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Doctor Who (1963)

Season 21 Episode 7

Frontios, Part One

Aired Saturday 5:15 PM Jan 26, 1984 on BBC
out of 10
User Rating
18 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

The planet Frontios, in the distant future. Following Earth's destruction, a tiny colony struggles to eke out a life on a desolate world — a world that buries its own dead…

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  • Time travel, Daleks, unexplained plot points - and a great massacre at the start of the episode! What more can you want? Oh... Davros...

    All in all a brilliantly over the top story. Logic falls out of the window - how did

    the daleks know about Teagan and Turlough, enough to create replicas of

    them already? Were the people slaughtered at the start just prisoners

    escaping? If so, where from? Why hide the Plague on earth? For that matter,

    why even bother having the time corridor - it served no purpose except

    allowing prisoners to leave!

    But ignoring the plot holes, it’s good to see Davros again. The Hunt the Blob

    sub plot was actually quite tense (despite my mocking of it), Teagan wasn’t

    overly annoying, Turlough was almost watchable, Dirty Den didn’t have any

    lines, and the acting was brilliantly over the top. It’s worth tracking down this

    story just to marvel at the fact each death has to be greater than the last.

    Davros’ amounts to lots of wobbling in the wheelchair, but i actually think the

    hands down winner is the un-named guard who dances like a puppet on a

    string in the warehouse. Watch the story and you’ll see who I mean.

    This was of course Terry Malloys first stint as Davros, and while not as good

    as Michael Wisher (the original), he sealed the role as his own in this and his

    next two appearances.

    Much as I take the mikey out of her, Teagan’s parting is done very well. Her

    reasons for leaving are actually better than the usual “leaving to marry some

    bloke she just met” syndrome that at least 6 companions have gone through.

    (From the top of my head. Susan, Vicki, Jo, Leela, Nyssa, Peri (although she

    gets bonus points for being the one to end up with Brian Blessed)). Her last

    scene of running back to the TARDIS just as it vanishes did actually hint at

    bringing a tear to my eye. After all, she tried to leave before, but got lured


    On a technical side, this was the first 45 minute episodes of Dr Who. It was

    filmed as a 4 parter, but transmitted as a two parter because of difficulties.

    The production team realised people would sit through 45 mins of Who, and

    created the next but one season in that style.moreless

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (1)

    • Revealing Mistake: In the opening scene, as Captain Revere sees the earth moving beneath him, the fingers of one of the crew are visible shifting the soil.

  • QUOTES (1)

  • NOTES (4)

    • Video: Doctor Who: The Awakening/Frontios (BBCV 6120) released in March 1997. Released in U.S.A./Canada (Warner Home Video E1080) in March 1998.

    • Novelisation: Doctor Who - Frontios by Christopher H. Bidmead (ISBN 0 426 19780 1) first published by W H Allen in 1984.

    • The original title for this story was The Wanderers.

    • Plot Hole: The destruction of the TARDIS creates a number of problems. First it makes the absence of Kamelion strange. Second, the gravity strong enough to destroy the TARDIS does not affect Tegan and Turlough while they are within. Finally, it has been established in numerous episodes that the TARDIS cannot be destroyed from the outside.