Page 4 of 13 FirstFirst 12345678 ... LastLast
Results 76 to 100 of 322
  1. #76
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Isle of Wight
    Posts
    5,316

    Default

    See above. It's what they do on screen, and is not out of character in the least with regard to what's gone before, therefore it is what they do whatever an artcle written nearly thirty years later has to say.
    I think that's always going to be a problem with a programme with as much background continuity as Doctor Who has. We try to fit the pieces together as best we can when looking at the whole picture, but sometimes they just don't fit. When they don't we try to dismiss them as errors, but at the end of the day the reason they may not seem to 'fit' could well be related to a later story. We try to work out a Dalek timeline, taking their first episode, Evil of the Daleks and Remembrance all into account and it never really makes sense. Which came first middle and last chronologically? We then try to create an absolute overview with the benefit of 40 years hindsight instead of taking the perhaps correct stance of 'what's on screen is what was meant and anything that came later to contradict it...well never mind just enjoy the tale'.

  2. #77
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Sittingbourne, Kent, UK
    Posts
    2,403

    Default

    Indeed Paul, it is a difficult thing to construct a timeline. However, I'd be amazed if there was a coherent timeline running throughout the series, given the number of times history is apparently changed with all these time travelling things about.

    In this particular instance I'd have to say, however, that I can't find anything on screen that contradicts the idea that the Daleks could pose as servile beings if it served their purpose. Witness in particular the Dalek that manipulated Rose into touching it by pretending to be sad, lonely and pathetic to gain her sympathy. Equally, if we assume that they are alien and therefore do not reason as we do then we have no basis for claiming their behaviour is out of character for the simple reason that we cannot presume to know what their character is if they do not share our reasoning. It is fallacious to assume that something that does not reason in the way humans do automatically reasons in the exact opposite way. The Doctor does not reason as humans do (as the Sixth points out in possibly the most blatant use of dialogue to justify the apparently bizarre decisions of the producers in regard to the character), but occasionally his reasoning overlaps ours.

  3. #78
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Loughton
    Posts
    11,419

    Default

    Power Of The Daleks serves as a good introduction to the new Doctor,though I thought it took Pat til The Moonbase to get properly settled in, and the writers til Underwater Menace. The Daleks themselves are shown to be more sneaky than normal, which makes them a greater threat than usual (this factor helps to make Dalek). Bernard Archard gives the best performance of the story,though Robert James' breakdown is fairly well-handled.

    The Highlanders isn't the most exciting of the historicals, it's a barely listenable story actually - not actually bad, but not one that easily keeps the attention. Good story for Polly though.

    Underwater Menace seems better when listened to than watched - that's the impression episode three gives anyway. The sets and costumes are downmarket there at least. This is more of the panto story than Horns of Nimon though; to give part three its due, it's fun in a sort of Rocky Horror way, joining in with the dodgy "Nothing in the world..." bits. The other episodes are worth listening to though. The end is better than the "sad" bits from the recent two series.

  4. #79

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Thompson View Post
    Except that they needed materials that the humans would supply.
    Which they could get for themselves.

    But surely that fact that they do in the story is strong evidence that that's how they do think?
    Well, the point originally made was that in terms of how they're usually presented, it differed.

    Like I say though, even one could probably wipe out two or three people in a room without too much difficulty within a few seconds, before anyone had the chance to turn anything off.

    The one that was reactivated managed to kill one person before being switched off.
    Yes, but if it had swizzled round in a few seconds it could probably have finished them off.

    Even with a full army of them, the Doctor was able to use a bunch of guards as a diversion so he could overload their power. A siongle Dalek could be distracted by a mass assault on it, which would allow at least one person to shut off their power.
    That doesn't prove that they would believe that though. I'm thinking of claims made by Daleks in both Evil and Doomsday, that one Dalek would be able to finish off everyone. Whether that belief is accurate or not is irrelevant here, it's what they appear to believe at any rate.

