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One of the great things about the Doctor Who DVD’s is all the bonus material that comes with them. As a fan it is great to be able to see behind the scene documentaries and other such items of interest.
The latest story released here in Australia is the first story of Tom Bakers final season with the show. It also marks the first story with John Nathan-Turner in the producers seat. A producer who bought the show into the eighties quite successfully.
This season was also the one that finally hooked me.
I was already aware of Doctor Who, but it wasn’t something I was watching. I remember when I was quite young including the concept of “Time Lords” into my play, but I cannot recall watching the show in the same way that I remember Star Trek or Space 1999.
It was the story “Full Circle” about half way through season eighteen that really grabbed me. I was ten years old and was starting to understand more complex storylines and subplots and the whole concept blew me away. I also remember being scared by the spiders that broke out of the riverfruit and attacked Lalla Ward’s character Romana.
When we moved to Australia in ’81 I got to revisit the whole of season eighteen again, starting with The Leisure Hive which I had missed when it came on tv in the UK
The Leisure Hive is an awesome piece of science fiction set in the year 2290 on Argolis, a planet destroyed by an interplanetary war that lasted 20 minutes 40 years before. The few survivors, who have been left sterile, built the hive as a recreation facility designed to promote peace and cultural understanding to the tourists that visit. The visitors can also explore the possibilities of the Tachyon Recreation Generator, which turns out to be more than it first appears.
The epic music score was criticised in one of the bonus documentaries as being too much. I think this was a little unfair as it was highly memorable and adds to the general feel of the story.
The Leisure Hive will be repeated on the ABC next June.