‘The Three Doctors’ (TV)

the three doctors dvd the three doctors special edition dvd revisitations 3

‘THE THREE DOCTORS’

Please feel free to comment on my review.

The Best of the Doctor with Omega

The Doctor is 10 years old! No, not really! 😀

It’s time to celebrate, as ‘Doctor Who’ reaches its 10th birthday in 1973. It’s an exciting and momentous year, as we get to have a romp of an adventure with three Doctors in it! ‘The Three Doctors’ is a four-part story by Bob Baker and Dave Martin. This is one of my favourites from the 70s.

I’ve had the original DVD cover of ‘The Three Doctors’ signed by four people at conventions. They include Katy Manning at the ‘Cardiff Film and Comic Con’, March 2014; John Levene at the ‘Bournemouth Film and Comic Con’, August 2015; Stephen Thorne at ‘The Capitol II’ convention in Gatwick, May 2017 and co-writer Bob Baker at the ‘Pandorica 2014’ convention in Bristol, September 2014.

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‘The Three Doctors’ was the first story I purchased on DVD from the Jon Pertwee era of ‘Doctor Who’ in 2007. It was great to watch an adventure with Jon Pertwee as the leading man and also to cushion the experience of watching it with Patrick Troughton and William Hartnell as the other two Doctors.

I was getting to know ‘Doctor Who’ as a newcomer to the series. Not only did I watch the first three Doctors altogether in this adventure. But I also got to see the Brigadier, Sergeant Benton who I recognised from ‘The Invasion’ and the lovely and delightful Jo Grant, the Doctor’s companion here.

‘The Three Doctors’ is a story where a crisis occurs, as anti-matter monsters attack UNIT HQ in order to capture the Doctor. The Doctor sends out a distress call to the Time Lords for help. The Time Lords can’t help the Doctor as power is draining on their planet. But perhaps the Doctor can help ‘himself’.

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The Time Lords lift the first two Doctors from his own time-stream in order to meet himself in his future during the present-day at UNIT. It’s not an easy working relationship, but the Doctors need to work together in order to defeat this menace from the anti-matter universe. Can they achieve that?

Jon Pertwee as the Third Doctor is great! I enjoyed seeing Jon taking the lead role for the 10th anniversary story of ‘Doctor Who’. The Third Doctor gets to be the action hero here. I love his relationship with Jo and he gets annoyed with Doctor 2’s wittering’s as they need to work together.

The Third Doctor gets to meet Omega and I like it that he tries to gentlemanly and agreeable when having chats with Omega. I like Jon Pertwee’s Doctor and that I was able to watch him in this. He gets to have his TARDIS to travel in time and space again, since the Time Lords end his exile on Earth.

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Patrick Troughton is equally great as the Second Doctor in this. I loved it when he interacts with his successor and it’s great to watch Patrick’s Doctor in his mischievous, impish ways compared to Jon’s magnificence. The two Doctor work together and put their minds together in order to defeat Omega.

I loved it when Doctor 2’s recorder appears in the TARDIS and he picks it up from Doctor 3. I love his line “Oh, I see you’ve been doing the TARDIS up a bit. Hmm! I don’t like it!” I enjoyed his scenes with Sergeant Benton and when he gets to reunite with the Brigadier since their time from ‘The Invasion’.

William Hartnell as the First Doctor appears to referee between Doctors 2 and 3. He turns up on the scanner in the TARDIS to tell them off. This was William Hartnell’s last appearance in ‘Doctor Who’ and it is great to see him in this special story to celebrate 10 years of the show before he sadly died.

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Doctor 1 has a small part during the story, due to Hartnell’s ill health. It’s a shame really, as I would have liked to have seen more scenes with Doctor 1 interacting with Doctors 2 and 3. It’s a testament for a fine actor who had first played the Doctor at the start of the TV series to come round full circle.

I really like Katy Manning as Jo Grant in this adventure. I’ve met and seen Katy at conventions and she’s truly a lovely, bubbly person. I’m happy I’ve met Katy, as she’s great to chat/talk to. Jo is a truly wide-eyed young girl who’s full of heart when joining her Doctor and is very loyal to him in this story.

I liked it when Jo comes up with the idea for Doctors 2 and 3 to put their minds together to create a door out of their prison cell in Omega’s domain. As I said before, I found Jo very loyal to her Third Doctor, even when she was willing to give her life for him, stand by him and sacrifice herself for him.

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The Brigadier was great to watch too in this adventure! I enjoyed Nicholas Courtney as the Brigadier. He’s the link between the Doctors 2 and 3, and he’s so bewildered by what goes on when he comes across two of them. He gets easily frustrated and a little annoyed by Doctor 2’s whimsical ways here.

I enjoyed John Levene as Sergeant Benton in this adventure. Benton gets to be a part of the adventure. I liked it when he reunites with Doctor 2 and explains to Jo about the two Doctors. I enjoyed Benton’s scenes with Doctor 2 and also the banter between him, Doctor 2 and the Brigadier.

