Doctor Who: Colony In Space DVD Review
“Colony In Space” juggles too many uninvolving stories.
“Colony In Space” is a third Doctor era story in which the Doctor and Jo Grant are brought to the planet Uxarieus by the Timelords. The reason? To have the Doctor stop the Master from using the powerful Doomsday Weapon. This is all later in the story however. First, the Doctor has to encounter colonists struggling to survive, mysterious native aliens, and a devious minerealogist survey team (IMC) that wants to take over the planet. How do all these stories connect? You’ll have to tune in to see (if you can make it through that is).
While Malcolm Hulke’s script is certainly busy with characters and subplots, it doesn’t exactly hold together. The episode is essentially a mash-up of formulaic “Doctor Who” staples ala the rock quarry setting, colonists, The Master’s evil plan, etc. Basically, there’s nothing new to be found in this cheap, recycled story.
The only reason to watch this episode is for the scenes between Jon Pertwee and Roger Delgado (The Master). The two have great on screen chemistry together and they save the episode from being a lifeless 6 parter. It’s a shame The Master doesn’t show up in the story until 77 minutes in as the episode could have benefited from more Master scenes.
Summary: “Doctor Who” completists will want to own this disc, but for casual fans, I’d recommend checking out other third Doctor era episodes like “Spearhead From Space.”
The fullscreen picture quality is sadly one of the poorest transfers of classic Who I’ve seen. The faded color picture is often blurry and there strange fluttering image errors that pop up now and then.
The Dolby Digital Mono audio track is better than the video quality. The audio is clean and clear throughout the episode.
* “Doctor Who” Series 6, Part 1, “Invasion Of The Dinosaurs,” and “The Android Invasion” trailers, photo gallery, Radio Times Listings, and info text.
* “From The Cutting Room Floor”- Nearly 13 minutes of mostly soundless alternate takes, footage, and model work.
* “IMC Needs You!”- A 25 minute making of that contains amusing animated bits, chats about the story, cast and crew interviews, etc.
* Commentary by Katy Manning, Toby Hadoke, Bernard Kay, Morris Perry, Michael Briant, Terrance Dicks, and Graeme Harper. A busy commentary that offers plenty of insightful discussions thanks to Toby Hadoke’s knowledgable moderation.
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