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Doctor Who - The Greatest Show in the Galaxy [DVD] 
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Although Ace hates clowns, the Doctor decides to take his companion to the Psychic Circus on the planet Segonax. There they find a group of scared performers who live in fear of the sinister and creepy Chief Clown.
But what is so dangerous about this particular circus, why is there such a small audience and will Ace be able to overcome her fear before it’s too late?
• Commentary With actors Sophie Aldred (Ace), Jessica Martin (Mags) and Christopher Guard (Bellboy), writer Stephen Wyatt, script editor Andrew Cartmel and composer Mark Ayres. Moderated by Toby Hadoke.
• The Show Must Go On Cast and crew look back on the making of this story.
• Deleted and Extended Scenes
• Model Effects Unused model effects shots originally intended for the story.
• The Psychic Circus A music video set to a song written by Christopher Guard and featuring vocals by Christopher Guard, Jessica Martin and TP McKenna. Produced by Mark Ayres.
• ‘Remembrance’ Demo Two scenes from Remembrance of the Daleks re-scored by Mark Ayres.
• Tomorrow’s Times – The Seventh Doctor The on-going series looking at the press coverage of Doctor Who reaches the Sylvester McCoy era. Presented by Anneke Wills.
• Victoria Wood Doctor Who sketch from Victoria Wood – As Seen on TV.
• Radio Times listings (DVD-ROM)
• Programme Subtitles
• Production Information Subtitles
• Photo Gallery
• Coming Soon Trailer
• Digitally remastered picture and sound quality
The story was originally broadcast on BBC1 between 14th December 1988 – 4th January 1989.
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Negatives: Little continuity error with Ace wearing Bellboy's ring on her jacket in the previous story, Silver Nemesis.
Episode 1 is a tad slow as well.
9.5/10 highly recommend it!!!
This intelligent writing lasts to the very end. Neither the (one has to admit it) at times wonky and somewhat laughable models nor the quarry setting destroy the excellence of the script. All the characters are memorable in their distinct ways, and there are winning performances, particularly by the actors of the Chief Clown - as many others have pointed out - and Maggs, as well as the leads.
Two notes: the opening attempted flight of BellBoy and Flower Child seeks to explain why flight is no answer; the critic on AVClub, I think it is, points out the metaphorical dimensions of the story which he thinks the crew and cast are more interested in - namely the need to entertain a critical public (the three in the tent), the desperate attempts of the BBC executives (the three main carnies) to find an entertaining act, the fact that whether a show (like Dr. Who) survives or not is at the whim of a fickle, bored an distracted audience. What they think of your show literally determines whether the show lives or dies (= is cancelled). Pretty convincing interpretation to me, along with the less than subtle crack at fandom.
Too many plots move so predictably that you have figured out the traps, the dangers and the ending way before the characters do. This story is a very honourable exception. Well done the script writer. It was not the show's fault that it was so undermined and underfunded, and had to wait many years for a decent budget that would have made this story exceptional in appearance as well as plot. As it was everyone did well.
Following the teleportation into the Tardis of an advertisting robot(nice touch) the Dr and Ace go to see the Psychic Circus but soon discover that what with the lack of audience, death dealing bus conductor (played by Dean Hollingsworth also an android in Timelash)and strange family watching the shows, something evil lurks at the heart of it.
Sylvester is the dark Doctor here. Ace clearly doesn't want to go due to a fear of clowns but he insists and seems to revel a bit in the goings on. Great performance from Sylvester who is given a neat scene to reveal is skills form his earliest showbiz incarnation as a physical performer e.g escapology and magic tricks. (interestingly Cartmel reveals in the commentary that he wasn't in favour of the way it was done)
Ace's fear of clowns give something different for Sophie Aldred to do & it's good to see a chink in Ace's armour. Her best scenes are with Christopher Guard the 2 working really well together.
Great guest cast most notably Ian Reddington's Chief Clown who switches form an almost Stephen Fry demeanour to menacing very effectively, T P McKenna's bombastic explorer Captain Cook (revealed in the info titles to have been inspired by politician Lord Hailsham!) and Jessica Martin's Maggs. Watch also for Daniel Peacock's Nord and the stallslady played by Sitcom legend Peggy Mount!
Well directed and the tents, plus location filming all convince us the circus is real. Some effects inevitably fail to look good after all this time (wonder if in a few years people will say that about Christopher Eccelston's stories?). Coolest moment? Sylv strolls nonchalantly off with a huge explosion behind him!
Good remastering although as well as delivering a good picture it has sharply pointed out how knackered that tardis was inside and out, by this time!
The pic n' mix commentary is the best in some time. It's funny e.g. cartmel recalls during the filming in the Elstree car park the "Allo Allo Girls doing a Can Can!"Sophie says this was his dream and also tells us that the custard and sweetcorn her and Sylv had to eat may be the forerunner of Matt Smith's fishfingers in custard! It's informative e.g. the original story idea was a bit more space museum and would have featured home of a Who Exhibition of the time Longleat and there are interesting view points e.g. Mark Ayres says that a lot of JNT's ideas didn't work but when they did they were terrific and he did give new talent chances. The Moderator Toby Hadoke shocks them all by referring to Daniel Peacock's character as dead in such a way they think he means the actor and are shocked, whoops! He does clarify himself thankfully.
There are deleted/extended scenes and and unused effects shot put into context by Mike Tucker's introduction. The shot looks a bit like his Red Dwarf work.
There's The Psychic Circus a song sung by Christopher Guard, Jessica Martin and (channelling Vincent Price in Thriller) T P Mckenna about the story, made into a video with clips.
Mark Ayres' test run on scenes from Remembrance of the Daleks is synced up to the action for us and there's a mildly amusing sketch with Jim Broadbent as the Dr.
Tomorrow's Times covers the 7th Doctor's Era, a period when the show was not loved by Fleet Street. You may need a stiff drink!
Best saved til last "The Show Must Go On" is a terrific making of covering the story's genesis, how part of the way through filming the unavailability of studios led to the cancellation before setting up a marquee in Elstree car park saved the day. As in the commentary tribute is paid to JNT as the man who saved the show. A fantastic doc. Just a shame that as in the commentary, there's no input from Sylv
I once said that I thought the extensive (even if mostly second hand)extras on Curse of Fenric made it doubtful, there would be a better DVD release. Delighted to be proved wrong, I recommend this to everyone!
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