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Reviews for The Keys of Marinus

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"You must buy this DVD for me..."

By:Huw Davies, Taunton, United Kingdom
Date:Sunday 20 September 2009
Rating:   10

There's no denying it - The Keys of Marinus is brilliant. I have stated elsewhere on this site that The Rescue is my favourite Hartnell, but after watching this after 2 years this has pipped Vicki's debut to the post.
We start off with a great idea - a glass beach, by the shores of an acid sea. The alien Voords (realised pretty well on the tight budget this story had to work with) have taken over the planet and to save it the Doctor and his companions must find the four keys of Marinus. We are taken to the city of Morphoton for some hypnotism by giant brains (my favourite episode), the screaming jungle including telepathic plants, the snows of terror where frozen ice soldiers become revived, and to a courtroom where Ian is tried for murder...
The whole thing finishes up well - but you'll have to watch the DVD for the ending!
On the extras side, we don't have the best package - one featurette with designer Raymond P Cusick talking about his work on the story. This is understandable, as being a 1960s quest story most actors will only have appeared in one episode, plus many have died, so this is why there is no 'making of' documentary.
Overall, the 2nd best release of the year (behind the War Games, of course.)

Out of Key

By:Trevor Smith, Nottingham, United Kingdom
Date:Wednesday 7 October 2009
Rating:   4

For me this is Dr Who's first failure. After the first four brilliant story's, this is an over ambitious story that looks like it is, a last minute story written in a hurry. the whole thing just feels disjointed. Of course it nice to see it all cleaned up, & for the first time since it was broadcast complete, for DVD.
The extras are very bare. There is an interview with the designer & the usual, & always entertaining & informative commentary. The best extra for me is the PDF of Doctor Who & the Daleks sweet cigarettes cards. Wonderful nostalgia.

This is exceptional good and thoughtful

By:Matthew David Rabjohns, Bridgend, United Kingdom
Date:Friday 6 May 2011
Rating:   10

Tthe Keys of Marinus hads garnered the reputation of being the first turkey of the Doctor Who cannon. This is rather unfair, because their is nothing at all wrong that I can find with this tale.

The story opens very well, with the glass beach and the well designed Voord creatures making rather a strong entry. Arbitan is a good solid character, despite the fact he's only in this single episode. But he is a sympathetic character and helps make the beginning of the plot very good and highly entertaining. The cliffhanger to part one is also very good.

The second part has some brilliant acting within it. The morpho brains look rather unsettling, the voice is also very good indeed. The plot thread here is strong and decently laid out too. Sabitha is a really good character, and its a great scene when she smashes that chair over Altos head! Barbara's defeat of the Morpho brains is good too. The screaming cliffhanger too is another classy one.

The third part is strong, but Will Hartnell has taken a holiday. But these episodes proove that the story can carry on well without the involvement of the lead character. The plant jungle is very realistic, and the riddle to find the key is again very engaging and believable. And the freezing wastes that quickly overcome Barbara and Ian at the climax are also well done.

The fourth part has a great psycho in the form of that hunting bloke. One of the early best one off single episode characters to come from the series up to this point. The psycho ends up with a huge prong in his back, so thats a nasty little outgoing too. And the cliffhanger again has you wanting to see more.

The courtroom scenes are the best of the lot. Highly suspenseful and not padded out at all. The defeat of the Voords too is amusing and creative. It all wraps this story up very well indeed. Marco Polo, the story before this, was always called an epic, and so is this. One of the classisest early Doctor Who stories. Comes highly recommended from me!

Great story

By:Sofia Fox, Hale, United States
Date:Wednesday 10 January 2018
Rating:   8

I've watched 1-5 (almost, 6 episodes, by the end of the day) and it is a good story. I've also noticed Ian still wears his outfit from Marco Polo From Episode 1 through 4. So there's that. Either way it's great.

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