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< The Daleks
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The Edge of Desctruction

Rating Votes
10
5%
6
9
7%
8
8
21%
24
7
32%
36
6
13%
15
5
12%
13
4
4%
5
3
2%
2
2
2%
2
1
1%
1
Average Rating
6.8
Votes
112

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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: traves8853Review Date: 1/16/16 9:21 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

At the beginning of, 'The Edge of Destruction' an unconscious Doctor lies on the floor muttering, "I can't take you back Susan, I can't..." Over the years, there has been fan speculation whether Susan was even his granddaughter or whether he had kidnapped her! - Much like he had plucked Ian and Barbara from the normality of their day existence (An Unearthly Child) and then spent two years trying to get them back, even though he seemed unable to navigate his own ship. He showed no hesitation at abducting the two teachers if it prevented his granddaughter leaving.

For a filler story on a budget of ten pounds with no new actors, no new sets or costumes this acquits itself very well indeed. It's a classic character-driven piece. I love stories with a certain amount of isolation and focus on dialogue. Something like Beckett's 'Waiting for Godot' or Mamet's 'American Buffalo'; in the right mood there is nothing better. Imagine the Tardis is a vast sprawling shadowy mansion stuck in acres of wilderness being looked after by an elderly and sinister caretaker and his granddaughter who has accepted a couple of guests. The Mansion is haunted and slowly driving its inhabitants mad. Sound familiar? Classic Doctor Who has always merged Sci-Fi and Horror genres better than any other show I can think of whilst often avoiding the pitfalls of both and compounding its strengths. There must be enough room on the disc to include and alternate version with words fast return switch CGI out and a bit of steam added to the melting clock, that wouldn't go a miss for me. We all owe this fantastic journey of events to a dodgy spring. I really like the sense of scale there, just a silly little spring in one of the most powerful machines in the universe causing so much trouble.

The change of Director for the second episode does make the transition from episodes clunky in terms of style and pace but perhaps that wasn't as noticeable when they were broadcast a week apart, and I don't think they pushed the menace in this story enough. Also, Starting off with disorientated character is a bit more confusing than mysterious and I feel it is something that should have crept in gradually but it is quite a short story. Still, though, this is packed full of good ideas. Today, 'Doctor Who' is so notable in our collective memories that Sydney Newman's wonderfully abstract concept of a box being larger on the inside is taken for granted; add in the idea that it is alive and perhaps partially sentient which is a wonderfully abstract concept and totally original concept.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: doctorwhomoffReview Date: 12/27/15 6:49 pm
0 out of 1 found this review helpful.

The edge of destruction is uniqe in that it is the only story to be set entirely in the TARDIS aside from one scene at the very end.

This story is the closest the Hartnell era ever gets to an out and out horror story and it shows, it is incredibly creepy and tense with tones of And Then There Were None and the thing in play.

The cast is very strong through out be special praise must be given to Jackie Hill for the absolutely spell binding turn she gives in this episode and for her amazing what the hell hero speech that she delivers to the doctor towards the end.

I would love to give this episode eight out of ten but it unfortunately falls apart a little towards the end, but resolution is always the hardest part. Even so I can only give this episode seven out of ten, I might have given 7.5 out of ten if I could.

On the whole however the edge of destruction is a good little two parter that is well worth a watch.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
6
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 6/13/15 7:36 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

The Edge of Destruction is a story I had to watch twice to actually get. The TARDIS begins to malfunction and the Doctor and Companions are on edge and paranoid. Susan takes up a knife, Ian almost strangles the Doctor (which wouldn't require being under any particular strain at this point in the series), and the Doctor is accusing the two school teachers of being saboteurs.

The story is important for a couple of reasons. First, in the third story, it does establish things about the TARDIS such as the heart of the TARDIS being located underneath the console which would be a key plot element in the final two stories of the first series of New Who. Other aspects are contradicted by later stories as the concepts were developed (such as the TARDIS being just a machine or a basic AI) or opening the heart of the TARDIS having the energy come out would destroy you. I think many of the differences can be explained in-world by the fact that the Doctor stole the TARDIS and may not have understood every aspect of its operation.

There's a great sense of mystery as to what exactly is going on causing problems in the TARDIS. This part of the plot ends in anti-climax and the best it does is explain why all the Time Lords make fun of the Doctor having a Type 40 TARDIS. I mean a TARDIS which can almost be destroyed by something like this-does make you kind of wonder.

However, the larger point of the story is the character and relational development. Coming on to the TARDIS, the teachers were viewed as intruders into the Doctor's home and the Doctor almost killed someone until Ian stopped him, and then nearly got them all killed by faking a problem with the TARDIS. These issues come up and the Doctor's behavior through most of this story doesn't help, but there's a turning point in the second episode that really changes the dynamic in the TARDIS as the Doctor is forced to come face to face with his own mistake and frailty. When you listen to Marco Polo, there's an entirely different dynamic. Ian and Barbara are part of the TARDIS crew. When this was written, Doctor Who was only guaranteed thirteen weeks and this served as a satisfactory conclusion to the Doctor's early adventures.

The story is helped by great performances from Jacqueline Hill, who plays a much more prominent role with a story that doesn't involve much action. She keeps her wits about her until the danger is past and then afterwards, the way she sits in stony silence and the expression on her face show how much the Doctor's threats and harsh words wounded her.

This also a good performance by Hartnell despite flubbing a couple of lines. There's plenty of the First Doctor being difficult but at the end, we see how this Doctor can be quite charming when he wants to be. The only problem is that he rarely wants to be.

Overall, this is a good bottle episode and while it's conclusion seemed weak, it's fun for it's look at the earliest version of TARDIS lore and the way it redefines the relationship between the Doctor and his earliest Companions.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
NA
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: TakeTheType40Review Date: 2/17/15 1:08 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

This was a fun one, and while left unexplained why the characters are behaving so weird it is a pretty good episode. Nothing exceptional but nothing horrid either.
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