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Doctor Who: The Time Monster - Episode 64

 Unrated   DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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The six-episode "Time Monster" was the final story of the ninth season of Doctor Who, a strong run that also saw Jon Pertwee's Third Doctor in "The Day of the Daleks" and "The Sea Devils." The Master, Roger Delgado, is at the Newton Institute, experimenting with a fragment of crystal, which can summon Kronos, a time-eating entity from beyond space-time. The Doctor, Jo Grant (Katy Manning), and UNIT become involved in a sequence of strange temporal dislocations, eventually leading to ancient Atlantis itself. There Jo faces the Minotaur, played by Dave Prowse in a bull mask five years before he found fame as Darth Vader. "The Time Monster" is classic Doctor Who at its most surreal, the effects ranging from mediocre to functional, the Atlantis sets surprisingly lavish. The Doctor may escape from eternity by playing the scriptwriting equivalent of a get-out-of-jail-free card, but the sequence, in which his TARDIS is inside the Master's TARDIS, while the Master's TARDIS is simultaneously inside the Doctor's TARDIS, is a mind-bending highlight. --Gary S. Dalkin

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Oddly watchable June 8 2003
Format:VHS Tape
Yes, I know it's as corny as a tin of bully beef, but there is an odd aspect to this one. I did a course in relativity a year or two back, and it was notable that it started with the historical background, Newtonian physics, and some propositions about space and time. One of these was the continuity of space, and the isotropy of space. Only then did it go onto the usual stuff about electrodynamics, and Lorentz and so forth. It has to be said that these are "a priori" assumptions that undergird an awful lot of subsequent mathematics, and I did think while reading that material that this story was a direct challenge to these assumptions. Granular, or interstitial time? Maybe not so crazy, who knows. I am still fascinated by the geometric paradoxes of box (a) inside box (b), inside box (a), and so forth. I remember reading through a heap of books on Homotopy and Homology at Uni, just because way back when I was 8 or so, this story came along. Still don't know if there isn't something in all this that might stand up. And it's maybe true, that in spite of all the horrible stage work, and cak handed acting, these ideas are actually the main grip here, and are the things that back up the story. Because you just can't write the whole thing off... not quite...
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By A Customer
Format:VHS Tape
This is probably the weakest John Pertwee Dr. Who video I have
ever seen. It starts out where Dr. Who has a dream about the time
monster Kronus. Then it goes to where the Master is working on a college campus doing a time experiment with some helpers. The Master brings this time monster from Atlantis. It is just a guy in a bird outfit flying around. This is probably the worst monster I have ever seen in any Dr. Who video. Then it turns into a UNIT adventure with
UNIT fighting soldiers from midevil times. This is typical Dr. Who
when they build up character rolls like Captain Yates, then you
never hear from them that rest of the show. The Doctor and Jo Grant
follow the Master in their TARDISs, then end up in Atlantis. The
Atlantis set is not too bad with some fairly good actors that get
built up then are not used again the rest of the show. There is a
few scenes of the Atlantis queen's cleavage, which is very unlike a
John Pertwee Dr. Who episode. Even the Master has a half romantic
scene with the queen. The Doctor and Joe do a TARDIS "time ram" with the Master, then return back to 20th century earth. If you are a huge John Pertwee Dr. Who fan this may be worth buying if it's the one you are missing from your collection. It sort of filled in the gaps for me. If you are starting your Dr. Who collection I would recommed other John Pertwee Dr. Who videos like Frontier in Space, Terror of the Autons, Planet of the Spiders, The Green Death, or Death to the Daleks. Again if you are not a huge John Pertwee Dr. Who fan I would not recommend this video.
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4.0 out of 5 stars So that's what happened to Atlantis! Jan. 25 2003
Format:VHS Tape
The Doctor has a nightmare, more a premonition, of the Master being in control using a trident-shaped crystal, and it turns out he is right. His nemesis, using the alias Professor Thascales, has invented a time-device called TOMTIT (Transmission Of Matter Through Interstitial Time) at Wooton, just out of Cambridge. It basically dematerializes an object, sends it through "the crack between now and now" and rematerializes it at its destination. And yes, it does use a trident-shaped crystal. He has Dr. Ruth Ingram and her brother Stuart as his assistants.
