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4.6 out of 5 stars
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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The fifth story from Patrick Troughton's second year as Doctor Who comes to DVD.

Originally a story of six twenty five minute long black and white episodes, all that existed in the bbc archive of this one till recently was episode one. The others having fallen foul of the BBC's old policy of wiping tapes of programmes they never expected to repeat or to have any long term value.

Copies of episodes two, four, five and six were recently found, though. All have been restored to pretty decent picture quality.

Episode three remains gone. To allow for a quick release of the story on DVD, this has episode three recreated by using the original soundtrack and photos that were taken of it at the time that it was broadcast.

The story was the second appearance of the Yeti. And their controller, the great intelligence. The Doctor, plus companions Jamie and Victoria, had met them three stories before, in 'The Abominable Snowmen.' Which was set in 1930's Tibet. And where they met scientist Professor Travers.

The Web of Fear starts with a quick scene that resolves the cliffhanger ending to the last episode of preceding story 'The Enemy of the World' [and which really belongs in the finale episode of that, but was presumably held over just to create a cliffhanger] and then it's 1960's London. Where the much older Travers lets his curiosity get the better of him. The Yeti return.

As London falls foul of a strange fungus, and the Yeti prowl the streets of the city and Underground tunnels, a small army unit is trying to fight back. When the Doctor and friends join them they find they have enemies both outside the military base. And within....

'The one with the Yeti in the London Underground' comes from the fact that this one did stick in the public consciousness for a long time, and attained the status of lost classic as a result.

It's nearly all studio bound, apart from a couple of location bits. Including a superbly directed battle sequence as the Army take on the Yeti. The jump from film material to video recording is noticeable but you do get used to it.

The sets are very good - as a result of which London Underground did inquire how the BBC had gotten to film in the tube without their permission. And the supporting cast are all well drawn. The actor playing reporter Chorley seems to try and imitate Alan Whicker - a name that would have meant a lot to viewers at the time - Travers' scientist daughter comes over as being genuinely intelligent. Although with somewhat stereotypical Welshman Private Evans, who is always looking to get away from danger, you can never be sure if he's meant to be comic relief or not and his attitude does get a bit annoying at times.

Amongst the character is a military man called Col. Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart. Whose first meeting with the Doctor occurs off camera and whose first appearance is in the missing episode three. Nicholas Courtney delivers a commanding performance from the off. And thus the name of the character became rather familiar...

Amongst these people though is someone who is working for the intelligence. This fact creates a great deal of tension [to audiences of the time, who had never seen Lethbridge-Stewart before, they wouldn't have known whether to trust him or not] an the best of the story is in parts three and four when things all seem to go against the humans, and a great deal of tension and action and shocks await.

Six parters could always be overlong, and this possibly is. Ultimately it's perhaps an overlong runaround. But it's a really good one.

Can it live up to it's reputation and the memories of those who saw it at the time?

That's for the viewer to decide. But at least you can get a chance to do so. Which is great.

The dvd has the following language and subtitle options:

Languages: English.

Subtitles: English.

It's English audio captioned.

The only extra whatsoever is a trailer for the story 'The Enemy of the World' on dvd. And since that one is already out, the trailer is thus 'also available' rather than 'coming soon.'
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VINE VOICEon 24 October 2014
A few years ago watching The Web Of Fear was only a Doctor Who fans dream. However this story has now been found (appart from Episode 3) and quickly released on dvd. There are no special features or commentary track but what you get is one of the best Doctor Who stories ever. The Web Of fear sees Patrick Troughton's Doctor battling the Yeti and The Great Intelligence, who previously appeared in The Abominable Snowmen. The Web Of Fear also see the first appearance of Colonel Lethbridge Stewart (late to be promoted to Brigadier) played by the late (and much missed) Nick Courtney. The picture and sound quality is excellent and Episode 3 has been reconstructed using photos and the original soundtrack of the episode. So if you enjoy classic Doctor Who then The Web Of Fear is well worth watching.
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on 17 March 2016
Yay it's the Yeti! Not many of Patrick Troughton's series remain and I had thought that the Abomnible Snowman monster had been wiped out for good but it has survived in the Web of Fear. One episode is partly only audio with static pictures but that doesn't effect the story at all. These are the days of intriguing adventures with a Doctor who does not have all the answers until, like a detective with infinite wisdom, he discovers the alien truth. Brilliant!
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on 30 September 2014
This along with The Enemy Of The World are a Doctor Who / TV Sci-Fi fan's dream come true.

Shame Episode 3 is still missing but it has been reconstructed using John Cura's Off Screen Stills and is superb.

Worth it for the price, just don't expect any new documentary or added extras as this is a bare bones release but worth it for a classic slice of 1960's British TV Sci-Fi.

I mean, it's Patrick Troughton, the introduction of Colonel Alistair Gordon Lethbridge Stewart and the Yeti in the London Underground - what more do you need?
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VINE VOICEon 11 August 2014
At last, a fairly complete Yeti adventure with the second doctor. One episode is made up of a number of stills with the original soundtrack, but the other five episodes are complete and ä joy to watch. This is also one of the few early Who's that I can really see why I was scared as a child! This has kept well (dramatically).
Your collection needs this.
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on 9 June 2015
As a formerly lost story (and being too young to have seen it when first aired) I had heard of the popularity of the Web of Fear as a classic story of legend. I must admit it was far better than the later Troughton stories and really lives up to the mythos that had surrounded it. A must-have.
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on 30 September 2015
Just wonderful to be able to finally see this on screen after so many years. Pity about the one missing episode and a shame about the lack of extras but no doubt there will be a Special Edition at some point.
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on 13 November 2015
Bought this for my son, a diehard Doc Who fan from way back.One of the best stories ever and great resolution on the video, especially for the age.
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on 23 July 2017
bit dated but great
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on 1 May 2017
great
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