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Tony Grist

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The Mind Robber [Jul. 15th, 2012|10:52 am]
Tony Grist
This is a good one too.

The Doctor and his companions push the Tardis's emergency escape button and find themselves outside of Space and Time in a misty Nowhere that eventually resolves itself into a world of books. The trees in the "forest" they get lost in are actually enormous wooden letters. They are hunted by wind-up toy soldiers and attacked by mythical beasts. They keep bumping into Lemuel Gulliver- who talks to them in great chunks of 18th century prose. There is some rather hazy SF explanation for all of this, but essentially we've landed over the rainbow.

The first episode- all that running about in the mist- was levered in at short notice to fill a scheduling gap. Frazer Hines was off sick for the filming of much of episode #2 so an incident was improvised in which he loses his face, thus allowing him to be replaced with another actor for the duration. These last minute adjustments are among the zingiest elements in a story that is more than usually wild and witty. Such are the benefits of working under pressure in a culture of make do and mend.

I'm very fond of Troughton's Doctor, but I could  wish the dithering was a little less voluble. Jamie and Zoe are sweet. Ever-so-Scottish Frazer Hines turns out to have been born in Yorkshire.

[User Picture]From: tamnonlinear
2012-07-15 07:58 pm (UTC)
I watched this one recently. Amazon has a limited amount of classic Who up for streaming. The actor who played Gulliver reminded me so much of Lain Glen that I had to remind myself that there were a few decades between.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-07-15 09:34 pm (UTC)
I'm watching them on YouTube. The quality isn't brilliant- but then it never was.
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[User Picture]From: sovay
2012-07-15 11:46 pm (UTC)
so an incident was improvised in which he loses his face

I love how that's possible.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-07-16 08:38 am (UTC)
I love it when a show can do these bold things- and still have it make some sort of sense.
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[User Picture]From: butterscotch711
2012-07-16 01:27 am (UTC)
I like this one.

The Jamie-face-change thing works so well and adds to the story so well I didn't believe the friend I first watched this with that it was a last minute fix.

The first episode is great and overall I think The Mind Robber has some of the best trippiness in all of Doctor Who.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-07-16 08:41 am (UTC)
Necessity is the mother of Invention.

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[User Picture]From: setsuled
2012-07-16 05:31 am (UTC)
That one is great. It's a great example of how the Troughton era Who used black and white to create such spooky atmosphere.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-07-16 08:42 am (UTC)
You can get away with more in black and white.
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