Saturday, 22 February 2014

Revisiting The Early Years of Doctor Who


When trying to fill in an hour one evening around a month ago to settle my youngest down I thought I'd show him the first ever episode of Doctor Who, An Unearthly Child. To be honest, I didn't think it would be of much interest, but as Thomas and myself settled down to watch the unbroadcast first episode, then episode one proper I was surprised by the response it got. Tom started to point out the differences between the two episodes like a spot the difference game, while getting furthermore drawn into the plot...


... so we worked our way through An Unearthly Child and the subsequent Tribe of Gum storyline, and thoroughly enjoyed seeing the characters of The Doctor, Susan, Ian and Barbara unfold. 

The Daleks was up next, and it was many years since I saw this all the way through. Due to a busy week there was quite a break between Tom and myself watching episode 3 and 4. Tom however, retained the cliffhanger and continued to ask me when we would watch the next episode...


So we followed The Daleks with The Edge of Destruction, that glorious two parter that sees The TARDIS malfunction and redefine the relationship of the Doctor, Susan, Ian and Barbara...

As Marco Polo no longer exists we moved straight on to The Keys Of Marinus, an exciting escapade which sees The Doctor and his friends relocating six keys that will bring harmony to the planets inhabitants, despite the threat of the oncoming Voord. This is a bit of an overlooked Doctor Who classic and an  very enjoyable story, Tom especially enjoying the pace of the episodes...

As we hadn't seen Marco Polo I was curious how Tom would respond to The Aztecs which in essence is a historical adventure. Tom found these episodes particularly educational, The Aztecs tradition of making Cocoa (funnily lampooned in an accompanying animated featurette on the DVD) certainly captured his imagination.

I was even more surprised when Tom declared this story the best so far and William Hartnell as his favourite Doctor at the conclusion of watching this... just goes to show that although 50 years old these episodes till carry immense appeal.


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