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Customer Review

on 28 August 2013
1966's The Tenth Planet is without doubt one of the greatest acheivements of Doctor Who & Television in General. This 4 part classic is the true genesis of a television programme that is still going strong 47 years later. I have always held this serial in high regard as apart from the introduction of the Cybermen and the concept of Regeneration, this is a cracking good script from one of the greatest eras in the shows history. By this point, Innes Lloyd {Producer} and Gerry Davis {Story Editor} have ingratiated themselves fully with the ins and outs of the show, and with a great amount of intelligence and courage, they produced one of the real highlights of Doctor Who's 4th season.

Just imagine if they had said, well, Bill's had a good run and so has the show, let's can it and make another police drama series. Luckily, this was not contemplated as both Innes and Gerry had vision. Vision that has made possible a show that this year celebrates it's 50th year on British Television. And of course, we must never overlook the fact that along with the concept of renewal, Gerry Davis and Kit Pedler also came up with the second greatest villians of all time, The Cybermen. Although primitive by todays standards, the Cybermen of The Tenth Planet are probably the must unnerving purely due to their closeness to conversion. A bit of hand here, a bit of motor there. Scary stuff, even now. I can't imagine what viewers in a paranoid 60's Cold War Britain would have thought. Dear me.

At heart, the real shock of the Tenth Planet is William Hartnell. The man that created a phenomenom was slowly winding down after 3 exaustive years in a very demanding part. Over the course of the last 3 series we have laughed and loved Bill's particular mannerisms and his completely solid professional conviction. I have always said that no Doctor since Hartnell has been able to convince me as easily as Bill does the utter almost scary seriousness of the greatest part on British Television. And I don't think there ever will be. It's a testament to a great man and a great actor that the part he created thrives 50 years hence forth.

The Tenth Planet is not to be missed, it's one of the true greats of Doctor Who. New beginnings and depressing ends have created an unbelievable masterpiece.

The DVD
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The BBC DVD Release of this iconic serial is a thing of beauty. From the cover to the extras, the DVD is an absolute must for any fan. Of course, everybody is concerned about the new animated episode 4, and all I will say is that it is a considerable improvement over The Reign of Terror. A much more measured pace fills the void in this 4 part classic. The 2000 tele-snap recon from the VHS has been included as well, but you really have to experience this story with the animated episode. A thing of real artistic simplicity and beauty. Fair play to the boys and girls at Planet 55, I hope we see more Hartnell era work from them in the future. The Crusade wink wink ;}.

I shall list the current line up of Extra's for those like myself who are eager to know the more trivial details of a DVD release. Enjoy;

1.Frozen Out - 29:08 - Making of.
2.Episode 4 - 24:20 - 2OOO Tele-Snap Reconstruction from the VHS Release.
3.Doctor Who Stories - Anneke Wills - 13:37 - Anneke Wills on Her Time on the Show.
4.The Golden Age - 15:48 - ???
5.Boys Boys Boys - 19:31 - A Look at the Doctor's Male Companions.
6.Companion Piece - 24:23 - A Look at the Role of the Companion in Doctor Who.
7.William Hartnell Interview - 03:16 - An Interview with a Legend - Newly Found.
8.Blue Peter - 09:04 - ???
9.Photo Gallery - 03:37 - Relevant Photo's from The Tenth Planet's Production.

Overall then, this is a landmark release for a landmark story from a landmark Doctor. It simply doesn't get better than this. Except an animated Power of the Daleks, we can all dream I suppose.

10/10.

Thank you.

M.B.
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