Who could possibly resist this extravaganza of intergalactic adventure, eccentric characters, and over-the-top sci-fi special effects? Certainly not the good Doctor's legions of fans, who will relish all 26 episodes featuring tousle-haired Tom Baker and, as the luscious Ramona, Mary Tamm. Polished writing by Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy) and Robert Holmes makes the preposterous seem almost possible. DVD extras include pop-up production notes, a photo gallery, and a who's who on each disc. 9 hours on 6 DVDs.
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.
Unlike the other Doctor Who DVDs from BBC America, The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure is debuting in North America rather than the United Kingdom, the reason being that the Baker serials have proven more popular with American audiences. And while offering somewhat fewer supplemental features than the previous releases, the boxed set is a rare opportunity to own an entire season of Doctor Who at one time. For fans of the series and Baker in particular, The Key to Time: The Complete Adventure is a must-have. --Paul Gaita
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