Doctor Who: Image of the Fendahl
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Doctor Who: Image of the Fendahl (DVD)
Tom Baker's Doctor encounters a monstrous creature that feeds on life itself in the chilling Image of the Fendahl, one of the more horrific story arcs from the venerable BBC science-fiction series Doctor Who. The Doctor and companion Leela (Louise Jameson) respond to time experiments on an ancient skull in modern-day England; the artifact belongs to the Fendahl, an extraterrestrial fiend with plans of world destruction. Though the Fendahl's sluglike acolytes leave something to be desired in the effects, the overall tone of the story is rich with mounting dread from the stars, which owes a nod to Nigel Kneale's Quatermass saga; the image of the idol-like Fendahl core is among the most indelible of the Baker era.
The Image of the Fendahl disc features the usual assortment of enjoyable extras that Doctor Who fans have come to expect from their hero's adventures on DVD. Baker and Jameson are joined on a jovial audio commentary by costars Wanda Ventham (the ill-fated Thea Ransome) and Edward Arthur (sturdy scientist Adam Colby). A 26-minute making-of featurette, "After Image," covers the departure of story editor Robert Holmes and the production team's struggles to work with the outdoor locations (Stargroves, owned at the time by Mick Jagger). There's also 11 minutes of deleted and extended scenes, as well as the by-now standard BBC 1 trailer for the story, text-only information track, production gallery, and Radio Times listings in PDF format for your PC or Mac; Easter Egg hunters will find an amusing clip on the Special Features menu of Jameson discussing a woeful-looking Leela doll. --Paul Gaita
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Top Customer Reviews
This story comes in Baker's fourth season, when the Golden Age was over and a new producer was at the helm. It's actually more entertaining than some of those dreary Golden Age stories, it is a Hell of a lot more fun than Mandragora or the silly Brain of Morbius. The Quatermass and the Pit rip-off plot about the origins of man is well used and there are amusing characters. But while the humor is good, it seems to detract from the suspense. The whole thing has a cool, gothic look and great atmosphere and overall, I like it better than some of the Golden Age stuff, which is overrated in my view.
It's quite memorable and I enjoy rewatching it, which says something and I really like things like the old lady who says to her Grandson, while helping battle the forces of evil, "There's gonna come a day when I'll be too old for this sorta thing!Read more ›
It's made abundantly clear that Thea is the focal point for the entire unfolding drama, but the other characters fail to notice that fact. It's clearly not due to ignorance, it's likely due to stupidity (or bad writing.) The Doctor bumbles about after breaking free and makes no attempt to track down Thea. Fendleman and Adam rabbit on about mutation and pentagrams - in front of our hapless heroine - and not ONCE does Adam say to Fendleman: "Y'know I saw this shimmering halo around Thea and some freaky Lovecraftian beasties crawling around her! Maybe we should stop the experiments!" Rather, he blurts out the Doctor's recommendation about X-Rays without mentioning the extraordinary reason WHY. Thea, perhaps tiring of her colleague's roundabout blather and lack of concern for her peculiar condition, ups and leaves. It never occurs to Adam to keep an eye on his tormented friend.Read more ›
Their experiments with the scanner plays havoc with the TARDIS, which is drawn to the grounds near Fetch Priory, where the team is based. The Doctor and Leela not only become involved with the happenings there, including a mysterious death, but with Jack Tyler and his elderly grandmother, who has precognitive powers. She and many of the villagers of Fetchborough believe in the old ways of superstition and magic. Logic has no place in her life but more human nature. "When most people believe what's said, that make it true." Jack says "Most people believed the earth was flat when it were round." She counters with, "Ah, but they behaved as if it were flat," emphasizing the word "behaved".
What Dr. Fendelman is unwittingly tampering with involves a creature from the Doctor's own mythology that began when a planet between Mars and Jupiter exploded. Unless the Doctor can stop them from messing with dangerous things, the population of Earth will go down from 4 billion people to 1 person.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
This is a rare below-average outing from Tom Baker's "Golden Period" as the doctor, which ran from his first appearance in "Robot" to his stand-alone turn in "The Deadly Assassin";... Read morePublished on July 30 2003 by M. G Watson
Though the idea of mankind's destiny being manipulated by aliens has been used several times in the series' history, this is still a first-rate and highly entertaining story. Read morePublished on June 29 2003 by Illumination
Dr. Who and Leela are pulled to earth by a time disruption to discover that a group of scientists are trying to sonically scan time to discover the origin of a 12 million year old... Read morePublished on April 22 2002
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