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Doctor Who: Planet of Evil (Story 81) (2008)

Tom Baker , Elisabeth Sladen , David Maloney  |  NR |  DVD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen, Ian Marter
  • Directors: David Maloney
  • Writers: Louis Marks
  • Producers: Philip Hinchcliffe
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Original recording remastered, Subtitled
  • Language: English (Mono)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 4, 2008
  • Run Time: 94 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00114XLZK
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,120 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Doctor Who: Planet of Evil (Story 81)" on IMDb

Special Features

  • Audio Commentary
  • DVD ROM Features
  • Making Of
  • Production Notes

  • Editorial Reviews

    When a distress call draws the Doctor and Sarah Jane to a scientific outpost at the end of the Universe, the Doctor suspects dark planetary forces are behind a series of sinister deaths.

    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    29 of 30 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars The Moody Planet. January 15, 2008
    Format:DVD
    Season 13.
    Zeta Minor is a planet on the periphery of the known universe.
    But what is not known about it, is, it's also a gateway to the anti-matter universe!
    (Nothing is ever simple in the Whoniverse!)
    En route to London the TARDIS picks up a SOS call from Zeta Minor, the Doctor immediately changes course and land's there. (circa, 37,166)
    Trudging through this densely jungled world the Doctor and Sarah come upon a Morestran military squad, searching for a geological expedition that has ceased transmitting.
    The Morestran's are extremely suspicious of the Doctor and Sarahs explainations as to why they are there, but their conflict is about to be seriously interrupted when the anti matter world makes it's presence known to them - and an infected killer starts to stalk the ships corridors.
    ~~~~
    Behind the scenes.
    The real star of this story, for me, is not a Human character but the magnificient alien jungle set, designed by Roger Murray Leech. Later to design for feature films.
    He suggested it should be shot on film at the BBC owned Ealing film studios, and not videotaped, to give it greater depth and realism, and it works for me. The shots in the TV studio have a noticeable drop in visual impact.
    These scenes set in the Zeta Minor jungle have to be the most eerie and suspenseful in the shows long history.
    ~~~~
    DVD Special Features.
    "Commentary" - With actors Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen and Prentis Hancock, producer Philip Hinchcliffe.
    "A Darker Side" - a 25 minute "making of" feature. With producer Philip Hinchcliffe, writer Louis Marks, designer Roger Murray-Leach, director David Maloney, actors Tom Baker, Elisabeth Sladen and Prentis Hancock.
    Read more ›
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    14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who does a horror version of Forbidden Planet December 23, 1998
    By A Customer
    Format:VHS Tape
    In this extremely well directed story with Hammer-like flourishes, The Doctor (Tom Baker) explores a lush alien jungle on a planet at the edge of the known universe. There, Professor Sorenson (Frederick Jaeger), engaged in experiments to harness the power of anti-matter, has unleashed a terrible anti-matter beast that threatens the men onboard the ship sent to rescue him. The alien planet is extremely well designed, and the scenes involving the anti-matter monster leave the viewer with a genuine sense of dread. There are also some very nicely directed sequences involving The Doctor falling into the anti-matter pit. As the anti-matter monster divides itself and attacks from all sides, the claustrophobia and tension increases, making one frequently look behind oneself. In an midst of a very well done Forbidden Planet remake, we have a terrific and genuinely frightening story with nice special effects for the era.
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    17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars Dr. Who at its finest January 25, 2008
    Format:DVD
    Dr. Who was in its golden age when PLANET OF EVIL was broadcast in the mid-70s. Tom Baker had assumed his iconic role as the good Doctor and, now in his second season, he was really on form. PLANET OF EVIL was one of those great Dr. Who stories which was haunting, scary, well acted, well written, well produced and well realized. It was in short the classic hide behind the sofa story.

    The Doctor and Sarah have materialized on Zeta Minor at the edge of the known universe. They arrive to find the skeletal remains of a human; all the life having been sucked out of him. Of course, the Doctor and Sarah are blamed. As it turns out, Zeta Minor is something of a gateway between the universes of matter and anti-matter. The creature responsible for sucking the lives out of people is something of a hybrid creature which lives in an abyss between the two universes and who is attacking people it seems because a researcher is intent on removing hybrid crystals from the planet for use as fuel in the human colonies. The Doctor returns the crystals, makes the creature happy and all is well again.