    Equally, if we assume that they are alien and therefore do not reason as we do then we have no basis for claiming their behaviour is out of character for the simple reason that we cannot presume to know what their character is if they do not share our reasoning. It is fallacious to assume that something that does not reason in the way humans do automatically reasons in the exact opposite way.
    You're missing the point here, it doesn't have to be the case of them "reasoning the opposite way", it's simply an example of their determination to kill anything like them I'm referring to. This is NOT an "alien" motivation anyway (unfortunately), it's genocidal thinking, and people or beings determined to commit that are always likely to spend as little time as possible thinking up complex plans involving prolonged contact with beings they're just determined to get rid of as soon as possible, when faced with what they would see as just a minor difficulty. In my view, in a situation like Power,their priority would most likely be to ensure the humans lose control of the power supply sufficiently for them to carry on their work.

    Since you also mentioned "Death", I'd point out that even in that story they're still inisisting they be obeyed even when their guns have been shown to fail, and have to be pushed into a temporary alliance, which even then, they kill off as soon as possible. That's a sort of example of what I was thinking.

    I'd also add that this isn't a major problem for me in "Power", which was why I only made the comment in passing, rather than attempt to slam the whole story on those grounds. It doesn't make much, if any, difference to how I feel about the story, and I've only written at length about it now because you chose to take it up.

  5. #80

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Clement View Post
    I think that's always going to be a problem with a programme with as much background continuity as Doctor Who has. We try to fit the pieces together as best we can when looking at the whole picture, but sometimes they just don't fit. When they don't we try to dismiss them as errors, but at the end of the day the reason they may not seem to 'fit' could well be related to a later story. We try to work out a Dalek timeline, taking their first episode, Evil of the Daleks and Remembrance all into account and it never really makes sense. Which came first middle and last chronologically? We then try to create an absolute overview with the benefit of 40 years hindsight instead of taking the perhaps correct stance of 'what's on screen is what was meant and anything that came later to contradict it...well never mind just enjoy the tale'.
    I should maybe clarify that the original article I referred to earlier was specifically about Terry Nation, and the point it made about Power was that the authors didn't believe it shared quite the same worldview about the Daleks as Nation had (their belief being that their sheer hatred and innate sense of superiority would preclude false displays of servility, which is not to say that they wouldn't temporarily use deceit when it suited them). That was more or less what I was alluding to. I think Nation saw them more as obsessive would-be galactic Nazis, only relying on tricking opponents when absolutely necessary and even then feigning alliances rather than servility, and that Whitaker's take was possibly more along the lines of hatching complocated plots and plans to get what they wanted (seen to a great extent in "Evil" especially).

    That doesn't necessarily mean either writer's stories are better, it's more a question of whether or how much this or that approach appeals to, or "works" for you. I don't have any serious problems with enjoying Whitaker's Dalek stories, whether or not the point suggested above is valid, because it's more of an abstract principle, rather than something which necessarily makes a story good or bad.

    So, like I said above, this doesn't greatly bother me (even assuming you accept the premise anyway, which you don't have to - it's all opinion), because slightly altered premises or ways of conceiving this or that concept are likely to vary a great deal in something made over a period of decades. So when it comes to

    'well never mind just enjoy the tale'.
    I can do, quite easily.

  6. #81
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Sittingbourne, Kent, UK
    Posts
    2,403

    Default

    OK Logo, I'm not trying to slam you down here. It's just fun having a debate. So, in that spirit:

    Quote Originally Posted by Logo Polish View Post
    Which they could get for themselves.
    But why epxend the effort when there are locals who can be made to get it all for you, allowig you to conserve energy.

    Well, the point originally made was that in terms of how they're usually presented, it differed.
    While I take that point, the whole situation differed. The Daleks have never been as vulnerable as they were at the start of Power. Even in Death To The Daleks they are operational in every way except for their weapons. They have never had an 'off' switch before or since.

    Yes, but if it had swizzled round in a few seconds it could probably have finished them off.
    But that's the point: it didn't get time to do that before they switched it off.

    That doesn't prove that they would believe that though. I'm thinking of claims made by Daleks in both Evil and Doomsday, that one Dalek would be able to finish off everyone. Whether that belief is accurate or not is irrelevant here, it's what they appear to believe at any rate.
    Maybe the first Dalek did believe that when it was first reactivated but was quickly shown to be wrong, hence the more duplicitous approach.
    Last edited by Jason Thompson; 4th Dec 2006 at 4:59 PM.

