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Doctor Who: Ep. 66 - Carnival of Monsters: Special Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Actors: Jon Pertwee
  • Format: 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.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • MPAA Rating: UNRATED
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • Release Date: April 10 2012
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • ASIN: B005SJGI90
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #26,786 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

Doctor Who ~ Carnival Of Monsters

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Top Customer Reviews

This dvd newer edition of the same Doctor who story is much more reasonably priced than the old one. Even though Jon Pertwee isn't one of my favourite actors to play the Doctor, he isn't my least favourite one either, This is my favourite Jon Pertwee story. And I like the colourful costumes of the Man & Lady who own the carnival.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa78e58ac) out of 5 stars 13 reviews
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7788a14) out of 5 stars Even President Zarb Would Have Approved of this Entertainment June 1 2012
By Phil Rosenbach - Published on
Here's yet another classic Doctor Who story that was re-released before all the other classic stories have been made available. 2|entertain wants your money, but this is one of the few re-releases that I feel may be worth it.

As always, I'm not going to give a synopsis of the story itself. If you don't know the story by now, there are plenty of other reviewers who will tell you all about it ad nauseam. Rather, I'm going to focus on what I believe will help you decide if this product is worthy of your hard earned wages by reviewing the extras which, in my opinion, can make or break a purchase.

DVD Audio Commentary - There are two of these, and I Love it! The first one features actress Katy Manning, and producer Barry Letts. Miss you Barry. And then there's a second one. The following people come and go from episode to episode, but the whole list consists of Cheryl Hall / (Shirma), Jenny McCracken / (Claire Daly), Peter Haliday / (Pletrac), Terrance Dicks / (Script Editor), and Brian Hodgson / credited as (Special Sound). Unfortunately, this second commentary is moderated by Toby Hadoke, who of course had nothing to do with the making of this story in any way whatsoever, so his intrusion into this commentary is personally unwanted by me. I wish the moths that ate his Doctor Who scarf would have then flown down his throat and eaten his larynx.

Text Commentary - This is different from the previous version. As I mentioned in a prior review, it irritates me that on occasion when a story is re-released with a new audio commentary, the old one is usually included. So why didn't they do that with the old text version as well? Call me greedy, but I want it all.

"Episode 2 - Early Edit" - This is self explanatory. Unless you ran two of these DVD's on two different monitors at the same time, you may not get a lot out of this. Some scenes are edited out, and some scenes are moved to episode 3. This is mildly interesting, but not something to make you "stop everything."

"Behind the Scenes" is a short series of clips of what happens off camera. It's too bad that this is so short because I personally could have appreciated more clips.

"Visual Effects Models" is just under nine minutes of... you guessed it. It`s fun, sometimes silly, and also educational to those interested in this type of material.

"Five Faces of Doctor Who" - I'm not sure why this is included. This is a promo for said same show. Completely unnecessary.

"Director's Amended Ending" is also self explanatory.

"CSO Demo" is a short demo featuring producer Barry Letts as he puts forth the benefits of CSO in Doctor Who. From a production point of view, it is interesting to see these early tests which were regularly used in the series, as well as countless others.

TARDIS cam no. 2 is a computer generated scene which offers nothing of consequence.


"Destroy All Monsters" is a somewhat humorous "making of" this story. Barry Letts, Terrance Dicks, and Katy Manning are some of the contributors to this piece which I highly recommend you watch.

"On Target with Ian Marter" - Many people associate Ian Marter as Harry Sullivan, one of the 4th Doctor's companions. Yet many people forget that he has a role in this story as well as Lt. John Andrews, or the fact that he novelized 9 of the classic stories. This wonderful piece tributes Ian, and some of the contributors include Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, miss you Lis, Terrance Dicks and Nicholas Courtney, miss you Nick. I humbly suggest that if you don't watch this, then you are missing out on a vital part of Doctor Who history.

