Saturday, 9 August 2008

Trial DVD delayed >> War Machines early release

2entertain have announced that the four-disc set, originally slated for 25th August release, will now materialise on 29th September, 2008. We can't confirm or deny that this is due to meddling by The Valeyard...

This four-disc set features the episodes - "The Mysterious Planet", "Mind Warp", "Terror Of The Vervoids" and "The Ultimate Foe" - that make up the Trial of a Time Lord storyline. The TARDIS is drawn to a space station where the Doctor (Colin Baker)is subjected to a Time Lord inquiry into his behaviour, presided over by an Inquisitor. The prosecuting counsel, the Valeyard, presents the first piece of his evidence, which consists of a recording played back on a screen linked to the Matrix. It concerns a visit by the Doctor and Peri to the desolate planet Ravolox...If you've being looking forward to the imminent DVD release of Doctor Who's most epic classic adventure, The Trial Of A Time Lord, then you'll have to wait just a little longer.

To fill the gap, 2entertain have pulled forward the release of First Doctor tale The War Machines.

Seen by many as a precursor to the Earthbound UNIT era of Doctor Who, The War Machines sees William Hartnell battle tank-like robots and a mad computer living in London's Post Office Tower.

A classic four-part adventure from William Hartnell's time as the first Doctor, The War Machines also features an early screen appearance for comedian MIke Reid, later to find fame with Runaround and Eastenders. The TARDIS arrives in London in 1966 and the Doctor and his assistant Dodo visit the Post Office Tower. There they meet Professor Brett who's invented a revolutionary new computer called the WONTAN (Will Operating Thought Analogue), which is capable of independent thought. Soon enough though, in the manner of newly sentient computers everywhere, the WONTAN decides that humans are inferior and that it's time for machines to rule over them. It sets about constructing a fleet of war machines to take over the world, using its hypnotic powers. Can the Doctor reprogram them before its too late?

DVD Features
Commentary with Anneke Wills and Director Michael Ferguson.
Now and Then - Featurette.
Blue Peter - A compilation of related articles from the popular children's magazine show.
One Foot in the Past - Politician and ex-Postmaster General Tony Benn investigates the history of the Post Office Tower.
WOTAN Assembly - A featurette explaining how the DVD was created from disparate sources, after the original series fell victim to overseas censorship in the Sixties.
Coming Soon trailer/War Machine design plan/Photo gallery.

In other DVD news, the cover for the upcoming Fifth Doctor adventure Four To Doomsday has been released.


The TARDIS arrives on board a huge spaceship where the Doctor and his companions encounter the frog-like Urbankans and a population of human androids. The androids are drawn from four different ethnic groups - Greek (led by Bigon), Chinese (led by Lin Futu), Mayan (led by Villagra) and Aboriginal Australian (led by Kurkutji) - and perform regular displays of dance and other rituals termed 'recreationals'.

The Urbankans' leader, Monarch, aided by his ministers Persuasion and Enlightenment, is engaged in a complex scheme to plunder from Earth the raw materials needed to enable him to travel back in time and thereby confirm his belief in his own status as the universe's divine creator.

Monarch has a poison that he intends to use to conquer humanity so that Earth can be repopulated with his androids. The Doctor, however, throws a canister of the poison at Monarch, causing him to shrink away to virtually nothing.

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