  7. #82

    Default

    Oh, that's OK, Jason. Having slept on this, I think I handled yesterday's debate badly, to be honest. And also, having given it some more thought, I think the implication about the "I am your servant" bit may have been that it would have been more in character for them to feign co-operation as opposed to servitude (something along the lines of what happens in the original Dalek story where they promise to co-exist as equals with the Thals before betraying them), with the idea being that their (for want of a better way of putting it) jingoistic pride might have precluded them from gilding the lily any further (good scene though I recognise it to be). Of course that's arguably a rather fine distinction ultimately. So I'll admit I may have going off on an unnecessary tangent, which is my fault.

    Also (as I don't think I did enough to make this clear yesterday; apologies for that) the suggested alternative actions for Daleks I was talking about weren't meant to imply a prescriptive "the story should have done this, should have done that" sort of thing, they were more an attempt at illustrating possible ways of how Daleks in the Nation mould might have acted in the circumstances. I think this got a bit lost. I have no problem with the suggestions you've made in your above post.

    Re; the (arguable) Nation/Whitaker difference, the allusion I made to it in the review mainly reflected the fact that I've read, over the years, shades of both viewpoints (ie Nation's Daleks more single-minded, Whitaker's more pragmatic and Machiavellian), and I was trying to make the point (not very successfully, I admit) that I can see virtues in both arguments. A very good case could be made for Whitaker's stories being the ones that used the Daleks most effectively in terms of drama, and I wouldn't necessarily disagree with that judgement either. Similarly though, I don't think the suggestion that Nation might have had a, say, "purer" conception of their singleminded hatred is necessarily entirely without merit - which is not to say that I think that ultimately takes anything away from Whitaker's stories, or indeed that it would matter if anyone disagreed re: Nation.

    It's a bit like the War Games/Deadly Assassin thing in a way. It could be argued - it has been argued, by Jan Vincent-Rudski in 1977, among others - that the Gallifrey seen in the Troughton story would preclude a story like Deadly Assassin happening, because the various powers demonstrated in The War Games would make it impossible for any of the villainy or skulduggery seen in that story to proceed so far. Now, on an abstract level, I don't think that suggestion is necessarily entirely without merit, but it doesn't stop me liking Deadly Assassin, and it's not something that ever worries or bothers me about the story.

    I hope all this goes some way to settling things to your satisfaction.

    PS - sorry for taking your thread off-topic, Wayne. Now then, The Underwater Menace...

  8. #83

    Default

    The Underwater Menace

    I always find Atlantis a tricky kind of subject for fiction, even SF. It's just a little bit too associated with pseudo-history of the "Was God an astronaut"/"lost cities buried under the antarctic" variety to easily escape an air of trashiness, for me anyway. So, attempting to depict it here, complete with sacrificial religions and a mad scientist, comes over as a distinct sign that the story is aiming for a purely pulp level.

    How fair is that suggestion? Well, it'd be difficult to ignore the somewhat Flash Gordon nature of the setting, concepts and narrative, such as human/animal/mineral hybrids (whether the Fish People of Atlantis, or the Clay Men of Mars), the organised hierarchy of exoticised punishments or regimes dotted about the place, or, as mentioned earlier, the mad scientist plotting to destroy the Earth from his laboratory.

    Zaroff conforms quite closely to the archetype at times, with Joseph Furst attacking the role with vigour, although it's fair to say that the character's excesses are slightly less frequent than the infamous outburst at the end of the third episode tends to imply. Although often obsessive, he is more bad tempered and arrogant than openly crazed, so is slightly less the stereotypical nutter than he might have been, and demonstrates a certain low cunning at times.

    The Fish People aren't actually that bad as a horror concept (well, you wouldn't be likely to want to end up like them), particularly if you bear in mind that their possible low intelligence (demonstrated by the way Sean and Jacko have to suggest strategy to them) could be taken to imply that the process of conversion involves something akin, in effect at least, to being partially lobotomised. And apart from the occasionally visible strings (a common problem with effects of that kind, not only in this series, but that period of television production in general), their balletic dance suupposedly underwater is an agreeably odd bit.

