There's something nasty draining power from the Time Lords
home world. Within days the energy loss will rob them of their
powers to traverse time and space. Time, in the real sense,
is running out but the one chance of hope, the Doctor, seems
powerless against an alien menace that appears to transgress
the laws of physics. In a last ditch attempt to defeat the
unknown attacker the Time Lords grant the Doctor access to
his past selves in the hope that three heads will be better
Three Doctors marked the show's 10th birthday and in the
spirit of the occasion the story has a party atmosphere about
it. Despite the impending destruction of Time Lord society
the tone of the story is light hearted and humorous with UNIT
once again showing a closer resemblance to Dad's Army than
a crack military organisation used to tackling alien attacks.
The Brig makes Sgt Wilson look like Bomber Harris.
Patrick Troughton seems to have forgotten how to play the
Doctor, replacing the fey and obtuse characterisation from
his tenure on the show with a more clowning and clumsy take
on the part. However, despite his lack of subtly he still
manages to steal most of his scenes if only because his screen
presence is so powerful.
ill health meant his contributions were limited to some pre-recorded
segments although this actually works rather well as his appearances
help add dramatic punctuation to an otherwise rather camp
production. Not that camp is necessarily bad, but it might
just have been better to have added a little more tension
to the plot. Even the evil Omega, the cause of the power drain,
comes across as a nice bloke with a temper problem rather
than as a scheming genius.
essence The Three Doctors is the archetypal Pertwee
romp and as such it's wildly entertaining. Not great then,
but nonetheless engaging, and with the host of extras crammed
on this disc the whole package makes for a fab night's viewing.
Katy Manning is quite clearly as mad as a box of frogs and
her contribution to the commentary often runs off at tangents
which somehow suits the story. Her musings also add to the
fun which is at heart what The Three Doctors was all
not a classic then, but certainly a consummate piece of high
camp. "Bona!" as Julian and Sandy might have said. So go vada...
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