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Dr Who – The Invasion Special Edition Region 4 DVD Review

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Distributor: Roadshow Home Entertainment
Certificate: PG | Region: 4 | 282 minutes

Extras: Yes

cast
Patrick Troughton, Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury, Nicholas Courtney, Edward Burnham, Stacy Davies

With two of its key episodes long since missing it looked like fans would never get to see all of classic second doctor story The Invasion, now whilst the footage from episodes 1 and 4 is still missing this is definitely the next best thing to having them. Back in the day fans of the show would often record the show on audio two track recorders and fortunately the BBC have been able to source audio copies of the missing episodes and by teaming up with the always reliable Cosgrove Hall have used the soundtracks to re-create in animated form the missing episodes, definitely a first for Whodom. It actually works far better than you would expect, the story flows properly and you quickly lose yourself in it regardless of whether you are watching an animated episode or not.

Plotwise its the series at its best with Doctor, Jamie and Zoe arriving in 1975 and discovering that the Cybermen, in league with a giant electrical conglomerate, are planning a major invasion of Earth. Rightly regarded as a classic entry in the Who canon The Invasion is still very exciting to watch today and like all Doctor Who releases its the extras package that makes the releases absolutely essential.

The extras include Commentary by Frazer Hines (Jamie), Wendy Padbury (Zoe), Nicholas Courtney (the Brigadier) and Chris D’Oyly John (Production Assistant), plus James Goss (bbc.co.uk), Steve Maher (Cosgrove Hall Films), and Mark Ayres (audio cleanup) discussing the animated Episode 1; Flash Frames is a featurette about the creation of the animated Episodes 1 and 4, including interviews with the animation team at Cosgrove Hall; Love Off-Air is an affectionate tribute to the people dedicated enough to capture the soundtracks of Doctor Who in the 1960s, enabling the crew to recreate the episodes on this DVD; 2 animated trailers; Character Design feature showcasing Steve Maher’s character design drawings and animation tests; Evolution of the Invasion is a doco in which cast and crew recall making of The Invasion featuring contributions from Padbury, Hines, Courtney and D’Oyly John plus Kevin Stoney (Vaughn), Sally Faulkner (Isobel), Peter Halliday (Packer), Edward Burnham (Watkins), Ian Fairbairn (Gregory) and Terrance Dicks (script editor); VHS Links features Nicholas Courtney’s links from the 1993 video release of The Invasion. There is also a photo gallery and the always informative production subtitles.

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