    I'm not so keen on the priest costumes, and some of the heavy false eyebrows don't necessarily do much for the characters wearing them. The Amdo Temple is rather well designed and expansive though, with a very striking-looking idol. A word or two for the music as well, which includes some extremely peculiar stings that feel more or less appropriate for the pulpy feel, although the ambient sounds used for the Temple scenes flow quite well. The story also seems to be fairly darkly lit, which does help to add some extra atmosphere.

    Ultimately the story is rather crude in narrative terms, with a very sudden about face from Damon at the end, when he decides that anything to do with Zaroff, the creation of Fish People, and the superstition from before should be gotten rid of, considering that less than an episode earlier, he was concerned about keeping the slaves (which said regime was built on) in line. Then again of course, witnessing the total destruction of your civilisation in a short time could well lead to abrupt reversals of one's worldview, especially if you had clear ideas who to blame.

    It's also interesting that Damon's rejection of both Zaroff and the Amdo cult signify the way in which the story shows both the religious and the scientific worldview being used for evil ends, although the dismissal of "superstition" goes some way to implying a preference for a more moral science over the corrupt activities carried out by Zaroff.

    The story is also sprinkled with a fair dash of humour, some of it agreeable enough, some of it on the footling and silly side, which gives Patrick Troughton the chance to get up to a bit more disguising and trickery, mostly to enjoyable effect.

    So, it's got its silly side, and the style of the story often feels more like something from a 70s American cartoon of the Godzooky or Space Sentinels variety, but it's played with some enthusiasm, and does have a darker side of sorts. Not a brilliant drama really, but likeable in a schlocky sense.

  9. #84
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Sittingbourne, Kent, UK
    Posts
    2,403

    Default

    Fair enough Logo. Let's call it a day, eh?

  10. #85
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Sittingbourne, Kent, UK
    Posts
    2,403

    Default

    The UNderwater Menace

    I can honestly say I was not overly impressed with this one. The Fish people are pretty bad, and that has nothing to do with DWM's 'augmented' pictures. The 'spreading the word' bit in episode 3 is truly soporific, or at least it would be without that awful music which, rather than being composed for a scene that long, was just the same five-second set repeated over and over again. Awful.

    I saw the recon not too long ago, and there were some good performances from the regulars but that's about it. Just very forgettabe.

  11. #86

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Thompson View Post
    Fair enough Logo. Let's call it a day, eh?
    Yes of course, with you all the way there.

    (Sigh of relief )

  12. #87
    Wayne Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Logo Polish View Post
    (Sigh of relief )
    Quite. (Just kidding)
    Great review as ever, Logo!

