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Poll: Rate & Review The Caves Of Androzani

Poll
Question: Rate the story
5/5 - Absolutely amazing - 12 (70.6%)
4/5 - Really Good - 3 (17.6%)
3/5 - Not bad, not great - 2 (11.8%)
2/5 - Not impressed - 0 (0%)
1/5 - Shockingly bad - 0 (0%)
Total Voters: 17

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Author Topic: Poll: Rate & Review The Caves Of Androzani  (Read 160 times)
Peri-Peri
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« on: June 03, 2012, 06:39:35 pm »


Happy 50th TIQ to you! That's right, we're on our 50th story. And what a great story for the milestone. The final story of the Fifth Doctor era, The Caves Of Androzani.

After landing on the planet Androzani Minor, the Doctor and Peri develop lethal spectrox toxaemia poisoning. As they search for a cure, they become enmeshed in a decades-old feud between the disfigured roboticist Sharaz Jek and businessman Morgus.

Jek becomes obsessed with Peri and the situation degenerates when the girl ignores his affections. Between threats from magma beasts and gun runners, it quickly becomes apparent that the Doctor will not find a cure in time to save both his companion and himself.

The Caves of Androzani was the penultimate story of season 21 of Doctor Who. It was Peter Davison's final regular appearance as the Doctor. It was notably Graeme Harper's first credited Doctor Who directorial gig. Widely praised by fans, it was seen as the single best televised Doctor Who story in a 2009 poll conducted by Doctor Who Magazine.

As a regeneration story, it offered many unusual elements. Perhaps the most obvious was that it was written by Robert Holmes. Although the most prolific writer of the 1963 version of the programme, this was his only regeneration story. Caves was also the first regeneration story to allow for a brief scene with the incoming Doctor. Unlike any of his predecessors, the new Doctor was given the final words of the story — something that wouldn't happen again until 2005's The Parting of the Ways. The proximate cause of regeneration was also unusual. It was the first time the Doctor willingly and explicitly underwent a regeneration to save a companion (which would next occur in The Parting of the Ways, and then again in The End of Time). As of June 2012, it was also one of only two stories in which the Doctor regenerated before the end of the then-current series.

From a behind-the-scenes perspective, Harper's direction was hailed by those involved with the production as being highly innovative. Particularly noteworthy were Harper's freer use of camera movement than usual at the time and his direction from the studio floor. Harper's energetic directorial style was in marked contrast to most who preceded him. Unlike Harper, most directors of the 1963 version of Doctor Who generally preferred to work in the booth and relay their messages to the actors and crew through the production assistant stationed on the floor. Peter Davison, in particular, found Harper's more direct style much to his liking. He lamented he had waited until his last story to receive this bolder style of direction and had he had more stories and experiences like this he may have stayed longer in the role.

Another unique aspect of the production was its use of Shakespearian soliloquy. Morgus, the principal villain of the piece, sometimes turned to camera, broke the fourth wall and revealed his thoughts directly to the audience. Though apparently the result of a mistaken impression about the script by actor John Normington, Harper kept the asides in, feeling they effectively ramped up the dramatic tension.


The next story will be posted on Sunday June 10th
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« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2012, 01:40:21 am »

I watched this for the first time a little while ago and I didn't really know what to expect. I'd heard so much about it that I worried it may have been overkill, but when I actually sat and watched it I really loved it. I've watched it loads since then and it hasn't lost any of it's effect. I've given it full marks.
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« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2012, 12:49:49 pm »

I've given it a 5. While I don't think it is 'the best' Doctor Who story it is certainly worthy of high praise and a top ten, maybe even top 5 placing. There's very little to fault with it.
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« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2012, 04:24:56 pm »

There is something intangible that differentiates between a story that is good and one that is great. There have been some wonderful stories that haven't quite worked on screen. There have been some weak stories that have actually worked very well due to good casting and convincing performances.

But very occasionally you get a story where absolutely everything is right and the whole thing clicks. It happened in the Hinchcliffe/Holmes era consistently and it happened in the Caves of Androzani. The guest stars, the script, the effects, the locations, the drama - it all coalesced and produced one of the greatest stories of the classic era. It is perhaps no coincidence that this story was written by (IMHO) the greatest writer of the classic era and the script editor of that golden age, Robert Holmes. It also benefited from genuinely energetic direction by Graeme Harper (who would go on and prove himself to be one of the finest Who directors in either era). The music is perfect and the effects are wholly wonderful.

