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Doctor Who: The Key to Time (Special Collector's Edition) (Stories 98-103) (2009)

Tom Baker , Mary Tamm , George Spenton-Foster , Pennant Roberts  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)

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Frequently Bought Together

Doctor Who: The Key to Time (Special Collector's Edition) (Stories 98-103) + Doctor Who: The E-Space Trilogy- The Tom Baker Years 1974-1981 (Stories 112-114)
Price for both: $103.76

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Product Details

  • Actors: Tom Baker, Mary Tamm, John Leeson
  • Directors: George Spenton-Foster, Pennant Roberts, Darrol Blake, Michael Hayes, Norman Stewart
  • Writers: Robert Holmes, Douglas Adams, David Fisher, Bob Baker, Dave Martin
  • Producers: Graham Williams
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Collector's Edition, Color, Original recording remastered, Special Edition, Subtitled, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 7
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: March 3, 2009
  • Run Time: 633 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001K2KM9Q
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #24,575 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Doctor Who: The Key to Time (Special Collector's Edition) (Stories 98-103)" on IMDb

Special Features

The Ribos Operation (Story 98)
Commentary by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor) and Mary Tamm (Romana)
A Matter of Time: A new documentary exploring Graham Williams' three-year tenure as Doctor Who's producer and The Key to Time as a whole, with Tom Baker, Louise Jameson (Leela), Lalla Ward (Princess Astra/Romana), John Leeson (K-9), plus new series writer Gareth Roberts
The Ribos File: Making-of with Nigel Plaskitt (Unstoffe), Paul Seed (The Graff Vynda-K), and Prentis Hancock (Captain)
Season 16 trailer
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac feature: Radio Times billings
The Pirate Planet (Story 99)
Commentary 1 by actor Bruce Purchase (The Pirate Captain) and director Pennant Roberts
Commentary 2 by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor), Mary Tamm (Romana), and script editor Anthony Read
Parrot Fashion: Making-of documentary featuring interviews with writer Douglas Adams, Mary Tamm, John Leeson (K-9), Bruce Purchase, and Rosalind Lloyd (Xanxia)
Film inserts, deleted scenes, and outtakes
Weird Science: 1970s educational film spoof looks at some of the science seen in The Key to Time season
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac feature: Radio Times billing
The Stones of Blood (Story 100)
Commentary by actor Mary Tamm (Romana) and director Darrol Blake
Commentary 2 by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor), Mary Tamm (Romana), Susan Engel (Vivien Fay), and writer David Fisher
Getting Blood from the Stones: making-of documentary featuring Mary Tamm, John Leeson (K-9), Susan Engel, David Fisher, script editor Anthony Read, Darrol Blake, and effects designer Mat Irvine
Hammer Horror featurette on horror films' influence on Doctor Who
Stones Free: Mary Tamm visits the Rollright Stones to meet experts on this ancient stone circle
Deleted scenes from Part Two
The Model World of Robert Symes: archive clip on Mat Irvine's model work for this story
Blue Peter & Nationwide: Doctor Who 15th anniversary celebrations
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac feature: Radio Times billing
The Androids of Tara (Story 101)
Commentary by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor), Mary Tamm (Romana), and director Michael Hayes
The Humans of Tara: Making-of documentary featuring actors Mary Tamm, Paul Lavers (Farrah), and Neville Johnson (Prince Reynart), writer David Fisher, script editor Anthony Read, and Michael Hayes
Now & Then: Location featurette
Double Trouble: Retrospective on doubles in Doctor Who
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac feature: Radio Times billings
The Power of Kroll (Story 102)
Commentary by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor) and John Leeson (Dugeen)
Variations: Location visit from BBC Archive
In Studio: A glimpse into the studio recording of the story
There's Something About Mary: Mary Tamm looks back at her season as Romana
Philip Madoc--A Villain for All Seasons: Retrospective of actor Philip Madoc's numerous roles in Doctor Who
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac feature: Radio Times billings
The Armageddon Factor (Story 103)
Commentary 1 by actors Mary Tamm (Romana) and John Woodvine (The Marshal) and director Michael Hayes
Commentary 2 by actors Tom Baker (The Doctor), Mary Tamm, and John Leeson (K-9)
Defining Shadows: Making-of documentary featuring writers Bob Baker and Dave Martin, designer Richard McManan-Smith, and actors Lalla Ward (Astra), David Harries (Shapp), and Barry Jackson (Drax)
Directing Who: Director Michael Hayes talks about his directing career
Rogue Time Lords: Potted history of errant Gallilfreyans
Pebble Mill at One: 1978 Tom Baker interview/Interview with Dick Mills and Brian Hodgson of the Radiophonic Workshop
The New Sound of Music: Dick Mills on series sound effects
Merry Christmas Doctor Who: Sketch for 1978 BBC Christmas tape
Late Night Story: Tom Baker reads five spine-chilling stories from an unbroadcast 1978 series
Alternative/extended scene
Photo gallery
Production note option
DVD-ROM PC/Mac features: The Doctor Who Annual 1979, Radio Times billings