  13. #88
    Wayne Guest

    Default

    The Moonbase

    As i mentioned earlier, this is a favourite story of mine, & i'm fairly familiar with it having previously listened to the BBC audio, & seen the recon, & have also viewed the existing episode on the 'Cybermen: The Early Years' VHS, & of course the 'Lost In Time' DVD set. My copy of the recon is stashed away in a box somewhere with all my other 'blank' vids, so i'm currently using the BBC audio release & the Lost In Time disc as source material.
    I think 'The Moonbase' has really good opening episode. It's immediately very atmospheric, right from when the Tardis team are floating about on the moon in their space suits. Pretty soon we're introduced to the crew in the base, & their purpose in controlling the Earth's weather by use of the Gravitron. We soon learn that things are amiss on the base, because of a mystery virus affecting the crew, & they learn that all their transmissions are being monitored.
    The scenes in the sickbay where the delirious Jamie thinks he has seen the 'phantom piper', & the scene where Ralph fetches the sugar from the stores are rather creepy, especially as they're augmented by some great, spooky incidental music, & background effects which all add to make a claustrophobic atmosphere. The suspense increases in the build up to the cliffhanger, & at least we are able to visually appreciate how effective a cliffhanger it is, via it's reprise at the start of Ep.2, when the Cyberman approaches Jamie's bedside....... A great first episode, i think!
    Great to get to an existing episode again for the 2nd ep, & a top ep it is too, IMO. There's just something about the early Cyb's the i find so effective. In the past i've made a big thing about how important the emotionless, monotone voice is, but even in silence, the lone Cyberman who carries off one of the patients is quietly menacing as it looms over Jamie.
    The sense of mystery deepens during episode, as everyone tries to make sense of the events - the virus, the disappearance of the crewmen, the appearance of the Cybermen, all of which makes Hobson naturally suspicious of the newly arrived Doctor & co. Some more good 2nd Doctor moments in this ep; I particularly liked the 'Evil that must be fought' speech. Troughton is good at portraying a quietly determined Doctor.
    The Doctor convinces Hobson that he can help, & begins an investigation, & meanwhile the Cyberman makes off with another crewmember from the sickbay. Later, after the collapse of yet another crewmember, the Doctor realizes that the virus is being passed on via the sugar, & this leads onto the cliffhanger where we see that the Cyberman has been hiding under their noses in the sickbay all along. Plenty happening in this second absorbing episode!
    It's always a bit of a come down to have to go back to audio after a lovely vidfired episode, but it's all go from the first moments of Episode 3, in a confrontation with the Cybermen in the sickbay, resulting in the brutal death of another of the crew. The Cybermen reveal their plan to obliterate the Earth by using the Gravitron, but in the meantime Polly concocts an acetone based solvent which successfully dissolves their plastic chest units when the companions attack. There's actually more Cyber action in this Ep, than the others, which makes me wish i could swap this one for Ep.2 - But in a way, because there's a lot more dialogue, particularly from the Cybermen, it makes for a good audio ep.
    I've always been fascinated by the Moonbase/Tomb Cybermen's totally monotone voices. Coupled with that blank stare, the flat voice gives them their own brand of emotionless menance, which is totally different to how the Daleks project their logical stance through the way they speak, but in some ways it's more effective, Especially when you consider that these were once men. For me personally, all this makes for an absorbing third episode, even if there's the odd bit of strange Cyber-dialogue like: 'stupid earth brains'.
    Yay! Back to shiny disc luxury for the last ep! The tension continues in Ep.4 with the Cyber force marching towards the Moonbase, & after their entry is thwarted they use their control of the infected crew to do their bidding. I really enjoy all the atmospheric scenes of the Cybermen on the moon, & the crew members under Cyber control all help to perpetuate the eerie edge that this story has. The Cyberships are a bit of a let down, especially as you can see the strings, but i think the interior shots of the Cyberleader in his ship look pretty good.
    Eventually of course the Cyb's are defeated after the Gravitron is used to propel them into space. I've seen this ending criticised before, but it makes perfect sense that such a device would be employed in such a way, even if you wonder why it took so long to think of it.
    Anyway, at the end of the day i really like The Moonbase. To me it's a very enjoyable piece of classic 60's Who. A great adventure that doesn't drag in the slightest IMO, even on audio. It's long been in my top 3 Troughton's, & i'll be surprised if that changes during the course of this thread.

  14. #89
    Pip Madeley Guest

    Default

    The Power of the Daleks

    I have fond memories of hearing this for the first time, I borrowed the cassette release from the local library (you know the one, Tom Baker narrating). This is the Daleks at their most effective. They're evil sods! Full of cunning, they feed on the greed and stupidity of the colonists, playing the role of servants just as long as necessary - in a way it's rather funny to think of Daleks serving drinks, but when you remember that the colonists are in mortal danger, it only adds to the drama. In later stories, especially with Davros' arrival, they simply couldn't act like this anymore, and that means there wasn't the same kind of tension. As said earlier in the thread, you know it's coming, and it could've gone wrong and been predictable and dull, but the atmosphere is riveting.

    Troughton's first performance is a bit here and there, but largely a solid debut, and always compelling. I can't imagine how it must have felt to be watching the show, wondering what the hell was going on, and even if Hartnell was coming back. I like his Doctor here though, lots of emotion and reaction, and just a little bit of scheming/deviousness. As Colin Baker said, without Patrick Troughton the show would've died. Thank goodness they got an actor of his talents to take over.

    Robert James almost steals the show though as Lesterson, and David Whitaker deserves credit for creating such a memorable character. His demise is compelling listening, beause you're not so sure whether he's actually sacrificing himself, or actually hopes to convince the Daleks' to spare him. "I am your servant" - no you're not, you're inferior, and you're going to be exterminated. Even better that the Dalek acknowledges Lesterson: "Yes, you gave us life" and they exterminate him. Superb moment, says everything you need to know about the Daleks - no conscience, no feelings, just pure hatred.

