Doctor Who – Planet of Evil [DVD] [1975]

Drawing influence from some classic science-fiction across its four episodes, Planet Of Evil is a strong Doctor Who adventure, that finds Tom Baker in the title role, and Sarah-Jane (played by Elisabeth Sladen) as his side.

The adventure begins when they respond to a distress call from the most distant planet in the Universe. The planet’s name is Zeta Minor, and when they arrive, the Doctor and Sarah discover that a geological expedition has gone wrong, with just one survivor left. So what’s happened? And what’s with the one who managed to stay alive? Planet Of Evil has the answers…

This is a thoroughly enjoyable adventure, originally broadcast in the midst of a confident period in the show’s history. Well directed, and only occasionally hurt by its limited budget, there are also some strong supporting performances among the cast that do the story no harm at all.

The DVD itself is suitably packed with the kind of fascinating material that classic Doctor Who stories are renowned for, with a commentary track, documentaries, a photo gallery and publicity material.

But the star remains the story itself. Planet Of Evil is really good science fiction, reverential in some of its story elements yet tight enough to work as an adventure of real merit in its own right. A worthy addition to the Who DVD library. —Simon Brew