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  1. #26
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    Number 10:
    Invasion (of the Dinosaurs) 1974


    A classic "they turn up and everything is wrong" episode. It has a really creepy atmosphere, you just feel it's not quite right as soon as the episode starts. A classic deserted London ala The Dalek Invasion of Earth. Nicely done.

    Lots of Doctor and Sarah scenes too. I love the way they're thrown up against bureaucracy and they can't escape it. No-one will listen, no-one cares. It feels more threatening than an army of Axons. Great stuff- very Malcolm Hulke isn't it? He loves this stuff and does it very well.

    The dinos themselves aren't great, but they do. The pterodactyl is the better of the two we see, Kklaking at pertwee as he tries to start the land rover in the warehouse.

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

  2. #27
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    Did you watch it in b&w or colour? I also love the scene where the Doctor and Sarah have been arrested and put on smiley faces for the camera!

  3. #28
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    In colour of course. I know it's not fully coloured, but it's still more exciting to see it in it's orangey hues than it is in black and white.

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

  4. #29
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    That pleasure awaits me - it's still on my shelf!

  5. #30
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    There's no answer to that!

  6. #31
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    Kklak! is the only answer!

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

  7. #32
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    Number 11:
    The Leisure Hive (1980)


    A slow pan (OK a very slow pan) across Brighton Beach doesn't get things off to the greatest of starts perhaps, but I rather like it, especially seeing the TARDIS in the row of beach huts. Fortunately Peter Howell's music is terribly majestic, and that helps throughout this episode.

    I love this episode, as everyone knows. This where I tipped over the edge into obsession with Doctor Who. It's full of mind boggling images- bodies and heads floating in the spherical screen, glimpses of the Foamasi, the frankly odd model shots of the Earth Shuttle, Morix's face turning negative as he dies. A nice attempt to give this story a feel all of its own (and show off the new effects box too!)

    Into it all are thrust The Doctor and Romana. Lalla looks great in her greatest costume of all, Tom is a little more subdued than in Horns of Nimon, but contrary to what we're told about this story, doesn't look bored and tired. There are lots of flashes of his grin throughout.

    It has the best cliffhanger ever too. That crash zoom right down Tom's throat as he screams in agony is one of the most unsettling images in the show's history. The fact that i could remember it years afterwards shows effective it was.

    I suppose no-one loves this one as much as I do. This is the one that sends me back to being 5 years old!

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

  8. #33
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    I thought that was bound to be on the list sooner or later!

  9. #34
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    As predictable as ever, eh Andrew?

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

  10. #35
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    Indeed, monitor, indeed.

  11. #36
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    Number 11:
    The Invasion of Time (1978)

    This is a good part 1. Throughout the audience is as bewildered by what's going on as Leela is. We have no clue whatsoever what the Doctor is up to and it's all rather wonderfully done. This must have been really unsettling for the viewers.

    The production is ok, better than most of the rest if the story, though the TARDIS control room is very small (but nicely lit, lots of shadows) and the Panopticon is probably as good as in The Deadly Assassin. Narrow corridors on Gallifrey though!

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

  12. #37
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    Number 13:
    Time and the Rani (1987)

    Well, I love this episode! OK, the script is totally Pip'nJane, which means no-one speaks in a way thats at all natural, the story is utterly bonkers, but, it's all so fresh, colourful and fun throughout.

    What is rarely mentioned is how well made it is. The effects are great throughout, the direction is effective and the sets are good.

    Considering what nonsense they have to spout, the acting is good too. McCoy is rather better than he's given credit for, his early scenes are brilliant, just a shame he gets,saddled with the amnesia plot as it weakens his Doctor from the off. Love Kate O'Mara impersonating Mel. Gloriously camp.

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

  13. #38
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    Time and The Rani is a great choice of first episode. Doctor Who casts off the shackles of Saward and is reborn. Lovely stuff.
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  14. #39
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    Number 14:
    A Holiday for the Doctor (1965)


    What makes this a great episode 1 is the Ballard of the Last Chance Saloon. It's a wildly wonderful conceit, using the song to narrate the story, instantly setting this apart from any other story in the show's history. I rather like it too- its sung with great gusto by Lynda Baron and feels authentic, despite being no such thing!

    There's also a real playfulness in the performances from the regulars, especially from Purves and Lane, who seem to be enjoying themselves immensely throughout. I like their clichéd costumes too- especially Steven's rather camp shiny tasselled shirt and the Doctor's marvellous hat.

    Tootache, alcohol, Mr Werp! It all makes for a fun pt 1!

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

  15. #40
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    Hartnell in a hat!!

  16. #41
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    Number 15:
    The Sontaran Stratagem (2008)


    Martha Jones brings the Doctor back to Earth, just in time for a Sontaran invasion. This episode does what Doctor Who likes to do, make something that we use everyday into a menace- here it's evil sat navs that can take control of your car and drive you to your death. It's a good idea, used effectively in the pre-credits teaser so that we know it's a threat for the Doctor later on (I like the pay off with the little pftt! of smoke after the Doctor escapes- nice joke!)

