Doctor Who: The E-Space Trilogy (Full Circle / State of Decay / Warriors' Gate) [DVD]
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The E-Space Trilogy contains the following:Full Circle: The Doctor discovers the TARDIS has fallen into E-Space and landed on the planet Alzarius. Its only inhabitants live on a vast, dilapidated spaceship which they have been attempting to repair for generations in order to return to their home planet. But Mistfall, a legendary time of terror, is coming again to Alzarius, and an eerie menace is rising out of the misty marshes. The Doctor and Romana must solve the riddle of the strange Marshmen if they are to have any chance of returning to their own universe.
State of Decay: Searching for a way out of E-Space, the Doctor and Romana, joined by a young stowaway, land on an Earth-like planet. Here the people live in fear of 'the Three who Rule'; cruel lords who live in a high tower overlooking their village. Suppressing all learning to keep their subjects ignorant and helpless, what chilling secret are these ruthless monarchs concealing? An ancient evil is rising once again and only the Doctor and Romana can destroy it.
Warriors’ Gate: A strange creature forces its way into the TARDIS steering them to a white void occupied only by the ruins of an old building and a spaceship. This empty space is a gateway to the past and future and the creature responsible for taking them there is Biroc, a Tharil, an enslaved race. The gateway offers the only exit out of E-Sapce, but the void is contracting. Are the Doctor and his friends fated to spend eternity in E-Space? And what final shock revelation awaits the Doctor?
Disc 1 - Full CircleCommentary – with actor Matthew Waterhouse, writer Andrew Smith and script editor Christopher H. Bidmead. All Aboard the Starliner – cast and crew look back at the making of this story. K-9 in E-Space – a look at the robot dog's role in the E-Space arc. With actors Lalla Ward, John Leeson, script editor Christopher H Bidmead, writers Andrew Smith and Terrance Dicks. Swap Shop – Noel Edmonds chats to Matthew Waterhouse and takes calls from viewers of the Saturday morning entertainment show after Waterhouse's first appearance as Adric. E-Space – Fact or Fiction? - Could E-Space really exist? A look at the science behind the concept of Exo-Space featuring script editor Christopher H Bidmead, visual effects designer (and Fellow of the British Interplanetary Society) Mat Irvine, authors Stephen Baxter and Paul Parsons, planetary scientist Dr Andrew Ball and astronomer and television presenter Sir Patrick Moore. Continuity – BBC continuity announcements from the original transmission. Photo Gallery Isolated Score Coming Soon PDF Material Programme Subtitles Subtitle Production Notes
Disc 2 - State of Decay
Commentary with actor Matthew Waterhouse, director Peter Moffatt and writer Terrance Dicks. The Vampire Lovers – cast and crew look back at the making of this story. Film Trims – mute 35mm film trims from the model effects filming for the story, featuring alternative takes of the Tower and the scout ship staking the Great Vampire. Leaves of Blood – a history of Vampires in literary fiction featuring authors Ramsey Campbell, Stephen Gallagher, Kim Newman, Pete Crowther, Simon Clark, Alison L R Davies, Chris Fowler and vampire specialist Dr Tina Rath. The Blood Show – a fascinating insight into the use and meaning of blood in society and culture. The Frayling Reading – cultural historian Sir Christopher Frayling looks at State of Decay with reference to the vampire stories of film and literature. Continuity – BBC continuity announcements from the original transmission. Photo Gallery Isolated Score Coming Soon PDF Material Programme Subtitles Subtitle Production Notes
Disc 3 - Warriors' Gate
Commentary with actors Lalla Ward and John Leeson, director Paul Joyce, script editor Christopher H Bidmead and visual effects designer Mat Irvine. The Dreaming – cast and crew look back at the troubled making of this story. The Boy with the Golden Star – actor Matthew Waterhouse looks back on his time on the show. Lalla's Wardrobe – a trip through Romana's time on the show via the medium of the many costumes actress Lalla Ward wore along the way. It’s a one-off Frockumentary like you’ve never seen before. Extended and Deleted Scenes – missing scenes from an earlier edit of ep. two. Continuity – BBC1 continuity announcements from the original transmission. Photo Gallery Isolated Score Easter Egg – Mat Irvine talks about the Gundan axes and his own on-screen role in Warriors' Gate. Coming Soon PDF Material Programme Subtitles Production Notes
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Full Circle is a 'homage' to Creature From The Black Lagoon concerning a spacecraft and a people who live in fear of the 'mists' which bring with them the dreaded marshmen. This story introduces us to new companion Adric. He was envisaged as an artful dodger. Perhaps someone should have told that to the script-writers. He comes across as arrogant, whiney and downright irritating. He is easily the least likeable of the teenaged gang, when surely he should be the one our sympathies lies with. Child genuises never work because it's impossible for the viewer to identify with them. Nice to see George Baker make a guest appearance, but otherwise this story is just a jumble of scientific twaddle and rubber spiders.
Warrior's Gate? It's the story where Romana and K9 leave. There are lion-faced aliens, pocket universes in mirrors and paper landscapes. It manages to be mildly entertaining.
By far the best of these three stories is State Of Decay, Dr Who's homage to vampires. There's an intriguing plot, some memorable villains and probably more blood than you've ever seen in Dr Who.
Full Circle was written by a teenager and introduces Adric - who really used to get on my nerves. Basically the TARDIS gets sucked into a new universe called E-space and they land on Alzariius where the locals face attack from monsters. It is a passable adventure, not the best but not the worst either. The Marshmen are rip-offs of the Creature from the Black Lagoon (which I think was admitted by the BBC!).
State of Decay is my favourite of the 3 DVDs. I read the Target novelisation some years ago and it is creepy and atmospheric. I really hope some day we get to see the Great Time War between the Time Lords and the Vampires. The story concerns the vampires who are planning on reviving the Great One - with dire consequences for everyone else.
Warrior's Gate introduced the Tharills the Lionesque warriors. This was one that I thought was better when I was younger - but it bored me a tad when I watched it again. It was also almost incomprehensible. And yes, I was gutted when Romana and K-9 left. As someone else said, things would never be the same again.
Typical of Doctor Who in the '70s, some of the special effects struggle a bit when translated to a high-resolution format, but that does not detract from three interlinked adventures that show plenty of imagination and some clever twists and turns as well as the moral issues that the Doctor and his companions face at times. This was an excellent purchase.
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The Doctor, Romana and K9 are attempting to get to Gallifrey but find themselves transported to E-Space which takes them out of their known...Read more
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