    Such a shame nothing more than scant clips exists. I'll come back to the thread soon, though I won't be talking about the Highlanders, I don't have anything interesting to say about it - yes, I'm that indifferent to it...

  15. #90
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    South Wales
    Posts
    1,809

    Default

    I've a certain fondness for the 60s Cybermen, they seemed to be in every other Troughton story at the time, Hartnell had the Daleks, Troughton had the Cybermen.
    The Moonbase is my earliest memory of a Troughton story, I remember knowing that the virus was in the sugar, and that the Cybermen were different than in their previous story, so I must have seen Tenth Planet even though I don't remember it.
    The moment when the virus takes hold of that technician in episode two is particularly chilling, the virus moves swiftly through the man's body, I have a really strong memory of the virus creeping up his arm and taking hold. Another strong memory of this story is the episode three cliffhanger, the camera shows just the marching feet of the Cybermen as they advance on the base, the accompanying music is quite haunting too.
    It's a shame that visually only two episodes of the story survive, we are lucky to have it on audio though, so we can get a taster of what the rest of it is like, all kudos to the fans who had the foresight to record the episodes for posterity.

  16. #91
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Downstairs by the PC
    Posts
    13,226

    Default

    I have really fond memories of reading the Target version of The Moonbase (Doctor Who and the Cybermen) as a kid. I seem to recall there's one really long chapter in there, and I think I started the book and gave up twice because of this massive hurdle. I finished it in the end though, and was very pleased I did!!! My favourite 'image' from the book (and from the story) is the Doctor roaming the base picking up bits 'n' pieces, even down to Hobson's boot.

    As for the TV version, the two surviving episodes look pretty good - the base itself is a little cramped inside of course, and the multi-cultural crew are still almost all white males, but those are comments on the period it was made more than the story itself. As Wayne mentions, the incidental music really adds to the tension of the story - even the scene of the two crewmen checking their spacesuits before going out to check the aerial is somehow made potentially terrifying by that music.

  17. #92
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Bracknell, Berks
    Posts
    29,448

    Default

    I'm shocked you didn't mnetion poor old Bob, Wayne. He gets such a hard time from this story and ends up dead. We love Bob and his big thick glasses.

    Ahem. Anyway. The Moonbase is great isn't it? Very effectively done and far, far better than The Tenth Planet. The Cybermen look so new and shiny in this story. They don't look like that very often. The moon surface scenes are very effcetively done and I love the image of the Cybermen marching across the lunar landscape. That's a great image!

    Troughton suddenly seems to have nailed it in this story and seems settled and at ease. This is the first real glimpse of the second Doctor we know... all comic and silly on the outside, but deadly serious and very, very clever on the inside.

    And the moral of this story is "don't take sugar in your hot drinks!"

    Si xx

    I've just got my handcuffs and my truncheon and that's enough.

  18. #93

    Default

    The Moonbase

    This one has always felt a bit drab and unremarkable for me. It's the earliest chance to see non-cloth Cybermen, and could be said to be the first of the Troughton base-under-siege stories (although it's also arguably a refinement of the formula used for The Tenth Planet), but it still feels rather generic, with an antiseptic setting and characters that make little impression overall.

    Robson is an early example of the grizzled cynical base commanders that populate the Troughton era, providing a straight man to contrast with the Doctor's spontaniety and impishness. Patrick Barr doesn't do a bad job in the role overall, managing to convey the feel of a rather tired and beleagured man trying to do his job in difficult circumstances and does have a certain gruff charm (I like his wry "Thanks very much!" at Polly's delight on hearing a relief crew including his replacement, are on their way).

    There's also a commendable effort to show the Moonbase as being run by men of various different countries and ethnic groups, stressing the international character of its organisation, and suggesting an optimistic hope (at the time the story was made) of co-operation between nations on such endeavours. Unfortunately, and improbably (from our perspective at least) it's men only, with apparently no women on the base apart from Polly, and even she ends up making the coffee a lot of the time (although that said, she does also come up with a way of attacking the Cybermen in the third episode). Something I can't help finding charmingly dated is the very upper class drawling voice used by Controller Rinberg, simply because it's the kind of accent rarely heard on television now (I'm not sure even many of the Royal Family speak in quite such cut-glass tones nowadays), and I must admit it's not one I've ever associated with the Space Race.