"The A-Z of Gadgets and Gizmos" - This has nothing to do with the story, but it's a fun piece of Doctor Who Gadgetry. Watch it, enjoy it, and if you have to complain, you can leave a comment below this interview.

"Mary Celeste" is a piece on maritime history regarding missing ships. I personally found this to be historically interesting. Please check it out.

Do I need to hit the nail with a hammer by saying this has more extras than most people know what to do with. Quantity is not necessarily quality, and I dare say that it seems that they tried to pack the first disc full of extras just for the sake of packing it full of extras. But, the second disc makes up for the Adipose FAT, which is why I'm giving this a rating of 4 ½ Screeching Drashigs. If you have to decide on the 2003 release and this one, I say spend the few extra buck and get this one. MY BOTTOM LINE is that this is A MUST HAVE to anyone of the classic Doctor Who series, Barry Letts, John Pertwee, and Katy Manning. And who doesn't love Katy?

I hope that this review was helpful to you, and please feel free to express your opinion(s) on my review so that I can hopefully improve upon my future ones. Thank you for taking the time to read this, and hopefully, consider my humble opinion(s).
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa779eabc) out of 5 stars Yet another double-dip! Jan. 27 2012
By Scott K - Published on
Verified Purchase
I would really like to hear the explanation from BBC video (or 2|Entertain) as to why there are so many Double-dips lately! (My theory: now that we are nearing the end of what there is left to release, they are trying to fill in the gaps, so that there are at least two per release date--this is presumably for two reasons; one, to keep their revenue stream up and two, to keep Doctor Who "active" on the release schedule until the 50th anniversary next year. But this is just IMHO.)

This story was previously released on July 1st, 2003 Doctor Who: Carnival of Monsters (Story 66). Although, as I write this, the current asking price for a new copy is over $60.00 for a 1 disc edition and almost $30.00 for a used copy.

Presumably, the new disc one will be identical to the old edition and disc two will be additional special/supplemental material--but time will tell. You should do your research before biting. As news of this release becomes more widely known, the price of the previous version should drop and you should not have to pay a premium for either one.

Who knows, for those prices, I may just sell my old copy but, I want to be sure that there isn't something that will fail to make it from the last release to this one.

If you haven't purchased this story yet, but want to, this is a very good time for you and you can bide your time for a more opportune moment (price-wise). If you're a completist and already have the almost-nine-year-old edition, it is not.

Update (1/27) Thanks to *Readz Alot* for pointing out that the list of contents would be found in the Revisitations 2 at the site:
"Carnival of Monsters
The Doctor and Jo take the TARDIS on a test flight. They arrive on a cargo ship, that appears to be crossing the Indian Ocean in 1926 but is in fact trapped inside a Miniscope - a banned peepshow of miniaturised life-forms...

Special Features:
Disc 1
* 4 x 25 min episodes with mono audio.
* Commentaries x 2 - with with cast and crew
* Episode Two - Early Edit- a longer early edit of the second episode, featuring the subsequently rejected `Delaware' version of the theme music. It is presented here completely un-restored.
* Behind the Scenes
* Visual Effects Models
* `Five Faces of Doctor Who' Trailer
* Director's Amended Ending
* CSO Demo
* TARDIS Cam no.2
* Easter Egg
* Coming Soon Trailer
* PDF material
* Programme Subtitles

Disc 2
* Destroy All Monsters! Making of with cast and crew
* On Target with Ian Marter
* The A-Z of Gadgets and Gizmos
* Mary Celeste Documentary
* Photo Gallery
* Resurrection of the Daleks:
* The TARDIS materialises in present day London within sight of Tower Bridge. Investigating some nearby warehouses, the travellers stumble into a trap that the Daleks have set for them..."

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7788e4c) out of 5 stars CARNIVAL OF MONSTERS Features A Carnival of Extras! May 9 2012
By Edward L Zimmerman - Published on
I'll admit I can a bit late to the whole Doctor Who craze. Like most folks in America (my side of the pond, as it were), Tom Baker was the first real Doctor. This isn't to say that I was unaware of the three who came before; rather, it's only to say, at that point, the whole franchise came together for me in a persona I could more fully appreciate, who didn't seem to English-stuffy, and who brought the kind of warmth and whimsy so often displayed in Doctors who've played the role since. Do I have a favorite Doctor Who? Why, of course, I do! But that isn't the purpose of this review.

CARNIVAL OF MONSTERS comes from the Jon Pertwee years, and the story - much like so many tales from early Who - actually respectfully delves into a whole host of matters so common attributed to quality science fiction. It explores class structure - government - social disorder - multiple worlds - the technology of shrunken worlds - and almost Matrix-like existence as the Doctor and his companion Jo (played with suitable aplomb by Katy Manning) find themselves trapped inside a Miniscope, a device that shrinks whole environments and the peoples and creatures who populate them, all for the purpose of providing viewing entertainment for others. It becomes a race-against-time as the peepshow device begins to fail, leaving the Doctor's companion stuck inside and facing death unless he can find a way to rescue her from it before the circuits fail.

I could go on and on discussing the plot and the various delightful shenanigans pulled by the traveling showman, Vorg, and his assistant Shirna (Cheryl Hall) - notice the similarities? An older gentleman with a youngish attractive girl at his side? - as well as dissecting the endless parallels between the story on the outside of the peepshow box and the story on the inside, but what really matters here is that it's quintessential Doctor Who. It's a terrific yarn built on an interesting premise, and it's all detailed with entertaining characters. It's certainly one of the better pre-Tom-Baker episodes I've ever seen, and I'll definitely watch it again in the future.

However, what I really wanted to rave about here were the special features, which are downright amazing given the fact that what we're dealing with here is a television production nearly forty years old as of the writing of this review. Despite the age of the piece, the BBC has provided two separate audio commentary tracks - each hosting both onscreen and behind-the-screen talents - and they stories they detail are as vivid as if it all happened yesterday. There's an honest, appreciable love of the Who franchise by those given the opportunity to play in that universe, and I listened to both with great delight. Granted, there was an awful lot of crossover material - I can't tell you the number of times it was discussed that Mr. Pertwee loved to `lift' personal souvenirs from the soundstage and location shoots - but it was still all told with great respect and genuine warmth.

But ... the extras don't stop there!

There's also a wonderful notation track that runs the length of the four episodes. This is a function track - much like a subtitling feature - that is turned on and off by the viewer, and the notes detail interesting trivia and tidbits not only associated to the filming process, but it also goes into incredible behind-the-scenes facts including direct quotations of scenes edited from the shooting script and never filmed! Some of what's learned is minor, but there's a great amount of detail here - it's all told very much in the fashion of MTV's `Pop Up Video' from several years back - and it's equally as charming as the audio commentaries.

But ... it doesn't stop there!

There's a restored edit of the second episode. It's longer than the one that aired originally on the BBC, and it inserts several short bits that expand slightly the socio-political themes still present but given short exposure in the entirety of the CARNIVAL. Furthermore, the discs come with a `making of' featurette that cobbles together the best moments discussed in greater detail on the commentaries; there's a feature detailing many of the Doctor's favorite weapons and gadgets throughout the entire run of the television show; there's a host of photo galleries and model shots; and there's even a short video exploring the more famous maritime ship disappearances, a theme central to the main story for these installments. All-in-all, it's an incredible collection of material involving actors, craftsmen, and other creative personnel like rarely seen before and certainly hard-to-come-by for a television production almost forty years ago!

I'll give a special shout out to the short feature on actor Ian Marter. He appears in a supporting role in CARNIVAL, but he returns as a completely different companion during Tom Baker's run. Mr. Marter was so enmeshed in the Doctor Who universe that he even authored several novel adaptations of episodes that aired, and this 20-minute documentary looks back at one of Who's early key players who left us long before he should have.

