- Actors: Tom Baker, Lalla Ward, Julian Glover, Catherine Schell, Tom Chadbon
- Directors: Michael Hayes
- Writers: Graham Williams, David Agnew, Douglas Adams
- Producers: Graham Williams
- Format: VHS
- Studio: BBC
- VHS Release Date: 8 May 2001
- Run Time: 99 minutes
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- ASIN: B00005AME1
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 253,145 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
Another adventure for the intrepid time traveller. The Doctor (Tom Baker) and Romana (Lalla Ward) are holidaying in Paris when they stumble across the mysterious Count Scarlioni (Julian Glover) to steal the Mona Lisa. With the aid of inept detective Duggan (Tom Chadbon) they discover that the Count already has several Mona Lisas walled up in his cellar - all of them painted by Leonardo Da Vinci - and when the Doctor finds out that Scarlioni is also conducting time experiments he begins to realize that his latest foe is not all that he seems... Due in part to an independent television strike, this story achieved the series' highest ever viewing figures, with the final episode peaking at 16.1 million.
From the Back Cover
The Doctor and Romana are enjoying a well-earned break in Paris, relaxing in the gentle delights of the art galleries, the waterfront cafes, the Eiffel Tower... and the unexpected jumps in time that noone else seems to notice...
Rare treasures and once-lost masterpeices are suddenly appearing in auction houses all over the world, the only link to them all being the mysterious Count Scarlioni. But what project is he secretly financing in the basement of his Paris chateau?
The time-travellers meet up with Duggan, a private detective investigating the activities of the Count and his accomplices. Can Scarlioni be planning the most audacious and daring of all art thefts? Or are his ambitions much grander? Big enough to threaten the existence of the entire human race?
This story was broadcast on BBC1 between 29 September - 20 October 1979.
Top customer reviews
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This story has a charming playful script by Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy), a classy, stylish Parisian setting, plus you get a John Cleese cameo thrown in. Julian Glover plays the Count and Catherine Schell the Countess, and they both really HAM it up, but in a good way.
Tom Baker and Lalla Ward are really enjoying themselves here, and Tom's acting is so comically over the top that it reminds me of his narration for 'Little Britain'.
There is nothing else in the entire series like this episode, it's unique, more like a Pink Panther film than a typical Doctor Who story.
If you recognise the villian, it's Julian Glover, who also starred For Your Eyes Only, The Empire Strikes Back and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (all playing bad guys). Light relief comes in the form of Duggan, the over-zealous private eye.
Together with Logopolis and Full Circle, this is the best of the Tom Baker Doctor Whos.
You'll be hard-pressed to even try to find a better Doctor Who story on video and I'll admit I've been counting the days to this release... (I just happened to pick up a copy on the high street three days before its official release and couldn't resist)... Even if you're not a fan of the show and have just stumbled in here by accident, you MUST buy this and see what the show was all about...
Did I mention John Cleese is in it?
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