“The Edge of Destruction”

First Doctor, Season One, Serial Three

reviewed by Tom-Tom

This is unfortunately quite a disappointing Doctor Who serial. It takes place entirely in the confines of the TARDIS which isn’t usually a bad thing. After a rough landing not uncommon to TARDIS travels these days, everyone wakes up in a daze uttering lines from a Sartre or Ionesco teatre d’absurdite’ play. I can imagine a French director on the sidelines motioning to the actors for “more ennui, more ennui!” The ennui soon turns to bickering among the travelers and is as fun to watch as bickering in line when you’re in the supermarket checkout line. People even get amnesia! Yes, this early in the season, the writers are already resorting to amnesia as a plot device. It is funny to see Susan try to stab her teacher Ian to death with a pair of scissors but only succeed in stabbing her reclined bed. People scream at clocks, throw their watches at the wall and argue some more. Some of what is argued about is practical, the Doctor’s selfish actions on the Dalek world which got quite a few Thals killed, his inability to get back to Earth at the right time period. These are all decent points but the family reunion gone terribly wrong aspect is train wreck material. The wild mood swings that come over everyone are rather hard to watch. The resolution is so contrived it was all I could do to not stop the video and stab the dvd Susan-style with my own pair of scissors. I’ve seen a fair few Doctor Who serials/episodes and this one is on my Worst Five List.


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