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Old 28-07-2012, 09:32
daveyboy7472
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Another Classic from a brilliant Season. There is very little to fault about this story, everything about it is utterly superb. Philip Madoc steals the show as Solon but all the other characters such as Maren, Condo and even Morbius himself were excellent characters.

If ever a story was the ultimate example of the Hinchcliffe Era this would be it. I don't know if others feel the same but I think it went as close to a Horror Film as you could get and was maybe the most 'Goth' out of all Tom Baker's first three Seasons.

There was blood aplenty, especially when Condo got shot. But there were also the strangulations from Morbius as he took his revenge out on the Sisterhood. And the Sisterhood itself showed they could be just as brutal in their destruction of other's spaceships.

What's fascinating about this story is that it is really a Sarah story rather than a Doctor one, I feel. All three cliffhangers involve her, she has an enormous input into the story and I think Lis Sladen did an absolutely convincing job of playing Sarah after she'd been blinded.

The incidental music is again excellent, conveying the creepiness of the story but the visual feel of it also makes it a great one as well. I loved the mind bending contest at the end, it was good to quickly see the other Doctors back onscreen, albeit temporarily.

I love this story, it's right up there with the best from Tom Baker's Era.

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Old 28-07-2012, 09:36
CELT1987
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This story drew huge complaints from Mary Whitehouse regarding the showing of blood when Condo got shot. Also the bit when the brain fell on the floor, that was more comic then scary!

Loved this story, it was a rip off of Frankinstein, but who cares!
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Old 28-07-2012, 10:23
AtomicClock
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I loved this when it was first shown, it was truly a very scary story and Solon was a chilling character. I was very much into Hammer Horror films at that time too so I'm sure there was a bit of a link.

This was the first time, I think, that I 'realised' that the Doctor was up against another Timelord as I hadn't clocked the whole Gallifrey thing until then (well I was only 6 at the time!)
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Old 28-07-2012, 10:29
Phoenix Lazarus
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Does anyone recall when the Doctor and Morbius had that psychic duel, you saw images on the screen that showed the Doctor's current face, as Tom Baker, then his Pertwee, Troughton and Hartnell faces. After that, we saw four or five other faces, implying that the Doctor had regenerated prior to changing from Hartnell to Troughton. I'm sure I recall a comment in one of the Pertwee adventures that backs it up, where the Doctor says that this is his current face, but he's had something like seven faces to date.
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Old 28-07-2012, 10:36
AtomicClock
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Does anyone recall when the Doctor and Morbius had that psychic duel, you saw images on the screen that showed the Doctor's current face, as Tom Baker, then his Pertwee, Troughton and Hartnell faces. After that, we saw four or five other faces, implying that the Doctor had regenerated prior to changing from Hartnell to Troughton. I'm sure I recall a comment in one of the Pertwee adventures that backs it up, where the Doctor says that this is his current face, but he's had something like seven faces to date.
Blows the 12 regenerations theory out of the water!
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Old 28-07-2012, 10:58
sovietusername
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LOVE this story, really brilliant, big fan of the horror stories in Tom Baker's era, it was when that era ended that it started to go downhill a bit, this, however, THIS, was brilliant
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Old 28-07-2012, 11:03
stud u like
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The Brain Of Morbius always reminds me of Sarah as Janet and Cordo as Rocky.
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Old 28-07-2012, 11:17
daveyboy7472
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Does anyone recall when the Doctor and Morbius had that psychic duel, you saw images on the screen that showed the Doctor's current face, as Tom Baker, then his Pertwee, Troughton and Hartnell faces. After that, we saw four or five other faces, implying that the Doctor had regenerated prior to changing from Hartnell to Troughton. I'm sure I recall a comment in one of the Pertwee adventures that backs it up, where the Doctor says that this is his current face, but he's had something like seven faces to date.
I don't ever recall Pertwee referring to previous incarnations at all during his time bar The Three Doctors, off course. In this story, though, he did say he had several faces so far after telling Solon he had 'A Grey Model before this one' which Sarah said she liked.

I don't think it can be proven either way who those faces after the three previous Doctors appeared in the mind-bending contest actually were. My initial thoughts were they were Morbius as the clay model of his head is inserted in there(I think). And even if it wasn't, I always felt it was Morbius rather than The Doctor.

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Old 28-07-2012, 19:45
Face Of Jack
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I loved this story. I remember watching it as a teenager when it was first shown, in the middle of winter! Perfect atmosphere for watching a 'horror - style' story such as this!
Frankenstein was at the back of my mind, even then.
Loved the Morbius creature and it's huge claw and bubble head! Sarah-Jane played the damsel in distress perfectly, without being TOO girly!! I felt sorry for poor Condo - especially when he realised why his arm had been chopped off! Then the poor guy was killed off! That Brain landing on the floor was a bit gruesome too....but fun!
Solon was also a brilliant character - the actor (Philip Madoc) appeared in other DW episodes, as well as the 1960's movie with Peter Cushing.
All-in all - an excellent gothic adventure, and even though it was another cheap studio-bound story....9+/10 (I always reserve rating something 10!!)
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Old 28-07-2012, 23:40
snakecharmer37
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I have this on the old VHS version and have to admit, playing it until the tape has virtually worn out. One of the all time great storys in my view. Right along side of Genesis. I keep meaning to buy the DVD, but i'm tight. Are there any juicy extras that will tempt me to put my hand in my pocket
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Old 29-07-2012, 00:17
DavetheScot
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After the aberration of The Android Invasion, we return to the greats of this era. This is among the best even in this series. Philip Madoc is terrific as Solon, the monster seemed genuinely scary to me at the time (though it might seem less so now) and I loved the little relationship between Condo and Sarah Jane; a very poignant little touch.