    This episode is fantastic for anyone, hard core fan and casual observer alike. The BBC effects department did a fantastic job on the jungle for this story (it was done entirely in studio!). The story also featured three of the best guest actors in the series' history, Prentice Hancock as Commander Salamar, Frederick Jaeger as Sorenson and Ewan Solon as Vishinsky. I don't give 5-star ratings lightly - get this DVD!
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    5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars The Scariest Dr. Who Story. October 27, 2004
    Format:VHS Tape
    This is one that had me jumping behind the couch when I was 10. Though some reviewers write this story off as rubbish, its one of my personal favorites. I think its because, like much of Hinchcliffe's Who, time and effort go into generating suspense and horror through image, through what we see as much as through plot and character, the two complementing each other, and the story being propelled as much by image as dialogue. The hideous, pig brained "Peking Homonculous" in the Talons of Weng Chiang is a good example of this.

    In Face of Evil, potent images of horror abound. Examples include the perpetual twighlight of the forest, the red, purple and black tones dominating the production design, in the fact that we don't see the monster at first, only its effect on the environment (an idea that resurfaced, along with the plastic jungle, in the similarly titled "Face of Evil.") There also is palpable fear generated by surveyors' scruffiness and dirtiness, their desperate rushes through the haunted wood, and the horrific look of their wizened corpses after the monster gets them. The look on Sarah's face when the monster almost gets her is another terrifying (to the 10 year old inside us all) image used in this story.

    And the terror is relentless. The suspense builds as the action shifts to the Morestran spaceship. Sorenson's glowing eyes after he morphs into "anti-man," the steaming potion he must gulp (like Dr. Jeckyll) to keep his demons at bay, the corpses ditched from the ship plunging into the endless loneliness of deep space.... all unforgettable images terrifying to the mind of an imaginative 10 year old.

    If there was a secret to Hinchcliffe's success as a producer it was this.

    Another appealing quality of the Face of Evil is its ending.
    Read more ›
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars Loved the Special effects (Theres something you don"t hear everyday)
    That's one of the nice parts about watching Tom Baker episodes. The special effects effect the plotline less and less. Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Jim Phillips
    4.0 out of 5 stars Seeking the "Best of" Early Dr. Who
    In the on-disc documentary, "A Darker Side", the producer, Hinchcliffe, at the very end said THE EVIL PLANET in hindsight wasn't one of the standout shows... Read more
    Published 2 months ago by Tinfoot
    4.0 out of 5 stars the Doctor and Sarah Jane
    What more can I say. As campy as the sets and costumes for many of the Doctor Who's can get this production is worth the viewing. The jungle is great! Read more
    Published 4 months ago by Doug Davies
    4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Story in a Great Setting
    In this Fourth Doctor story we get a alien menace reminiscent of the classic film "Forbidden Planet. Read more
    Published 17 months ago by Keitheaux
    5.0 out of 5 stars Great DVD
    I liked this story. Just like the other if you like Doctor Who you will like this one. The special effects are cheesy but a good story.
    Published 20 months ago by Pete
    4.0 out of 5 stars Can the Doctor save those from Anti-Matter monsters or be destroyed?
    The Doctor and Sarah Jane have recived a rescue signal from the planet called Zeta Minor. There they have found a sicentist by the name of Professor Sorenson sole survior of an... Read more
    Published on July 26, 2011 by Jacob
    4.0 out of 5 stars A triumph of design and classic sci-fi themes
    "Planet of Evil" brilliantly showcases the work of designer Roger Murray-Leach, whose previous work included "The Ark in Space" and who would go on to design perhaps the most... Read more
    Published on July 9, 2011 by buckbooks
    5.0 out of 5 stars A top-notch sci-fi/horror entry (details)
    A distress call broadcast by an expeditionary research and mining group on Zeta Minor, at the fringe of the Universe, is detected by their rescue ship and by The Doctor [Tom Baker]... Read more
    Published on April 4, 2011 by Patrick W. Crabtree
    5.0 out of 5 stars Planet of Evil, Doctor Who Story 81
    A solid, quality production, of an often overlooked story in the early Tom Baker era. "Planet of Evil" is often overlooked not because it isn't a great story, which it is, but... Read more
    Published on August 25, 2010 by G. L. Nelson
    4.0 out of 5 stars Paging Dr Who
    If you were a Tom Baker fan(the Dr. Who classic actor with the scarf and the wooly head of hair), then this and the related volumes is for you. Read more
    Published on January 21, 2010 by Beantown Jim
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