    The sets aren't bad for the time, although only the Gravitron backdrop, with the large window looking out over the lunar surface, is particularly memorable. The model shot of it as seen from the outside is not bad as a model in itself, but I'm not sure it quite matches the studio set in scale. The flying saucers look very 50s though, and the strings don't help either. However, the actual moon set itself is very good, with the mood enhanced by some haunting and moody music tracks, and the scenes of the Cybermen marching across do have a certain elegant menace.

    As for the Cybermen themselves, the design is interesting if a little too B Movie style, and the idea of their having electronic voices is inspired (although it does occasionally make it difficult to work out what they're saying). Their characterisation is mostly implacable enough, although one becomes oddly flippant at one stage, where after telling Robson "only stupid Earth brains like yours" would have been baffled by how they infiltrated, and the humans then work it out, it responds sarcastically "clever...clever...clever..." I find the eventual method of their defeat effective if with a whimsical overtone, and it leads to a nice moment at the end when the travellers reflect on whether the lights in the sky might be Cybermen floating away for eternity.

    There is a fair sense of horror in the business about infected crewmen being used as mechanically controlled slaves by the Cybermen, especially with the grotesque line patternings over their faces and limbs that it involves, although this does lead to a possible loose end by the finish, when it's not clear whether their control has been averted, and if so, how (maybe it only operates over a limited range, or will eventually fade after the head-adornments are removed?)?

    It's quite a good story for Troughton. I still like those scenes where he's creeping about trying to get fabric samples and annoying everyone, and his ominous "some corners of the universe" speech is another highpoint, giving a hint of the steely resolve he can also demonstrate at times. He's not bad at stalling for time either, it would seem, keeping trouble at bay with the promise that he might be able to find something out about the plague through investigation (although no doubt he genuinely hopes to).

    Interesting to revisit this story when it's just been in the news that there are hopes of returning to the Moon in 2020 to set up a base. If they're intending to add a Gravitron 30 years after that, they might be as well avoiding having any glass surfaces on the exterior, just in case they're short of tea trays in an emergency...

  19. #94
    Wayne Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by SiHart View Post
    I'm shocked you didn't mnetion poor old Bob, Wayne. He gets such a hard time from this story and ends up dead. We love Bob and his big thick glasses.

    Si xx
    You've got a point. To be honest, Hobson was about the only one who really made an impact on me from the Moonbase crew, so i supppose there's something in what Logo says in his first paragraph.
    Another interesting read from Logo btw, who always manages to say lots of good things about stories he doesn't like that much.

  20. #95
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    London
    Posts
    3,166

    Default

    I really like The Moonbase, and agree with Si that it's much better than the over-rated 10th Planet. I also agree with Wayne that the loss of episode 3 is a real blow, as that seems to be the most incident-packed episode.

    Everyone else has already said what I wanted to say - the Doctor removing the staff's boots always makes me laugh, the Doctor's speech about fighting evil, and the strange Cyber dialogue. Its stance on the part 2 cliffhanger is a bit unusual too!

  21. #96
    Pip Madeley Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonno Simmons View Post
    Its stance on the part 2 cliffhanger is a bit unusual too!
    I thought it was checking the time on its wris****ch when I first saw it!



    Edited to add: It seems wristwtch is a dirty word. Just reminded meself of General Melchett:

    "Security isn't a dirty word, Blackadder. Crevice is a dirty word, but security isn't."


  22. #97
    Wayne Guest

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Phillip Madeley View Post
    I thought it was checking the time on its wris****ch when I first saw it!



    Edited to add: It seems wristwtch is a dirty word.

    Is this another chance for me to moan about the filter?

  23. #98
    Pip Madeley Guest

    Default

    As long as you do it in the Temple. In graphic language.

  24. #99
    Wayne Guest

    Default

    Ok.

  25. #100
    Pip Madeley Guest

    Default

    By the way, did you watch Joseph Furst's interview on the Underwater Menace recon? Was rather touching, I thought, especially now he's gone... shame his "Nuzzink in ze world" bit wasn't as manic as it was in 1967