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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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Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Story Idea March 31 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
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 more for comedic value (Benton reverted to a baby, then back to an adult) and filler.

The Bad:
Picture quality is poor for some parts of episode 6 (not poor as in unwatchable, just slightly distracting).

The acronym TOMTIT (Transfer Of Matter Through Interstitial Time) is silly, but the concept is really neat and the tie in with Atlantis was well done. I also enjoyed the concept of Chronos and his race that exits outside time. UNIT is well used in this story and their presence gave me a sense of the family feel that existed between UNIT on Jon Pertwee's Doctor.

The acting was well done, the sets were really nice and the script was well written. The Atlantian costumes and the Chronos Monster were great ... for Doctor Who. The story was great - I like stories like these where you really don't need cgi effects to help tell the story.

The extras were okay. There really wasn't any "Making of" featurette - just an explanation of the science behind the "Transfer Of Matter Through Interstitial Time" device and real physics (24 minutes) interspersed with interviews with Katy Manning and Richard Franklin. I watched this before I watched the full episode and found it really helped me get into the story.

The featurette on the restoration of parts of this movie really gives you a sense of the amount of work involved. Hats off to the people who worked on this - they did a great job (excluding two parts of episode 6 of course where you can see lines bleeding to the right of the actors such as the Doctor and the Atlantian Queen).

Overall, a great addition to Doctor Who.
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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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Format:VHS Tape
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. The monster is as scary as a man in a sheet and too many of the early scenes repeat similar themes indicating padding. However basically a good story, the Master is in great form and I'm always happy to see Ingrid Pitt.
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Format:VHS Tape
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 working on TOMTIT, sort of a temporal matter transmission machine, while the Doctor hunts him down with clues he had in a dream. there are some interesting ideas, and our friends from UNIT have some humor included. But, like all Pertwe six-parters, The Time Monsters comes to a complete and sudden stop when they reach the mythological Atlantis. A few good lines can't help the last 2 episodes. The scenes betwen the Doctor's and the Master's TARDIS are amusing, but this can hardly salvage one of the worst of Season 9.
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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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Most recent customer reviews
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
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 So that's what happened to Atlantis!
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. Read more
Published on Jan. 25 2003 by Daniel J. Hamlow
2.0 out of 5 stars NOT one to put at the top of your buying list.
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... Read more
Published on Jan. 18 2003 by C. C. Cotham
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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