Starring: William Hartnell, Carole Ann Ford Writer: Peter R Newman Director: Frank Cox Price: £20.42 (Amazon price: £12.99; BBC Shop price: £12.99) Released: January 23rd 2012
I have to confess that I'm not the most diligent of DVD reviewers. Give me something that I can watch in an hour or two and I'm fine. Give me something that lasts two and a half hours and that also has commentaries and epic amounts of extras and basically, I'm not up for that. Call it being busy, call it being lazy - it ain't happening.
But sometimes, I'll give it a try. In this case, the BBC Shop, in their infinite wisdom, sent me the six-part William Hartnell Doctor Who story The Sensorites to peruse. Now, I hadn't seen this in about 20 years and beyond a slight reference to it at some point when the Ood popped up in modern Who, it had almost completely escaped my mind. Feeling semi-dedicated, I decided to give The Sensorites a go. See how I fared after this trailer and the jump.
In the UK: Thursdays, 10pm, ITV3. Available on the ITV Player In Denmark: Aired last March. Cancelled after the first series
Foreign TV is a funny old thing. What you get to see of another country's TV is usually the cream of the crop, some nice purchasing person at your local TV network having viewed it all and decided what's good and what isn't. So it's easy to think as a result, based just on what you see on TV of it, that another country's television output must be great.
French TV looks good thanks to Engrenages. Canadian TV looks good thanks to Being Erica and The Border. Danish TV looks awesome thanks to The Killing and Borgen. UK TV looks good because of Downton Abbey and Doctor Who. US TV just looks good all round. Israeli TV looks amazing thanks to all the adaptations like In Treatment and Homeland.
Italian TV, thanks to Inspector Montalbano, just looks silly. Some things I guess you just can't polish.
But if you have to wade through it and start delving into the lower reaches of TF1, CTV, Sky Living, TBS, et al, you soon start to realise that not all foreign TV is good. Equally, you start to realise that other countries watch other countries' TV and try to emulate that.
Now, here in the UK, we've had something of a Scandinavian TV love-in thanks to BBC4 and the rise of the 'Nordic noir' genre of books and movies. The Killing, Wallander and Borgen have convinced people that Scandinavian TV is universally brilliant. So ITV3, the home of old crime shows, has been trying to get in on that action and has bought in Danish TV network TV2's Den Som Dræber aka Those Who Kill.
On paper, this should be cracking. It's written by bestselling crime-author Elsebeth Egholm and Stefan Jaworsk, the writer of several award-winning and critically acclaimed features and TV series. The show stars, among others, Lars Mikkelsen from The Killing, and comes from the producers of several of the Wallander movies, and when it aired in Denmark last year, was watched by a record-breaking 50% of the adult population.
Yet, unfortunately, Those Who Kill is laughable old toss. Here's a trailer:
Starring: Kevin Conroy (Batman), Tim Daly (Superman), Susan Eisenberg (Wonder Woman), Nathan Fillion (Green Lantern), Carl Lumbly (Martian Manhunter/Ma'alefa'ak), Michael Rosenbaum (The Flash), Bumper Robinson (Cyborg), Carlos Alazraqui (Bane), Claudia Black (Cheetah), Paul Blackthorne (Metallo), Olivia d'Abo (Star Sapphire), Alexis Denisof (Mirror Master), Phil Morris (Vandal Savage) Writers: Dwayne McDuffie, Mark Waid. Director: Lauren Montgomery Price: $24.98 (Amazon price: $14.99) Released: February 28, 2012
When it comes to movies, Marvel and DC both have their specialities these days. Marvel has it sewn up at the movies, with things like Captain America, Iron Man, The Avengers, The X-Men, Daredevil, Thor et al. Sure, DC has Batman, but Superman isn't working that well, Green Lantern wasn't exactly brilliant and if you can't work out how to make a movie of Wonder Woman after a decade of trying, clearly you've got problems.
By contrast, in the realm of animated movies and TV shows, it's the other way round. You'd only have to have a teeny weeny, atom-sized piece of paper to write down all the decent animated shows that Marvel has put out (X-Men Evolution and that's about it) in the last couple of decades, while DC has had Batman, Superman, Green Lantern and, of course, Justice League shows filling up the airways for years. They even did a halfway decent animated Wonder Woman movie.
Possibly their best effort was Justice League, which expanded to become Justice League Unlimited later on. That, of course, ended nearly six years ago, but now the brainiacs at DC have decided to take an old Justice League comic and create a brand new Justice League animated movie, Justice League: Doom, in which the Justice League's arch-enemies club together to kill the League. Cleverly, DC has got together virtually all the cast from the original series, as well as Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Castle) from its Green Lantern animated TV series, Tim Daly from its Superman animated series and a great guest cast to do it.
And while it's not outstanding, it does at least make you wonder why the hell they can't make a proper live-action movie. Here's a trailer.
About the blog
A UK media blog focusing on the best scripted TV from around the world, with daily news, views, exclusive reviews and good conversation. There's a bit of a bias towards the latest and greatest US TV, but we also cover Scandinavian, Canadian, European and Antipodean TV, as well as UK TV ranging from new Doctor Who to old Z Cars, and BBC4 to S4C.
Add in film, theatre, art, books, events, competitions and even weekly reviews of Wonder Woman comics, and you've (hopefully) got officially the fourth best blog on the web for media lovers. Oh yes, and there's The Barrometer, the ultimate guide to quality TV.
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"For most of us watching the telly of an evening is a way to wind down and relax, but for Rob Buckley it’s his blogging bread and butter. With reviews of cult classics and up and coming US and Brit television shows, The Medium is Not Enough is fast becoming essential reading for TV buffs, with over 50,000 hits a month."
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"Billing itself as 'officially the fourth most popular UK TV blog', there are several whimsical regulars here that could help it climb as high as number three…"
I'm Rob Buckley, a freelance journalist who writes for UK media magazines that most people have never heard of, although you might have heard me on Radio 5 Live's Saturday Edition or Afternoon Edition. I've edited Dreamwatch, Sprocket and Cambridge Film Festival Daily; been technical editor for trade magazine Televisual; reviewed films for the short-lived newspaper Cambridge Insider and the equally short-lived Death Ray and Filmstar magazines; written features for the even shorter-lived newspaper Soho Independent; and was regularly sarcastic about television on the blink-and-you-missed-it "web site for urban hedonists" The Tribe. I'm freelance now and have contributed to the likes of Broadcast, Total Content + Media, Action TV, Off The Telly, Action Network and TV Scoop.