Stories:
3010
Members:
742
Submitted Reviews:
8604
Reviewers:
350
< Paradise Towers
Dragonfire >

Delta And the Bannermen

Rating Votes
10
2%
2
9
6%
5
8
14%
11
7
16%
13
6
26%
21
5
20%
16
4
10%
8
3
2%
2
2
2%
2
1
1%
1
Average Rating
6.1
Votes
81
Director:
Writer:

Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
3
Plot Rating:
NR
Acting Rating:
NR
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: Doctorluna2001Review Date: 4/1/19 3:25 pm
1 out of 2 found this review helpful.

It's just so weird and dull
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
2
Plot Rating:
2
Acting Rating:
3
Replay Rating:
2
Effects Rating:
2
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: MercuryReview Date: 2/12/19 2:40 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

Oh dear! This is the worst story in the worst (by FAR) season of Doctor Who ever and is therefore, for me, clearly the lowest point the series has ever reached. The whole of this season is badly written, cheaply produced, badly directed etc. It is the only season of the show across its over 55 year history (at time of writing) that I think it was genuinely bad and not at the level of average TV shows let alone average Doctor Who. Season 22 and 23 had been my least favourite seasons and I disliked the characterisation given to the 6th Doctor. The 7th Doctor is much more likable and in keeping with the Doctor's usual characteristics but sadly the material and the whole production was so bad that Season 24 even made the Colin Baker era look great by comparison! Thankfully Season 25 was to be a big step forward back to respectability and Season 26 would be really excellent so Sylvester McCoy was deservedly not left with this very disappointing standard to represent his whole era. Very sadly I think it was this season which spelled the end for the show's original run. The damage done to the show's reputation at this time are I think what lead to its cancellation.

This story gets a fair amount of criticism but many feel other stories are even worse. I think this is because some people see this as a case of 'so bad its good' bit of 'camp fun'. I strongly disagree with that attitude. Yes we want fun and humour in Doctor Who but we should be laughing with intentional comedy not laughing AT how bad it is. It is possible for the show to have some camp fun but this story is not fun or funny, it is boring and embarrassing.

The production values are as bad as it gets. The costumes are cheap and over the top, the make up is VERY amateurish, the 50s music is fine but is not used well and the other incidental music is awful, the special effects such as the satellite and so on are not good and the whole thing is totally cheap and cheesy.

There are comments I have heard before from critics about the guest appearance of comedian Ken Dodd in part 1 of this story as an example of its cheesy lack of quality. In fact, I think, Ken Dodd is one of the highlights of the story! He just basically plays a version of his usual comedy stage persona which should not be a highlight of a Doctor Who story but his role as Tollmaster is small, comedic and well performed within the limits of the material given. Welsh stalwarts Richard Davies (camp boss Burton) and Brian Hibbard (as a mercenary) also perform as well as they can in the circumstances and along with Sylvester MCCoy these efforts are pretty much the only things lifting this above a 1/10 total debacle. Bonnie Langford as Mel is sadly her usual mixture of pantomime style dialogue delivery and high pitched screaming and the rest of the cast are just plain poor. Stubby Kaye and Morgan Deare appear in totally pointless and illogical roles as Americans weirdly searching for the satellite in Wales before it is even brought to Earth. Deare is particularly awful in his role. The beekeeper just spouts supposed wisdom about bees and butterflies that is heavy handedly and stupidly supposed to coincidentally tell us about the aliens situation. Billy and Delta are badly woodenly acted and their instant romance and devotion is ludicrous. Sara Griffiths does her best as Ray but is amateur dramatics level. Don Henderson is a panto villain and all other parts are all of zero quality with the dire Bannermen and minor holiday camp staff members delivering embarrassing performances.

The script is awful with no intelligence, nothing interesting and nothing sensible being said and the plot is both dull and nonsensical. A scene where the Bannermen barge into a farmhouse barn and get covered in honey then stung by bees is possibly the worst scene ever in Doctor Who. How anyone can criticise any post 2005 episode as "the worst ever" while calling Delta and the Bannermen an OK bit of camp fun is on a different planet to me! This is the lowest of the low. Worst TV story of all time. 2/10.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
5
Acting Rating:
6
Replay Rating:
6
Effects Rating:
4
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: GuiannosReview Date: 1/27/19 9:27 pm
0 out of 1 found this review helpful.