Also, it's difficult not to feel a little stab of sympathy for Morbius, in the same way that I do for the Family of Blood; evil as he may be, his punishment is a truly hellish one, as his speech about his situation reveals.

Re the faces we see during the dual, bear in mind that Morbius loses the dual, so it's not unreasonable to suspect that the faces we see after Hartnell's are his, not the Doctor's.
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Old 29-07-2012, 21:55
Larry1971
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simply can't fault it 10/10...
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Old 05-10-2013, 09:13
Pointy
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I was watching the dvd of this again last night and obviously I enjoyed it. However, it's interesting to note how Terrance Dicks was unhappy with the rewrites of his script. The points he makes are valid too, as when you look at the changes to the plot they don't really make sense when you pay close attention to the story on screen. However, like The Android Invasion, I enjoy it no matter what!
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Old 05-10-2013, 09:22
adams66
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I was watching the dvd of this again last night and obviously I enjoyed it. However, it's interesting to note how Terrance Dicks was unhappy with the rewrites of his script. The points he makes are valid too, as when you look at the changes to the plot they don't really make sense when you pay close attention to the story on screen. However, like The Android Invasion, I enjoy it no matter what!
It's a cracking story - always in my top ten.
It's been a while since I watched it - what does Terrance actually say about the plot changes that don't make sense?
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:01
Pointy
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It's a cracking story - always in my top ten.
It's been a while since I watched it - what does Terrance actually say about the plot changes that don't make sense?
Terrance's main point about the changes to his script concern Solon, who was added instead of a servant robot. Obviously a robot has no appreciation of aesthetic sensibilities, so cobbles together a body regardless of appearance. However, Solon is meant to be a peerless surgeon, so why would he create a hideous body to house Morbius' brain in? This is compounded by Solon only wanting the Doctor's head when he has an actual Time Lord's body available to try and encase the brain in! Still, as I say, I enjoy it irrespective of these peculiarities.
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Old 05-10-2013, 11:35
adams66
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Interesting - thanks.
Not simply moving Morbius' brain into the Doctor's body could perhaps be explained by the fact that Solon had spent years building the body for Morbius, and had made it stronger than a regular Time Lord body (the new cobbled together body has the lungs of a Birastrop as Morbius proudly states at one point), but I think I'm pushing it somewhat!! In reality Terrance is quite right, it's a bit of a gaff isn't it?

And I'm with you on the enjoyment factor - the story is delivered with such verve and excitement and total commitment from the actors that any failings in the script are totally overlooked.
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Old 05-10-2013, 12:10
Demolished Man
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...Solon is meant to be a peerless surgeon, so why would he create a hideous body to house Morbius' brain in? )
Ah, the answer to that one is obvious...

Solon is quite, quite mad, you know.

He an obsessive, intent on concentrating on the fine details and looses track of the bigger picture entirely. He's assembled his creature from the 'perfect' components and it simply doesn't occur to him that it looks terrifyingly bizarre.
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Old 05-10-2013, 13:08
Pointy
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Ah, the answer to that one is obvious...

Solon is quite, quite mad, you know.

He an obsessive, intent on concentrating on the fine details and looses track of the bigger picture entirely. He's assembled his creature from the 'perfect' components and it simply doesn't occur to him that it looks terrifyingly bizarre.
It would be quite easy to write Solon off as mad, but he comes across otherwise on screen. He's quite focused on his plans, and is more dedicated than obsessive. Also, the Doctor leaving Solon alone with Morbius to disassemble his creation was quite silly, as Solon would obviously try to correct Morbius, not destroy him. It was one of those moments where people do illogical things in a story only to keep it going.
Another interesting thing I gleaned from the dvd retrospective documentary was that Philip Hinchcliffe wasn't satisfied with how the show ended up!
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Old 05-10-2013, 19:22
monkeyscratch
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this and talons owc are my fave episodes from the classic series, loved this story,
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Old 05-10-2013, 19:28
Mulett
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Scared the living crap out of me, this one, when it was first shown. Especially the horrific and brutal way Morbius murders Condo. Wonderful!
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Old 06-10-2013, 01:33
DavetheScot
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Terrance's main point about the changes to his script concern Solon, who was added instead of a servant robot. Obviously a robot has no appreciation of aesthetic sensibilities, so cobbles together a body regardless of appearance. However, Solon is meant to be a peerless surgeon, so why would he create a hideous body to house Morbius' brain in? This is compounded by Solon only wanting the Doctor's head when he has an actual Time Lord's body available to try and encase the brain in! Still, as I say, I enjoy it irrespective of these peculiarities.
Surely that's explicable. Solon is concerned with practical utility of the body, not with aesthetics.
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Old 06-10-2013, 07:25
Pointy
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Surely that's explicable. Solon is concerned with practical utility of the body, not with aesthetics.
If he was concerned about the practical utility of the body, why did he make Morbius a lumbering beast?
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Old 06-10-2013, 09:48
allen_who
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Some great new posts to this thread. Love the info about terrence dicks.. great stuff
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Old 06-10-2013, 20:44
TheSilentFez
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I don't actually like The Brain of Morbius all that much. I'm not entirely sure why- I just couldn't bring myself to enjoy it.
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Old 07-10-2013, 01:04
DavetheScot
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If he was concerned about the practical utility of the body, why did he make Morbius a lumbering beast?
Because he thought toughness was more important. And he was presumably limited in what kind of body parts he could get from wrecked spacecraft too.
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