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Doctor Who Reviews: The Time Meddler

July 1965. Technological innovations yet to be discovered. It can only mean one thing. Tomorrow’s World. Unleashed to an unsuspecting public, the much-loved gathering of weird and wonderful gizmos was to prove highly popular for the next few decades: well, until that creepy floating baby got too much. In the process, it produced my all-time favourite TV theme tune in the form of Johnny Dankworth’s brilliant, jazzy “Fried Egg” theme that was the signature tune throughout the 1970s. Sorry, I’m supposed to be writing about The Time Meddler, which, by coincidence, went out in July 1965 too - and what do you know - revolved around futuristic devices cropping up in an age which would have reacted with head-scratching bafflement....

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Doctor Who Reviews: Galaxy Four

No look-y. No like-y. The terrifying Take Me Out continues as a clutch of hapless blokes try to win over a gaggle of shrieking hen party members. The aim of the game is for the men to try and win at least one date, something that hardly happens, since they get ripped to shreds by the highly critical females, who switch off their booth lights with a metaphorical nyer-nyer-nyer-nyer-nyer. All that power, it’s frightening. The women in Galaxy Four have this sort of power, too. The Drahvins are a slightly more restrained version of the Take Me Out coven, but they neatly sum up the main moral message of Galaxy Four, which is “Don’t Judge A Book By Its Cover”....

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Doctor Who Reviews: Mission To The Unknown

Mission To The Unknown is a relevant title, not only for the luckless Marc Cory, but also for the viewer at home. 1965 audiences must have been baffled at the lack of The Doctor, Vicki and Steven. There’s not even a brief introductory clip of The Doctor going: “What’s that, my boy? A week off, hmmmm? Do I still get my regular fee, though?” These days, Doctor-lite episodes are more common. What’s jarring about Mission To The Unknown is that there’s not even a single glimpse of The Doctor. At least, today, The Doctor’s still managed to crop up for a couple of minutes. While today’s Doctor-lite episodes are carried by award-winning actresses or the man from Hustle, Mission To...

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Doctor Who Reviews: The Myth Makers

Pick a card. Any card. OK, now memorise it. What’s that? You can’t? Odds are then, that out of the Doctor Who pack of cards, you have just selected The Myth Makers, or as I call it, The Historical Story That Time Forgot. Think of Doctor Who historical adventures, and it’s a safe bet that the first ones to spring to mind will include Marco Polo, The Aztecs or The Crusade. Unfortunately, the historical yarns of Season Three are less likely to roll off the tongue when discussing the merits of Doctor Who stories that are set in the past. This is partly because neither The Myth Makers nor The Massacre exist in the BBC archives, and partly because neither...

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Doctor Who Reviews: The Daleks' Master Plan

If Mission To The Unknown was a day return ticket, then The Daleks’ Master Plan is an extensive round-the-world trip. Following the sneak preview (and just before The Myth Makers annoyingly barged in), The Daleks’ Master Plan can be seen as a series in its own right: A whole 12 episodes that went out in the cold winter of 1965/66. Of course, today, that trip has been considerably cut short, since only three episodes exist in their entirety (as well as a few surviving clips). The recent recovery of the second instalment, Day Of Armageddon, does at least hold out hope that there may be more lost episodes sitting out there somewhere in the world. The only alternative is to...

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