Editorial Reviews

The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure encompasses one of the more ambitious chapters in the history of the long-running BBC television series Doctor Who, and its landmark status, combined with the presence of the well-loved Tom Baker in the title role, should make this six-disc boxed set irresistible to Who fans. The 26-episode series was conceived by producer Graham Williams, who was intrigued by the idea of a season-long story arc, and after several setbacks he finally achieved it in 1978-79 for the program's 16th season. In The Key to Time, the Doctor and his new companion, the elegant and sharp-witted Time Lady Romana (Mary Tamm) are dispatched by the White Guardian to recover the six segments of the Key of Time, a powerful device with the ability to stop time. The Doctor and Romana must travel the universe to find the hidden segments before the nefarious Black Guardian discovers them. Their adventures bring them in contact with a host of unusual personalities and, in a time-honored Doctor Who tradition, a number of terrifying monsters. For fans of the series and Baker in particular, The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure is a must-have. --Paul Gaita

Product Description

In a story arc that continues throughout Season 16, the White Guardian gives the Doctor a quest to find the six disguised segments of the Key to Time which, when assembled, will be used to restore the balance of the cosmos. To aid him he is given a new companion, a female Time Lord called Romana, and a tracer device.

DVD Features:
Deleted Scenes
Photo gallery
Production Notes

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
100 of 102 people found the following review helpful
Verified Purchase
I have been reading the reveiews for the new "Key To Time Set", and I find it funny that they only get the story only half right on why they have re-released this set.

So I checked on [...] (Steve Manfred's website) who is the man to talk too about all Doctor Who DVD (and hell, even VHS) releases in the US. FROM STEVE MANFRED's WEB SITE:

A very Frequently Asked Question I've been getting lately is "Why are they re-releasing The Key to Time (especially when half the rest of the series isn't out yet?)"

The answer has to do with how and why we got the 2002 edition of this set. In their first DVD releases in North America in 2001 and early 2002, BBC Worldwide Americas included a questionnaire that pointed to a website poll where their customers could choose from amongst a list of titles which Doctor Who title they would most like to see released next. On that list was The Key to Time, and it won the poll. They went back to their partners in the UK and requested that it be released. They met with some resistance as the UK BBC people didn't feel the time was right for their market for a box set of this many episodes to be released, however the BBC WA people emphasized how important box sets had already become in the North American market and how having one was in fact now essential to get stores to stock Doctor Who titles at all. They'd had a wave of some individual titles in 2002 that many chains chose not to stock because all they were was individual stories. A box set was now seen as a requirement to save the range's future in North America. And so an agreement was reached whereby The Key to Time could be released in late 2002 in North America without there having been a UK release first.
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115 of 119 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Double-dip to Excellent Tom Baker Season December 16, 2008
Yes, these are technically re-releases of shows that have already been put out on DVD. For the 'die-hard' fans these may not be totally redundant like Lucas and his Star Wars releases.

The Key to Time Series: I would get this again ONLY because it is loaded with commentaries by Tom Baker and Mary Tamm which were not available on some of the episodes within the previous DVD set released. As well, there are new making-of documentaries regarding each of the shows per each segment of the Key that are, again, totally new.

I am biased towards loving this season of Tom Baker's run. Thus, if you aren't that crazy about these then, yes, the purchase is totally unnecessary. However, if you are 'avid', then this set should be rewarding to succumb to the 'double-dip'... with the new special features in plenty...

