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Doctor Who: New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken / Logopolis / Castrovalva) (Stories 115 - 117)

4.9 out of 5 stars 56 customer reviews

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  • Doctor Who: New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken / Logopolis / Castrovalva) (Stories 115 - 117)
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  • Doctor Who: The E-Space Trilogy- The Tom Baker Years 1974-1981 (Stories 112-114)
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  • Doctor Who: The Key to Time (Special Collector's Edition) (Stories 98-103)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Doctor Who: New Beginnings (DVD)

These three stories saw the return of the Doctor's arch-enemy, The Master, as well as the transition from Tom Baker's Doctor to Peter Davison's. The Keeper of Traken: A distress call brings the Doctor (Tom Baker) to the tranquil planet of Traken, where a living statue poses a deadly threat. (4 eps, 98 mins) Logopolis: The Doctor's (Tom Baker) plan to enlist the help of Logopolis's mathematicians for a small favor become sidetracked when the Master's interference leads to disaster on a universal scale. (4 eps, 98 mins) Castrovalva: The Doctor's (Peter Davison) regeneration is failing, and his last hope rests with Nyssa and Tegan, who struggle to steer the TARDIS to the remote haven of Castrovalva. (4 eps, 96 mins)

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Keeper of the Traken
The Keeper of Traken was the beginning of the end for Tom Baker's tenure as the venerable TV sci-fi hero Doctor Who. By the end of the next serial, Logopolis, Baker had been replaced by the Fifth Doctor, Peter Davidson (whose debut, Castrovalva, is also available on DVD, as is Logopolis; both, along with Keeper of Traken, can be found in a three-disc boxed set titled New Beginnings). But fans got one more witty and suspenseful dose of Baker's Doctor with this story, which sends the Time Lord and companion Adric to the planet Traken, a peaceful haven ruled by the all-wise Keeper for a thousand years. The Keeper feels his reign is coming to an end, and with it, the rise of evil from within Traken's governing council itself. The Doctor, however, recognizes the presence of a old and familiar foe at the heart of the mystery--one he thought had been vanquished long ago.

Well-played by the cast (especially Baker, who is given a wealth of amusing lines), and an excellent launching pad for new companion Nyssa (Sarah Sutton), The Keeper of Traken is both a fine addition to the Baker canon and an enjoyable serial for new and old Who fans alike. Extras on the single disc include commentary by Sutton, actors Matthew Waterhouse (Adric) and Anthony Ainley (Consul Tremas), and writer Johnny Byrne; a 30-minute documentary on the serial, which includes interviews with most of the cast and production team; a clip of Sutton on the BBC series Swap Shop; and a featurette on the true identity of the evil plaguing Traken. The by-now-standard photo gallery, text-only commentary track, and PDF of the Doctor Who Annual (here from 1982), Radio Times listings, and BBC sales literature rounds out the crowd-pleasing supplements. --Paul Gaita

Logopolis
After seven years as the Doctor on England's long-running science fiction series Doctor Who, actor Tom Baker hung up his scarf and retired from the role in this four-part serial from 1981. )(The second in a three-part story arc focused around the Doctor's longtime adversary The Master (Anthony Ainley), (The other parts of the arc, Castrovalva and The Keeper of Traken, are also available on DVD as single discs and in a three-disc set titled New Beginnings) Logopolis finds the Time Lord in a contemplative mood as he attempts to repair the TARDIS' broken chameleon circuit, which has left the shape-shifting vehicle in the form of a police box. The Doctor and Adric (Matthew Waterhouse) travel to Logopolis, a planet run by mathematical geniuses, but encounter the Master as he plots to steal the secret of the planet's massive radio telescope. His scheme accidentally releases a wave of entropy that threatens to destroy the universe, and the! Doctor and the Master must work together to prevent the end of existence itself. A sense of finality pervades Logopolis, and certainly for Baker fans, it does mark the end of the actor's run in the role, as well as a period of considerable popularity for the series. Baker's replacement, Peter Davidson, faced an uphill battle when he assumed the Doctor's mantle, and for many fans, his arrival signaled a downward turn for the program that was not reversed until its revival in 2005. The story itself is an intriguing one, and well played by its cast, which included newcomer Janet Fielding as airline stewardess Tegan Jovanka, who became one of the Doctor's companions for several seasons. Extras on the disc include commentary on all four episodes by Baker and Fielding, as well as writer Christopher Bidmead; a trio of BBC news program interviews with Baker on his departure and Davidson on his assumption of the role; a terrific 50-minute featurette titled "A New Body At Las! t," which interviews many of the principal cast and crew on the transi tion from Baker to Davidson; and the usual PDF of printed material from The Doctor Who Annual and Radio Times, as well as the excellent text-only commentary and isolated music tracks fans have come to expect from the discs. -- Paul Gaita

