Well, here it is. The big 20th season anniversary special. I had high hopes for this special, but unfortunately it wasn’t as great as I was hoping. Don’t get me wrong. I enjoyed it, but it wasn’t the amazing piece of work I was hoping for.
My biggest complaint is that the Doctors barely interact with one another. 5 and 1 have a bit of interaction towards the start but are separated pretty quickly. It isn’t until the end that we see all four of them together and it is maybe 15 minutes, if that. I was sorely disappointed.
The reason for this, at least according to Peter Davison on the behind the scenes feature on the DVD is that the Powers That Be felt that the actors would not get along due to their massive egos and so limited their screen time together. Davison says that they were all professionals and this wouldn’t have been a problem.
Since there had to be limited interaction between the Doctors the plot that the writer came up with was rather good. The Doctors have all been transported to various points around the arena and, along with their companion, must make their way to the Tower.
The interactions between the Doctors and the various companions that we did get was quite good. I especially liked the scene where the 1st Doctor ordered Tegan to get the men folk drinks and Tegan was not having it, resulting in 5 having Turlough help her.
I do wish we had seen Jo teaming up with the 3rd Doctor since they did have a special bond but I’m not going to complain about seeing more Sarah Jane. We even see that she still has K9.
The scene where Sarah Jane falls down the “steep” hill and the Doctor has to help her up should have been cut. No camera trickery was going to make that slight incline seem like a tough climb.
This was my first introduction to the 2nd Doctor. I thought he was pretty cool, with his space hobo thing he had going for him.
The new TARDIS console looks nice. It looks outdated by today’s standards but I think it is an improvement over the previous one.
The special had a nice mix of baddies with main ones like the Daleks, Cybermen, and the Master being featured. I did appreciate that none of them were the real mastermind behind the shenanigans.
That Raston Warrior Robot was really cool. It ripped the Cybermen apart with no problems.
Oh, I should mention that the 4th Doctor isn’t actually in the special. Tom Baker declined to be part of the special, so unused footage from “Shada” was spliced in to have him in for a few minutes and for the rest of the special he is time locked, or something.
I loved that no one trusted the Master even though he was there to help. Well, kind of there to help. He is the Master after all.
The opening scene with the current TARDIS crew enjoying some down time at the Eye of Orion was really nice. I’ve felt that we don’t see enough scenes where the companions are getting to enjoy the benefits of traveling with the Doctor.
Really random, but Rassilon had a lot of stuff named after him, didn’t he? There’s the Tower of Rassilon, the Game of Rassilon, the Tomb of Rassilon, the Coronet of Rassilon, the Ring of Rassilon, etc. I was half expecting to hear about the Underpants of Rassilon or the Used Snot Tissue of Rassilon.
It was a pleasant surprise when Mike and Liz showed up. That put a smile on my face, even if they were only in one short scene.
The ending was perfect. The Doctors and their companions all go off in the TARDIS and the current Doctor is made president since there is a vacancy now. He tells his fellow Time Lords he will be at his inauguration soon and heads off in his TARDIS, running away from Gallifrey again.
“The Five Doctors” wasn’t the amazing special that I was hoping for but it was still a really good special celebrating 20 years of Doctor Who and was filled with lots of stuff to love.