The Brigadier is sent as a UNIT observer, but during a trial run, Stuart is aged to an octagenarian. The Master then calls for Kronos, who is a chronovore, dangerous creatures living in the time vortex that cab "swallow a life as quickly as a boa constrictor can swallow a rabbit. Fur and all!"
The Doctor and Jo arrive at Wooton because they detect the Master's TARDIS and comes upon an aged Stuart, who mentions the name Kronos. From then, it's the Doctor and Jo against the Master and Krasis, the high priest of Atlantis who unwittingly helps the Master in controlling the dangerous chronovore.
One interesting goof is the word "chronovore." "Chrono" is Greek, while "vore" is Latin. Surely "chronophage" should have been more appropriate, or "temporavore"? Another is the V-1 rocket that the Master brings through time against Yates' convoy. A farmer remembers a V-1 striking in the exact area in 1944. Unless there was more than one V-1 attack in that area, it's impossible for the farmer remembering it if it had been taken out of time. And Aidan Murphy (Hippias) has a shrill and irritating voice.
Other items: the Doctor and the Master's TARDIS materializing within each other is later duplicated in Logopolis.
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2.0 out of 5 stars NOT one to put at the top of your buying list. Jan. 18 2003
Format:VHS Tape
This is definitely not "Doctor Who" at its peak. This show could do both serious sci-fi drama or undemanding kids entertainment, but I don't think it managed to get either one right here. Even the high-camp Pertwee era, which was aimed straight at the kids, was usually much better than this. It is entertaining in its way, but despite being full of action and event, I thought it really went nowhere and didn't take an interesting route getting there.
I could really pick it apart, but I won't bother. If you're a Doctor Who fan, you're probably familiar with it enough to know whether you want to buy it. But if you're not, I'd definitely reccomend you pick up something else first. "Doctor Who" was an amazing TV show, but precious little in this story will give you any idea why. Save this one for later.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Story Idea
The Good:
Classic sci-fi concepts - Nice tie in with Atlantis
Great restoration work for the epsiodes (except parts of episode 6)
UNIT is involved, but they're there... Read more
Published 17 months ago by Fred Cain
1.0 out of 5 stars End of Pier Show Shenanigans
I literaly fell off my couch laughing at this tosh, I adore the Pertwee era but this is probably one of the worst examples of early 70s Doctor Who. Read more
Published on Jan. 13 2011 by Glenn Ogden
4.0 out of 5 stars Good story maybe a bit padded and comical at times
Basically a decent story with some great performances maybe this story goes on too long. Additionally the "Monster: suffers as many of the 70's stories. Read more
Published on Jan. 26 2004 by Martin Richards
2.0 out of 5 stars "I'm sorry to hear about your coccyx, too, Miss Grant..."
Before "Battlefield", there was The time Monster. A mix of sci-fi and Atlantean mythlogy. The Time Monster strarts out decent enough, with the return of the Master... Read more
Published on May 20 2003 by Huntsmæñus
5.0 out of 5 stars great story
I really love Pertwee's Doctor. I like most of the Doctors, but I really love his and this is one of his best. Well thought out and not overly cheezy.
Published on March 6 2003 by Michael O. Byrd
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Who
While VHS is a dying format, those of us who have devoted most of our lives to collecting Doctor Who videos can't resist buying them.
Since Dr. Read more
Published on Jan. 27 2003 by Alan D. Patten III
4.0 out of 5 stars Groovy, hi-camp fun
Well, it's not the best of the Pertwee era, but it's not the worst, and it's certainly good fun. And Roger Delgado is true to form as the best Master of all Time and Space. Read more
Published on Nov. 20 2002 by Shane Spangler
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