Castrovalva
The four-episode serial Castrovalva not only kicked off the 19th season of Doctor Who, but introduced the fifth incarnation of the venerable British sci-fi hero in the younger (and blonder) form of Peter Davidson, who replaced fan favorite Tom Baker at the end of the previous season. Castrovalva picks up where the Baker finale, Logopolis (also available on DVD), left off, with the Doctor in a weakened state after his transformation, and in need of rest and recuperation. His companions set a course for the planet of Castrovalva, but all is not as it seems on the peaceful and educated world: Could the Doctor's old nemesis The Master be setting a trap for the ailing Time Lord? It's a strong debut for Davidson, who quickly sets his own path as the Doctor (while referencing his predecessor's traits and quirks in several clever bits), and the single disc DVD's extras do an excellent job of covering the transitional phase that the cast and crew underwent during the serial's production. Davidson is front and center on the commentary tracks for all four episodes, and he's joined by castmate Janet Fielding (Tegan), director Fiona Cumming, and writer Christopher H. Bidmead. And he's the focus of two featurettes: "Being Doctor Who," which covers his tenure as the Doctor, and "The Crowded TARDIS," in which he joins Baker, Fielding, and Sarah Sutton (Nyssa) to discuss the Doctor's multiple companions in the Davidson years. Cumming is also profiled in a short feature on directing the episode, and the BBC vaults yield interviews with Davidson from the period on the children's shows Blue Peter and Swap Shop. A pair of deleted scenes, continuity announcements, a photo gallery, the usual above-par text commentary, a PDF of printed material on the show, and a music video for a remix of Peter Howell's theme music round out the supplements. -- Paul Gaita


Special Features

Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Anthony Ainley, Sarah Sutton and Matthew Waterhouse and writer Johnny Byrne DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs Documentary: Being Nice to Each Other: A new 30-minute "making of" documentary that includes contributions from Sarah Sutto Sheila Ruskin, Geoffrey Beevers, John Black, Johnny Byrne, Christopher H. Bidmead Interviews: Swap Shop: Noel Edmond interviews Sarah Sutton (11 mins) Other: The Return of the Master: Geoffrey Beevers, Christopher H. Bidmead and John Black talk about the return of the Doctor's arch-enemy (8 mins) Trailers and Continuity Announcements (6 mins) Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Tom Baker and Janet Fielding and writer Christopher H. Bidmead DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs Documentary: A New Body at Last: A new 50-minute documentary on the transition from Tom Baker to Peter Davison, featuring many of the actors and production team involved, plus exclusive behind the scenes footage of the regeneration Interviews: Nationwide Interviews with Tom Baker and Peter Davison (8 mins) Pebble Mill at One: Peter Davison interview (12 mins) Other: BBC News Reports on Tom Baker's wedding, the announcement of Tom Baker's departure and Peter Davison's arrival (1 min) TV Spot: Trailers and Continuity Announcements (2 mins) Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Peter Davison and Janet Fielding, writer Christopher H. Bidmead and director Fiona Cumming DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs TV Spot: Trailers and Continuity Announcements (5 mins)Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Anthony Ainley, Sarah Sutton and Matthew Waterhouse and writer Johnny Byrne DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs Documentary: Being Nice to Each Other: A new 30-minute "making of" documentary that includes contributions from Sarah Sutto Sheila Ruskin, Geoffrey Beevers, John Black, Johnny Byrne, Christopher H. Bidmead Interviews: Swap Shop: Noel Edmond interviews Sarah Sutton (11 mins) Other: The Return of the Master: Geoffrey Beevers, Christopher H. Bidmead and John Black talk about the return of the Doctor's arch-enemy (8 mins) Trailers and Continuity Announcements (6 mins) Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Tom Baker and Janet Fielding and writer Christopher H. Bidmead DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs Documentary: A New Body at Last: A new 50-minute documentary on the transition from Tom Baker to Peter Davison, featuring many of the actors and production team involved, plus exclusive behind the scenes footage of the regeneration Interviews: Nationwide Interviews with Tom Baker and Peter Davison (8 mins) Pebble Mill at One: Peter Davison interview (12 mins) Other: BBC News Reports on Tom Baker's wedding, the announcement of Tom Baker's departure and Peter Davison's arrival (1 min) TV Spot: Trailers and Continuity Announcements (2 mins) Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Peter Davison and Janet Fielding, writer Christopher H. Bidmead and director Fiona Cumming DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs TV Spot: Trailers and Continuity Announcements (5 mins)Audio Commentary: Audio Commentary by actors Anthony Ainley, Sarah Sutton and Matthew Waterhouse and writer Johnny Byrne DVD ROM Features: 1982 Doctor Who Annual, Radio Times and BBC Enterprises literature PDFs Documentary: Being Nice to Each Other: A new 30-minute "making of" documentary that includes contributions from Sarah Sutto Sheila Ruskin, Geoffrey Beevers, John Black, Johnny Byrne, Christopher H. Bidmead Interviews: Swap Shop: Noel Edmond interviews Sarah Sutton (11 min

Product Details

  • Actors: Tom Baker, Peter Davison, Matthew Waterhouse, Sarah Sutton, Anthony Ainley
  • Directors: John Black, Fiona Cumming, Peter Grimwade
  • Writers: Johnny Byrne, Christopher H Bidmead
  • Producers: John Nathan-Turner
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 5, 2007
  • Run Time: 292 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000NJXG8G
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,517 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Three stories from a very turbulent era of the classic BBC series Doctor Who have hit the shelves, either in a box set or as three individual discs - a much more expensive option! Grouped together under the title "New Beginnings" or alternatively "The Return of The Master", these three stories very much make up the `end of an era' and a fresh start for the errant Time Lord.