The menace turns out Stephen Thorne as Omega. Stephen also played Treebeard in the radio version of ‘The Lord of the Rings’. My fondest memory of Stephen was seeing him on a panel at the ‘Regenerations 2013’ convention in Swansea, September 2013 where he bellowed the immortal line, “A HERO?! I SHOULD HAVE BEEN A GOD!!!” Everyone in the audience laughed at that great moment!

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Omega is a very important figure to the Doctor. He was the first stellar engineer to create time travel for the Time Lords. But Omega got caught up in an explosion and survived spending his life in an anti-matter world. Now Omega wants to go home and to unleash his revenge onto the Time Lords.

The slaves of Omega are the Gell Guards. Now these guys I can’t take seriously. They do look like blobby jellies with actors inside the costumes who can’t see where they’re going. Seeing the Gell Guards put me in mind of Mr Blobby at times. I even say, “BLOBBY, BLOBBY, BLOBBEEEE!!!” at them.

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‘The Three Doctors’ was originally released on DVD in 2003. The DVD special features are as follows. There’s a ‘Pebble Mill at One’ featurette with monster maker Bernard Wilkie and Patrick Troughton; a ’40th Anniversary Celebration’ music video; a ‘Blue Peter’ item; ‘BSB Highlights’ and there’s the ‘PanoptiCon 93’ convention panel interview with Jon Pertwee, Katy Manning and Nicholas Courtney.

There’s also a trailer for ‘The Five Faces of Doctor Who’ season from 1981 and a trailer for Episode 1 of ‘The Three Doctors’. There’s a photo gallery of the story, an info-text commentary option to enjoy and a commentary with Katy Manning, Nicholas Courtney and producer Barry Letts on the story.

Since then, ‘The Three Doctors’ has been re-released as a 2-disc special edition and as part of the ‘Revisitations 3’ DVD box set, which also contains ‘The Tomb of the Cybermen’ and ‘The Robots of Death’. The new DVD contains the original DVD special features as well as some new additional ones.

On Disc 1, there’s a ‘Radio Times Listings’ PDF of the story and an updated version of the info-text commentary option to enjoy. There’s also a ‘coming soon’ trailer for ‘The Face of Evil’ with Tom Baker and Louise Jameson.

On Disc 2, there’s the ‘Happy Birthday to Who!’ making-of documentary; the ‘Was Doctor Who Rubbish?’ documentary; and the ‘Girls, Girls, Girls: The 1970s’ discussion with Caroline John, Katy Manning and Louise Jameson who talk on the trails of playing a ‘Doctor Who’ companion in the 70s.

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‘The Three Doctors’ is a lovely anniversary story to celebrate 10 years of ‘Doctor Who’. I had great pleasure from watching this. This story would start off a chain of more multi-Doctor adventures with the likes of ‘The Five Doctors’, ‘The Two Doctors’, ‘Time Crash’ and recently ‘The Day of the Doctor’.

‘The Three Doctors’ rating – 9/10


The previous story

For the First Doctor was

  • ‘Fields of Terror’ (Audio)

For the Second Doctor was

For the Third Doctor was

  • ‘Find and Replace’ (Audio)

For Jo was

  • ‘The Time Monster’ (TV)

For the Brigadier was

  • ‘The Time Monster’ (TV)

For Benton was

  • ‘Find and Replace’ (Audio)
The next story

For the First Doctor is

  • ‘The Empire of Glass’ (Book)

For the Second Doctor is

  • ‘Little Doctors’ (ST/Audio)

For the Third Doctor is

  • ‘The Havoc of Empires’ (Audio)

For Jo is

  • ‘The Havoc of Empires’ (Audio)

For the Brigadier is

  • ‘The Scorchies’ (Audio)

For Benton is

  • ‘The Heralds of Destruction’ (Graphic Novel)
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2 Responses to ‘The Three Doctors’ (TV)

  1. Timelord 007 says:

    Awesome review Tim, this is a cracking fun multi Doctor adventure & i remember this was one of the story’s i found for £3 on vhs in the mid 90’s at Merry Hill Shopping Centre with a load of story’s I’d had trouble finding locally (No Amazon back then) I’m convinced they thought I’d gone loopy in that shop as i was dancing around the store, i love the pics with you, Katy & John.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tim Bradley says:

    Hi Simon.

    Glad you enjoyed my review. I remember this story fondly when I first purchased it on DVD back in 2007.

    Thanks for sharing your happy memories of purchasing ‘The Three Doctors’ for £3 on VHS. Yes the days of limited availability with no Amazon back then. I can imagine how excited you must have been when a new ‘Who’ story came out on VHS in those days.

    Glad you love my pics with me, Katy Manning and John Levene. I’m very pleased I had my photos taken with them.

    Tim. 🙂

    Like

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