The NEW 350 minutes-worth of special features details are as follows. All the making-of features are new and NEW commentaries are marked with an *:

I. The Ribos Operation: Special Edition (1 DVD; 4 episodes; 98 mins)
1. Commentary with Tom Baker and Mary Tamm
2. A Matter of Time - A new 60-minute Documentary
3. The Ribos File - Cast and Crew Interviews about the making of
this story
4. Continuities - off-air continuity links from the story's
original BBC1 transmission
5. Season 16 Trailer - BBC1 trailer for the forthcoming season
6. Photo Gallery

II. The Pirate Planet: Special Edition (1 DVD; 4 episodes; 100 mins)
2 Audio Commentary Tracks:
1. Commentary with Bruce Purchase and director Pennant Roberts
2. * Commentary with Tom Baker, Mary Tamm and script editor Anthony
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
The Key to Time season features, without a doubt, some of the best of the various aspects of "Doctor Who" that have made the series so beloved:

1. Strong, competent companions: in this case, we get two. There's Romanadvoratrelundar (the Doctor gives her the choice of shortening her name to Romana or Fred), played by the beautiful Mary Tamm; and K-9 Mk. II, voiced by John Leeson. Though she starts out somewhat irritating, Romana soon becomes one of the Doctor's most capable and helpful companions (sometimes even managing to upstage the Doctor in brilliance), while K-9 is as helpful and adorable as ever.

2. The plots, while not always making sense, go along at a nice clip, with little to no padding. My particular favorites are "The Pirate Planet," "The Stones of Blood," and "The Androids of Tara."

3. The hammy performances. Oh God, the hammy performances. In "The Pirate Planet" alone (written, appropriately enough, by Douglas Adams) we get the Captain, who gives us such wonderfully bombastic lines as "NO! BY THE WINGS OF THE SKY DEMON, I SAY NOOOOOO!!!" This is the kind of ham that is a joy to watch, rather than a chore to sit through.

4. The humor. In particular there's "The Stones of Blood," in which every other scene after the first episode has some sort of funny moment, whether it's the Doctor insisting that K-9 has always wanted to be a bloodhound, despite the robot dog's insistence to the contrary; or the Doctor's wily maneuvers during his trial by the Megara.

For those of you who have never seen classic "Doctor Who," or have never seen "Doctor Who" at all, this is a perfectly good way to begin.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Scratched DVDs
My box set arrived with scratches on all the DVDs. I am extremely upset.
Published 1 month ago by Lyndsay Lawrence
5.0 out of 5 stars Just as good as I remember
The 4th Doctor is the best. Who would have thought my 13 year old would like these cheesy effects, but he does!
Published 1 month ago by Charles H Meyer
5.0 out of 5 stars Seeking the Best of Early Dr. Who (A Masterpiece Season)
When it comes to the pinnacle of the 4th Doctor's adventures, I firmly believe that the KEY TO TIME series showcases Tom Baker and the 2nd Production Team's (Producer Graham... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Tinfoot
5.0 out of 5 stars great doctor who stories,excellent work
Some of the greatest episodes of the British T.V. show Doctor who are in this "Key to Time" miniseries plot . I just LOVE IT!!
Published 5 months ago by Kevin Todd Clepps
5.0 out of 5 stars A Key to"a good" Time
This is a great little series with very inventive story lines, starting with a near vaudeville act, and ending with a life lesson in why questioning authority is always a good... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Fishgeek
5.0 out of 5 stars The real Dr. Who
Tom Baker rocks as the real Dr. Who .I grew up with his personification as the Dr. and in my humble opinion he is the only one that pulled it off. Read more
Published 6 months ago by Steven I. Bennett
5.0 out of 5 stars Definetly worth $60.99 so get it now if you don't own it!!!!
The Key to Time set is currently going for $60.99 and that's a good price, a great price would be $30.00 but I doubt if it's gonna
go that low... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Ferris Bueller
5.0 out of 5 stars So much fun
I watched these as reruns on PBS as a kid. I was stoked to find them on dvd. I'm glad I ordered it. Fun for the whole family.
Published 9 months ago by KLS
5.0 out of 5 stars Superior season long story
a very entertaining season of Doctor Who . well worth a buy for any Whovain.also features the 1st app. of Lella Ward on the show
Published 9 months ago by Steve Kuykendall
5.0 out of 5 stars so happy
I am so excited to own this! I love the Key to Time arc, and this edition is very nice.
Published 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
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