Tom Baker had been playing the part of the Doctor since 1974 and although it was by now very accepted for different actors to play the part, he had become so entrenched in the role that the public very much saw him as "The" Doctor and for a whole generation of younger viewers, he was the "Only" Doctor. Behind the scenes, Baker had become more and more difficult to work with and changes in the production team at the start of season 18 had irritated him even further. His annual threat to leave the show was presented in due course and this time - it was accepted! New producer John Nathan-Turner was eager to stamp his own identity on the show and recasting the central role was one that certainly excited him. Although he briefly considered Richard Griffiths for the part, his one and only choice was the much younger actor Peter Davison, who was already very well known to TV viewers from his work on All Creatures Great and Small.

By the time The Keeper of Traken, the penultimate story of season 18, was in production, Baker's departure had been announced and plans were well under way to ease the transition to the new Doctor, to be played by 29-years-old Peter Davison, the youngest actor yet to take on the part.
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It will be hard for Doctor Who fans not to heed the call of this excellent DVD set, for the Time Lords, they are a-changin'. Indeed, the three storylines included here work as a whole to mark a pivotal shift in the show's development in the early 1980's. True, each story is to some degree self-contained and episodic in terms of location, plot, and concept, and yet all three flow together into a loosely-structured trilogy of sorts thematically unified by regeneration and renewal--first, ominously enough, of evil, as the Doctor's fellow Time Lord and arch-nemesis the Master cheats death and decay by using an innocent man's life force to rejuvenate himself (henceforth he'll become a regular villain in the series for years). But then even more significantly, the Doctor himself is fatally injured in the Master's schemes and must regenerate, thus marking the end of Tom Baker's long, much-loved, and virtually iconic tenure in the role and the beginning of Peter Davison's time at the Tardis console--for some, a key moment in the show's downfall, for others the start of a younger, fresher and more serious interpretation of the Doctor; opinions tend to divide sharply, which means this DVD set gets the added spice of a touch of controversy. And as if the Doctor and the Master weren't enough, there are other new beginnings here, too. Romana and K9 are gone. A new group of traveling companions gradually join the Doctor throughout this loose trilogy--as many as three in fact, which actually replaces the general formula (since 1970) of a single female companion with a demographic batch closer to the companion crews typical of the 1960's. Perhaps a bit crowded, but characters we'll see regularly for quite a while are introduced right here.Read more ›
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Format: DVD
By the time John Nathan-Turner became producer of Doctor Who, it had been running for the better part of 20 years! He felt that the show was starting to become dull and dated. Thus making significant changes, and lending a brand new lease of life into the series.

This boxset consists of the last of the alterations made to the show; adding familiar characters from the show's past (i.e. the Master) and the transition from Tom Baker to Peter Davison.

The stories included are: The Keeper Of Traken, by Johnny Bryne; Logopolis, by Christopher Bidmead; and Castrovalva, also by Christopher Bidmead.

The DVD includes Tom Baker discussing his retiring from the part and has Peter Davison remembering his

time as the Doctor.

Also includes a unique commentary session featuring the late Anthony Ainley.
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Format: DVD
I absolutely love these final stories from the "Baker era" but every time I watch the end of "Logopolis"..a tear comes to my eye. I really didn't want to see Tom Baker leave at this point. He was still at the top of his game and better than ever here. I think there were a few reasons why Tom left and if you know these reasons, you really can't blame him. First off, John Nathan-Turner. The guy solely responsible for ruining everything that was good about the series. Secondly, some of the new crew that kissed Turner's butt. Thirdly, the writing which was geared towards pleasing Turner's ideals. Tom Baker adored "Doctor Who" and really didn't want to leave but he knew what was occuring and didn't like the way his character was being compromised. Although, I enjoy these stories(especially "Keeper Of Traken"), there is a lack of humor and witty lines coming from the Doctor during this final season. I can understand that in the "logopolis" story but not the others. I miss that and you know that Baker was being held back. Something which Philip Hinchcliffe(producer during the glory years)would have never done. Baker clearly no longer had creative control over his character and for this reason, the stories in this season aren't as entertaining as they could be. Also, there is the addition of too many companions and in doing so Baker(who really drove the show)gets less screen time and not as much to do. Like many "Who" fans, I really wish Tom Baker would have stayed on for another two or three seasons but I can totally understand why he chose to leave. He left at the peak of the series and it would never be as good as this again. Baker was incredibly smart(we already knew that of course) and made a wise decision. Can you imagine how he felt filming those last scenes though? It had to be unbearable for him.Read more ›
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Doctor Who: New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken / Logopolis / Castrovalva) (Stories 115 - 117)
This item: Doctor Who: New Beginnings (The Keeper of Traken / Logopolis / Castrovalva) (Stories 115 - 117)
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