The Five Doctors - 25th Anniversary Edition DVD

'The Five Doctors - Special Edition' was the first Doctor Who DVD to be released, the story being chosen because of the high quality pictures and multi-channel surround soundtrack that was available to help show off the new format. Eight years later on, and in the 25th anniversary year of the story's transmission, this new release sees both the original 90-minute version and the 102-minute Special Edition released as a double-disc set including a comprehensive set of extra features.

 Both versions of the story have been remastered from scratch, taking advantage of the improved quality available from Transform PAL decoding and newer digital noise reduction and grading technologies. In addition, the original A/B roll camera negatives of the location film sequences that make up so much of the story's running time have been newly transferred on the Spirit telecine and re-instated into both.

Roll mouse over old image to reveal new version...

Note lack of grain on Raston Robot and spear guide-wire removal.


This shot of Tom really shows up the poor quality of the original insert on the transmission version of the story.


The DVD Extras consist of:

Disc One - The Transmission Version

Commentary with actors Elisabeth Sladen, Mark Strickson, Nicholas Courtney and Carole Ann Ford.

Celebration (dur. 52' 13"). Producer Steve Broster takes a look back to 1983 and the celebration of Doctor Who's twentieth anniversary, including the production and transmission of 'The Five Doctors', the media interest and the BBC Enterprises' event at Longleat House. Featuring actors Peter Davison, Elisabeth Sladen, Nicholas Courtney, Mark Strickson, Janet Fielding, Carole Ann Ford, John Leeson, Richard Franklin and Caroline John, writer Terrance Dicks, director Peter Moffatt, visual effects designer Mike Kelt, new series writers Paul Cornell and Gareth Roberts, prominent fans Andrew Beech, Ian Levine, Richard Molesworth and James Goss. Presented by Colin Baker.

Trails and Continuity (dur. 19' 08") - BBC1 trails and continuity announcements from the original 1983 transmission and the subsequent transmission of the story in four parts. The full opening title and closing credits of the four-part version are included for completeness.

Photo Gallery (dur. 8' 12") - production and publicity photos from the story.

Isolated Music - isolated synchronous music from the story.

PDF Material - Radio Times billings for the story's original transmission.

Programme Subtitles Subtitle Production Notes


Disc Two - The Special Edition

• 102 min Special Edition with Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Surround (original 1995 VHS release version soundtrack) audio tracks.

Commentary with actor Peter Davison and writer Terrance Dicks.

The Ties that Bind Us (dur. 25' 55") - Brendan Sheppard's featurette takes a look at the subtle (and not so subtle!) links to the show's past and future contained within the story of 'The Five Doctors'. Narrated by Paul McGann.

Five Doctors, One Studio (dur. 18' 45") - inside the studio for the recording of the story's final scenes, the only time that all the Doctors were on set together.

Out-takes (dur. 6' 35") - bloopers and gaffs from the making of the story.

(Not So) Special Effects - (dur. 8' 58") - tin-tacks, gaffer tape and high-explosives - all in a day's work for the visual effects crew working wonders on a Doctor Who budget!

Saturday Superstore (dur. 10' 28") - Peter Davison, Janet Fielding and Mark Strickson join Mike Read to talk about the series and to take calls from viewers, in this extract from the Saturday morning children's show.

Blue Peter (dur. 8' 02") - Peter Davison, Richard Hurndall and a bevy of monsters join presenters Janet Ellis, Simon Groom and Peter Duncan to celebrate Doctor Who's twentieth anniversary.

Nationwide (dur. 9' 08") - Patrick Troughton, Jon Pertwee and Peter Davison are interviewed by Sue Lawley, whilst the programme's first producer, Verity Lambert, is interviewed by Richard Kershaw.

Breakfast Time (dur. 2' 45") - Patrick Troughton and Peter Davison join Frank Bough and Selina Scott in the Breakfast Time studio.

Isolated Music - isolated synchronous music from the story.

Coming Soon - a trail for a forthcoming DVD release.

Programme Subtitles Subtitle Production Notes


Copyright Steve Roberts,  25th January 2008. No reproduction allowed without written permission.