108 – The Android Invasion

This Tom Baker story is a prime candidate for the strangest story ever attempted. Strange because it contains some interesting aspects that could have worked quite well – androids impersonating real life people, an astronaut tricked into betraying his own kind, and an alien race committed to destroying the earth through a hideous virus. It’s pretty standard fare for Doctor Who.

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What do you think so far?

Dear readers – we are almost 30 posts into my countdown through 137 Doctor Who Serials!

I hope you have been enjoying the journey so far – I am sure there have been shocks and eyebrows raised, whether it is my brutal dislike of Sylvester McCoy’s era (or anything from the 80s for that matter) to the fact that no Patrick Troughton serial has made an appearance yet. Such disagreement is fantastic, because it shows what a varied fanbase the show enjoys.

Ahead of continuing my countdown, here is a quick reminder of the serials we have counted through so far – do tweet me at @dantalksdrwho with your comments on where I have placed each story – agree, disagree or just plain baffled!

108         The Android Invasion (Coming Today)
109         The Sensorites
110         The Web Planet
111         The Time Monster
112         The Power of Kroll
113         The Ribos Operation
114         The Creature from the Pit
115         The Claws of Axos
116         Planet of the Spiders
117         Revelation of the Daleks
118         The Awakening
119         The Two Doctors
120         Silver Nemesis
121         Terminus
122         Time-Flight
123         Warriors of the Deep
124         The King’s Demons
125         Ghost Light
126         Black Orchid
127         Time and the Rani
128         Dragonfire
129         Survival
130         Battlefield
131         The Greatest Show In the Galaxy
132         The Twin Dilemma
133         The Happiness Patrol
134         Four To Doomsday
135         Timelash
136         Delta And the Bannermen
137         Paradise Towers

109 – The Sensorites

Rather uniquely among the episodes reviewed so far, I had no real prior expectations when it came to watching this adventure from William Hartnell’s first season. Obviously The Daleks had left a lasting impression upon me, but I had been less impressed by The Keys of Marinus and The Aztecs – so really wasn’t sure what to expect.

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110 – The Web Planet

This story carries novelty value as the one and only time I’ve actually felt embarrassed while watching Doctor Who. On the whole I was quite looking forward to watching The Web Planet – I had vague hopes that it might be similar to Planet of Evil in terms of feel and menace. So when I bought a big stack of DVDs as a Christmas present to myself in late 2010, this was one of the first I popped on. Rather unfortunately I chose to watch the 6 part serial in the living room of my shared accommodation, and didn’t really have a ready made defence when my housemates began ridiculing the costumes and the acting.

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111 – The Time Monster

I have only the haziest memories of first catching glimpse of this serial – my dad was watching it on UK Gold, who very helpfully liked to insert ad breaks into the middle of 25 minute episodes. Being quite young I was greatly amused by the sight of what I thought then was a filing cabinet (now know was a massive computer) materialising into the middle of what I took to be Ancient Greece. Later researches of course revealed that the serial was none other than The Time Monster and I felt suitably intrigued.

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113 – The Ribos Operation

One of my most enjoyed experiences of watching Doctor Who as a child was the gradual introduction to the ‘Key to Time’ story arc of Season 16. The entire season was given over to the Fourth Doctor tracking down the six segments of the eponymous Key To Time – conveniently one segment per story! The Key was meant to be an extremely powerful artefact that could be used to bring equilibrium to the universe. And thus Tom Baker is dispatched by the White Guardian to assemble the Key so that he can bring order back to the universe.

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