This is one of my guilty pleasure serials. Yes, it's as bad as it's reputation suggests. I will not dispute anyone criticizing it's lack of merits. The premise of alien tourists coming to Earth in the 50's to experience Rock & Roll is completely daft. The "queen in exile" story and love with a commoner angle are both overworn tropes and there's nothing exemplary about how they're handled. The costume design and execution is cheap, tacky, and unconvincing. The acting is decent but nowhere near good enough to salvage the plot. So, why defend it at all? Because it's consistently bad in all the right ways to make for some campy fun in a laughable way. As a story it never takes itself seriously (or asks the viewer to). Everything about the serial conspires to set a goofy mood and achieves it's goal, helped by some perfectly fitting musical direction. No, it's not a good story. It's not even the most polished turd in one of the weakest seasons and bumpiest runs of the show's history. If you have a stomach for it, though, and are able to laugh it off this can be an pleasant watch. Like it or not it will be memorable.

Other Recommendations

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
2
Plot Rating:
1
Acting Rating:
4
Replay Rating:
1
Effects Rating:
2
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: JMChurch25Review Date: 4/19/18 2:51 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

It's hard to imagine a Seventh Doctor TV story worse than 'Time and the Rani' but honestly and shockingly "Delta and the Bannermen" somehow fits the bill. At least 'Rani' had some interesting things about it that saved it a little even if they weren't executed all that well. 'Bannermen' doesn't even have that going for it and re-watching it again its reputation is very well earned. The plot as best as I can figure out centers around the Chimeron princess Delta being pursued as the last of her kind by the evil Bannermen who want to kill her for.....some unknown reason that I couldn't figure out watching other than just being evil. If you are looking for some sort of motivation or background to these characters and why they have such animosity towards each other, you aren't going to find it here. Meanwhile the Seventh Doctor and Melanie join a group of tourist aliens on a tour of the Earth and get stuck in 1959 in a run-down holiday camp where they end up finding Delta and get involved in said conflict along with a 50's biker girl named Ray, a young man named Billy with an out of nowhere attraction to Delta, two American spies looking for a downed satellite, and a weird old beekeeper who seems to only be there to spout weird wisdom that relates to the Chimeron culture. How all these things tie together I really have no idea and I'm not sure the story itself does either. Trying to untangle and care about what is going on is next to impossible especially as we never find out more about any of the characters the plot centers around other than surface level impressions. There are also so many things that simply don't make sense at all like the completely out of left field romance between biker dude Billy and Delta, the purpose of why the American pair are in the story at all, and especially how and why this conflict is important or worth caring about. It makes the story an unpleasantly boring slog and all of the other flaws in the story certainly don't help. For one thing, I hate the 50's setting partially on a personal level and partially because it's cheesy, overblown, and really doesn't serve the story's purpose. For another, the design of this story is simply awful. Everything from the creature design of the tourist aliens to the costume designs of both the Bannermen and Delta are over the top and silly-looking. I could go on and on about all of the problems this one has but what about what's good? Well Sylvester McCoy is certainly trying his hardest and you can continue to see his character growing in confidence and ability in this story. He gets all the best lines and moments in the story though that's really not saying much when everything else is so bad. I really also like the character of Ray in this story. A Welsh biker girl that feels like a prototype for Ace with a sweeter edge to her, she and Seven have a really nice connection and I could totally see them working as a TARDIS pair. You can tell that the producers were prepping for Mel's departure next story (who by the way is at her worst here with nothing redeemable to go off of) and playing around with different ideas on who would work with Seven. Other than that.....the scenery is nice at times I guess and the production design is OK for the most part. But that's honestly about it. I can count the good things of this story on one hand compared to needing my entire body to describe the bad things. In short, "Delta and the Bannermen" is a waste of time and energy and if I had to pick a low point for the Seventh Doctor on TV, this story would definitely be it. Thankfully it doesn't tie into anything related to future Seventh Doctor adventures or stories so I'm glad to say you can safely skip this one and leave it to the oblivion it deserves.