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4.6 out of 5 stars
73
4.6 out of 5 stars
Doctor Who - The Keys Of Marinus [DVD] [1964]
Format: DVD|Change
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on 7 September 2017
Even though most reviews here are quite strong, I often hear this story described in less than stellar terms. In the extras, the episode's Designer even goes so far as to say he has nothing nice to say about this episode. But I actually really like this episode. It has a reasonably engaging story, it is well-paced for an early 1960s BBC production, and each episode packs a completely unique quest to collect the keys of Marinus. If you like classic Dr. Who, ignore the critics and give this one a go.
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on 18 May 2017
One of Hartnells best.
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on 5 October 2015
lovely thanks
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on 8 March 2017
Fantasic story, 145 minutes of great classic who! Great story, i would recomend to any who fan!
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on 22 August 2017
Excellent service and quality
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The Keys Of Marinus is a classic Doctor Who story that could have been one of the best ever produced if there had been more care in scripts and with the at times clumsy aliens and special effects.
It is a shame there was simply not enough time and money to give these story's justice.
The story is very clever, involving several different scenes looking for the five keys. The supporting acting is superb in these 6 episodes in particular Ian.
The final 2 episodes are far superior, I wont spoil it but I will say there are a few twists and turns that would go well in a good detective story.
William Hartnell takes a back seat for several episodes here, things were done differently in those days and believe it or not Doctor Who took a holiday half way through the production.
One telling statement is from the interview of the only segment included as a bonus extra. The gentleman who created the sets for this story was asked if he had any good things to say about The Keys Of Marinus, he answered none.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 30 September 2009
Back in 1963 nobody expected Doctor Who to be a major hit, or last very long. But then along came the daleks, and the show really took off. With it being on screen for over forty weeks of the year the pace of the production meant that it was sometimes hard for the production team to keep up.

So for the fifth story of the first season they turned to terry nation, who'd just created the daleks. One of a group of tv writers who were responsible for the vast majority of episodic drama of the time, he could turn out a script quickly and whenever required.

This story finds the tardis crew landing on the world of marinus. A machine there has the ability to remove evil from people's mind. But the keys that control it have been hidden all over the planet, lest they fall into the wrong hands. With the nasty creatures called the voord trying to seize the machine for themselves, the only hope the planet has is for the tardis crew to find the keys.

An episodic story ensues, with each key being in a very different location allowing for a different kind of adventure each week. and the inveitable confrontation with the voord in part six.

The limitations of this are manifold. William Hartnell was entitled to two weeks off so the doctor has to be written out in the middle of the story. the small budget and the technical limitations of the time and the need for new sets every week result in the whole thing being very stagy. And the voord, tipped to be the next big thing after the daleks, never really amount to much. in their first appearance they're men in wetsuits but in their next appearance in the story they're humanoid creatures who look like men in wetsuits.

And yet the whole thing proceeds very nicely. Like many old doctor whos you can watch this and admire how they made a purse [not quite a silk one] from a sow's ear. and the production does it's best. It doesn't have the problems of so many 1980's stories of poor production values down to bbc apathy of the time. It fights against those limitations.

This is not fast paced spectacular television, it's a nice little relic of days gone by and an entertaining little story with it.

the age of the whole thing means there's not much they could provide by way of extras.

there's a commentary from william russell [companion Ian] Carole Ann Ford [Companion Susan] the director John Gorrie and the Designer Raymond Cusick.

The one feature, the sets of marinus, is a nine minute long interview with raymond cusick about his work on the story. a fascinating look at the things designers had to contend with at the time he's a very good talker and an interesting listen. And very forthright with it. Don't switch off the extra till you've seen what's after the end credits.

In addition to the usual radio times listings of the story as a pdf file there's also one showing some sweet cards of the time which tell a short story involving the doctor and friends and the daleks and the voord.

there's also the usual items for this range: production information subtitles, coming soon trailer for a forthcoming doctor who dvd, a photo gallery of stills from the story and the production, english language subtitles and language track and audio captioning.

This is a single disc release, and I couldnt find any easter eggs. The dvd starts with a general trailer for the range but you can skip that by pressing the next button.

So whilst this may not be for every doctor who fan, it's not a bad record of an integral part of the show's very early days
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HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 7 August 2014
This is the fifth adventure of Dr Who, first aired in the first season way back in 1964. It features William Hartnell as the 1st Doctor, Carol Ann Ford as Susan, William Russell as Ian and last, but not least, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara. This is the second script for the show from Terry Nation, who had a lot to live up to after his creation of the Daleks a few months earlier.

This is a quest story, the crew land on an alien planet and are soon drawn into a quest to locate the four keys of Marinus, which will allow the possessor to do something or other. The whys and wherefores don’t seem to matter so much. The format allows the crew to be split up and go off on different adventures independently of each other. It also allowed William Hartnell to go off on holiday for a couple of weeks, so the Doctor doesn’t actually appear in episodes 3 and 4. This episodic nature gives each of the main characters a bit of limelight, which in the case of Ian and Barbara is very welcome, though unfortunately Susan is written as just screaming a lot. It also allows a wide variety of locations and situations, and the constant change helps keep the story feeling fresh and not becoming too boring.

That’s not to say that there aren’t problems. The plot is nonsensical for a start. And as usual the resources are not always up to the production team’s imaginations, so there are a few dodgy looking sets and effects. Also this has a disturbing theme of violence towards women running through it which I have always felt ill at ease with, and feels at odds with the liberal progressive vision that the producers often seemed to be trying to put over. The Doctor’s absence for two episodes is a particular problem, the script covers reasonably OK, but he leaves far too big a hole to fill easily.

As usual 2¦Entertain have done a great job with this release. The picture has been cleaned up and is in the best possible condition. There is a plethora of extras, including the production subtitles (I never watch old Who without them now) audio commentaries, a documentary on the sets, radio times listings, 8 mm footage from on set and a photo gallery. As good as it gets really. 4 stars in total – it’s a 3 star story but a 5 star DVD production, so on average 4.
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on 15 May 2017
Excellent story, following the assistants over two episodes without William Hartnell's Doctor allowing them to expand on their characters. Clever ending with Ian Chesterton getting the better of the leader of the Vords.
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on 22 July 2017
One of the best early doctor who series.
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