Classic Rewatch: The Sontaran Experiment

The Sontaran Experiment

Sometimes, when you’ve got a tale to tell, you don’t need to embellish it with a lot of extraneous characters and tangential moments. The beginning, middle, and end just fall into place, straightforward and true. (And you don’t even have to mention that in the crafting of the story, people were getting seriously injured, and it was probably best that you didn’t drag things for any longer, else something really nasty might come about.)

This week, Taylor Nelson from The PODcastica joins us for a surprisingly brief rewatch of Season 12’s two-part story, ‘The Sontaran Experiment’. Neither he nor Jay had viewed it before, and were rather thrown to find that it was the first two-episode story of Doctor Who ever aired. Nonetheless, we all agreed it was a tight, perfectly enjoyable extension to the “Ark In Space” predecessor…perhaps…the Ark Arc? (We’ll show ourselves out.) The TARDIS is missed, Harry is a bit of a clod (again), Sarah Jane stands strong against Styre, and Tom Baker is endearing and amiable, despite an on-set injury that would/should have really impeded his performance. Let’s face it…he’s just that good.

EXTRA: A little “Five Rounds, Rapid” with Taylor!

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Classic Rewatch: The Time Warrior

The Time Warrior

You can mark exact timestamps in your life that could be described as “where I was when” moments. The birth of children, superlatives like first kisses or last goodbyes, the instant when meeting a personal hero. These are carved within our memories like sculptures that adorn our mind palaces, capable of transporting us instantaneously back to wherever and whenever we were on first experience.

For a few of us at Gallifrey Public Radio, one of those “statues of memory” is the remarkable likeness of Elisabeth Sladen, grinning with eagerness and spark, adorned in a roughspun woolen tunic.

With barely contained enthusiasm, we charge the proverbial castle walls in our rewatch of the opener for Doctor Who‘s Season 11, “The Time Warrior”, joined by Deb Stanish of the Verity! Podcast. We discuss the merits of the story, the pros and cons of “Monty Python” elements of humour, the early representations of Sontarans, updates to effects (and title sequences), and of course, the arrival of our patron saint, Sarah Jane Smith. Bringing wide-eyed energy, love for adventure, quick wit, an inquiring intellect, and feminist strength to the role from her first scenes, we all agree that the pedestal upon which this companion stands is both tall and revered — even if we may connect her in our minds more often with another (slightly more eccentric) Doctor.

EXTRA: What is there to do with a first-time guest, than play a little “Five Rounds Rapid”? Deb’s a great sport with our fast-paced line of questioning.

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