Doctor Who: The Krotons REVIEW
The Kroton was clearly compensating for a tiny winkie.
Release Date: 2 July 2012
1968 | PG | 100 minutes | £20.42
Distributor: BBC Worldwide
Director: David Maloney
Cast: Patrick Troughton, Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury, Philip Madoc
For a generation of TARDISheads, “The Krotons” hails from 1981, not 1968. It was the Troughton tale selected for The Five Faces Of Doctor Who, that winter’s ridiculously thrilling repeat season that resurrected old Doctors for an audience of kids to whom Tom Baker had always been the guvnor. Out of the past it came like some flickering ghost from the dawn of the universe. It’s sobering to reflect that it was only 13 years old – the same timespan that separates the present day from Robbie Williams’ “Millennium”.
So how does it look, 31 years on? Well, it’s vintage but no classic. Written by the mighty Robert Holmes, it has little of the plummy mischief he brought to such scripts as “The Talons Of Weng-Chiang”. On an anonymous, standard-issue planet council members squabble and declaim “It is the law of the Krotons!” while their monstrous overlords emerge as objects of high weirdness, giant, shuffling cafetières with Afrikaans accents and madly spinning heads.
Fittingly for a tale where chemistry saves the day, it’s the chemistry of the TARDIS crew that saves it: the groovy girl genius, the innocent boy Highlander and Troughton’s Doctor, a mop-topped leprechaun declaring “Great jumping gobstoppers!” What larks.
No dedicated Making Of, but “Second Time Around” is a 50-minute featurette encompassing the whole of the Troughton reign. Elsewhere, there are extended outtakes from Frazer Hines’s 2003 interview for doc The Story Of Doctor Who, capturing Who’s very own Robin Askwith in cheeky-pervy-monkey mode, while “The Doctor’s Strange Love” finds Joe Lidster and Simon Guerrier inexplicably invading the Sarah Jane Adventures attic for some Krotons-based badinage. There’s also a commentary with a revolving cast of three guest stars, the assistant floor manager, and the bods responsible for make-up, costumes and special sounds. Info text, a photo gallery and Radio Times PDFs complete the package.
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