    We've got David Tennant at the height of his powers here, and lovely to see Donna too- how great is she? Nice to see Martha too and again, nice wrong footing with the two companions not doing a Rose/ Sarah Jane bickering thing. And lovely to see Wilf and Sylvia too. What a great family!

    The Sontarans come over well, though I'm still not sure about the Sontar-Ha! chanting. It still doesn't feel right. Otherwise they're characterised nicely and after all the Strax stuff recently, it's nice to see them not played for laughs and proving to be an effective threat.

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

  17. #42
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    Number 16:
    The Awakening (1984)


    Here's an episode that rattles along quickly. There's a few escapes and captures in it, but all done at a nice pace. Everyone seems to spend the episode running! There's a real sense of menace from Sir George and you can feel a tension in the village between what's allowed and not allowed in the war game they're all playing. That Sgt. Willow though, I don't think i could forgive him- he's a right shot all the way through, clearly enjoying being allowed to be a thug!

    Good locations, filmed in lovely sunshine make this a nice episode for a dreary morning. There's a good cast too- Davison leading from the top, another Doctor at the height of his powers, giving it all the earnestness he can muster, but flashing his smile throughout and clearly enjoying the script. He plays well against Polly James, and there's a lovely easy rapport there. He needed a companion who was a woman of a certain age (and possibly an Ex-Liver Bird!) really, didn't he?

    The sets are great throughout. I love the church set, which you really feel is authentically decrepit and could fall down on the actors at any moment.

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

  18. #43
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    The church set is so good that I'm sure I thought it was all shot inside the church that you see from the outside!

    Agree with you about a great revival of the Sontarans, in particular Christopher Ryan who is fab, including the voice which is so much better than Dan Starkey's! And I don't like the Sontar-ha! much either.

  19. #44
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    Number 17:
    The Krotons (1968)


    The superior performances from the regulars lift this episode hugely. Hines, Padbury and Troughton are a great TARDIS team, and their banter feels easy and real throughout this episode. What a delighful team, Troughton humming his way across the landscape with his lovely pop up umbrella, Zoe all superior and knowing and Jamie spoiling for a fight! Splendid.

    There are some nice touches. the student revolt touches on real life events of the time (even if the students are acted by people clearly older than student age, though maybe this is normal on the Planet of the Gonds) and there's the revolutionary zeal of the young rising up against the older rulers. All this si almost halted by the booming voice of the Krotons, which makes an immediate impression across the Learning Hall. Nicely done.

    Good cliffhanger, with the pop art Doctor imagery and the snake from the Dynatrope being very well done.

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

  20. #45
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    I remember during the 5 Faces season that at school on the Monday this episode was aired, I predicted to interested classmates how the first part would end, and the next day they were amazed! Of course, I'd referred to the Episode Guide in DWM which gave a brief description of each cliffhanger!

  21. #46
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    Well done Jonno! I remember the following day (ie, after episode 1) us discussing how we thought the Doctor would survive - I believe that Jamie chopping the 'snake' head off was the favourite suggestion!!

    though maybe this is normal on the Planet of the Gonds
    It seems to be normal for casting directors, judging by the cast of Please Sir! and Grease.

  22. #47
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    Number 18:
    The Marian Conspiracy (2000)


    This is a terrific episode. For the most part its a two hander between the Doctor and his marvellous companion to be, Dr Evelyn Smythe. Colin and Maggie Stables have a great chemistry and spark off each other wonderfully right from the start, creating a beautifully warm friendship. Evelyn is one of my absolute favourite companions.

    The two hander broadens out towards the end of the episode, as the Doctor and Evelyn arrive in Tudor London. of course, the Doctor has the time wrong, which leads to jeopardy by the end and danger for Evelyn for the cliffhanger. Of course, she's in danger right from the start since her history is being unstitched all the time too (very Back to the Future!).

    A nice unhurried episode, setting up the story nicely. Good stuff.

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

  23. #48
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    This is a great story - I'm excited to be so far behind in my BF early stories because I know I've got lots of Evelyn stories to come :-)

  24. #49
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    Number 19:
    The Space Museum (1965)


    As space has dimensions, so time has dimensions of its own.

    This is a classy part one. Full of good special effects to show that things aren't going quite right for the TARDIS crew, some good character moments (Doctor, we're in our clothes!) and the Doctor's pretty blasé attitude to what's going on. It's one of those part ones that is brilliant the first time, when you have no idea what's going on. All the clues lead up to the "We've arrived" cliffhanger. It's pretty splendid.

    I like the way this is all about the crew finding out their fate- to be museum exhibits before it actually happens. Can they do it? Well I won't find out this time...

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

  25. #50
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    I've always thought that this is probably one of the top 10 first episodes of Doctor Who, possibly top 5.

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