But the production values are only half of the equation and there is a wonderful company of actors giving spellbinding performances throughout. Peter Davison really brings a new dimension to his Doctor. Vulnerable, yet brave - a figure who is heading towards his tragic and inevitable destiny. I don't think Davison ever put in a finer performance (and actually, having seen him act throughout his career, I think this represents the best thing Davison has ever done). Nicola Bryant is the perfect companion in this - providing an intelligent yet appropriately vulnerable central figure. The guest artists are an absolute joy with Chris Gable, John Normington and Maurice Roeves ripping large chunks out of a brilliant script and giving full-on, intense performances with absolute conviction.

The best Davision story? The best regeneration story? The best Classic story? I am not sure if I have an answer to any of those questions - but one thing is sure, this story is an absolute classic and is everything that was wonderful about the classic series.
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« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2012, 05:23:17 pm »

Though I'm probably going to be the only person who marks this down, I am going with a four. I think it's a fantastic story but I'm not blind to it's flaws and I there were elements to it that I wasn't keen on. I think everybody put in great performances and I think the story was great, but I don't personally agree with it's rating as the best story ever.
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« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2012, 08:02:10 pm »

Full marks from me. As others have said, this isn't my favourite but I do think it's a great story and certainly one of the best of the classics and the top Fifth Doctor story.
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« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2012, 08:02:51 pm »

Also, I can't believe this is the 50th TIQ story we've done. That's passed by so quickly!
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« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2012, 12:36:32 am »

I've gone with a five. I'm quite sparing with my 5's but I think this is deserving of it. Excellent cast working from a brilliant script on a story that mostly looked great. Always good for a rewatch.
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« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2012, 11:25:30 am »

I've given it a three. The ending was great and everyone did a good job in it, the story itself was pretty good too, but, and I suppose it comes down to personal tastes, I just didn't think it was particularly better than anything else I have seen and there are still a whole heap of stories that I like a lot more.
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« Reply #9 on: June 06, 2012, 12:24:59 pm »

I was always going to give it a five.  Great story, wonderful performances, and one of the best regenerations.
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« Reply #10 on: June 06, 2012, 04:42:25 pm »

Full marks from me. An excellent story with a great cast and on top of all that it also looked really good as well. It's definitely worthy of the praise it gets even if though it's not my personal favourite.
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« Reply #11 on: June 06, 2012, 09:35:40 pm »

I've been missing so many of these stories. Cool to be here for the 50th one though.

The Caves of Androzani is one of my favourite Fifth Doctor stories and has loads going for it. I don't have much to add that's new that hasn't already been said by everyone else. There are a few things about it that don't really work though, such as the Magma Beast and some of the plot points didn't make sense, like the Doctor not taking the antidote when he had the chance. I've gone with a 4.
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« Reply #12 on: June 06, 2012, 09:36:03 pm »

^^That was my 3000th post btw Cheesy
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« Reply #13 on: June 07, 2012, 06:49:20 pm »

Finally managed to take part with a classic one again!  Cheesy Been rubbish cause I don't have many of them on DVD and Dad won't let me watch *anything* on the internet cause we don't have unlimited anymore Sad But I inherited this DVD from my uncle Cheesy

5/5 from me! This is one of the few classic episodes I've actually sat through all the way through without getting bored. I didn't really find that much fault with it, and it is easily starting to compete with my favourite classic episode Smiley Love this one so much!  Smiley Smiley
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« Reply #14 on: June 08, 2012, 12:03:09 am »

Great story. Everyone puts in 100% and puts together a great serial. Full marks from me.
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« Reply #15 on: June 08, 2012, 10:39:58 pm »

I've joined the five brigade. I'm always quite critical of most of the 80's but there's no denying this is a fantastic story.
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« Reply #16 on: June 09, 2012, 01:41:40 pm »

I've gone with a 4 because the story isn't without it's faults. I think in more recent years this story has snowballed and the hype surrounding it has grown, and as a result continues to do so. It's a great story and is really well made but I wouldn't say it was the best. I'm not even sure it would be in my top 5. It's good and enjoyable and its all about personal tastes of course, but I do think it has a lot more people gushing about it than perhaps it should
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« Reply #17 on: June 10, 2012, 12:52:54 pm »

Bit late in the day, but my vote was 5/5
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« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2012, 02:26:23 pm »

Never liked this story and was amazed to discover the high regard in which it is held by genuine fans (and not just fans of Nicola Bryant's chest, which is admittedly impressive).

What don't I like about it? For one thing, the Doctor seems to be quite passive. He is saved from the inevitable cliff-hangers but by chance rather than by his own ingenuity. He doesn't seem to be on any particular side or help any particular side. He doesn't seem to do anything at all, in fact. And personally I found characters talking to the camera very off-putting and annoying.

So, no, I don't get why people like this so much.
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