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Doctor Who: The Robots of Death

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Doctor Who: The Robots of Death + Doctor Who: The Face of Evil
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Product Details

  • Actors: Various
  • Directors: Various
  • Format: AC-3, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Special Edition
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: March 13 2012
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • ASIN: B005SH63H4
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #27,805 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Product Description

Doctor Who: Robots of Death, The: Special Edition (DVD)

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Most helpful customer reviews

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Tom Baker at his best and one of the best stories from his era. Would you like a Jelly baby?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 18 reviews
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
about time this great Who story got some decent dvd extras Dec 6 2011
By feedthecat - Published on
When this superb four episode story from the last of the Hinchcliffe-Holmes years of Tom Baker's stint as the fourth Doctor was first released on dvd years ago (in 2000 or 2001 ~ it was one of the first on disc in any event), the extras were pretty much limited to (audio) commentary from producer Hinchcliffe and writer Chris Boucher and a photo gallery. Guess they just figured that we Who fans would be so estatic about no longer having to watch our worn VHS tapes any more that we wouldn't mind being gypped on the "special features".

After years of waiting, we're finally being given a remastered version of 1977's THE ROBOTS OF DEATH and one that comes with some of the extras that we've come to expect, such as a new commentary track - featuring Baker, Louise Jameson ("Leela"), Pamela Salem ("Toos"), and director Michael Briant - plus the one from the original dvd release, a "making of" doc entitled "The Sandmine Murders", and another doc concerning "robophobia" - that is, if this US/Canada re-release has the same extras as the Special Edition that's part of the REVISITATIONS 3 box set that will be released in the UK also next year (that set also includes new editions of THE THREE DOCTORS and THE TOMB OF THE CYBERMEN). Might also note that the price of this single disc SPECIAL EDITION of Doctor Who story #90 is comparable to some of the other dvd re-releases.

As for the plot ... well, I don't want to give too much away to Amazon shoppers who've never seen this all time Who classic, so I'll just state that the Doctor and his new "companion" Leela (the Doctor just met the knife-wielding, Janis thorn-throwing member of the tribe called "The Sevateem" in the previous story, "The Face of Evil") arrive on a sandmining vehicle operating on an uninhabited planet and soon find themselves under suspicion for a crewmember's murder. While the Doctor and Leela are a treat to watch in action and the various crewmembers prove a diverse and interesting cast of characters, it's the robots who steal the show, not only for their soft, dulcet voices and striking design, but also for the chilling manner that they ... well, as I said, don't wanna give too much away. Enjoy.

Incidentally, while it's nice that BBC Video/2 Entertain is releasing new, special editions of many Who classics with better picture quality and the addition of Making Of docs, I, personally, wd have preferred if they had first turned their attention to releasing stories that have YET to be put out on dvd, such as "The Daemons" (Story 59). Just my "two cents".
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
One of My Favorite Fourth Doctor Stories July 4 2014
By Keitheaux - Published on
Verified Purchase
This Fourth Doctor and Leela adventure takes place in the future on a large sand-miner on an alien world. The small human crew is aided by a larger number of robots that are the basic labor force of their future society. Then a crewman is murdered at the same time the Doctor and Leela arrive. Who did this? It had to be a human, didn't it? Robots can't harm people of course . . .

This special edition has a number special features including a "making of" and a humorous look at the history of robots. The baroque interior sets of the future sand-miner and the excellent consumes and make-up give this a very different and attractive visual appearance. How this came to be was well explained in the making-of special.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Seeking the "Best Of" Early Dr. Who June 21 2014
By Tinfoot - Published on
Verified Purchase
This was actually the first time I have watched this story, having missed it as a kid and only recently bought it for my collection, so I come to it with a relatively fresh perspective.

I have been watching my Tom Baker collection one by one in sequence from the beginning, ROBOT (Story 75), with an eye towards seeking out the best of early Dr. Who... and THE ROBOTS OF DEATH is definitely not one. In fact, in brutal honesty, this is the first "mediocre" adventure out of the 16 serials so far for two very particular reasons:

● Those hats! Jeeze, as much as the art deco settings are wonderful to look at, those crazy hats upstage EVERYTHING. It's like passing by a bad accident, you struggle to keep your eyes away from focusing on it. It's an actual relief towards the end when the remaining crew is running around without them on. Even the players made obliquely unhappy references to them in the documentaries and commentaries (there are two separate commentary tracks on this edition).

● The Mine Crawler captain, Russell Hunter, and the baddie, David Collings, give very creditable performances. However, the rest of the crew act in the most theatrically melodramatic way that it makes even me cringe. It -really- is over the top, and nothing in the preceding 15 serials can compare, not even the wooden performance by the Court Astrologer in THE MASQUE OF MANDRAGORA. One of the truly sparkling aspects of all the adventures, in spite of a beggarly BBC budget, is the awe inspiring, highly accomplished actors and actresses that jumped for even a small role in Dr. Who- yet in this particular case, I think Television Presence was subsumed in Stage Exaggeration.

All the other elements are good (well, maybe not those robot shoes): plot, pacing, settings, subtle details galore. Certainly get THE ROBOTS OF DEATH for a collection, but if simply seeking the best of early Dr. Who, skip this and head directly to the next serial, the seminal THE TALONS OF WENG-CHIANG.
Another Homerun Aug. 18 2013
By Jim Phillips - Published on
Verified Purchase
I am really getting addicted to these special editions. The extras always make it worthwhile. Extra commentary tracks and the making of are included in this release.
Robots are cool. Jan. 12 2013
By Patrick Correa - Published on
As a huge fan of Transformers, Isaac Asimov & just about any anime with giant mecha, I can say I've always loved stories about robots both big & small. Seeing my favorite Doctor & my favorite companion in a story involving futuristic robots is like a dream come true, and the story did not disappoint in the least. It had a claustrophobic feel to it, which really added to the tension. The robot costumes actually look quite good, especially compared to some of the ones the earlier Doctors have faced. Another classic Doctor Who from the Tom Baker era. In fact, I'd say it's quite possibly my favorite episode.