1 or just the first ten min
I really used to feel this ep wsa the worst of the last Tom Baker season but having just come from LEISURE HIVE...I'm much more open minded.
The TARDIS scenes, usually my favorite, are just okay here so far. Far more interesting are what I used to think were boring: the planet scenes. The religion vs science debate, old even for the 60s, is intriging here. Of course the scientists, called savants (! does that tell us the writers' opinions about science?), all wear their hair like the Moonbase women in UFO. Anyway, I can't stand that Jackie Hill is wasted (although she does do some good acting and has a meaty part) as Lexa, a religous fool who seems to be a villain and a *censored* or one or the other. Too bad she couldn't have been Barbara, as she played Barbara, first Doctor companion. And well done she was too.
What I don't understand is if the old guy Zasta knew the Doctor, then why not go the whole hog and introduce Barbara back into it anyway. I used to think that the human man (never named in the tv ep but probably in the novel) was originally supposed to be Ian but it could have easily been made Barbara.
Still, not all is lost as the planet seems to have some true debate going. Tom already has more jokes, ten minutes going into this than all of LEISURE HIVE and all the better for it.
Perhaps this all goes horribly wrong later?
More on part one later...
rest of 1 and part 2
Okay as the Doctor says, "A promising start" but...
Anyway we get pirates (who despite what some reviewers says aren't all that funny or menacing), a double (oh no, i'ts dull), a plant monster, no, two plant monsters or more, and an unnamed Earthling. And yet another blasted planet like the one in LEISURE HIVE this time with only one survivor...Meglos. And another jungle.
let's look at the bright side or the positive...after all aren't I known for that? The music is better than LEISURE HIVE (even the need to work in the DW theme is much better, see ep2). The music during the religious scenes is pretty good and does not get annoying until ep3 or so as it sounds later like DIE DIE DIE but for now it's good.
The sets looks great and both planets look like planets. The screens are amazing on first glance but some of the later CSO is poor. The jungle is well filmed and looks good (but not as good as CREATURE FROM THE PIT). The set up is well done.
The time trap...Meglos calls it a Chronic Histogapho or something but not a chronic hysterisus as it is called by the Doc and Romana. Not a bad idea but not logical but it's about time the show did a time loop trap, not done since THE TIME MONSTER or at least not done to the Doctor in any detail. It was done to the Fendahl. In any event, the script here is clever.
Then the Doc arrives on Tigella, quickly loses Romana but not ahead of Meglos. Tom makes Meglos suitably villainous and different but not by much. It all seems to get drab rather quickly. K9 loses his energy...
It's easy to see, if this was competing with BUCK ROGERS at the time, how viewers would go for that. It was fast paced, had more humor and light touches, better looking monsters for the most part, faster spaceships, and didn't take its popular robot sidekick for granted (Twiki) and used it to good effect rather than having reasons for it to be written out (JNT and Bidmead both hated K9 but then again JNT hated the know all Doctor and Romana too---"I frankly did'nt like it at all."
Lalla does a good job of acting among the cliches but still, JNT's era hasn't gotten off to a good start.
oh and in part two the TARDIS doors are left open again!
The Gallifreyan Embassy - Forum