It's an amazing experience that comes from BBC and BBC Warner. The disc is professionally produced, with both visuals and audios solid.

HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION POSSIBLE. If you're a Who fan, then you owe it to yourself and fandom to experience this Special Edition collection from start-to-finish. If you're not a Who fan but you've thought about jumping aboard to see what all the fuss is about, then this could as well be the disc you've been waiting for. It's easily enough to jump aboard this delightful journey in mid-stream, and Pertwee - while a bit stiff for my tastes - does a great turn as the Doctor. If you've absolutely no interest in Doctor Who ... then what are you doing still reading my review at this point? Get off your tuckuss, and get out there to buy a copy, watch this, and I guarantee you'll join the club!

In the interests of fairness, I'm pleased to disclose that the fine folks at BBC Warner provided me with a DVD screener copy of DOCTOR WHO: CARNIVAL OF MONSTERS (Special Edition) for the expressed purposes of completing this review.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7797294) out of 5 stars What's good about this production is the sheer ambitious nature of the whole project Jan. 18 2015
By Sussman - Published on
Possible Spoilers

This Doctor Who episode Carnival of Monsters is a `busy' production with a lot going on, as well as being rather ambitious on the SFX front. The Doctor and Jo are supposedly on fun jaunt to Metebelis Three, when they find themselves on a cargo boat heading to Bombay India in the mid-1920s (or should we now say Mumbai) We later find out they are inside a machine called `Miniscope'.

The Miniscope holds various living organisms (in miniaturized form) in set environmental enclosures that replicate their original environments or home worlds. It seems that the `inhabitants' are not aware of their situation, as time for them is in a perpetual loop. While the Doctor and his assistant are immune to the time loop; they have their adventures inside machine. However, the events inside the Miniscope are interwoven, cleverly, with events outside the Miniscope involving its current owners. Both are, rather colourful, travelling carnival people Vorg and his subordinate Shirna, who have just arrived on the planet of Inter Minor but are distrusted and refused entrance by a three-member tribunal. The tribunal picks up on the fact that entities removed from the Miniscope soon return to their regular size - in some cases with terrifying results. When Vorg extracts an artefact stuck in the electrical structure it turns out to be the TARDIS - from the Miniscope. Add to this layer of narrative, a further sub plot involving two of the tribunal members, who are disgruntled with the leadership of their planet, and who conspire to let the Drashigs (in my humble opinion a rather nasty alien tapeworm) abscond from the Miniscope and allow them to inflict chaos, the hopeful resultant being ensuing calamity and the president's resignation.

What's good about this production is the sheer ambitious nature of the whole project. I would have loved to be a fly on the wall when they storyboarded the project. Yes I would agree that some of SFX seems dated - but the Miniscope is very well imagined and the filming depicting the internal electrical circuitry is rather well done. We see the appearance of Fourth Doctor companion, Harry Sullivan as cargo ships’ officer. There is interesting exchange when Vorg attempts to speak to the Doctor in Polari, vernacular common in carnival people. Even the Inter Minor officials are interesting, as there is clearly shown a subservient peoples catering to their more mundane and labour intensive work. The officials are clearly seen as being rather xenophobic and not liking the idea of their planet receiving outsiders, a subject that was very topical in the Britain of the 1970s and in a way reflective of certain attitudes today.

All in all this is a rather enjoyable four part episode, from the tenth series.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa7788eb8) out of 5 stars Excellent replacement for my original broadcast copy Oct. 29 2013
By Maui Mike - Published on
Verified Purchase
I bought this DVD to replace my original DVD that was recorded on-the-air years ago. I am completely satisfied with the audio and video quality of the main program, as well as the bonus content. Fellow Whovians know full well that this is a classic Dr. Who. This DVD version does it justice. Five stars, no question!