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Doctor Who: The Seeds Of Death (Story 48) - Special Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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(Jun 12, 2012)
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Special Edition
$13.71 $12.60

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$22.44 & FREE Shipping on orders over $49. Details Only 13 left in stock. Sold by Two Thumbs Up and Fulfilled by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Doctor Who: Seeds of Death: Special Edition (Episode 48) (DVD)

New to DVD! Digitally re-mastered Doctor Who classic The Seeds of Death Special Edition! By the late 21st century, mankind has become totally dependent on T-Mat to transport people, food and medicines around the world. When the system breaks down, Earth is soon crippled by global shortages. Traveling to the relay station on the Moon, the Doctor and his companions discover the horrific truth: the Ice Warriors have hijacked T-Mat, and intend to claim the planet for themselves. Can the Doctor defeat the Martians before Earth is smothered in deadly fungus, and the human race is condemned to extinction?


An excellent script, top-notch supporting performances, and a vivid villain make The Seeds of Death an above-average Doctor Who story from the 1960s. The Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton) and his companions, the headstrong Jamie (Frazer Hines) and the intrepid Zoe (Wendy Padbury), arrive in a future Earth where all travel is done by teleportation, a system called T-Mat--but the Ice Warriors have taken over the T-Mat station on the Moon and threaten to conquer Earth. Over the course of six episodes, the Doctor infiltrates the moon base, is nearly killed by toxic bubble bath (as usual, the special effects are fairly primitive), and saves the day. The first two episodes of The Seeds of Death really zip along; the crisp writing (by Brian Hayles) lays out the plot skillfully and the characters actually behave like intelligent human beings. After that, when long-time script editor Terrance Dicks rewrote the story (as discussed in one of the extras), the material takes a turn for the generic and the pace grows sluggish, but there's still fun to be had. While most of the Ice Warriors are a bit laughable, Ice Lord Slaar (Alan Bennion), with his sibilant whisper of a voice, is marvelously creepy. Not only does this story feature the hyper-intelligent Zoe, one of the leading T-Mat managers is the highly competent Gia Kelly (the excellent Louise Pajo), whose skill and authority are treated with respect throughout. A second disk of extra features includes a solid making-of doc and several featurettes about the monsters of Doctor Who, from the Daleks to the Weeping Angels. All in all, good fare from the early years of this classic science fiction series. --Bret Fetzer

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Patrick Troughton, Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury
  • Directors: Michael Ferguson
  • Writers: Brian Hayles
  • Producers: Peter Bryant
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Black & White, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 12, 2012
  • Run Time: 145 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B005SJGI7C
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,108 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Phil Rosenbach on May 10, 2012
As I am writing this in mid May, 2012, I have to state that this one almost got by me, thinking this "Special Edition" was an older product. But then I realized that this has not yet been released in the US. I got this last year as part of the U.K. Revisitations Box Set - Volume 2, which became available in March 2011. So this is a genuine review, unlike many of the other phonies who post "reviews" before the product is made available to them simply for the sake of making them.

As always, I'm not gong to give a synopsis of the story itself. If you don't know the story by now, there are plenty of other reviewers who will tell you all about it ad nauseam. Rather, I'm going to focus on what I believe will help you decide if this product is worthy of your hard earned wages by reviewing the extras which, in my opinion, can make or break a purchase.

DVD Audio Commentary - With Wendy Padburry, Frazer Hines, director Michael Ferguson, and Terrance Dicks. I actually listen to each and every one of these, and usually enjoy them, especially when Toby Hadoke is NOT a part of it, and fortunately he did not take part of this one.

Text Commentary - This is different from the 2003 version. While I'm glad then when a new a audio commentary may be included, as well as the older one from the previous release, I get irritated that they don't include the old text commentary along with the new one.

Lords of the Red Planet - Is a documentary on the making of "The Seeds of Death. It covers the history of the creation of the Ice Warriors and their creator, Brian Hayes. Frazer Hines, Wendy Padburry, and costume designer Bobbi Bartlet are just a few contributors to this piece. I found this to be interesting and entertaining.
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I don't usually include a synopsis but I noticed that the other 6 reviews did not include one. So here it is.

At the end of the twenty-first century, a "T-Mat" (Teleportation) has replaced all other forms of transport. Manned space exploration has ceased due to the quality of life on Earth. The Doctor, (Patrick Troughton) Jamie and Zo arrive on Earth at the Rocketry Museum run by Professor Daniel Eldred. When the T-Mat relay station on the moon breaks down the Doctor and his companions volunteer to help Commander Radnor and his assistant repair the relay station by crewing a rocket Professor Eldred has been privately building in hopes of re-igniting an interest in space travel
We cut to the moon where we find the relay station has been taken over in a military coup by unknown invaders. Controller Osgood has been killed while sabotaging the relay system in an attempt to thwart the takeover, and his deputy Fewsham has been pressed into assisting the invaders. Locke (another tech) actively tries to contact Earth and explain the situation, for which he is killed. While technician Phipps concentrates on survival and looking for an opportunity for reprisal. We come to find the Ice Warriors, a militant Martian race, have taken control of the moon base and are planning to use it as a staging point for an invasion of the Earth. Fewsham repairs the T-Mat link on receive mode and Gia Kelly the Commanders underpaid Assistant beams through and starts to work on repairing the full T-Mat system.
After a rather bumpy ride the Doctor and his companions arrive by rocket discovering the situation and make contact with Phipps, who has evaded the Ice Warriors and is hiding in the moon base.
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This is one of the most visually striking, compelling stories of Doctor Who's black-and-white era. After comparing the "Special Edition" with the original DVD release from 2004, I'm not sure the added features you get with the newer version warrant buying it again. (Amazon is, as of this writing, charging about the same for both versions, so if you're new to "The Seeds of Death," go for the new release by all means.)

As best as I can tell, the only thing new to the special edition are three good to middling new mini-documentaries that, respectively, trace the history of the Ice Warriors, look at the use of monsters on the show generally, and compare those iconic monsters that have made repeat appearances in the series. A fourth feature, which includes interviews with actors who played the Ice Warriors, is included with both versions.

In "The Seeds of Death," the Doctor, Jamie and Zoe land on a future Earth, which has given up traditional space travel with rocket ships and now relies on a matter-transmitting device centered on the Moon to ship freight and people all over the world. "T-Mat," as it is called, is hijacked by the Ice Warriors in a plot to alter Earth's climate. The Doctor must persuade Earth's foremost authority on rocket travel (now the curator of a space museum) to take one of Earth's rockets out of mothballs so that he and his companions can fly it to the Moon to sort out the trouble.

Louise Pajo is magnificent in the central female role of Gia Kelly, Commander Radnor's so-called "assistant" who singlehandedly keeps the global T-Mat system running smoothly. The use of lighting in this story is particularly effective, flashing numbers of a countdown, for instance, on Pajo's face to dramatize action that might otherwise be limited to model effects.
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