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David Tennant's Doctor Who swan song comes to DVD

by John Scott Lewinski, posted Jan 13th 2010 7:32PM
Doctor Who: The Speicla features David Tennant's last episodes of Doctor Who.Doctor Who went from regular production to sporadic specials last year to freshen up the show and to give former lead David Tennant a shot at playing Hamlet for the Royal Shakespeare Company. The end results of that year of specials are headed your way on DVD in a five disc set.

Doctor Who: The Complete Specials features what proved to be a mixed bag of special episodes that became a sort of de facto fifth mini-season for Tennant. While you're not going to find a bad piece of television anywhere on this disc (or anywhere in Doctor Who's 21st century rebirth), last year's programs got weaker as they marched toward Tennant's regeneration.

The line-up includes The Next Doctor, Planet of the Dead, The Waters of Mars and The End of Time, Parts One and Two. The first two stand alone, but the last three create a sort of trilogy documenting the 10th Doctor's final days.

The stand alone pieces are entertaining and filled with Who's mix of action and spookiness. But, as Mars and End of Time arrived, former show runner Russell T. Davies indulged in a little too much melodrama and overwrought pathos to satisfy as adventure stories.

In edition to the episodes, you get a complete set of special features, including audio commentaries, Doctor Who Confidential behind the scenes looks, deleted scenes, David Tennant Video Diaries: The Final Days and a video of Doctor Who's panel at Comic-Con. It retails for about $50.

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John you've got your facts a little mixed up the only thing that ties Waters of Mars to The End of Time is seeing the Ood in the Snow. Planet of the Dead is where the Doctor receives the prophecy that his song is ending and He will knock four times. Echoed by the Doctor himself sitting with Donna's grandfather in End of Time part 1. I agree with Red Golem more like 90% of the work RTD did was outstanding especially in Season 1 and 2, there were some clunkers in 3 and 4 like the Wasp and The Next Doctor was nothing special.

January 14 2010 at 2:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Actually, bc, quite a lot of people think RTD botched the job. Personally, the jury's still out - some things I liked, others I looked sideways at.

Just as a side note - although each of the specials is available individually, the box set has extras the individual discs don't.

January 14 2010 at 3:08 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

You've got a typo -- "In edition to the episodes"

January 13 2010 at 11:46 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Professor Zed

I agree that the specials "got weaker as they marched toward Tennant's regeneration." The finale was filled with a whole lot of important people standing around waiting for other important people who were standing around - to do something. Oh, and I guess show runner/writer Russell T. Davies proved his 10th Doctor was better than the 4th Doctor - The 10th leaped out of a spaceship, plunged through Earth's atmosphere, smashed through the glass dome of a building and hit the floor with a bone-crushing thud, but didn't crush any bones. No injuries at all. Well, just a cut or two. The 4th Doctor fell a much shorter distance onto soft grass and immediately regenerated. Anywho... Even a bad episode of Doctor Who is better than what passes for entertainment on most networks and cable stations. I'll certainly be purchasing the DVD of these specials.

January 13 2010 at 10:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Matthew Golem

"While you're not going to find a bad piece of television anywhere on this disc (or anywhere in Doctor Who's 21st century rebirth)..."

You're joking, right? "Fear Her", "Daleks in Manhattan", and "The Unicorn and the Wasp" come to mind.

January 13 2010 at 10:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
BC McKinney

Taking every possible opportunity to repeat your opinion won't necessarily make more people agree with you. Consider the possibility that your dissatisfaction lies within your expectations and perceptions rather than in a deficiency of Davies.

January 13 2010 at 9:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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