Sunday, February 19, 2012

Out on the (Time)Lash

First things first, hello! As you will all probably notice, it's my first post here for The Knights, with hopefully many more to come! If you like what you read, please feel free to catch up with me on Twitter @LonelyGod

Along with the general geek news and thoughts, you'll find my posts mainly focusing on Classic Doctor Who. Since last year I have started collecting the DVD releases (or soundtracks where appicable), and working my way through viewing them all, not in any particular order. To date I've seen a vast amount, but starting from today I'll be recording my thoughts and views on some of these older stories.

As you would have no doubt noticed, and therefore probably stopped reading by now, this first post is concerned with a story which has a rather dodgy, and in my opinion unfair, reputation within the fanbase - Timelash.

I want to start by saying that I don't agree with with popular fan opinion, so this won't be the usual list of things wrong with the story, or knocking the production values. You can see what I thought after the break...

Do you have any thoughts on Timelash? Leave them in the comments section below!

It's fair to say that I've done my research on Classic Who, and probably enough for everyone else too, therefore I was more than aware that Timelash doesn't have the best reputation. It was no accident that it is the last Colin Baker story I have sat down to watch, and I did so expecting the worst. However, I was pleasently suprised.

Sure, there wasn't as much money thrown at it as The Two Doctors and Revelation of the Daleks either side of it, but even New Who has stories which stand out as having the purse strings pulled a little tighter. (Though admitidly, modern production teams cope with it a bit better.) The sets and costumes might be bland, but don't stand out as anything massivly cheap compared to the majority of stories.

The writing is generally good too, with the inclusion of H.G.Wells a particualr master stroke. I hadn't realised that it wasn't made obvious who Herbert actually was until the end of the story, making it a suprise for a first time viewer, which is a nice change for someone used to the New Who way of treating historical guest stars.

The Doctor is nicely written, even if Bakers' performance is a little below par due to other commitments forced upon him by John Nathan-Turner at the time. Waching it in conext of the series though, it does feel as if it should have been placed earlier. At this point, the Doctor and Peri have gotten over their bickering phase, and instead share witty exchanges. However, right from the start of Timelash they are at each others throats again, which just feels a little out of place.

Although I would never go out of my way to defend Timelash's dodgy monster and drawn out TARDIS scenes, I did enjoy it, and that's probably the difference. In the grand scheme of things it isn't a good story, but I enjoyed it, and in the end that's all that really matters.

Do you have any thoughts on Timelash? Leave them in the comments section below!


  1. I don't remember seeing this one or reading the novel. You've piqued my interest to go back and watch this story.

  2. I liked the soundtrack but its not available as an isolated score on this DVD. Only the later special editions have the isolated score option.