Saturday, 22 January 2011

Dr Who: Series 5: DVD Review

Dr Who: Series 5: DVD Review

Doctor Who Series Five

Rating: PG
Released by BBC

So the latest escapades for the Doctor are all bundled up into this fifth annual set since the revival of the show in 2005.

And with a new set, comes a new Doctor - this time, the youngest ever in the form of foppishly haired, manic Matt Smith who quite honestly, has inhabited the role of the Time Lord brilliantly from the moment he stepped into the TARDIS.

It's a new show in many ways this year with new cast, new producers (longtime fan Steven Moffat) and an entirely new ethos at the helm of it all. Yet, it still remains eminently watchable - despite the many ups and downs there were during the fifth season's 13 episode run.

It starts off with aplomb in the Steven Moffat scripted The Eleventh Hour as Matt becomes the Doctor so charismatically and so quickly - but with episodes like the Hungry Earth, Victory of The Daleks and Vincent and The Doctor, the show hits an uneven keel in the writing room.

For every miss, there's a hit - and this is clearly a show now being run by someone who was always a fan first and foremost - never before have so many echoes of the series' 48 year history been so in play; from the flashbacks during the Eleventh Hour to a reel of the Doc's previous female companions in one of the Meanwhile in the TARDIS scripted extras, this is a show which embraces and loves its past.

There are hints of an ongoing arc into the next series - but with a bout of unevenness, I'm hoping better writing next year will match upto the standard of the simply excellent Matt Smith.

Extras: Disappointing this year - although the two 3 minute Meanwhile in the TARDIS scenes link episodes well, there's a lack of anything major to stand out on this set. Monster Files have been brought in from the episodic releases and Behind the scenes series, the Cut down confidentials merely offer a lot of back slapping this time around. Vid cam diaries from the actors add something but I can't help but feel a little short changed all round this year from one of my all time favourite characters and shows.

Rating: 6/10

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