Doctor Who – The Complete Second Series DVD set

I’ve had this for a while, but rather than watch it all at once, I’ve been rationing it out, to make it last longer. Well, it’s a long time to wait for new episodes…

I got the limited edition Cyberman box. This is the standard package inside a larger box with a 3D Cyberman head on the top, and is probably best described as for serious geeks only. The packaging, while not as cool as last year’s limited edition Tardis box, it is an attractive item. The outer box has a couple of nifty “3D” images – those prismatic thingies that change as you move them around. One of menacing Cyberman, and one of the Tardis entering the Vortex. Inside that are two folders, each containing three DVDs. The folders are covered with stills from the series, and have new artwork inside. All very nice, and well put together.

Inside the first folder, there’s a postcard-size prismatic image of a Dalek, and the booklet. Not a particularly fancy booklet – it has an introduction from Executive Producer Julie Gardner and loads of pictures. Does the job quite nicely.

And so to the DVDs. Each one has a very nice central image (Sycorax, K9, Cyberman, Ood, Dalek Sec[1], the Doctor and Rose), and add a final touch to the overall feeling that this is a quality package.

But none of that presentation would matter at all if the content wasn’t up to it, so let’s have a look at that.

I’ve talked about the individual episodes before, so I won’t go into the details again, other than to say there’s some superb stuff here. And it’s all in DVD quality with earth-shaking Dolby 5.1 sound. It all looked and sounded quite wonderful on my kit. And it started making me think I need a bigger TV…

Disc 1 opens with The Christmas Invasion, with the full series following on as far as Disk 5. Also on Disc 1 is the 2005 Children in Need mini-episode, a short video diary from Billie Piper, a few deleted scenes and quite the silliest “out-takes” I have ever seen. Not just the usual stuff of people fluffing their lines and falling over, but also some specially created fun and games from the effects guys at The Mill. Very nice.

Commentaries are available for each episode. One commentary on each disc is an in-vision thingy – a small window is overlaid on the screen allowing you to see the people talking about the episode. I’m not sure if this really adds anything, but it’s mostly harmless. Commentators include Russell T Davies, David Tennant, Billie Piper and many more. As with any commentaries, they’re probably a once only thing, but they do give some insight into the creation of the show, and are worth a listen (and indeed look).

Disc 6 contains thirteen episodes of Doctor Who Confidential, the documentary shown on BBC3 each week during the series. These are the cut down versions, at around ten minutes each, but they manage to be informative and entertaining. And finally, there’s David Tenant’s video diary, which runs to nearly an hour and a half, and is good fun – lots of behind the scenes stuff, background and has to be cherished for seeing David and Billie practising saying “Nadolig Llawen[2]” before turning on Cardiff’s Christmas lights in 2005.

Overall, a good collection. Much better than the basic DVDs that came out earlier, and if you shop around a bit, it’s not too expensive. Highly recommended.

[1] The Black one
[2] It’s Welsh :wales:   :tongue: