The Five Doctors

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The Five Doctors
Daleks, Yeti, Cybermen… BINGO!

We watched the original broadcast version of The Five Doctors. Sadly, I couldn’t source an off-air copy with the Children in Need ticker running across the bottom of the screen. I hope this doesn’t invalidate the science at the heart of this experiment.

The Five DoctorsNicol: I’m not watching any William Hartnell with you. You can forget it.

Me: Be patient, Nicol.

Sue: Don’t worry, Nic. Neil’s promised me ...

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The Dalek Invasion of Earth

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The Dalek Invasion of Earth
Once again, I trick Sue into believing that this is going to be a run-of-the-mill adventure.

World’s End

Large chunks of this episode are taken up with an exasperated Sue moaning about how the TARDIS crew haven’t noticed a huge, ominous sign that warns the public against throwing dead bodies into a river. It could be a lot worse. It could be a poster for Sugar Puffs.

Sue: You’d have to be blind not to notice that sign! It’s moments like this that ...

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3

Planet of Giants

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Planet of Giants
I decide to have some fun with Sue before we dive into season two. When she asks me how many episodes make up this story, I tell her that it’s an eight-part epic and several chunks are missing, although there is a reconstruction of part seven that will be performed by an amateur dramatics group from Bournemouth. She simply shrugged her shoulders and sighed, “We’d better get on it with then”.

Planet of Giants

Sue is fascinated by the TARDIS crew’s new ...

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4

The Reign of Terror

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The Reign of Terror
The end of the first season of is within our grasp. But we have one final obstacle to overcome: an incomplete story with a third missing from the archives. Cowards would probably skip this one but we’re in far too deep to turn back now.

A Land of Fear

I stun Sue with a confession.

Me: I’ve never seen this story before.

She spits a mouthful of hot coffee over our kitten, Tegan.

Me: It isn’t my fault! I didn’t have a VHS player when ...

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6

The Sensorites

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The Sensorites
Of all the attempts to watch Doctor Who from the beginning, 67% fail halfway through this story. Can Sue defy the odds? Will she recognise Peter Glaze? And if she does, will she resist the urge to shout “Crackerjack!”?

Strangers in Space

The SensoritesThe Sensorites begins with an incongruous scene which features our heroes fondly remembering all their adventures together so far, although nobody mentions the weird one with the scissors. However, ...

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9

The Aztecs

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The Aztecs
If Sue scores this lower than The Keys of Marinus, she could find herself sleeping on the sofa tonight.

The Temple of Evil

My hope that Sue would soak up this episode in revered silence is dashed within seconds, mainly because we get embroiled in two very tedious discussions. Well, tedious to me, at least.

Sue: Why have they decided to visit the Aztecs? I thought Ian and Barbara wanted to get back to 1963?

Me: They’ve arrived here by accident.

Sue: Why?

Me: Well, ...

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The Keys of Marinus

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The Keys of Marinus
Up until now, Sue has been oblivious to some of the show’s more, shall we say, regrettable shortcomings. But that’s all about to change.

The Sea of Death

Sue: Pause! Stop it! Rewind!

Damn, she’s good. Even I didn’t notice the production team member pushing the revolving door when I saw this episode for the first time. It happens at least twice (three times, according to Sue), and she spends the entire episode scanning the frame for the slightest hint of an AFM. ...

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5

Marco Polo

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Marco Polo
Against everyone’s advice, except for some divorce lawyers who contacted us last week, our adventure continues with a reconstruction.

Sue is initially perplexed by the experience.

Sue: It looks like a normal episode to me. This isn’t so bad. I don’t know what all the fuss is about.

Me: This is the recap from the last episode, love.

Five minutes into the reconstruction proper, I ask her how she’s coping. She’s been very quiet so far.

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2

The Edge of Destruction

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The Edge of Destruction
Sue knows this story is only two episodes. If she thought it could be dragged out for seven episodes, we really would be on the brink of disaster…

The Edge of Destruction

Sue finds it amusing that travelling in the TARDIS is a traumatic experience for everyone concerned, and when the crew are thrown violently to the floor, she doesn’t see it as a portent of doom, she regards it as business as usual. She’s wrong, of course.

Sue: What the hell is ...

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The Daleks

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The Daleks
Before we begin, I would like to point out that Sue initiated the screening of every episode of this story. Yes, I’m frightened too.

The Dead Planet

Sue: What’s this one called then?

Me: ‘The Dead Planet’.

Sue: How many episodes is it?

Me: One.

Sue: Excellent.

Me: Well, I say ‘one’. You’re not supposed to know. The episodes have individual titles, which means you wouldn’t have known when one adventure might end and another would begin. A story might last for four episodes, another might last ...

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