Doctor Who – The Brain of Morbius

Oh, joy! Another classic from Doctor Who’s gothic horror period. This story, first shown in January 1976 stars Tom Baker as the Doctor and Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith. It seems that the Time Lords have taken control of the Tardis and caused it to land on a somewhat barren planet on the traditional dark and stormy night.

And like a lot of stories of the period, this one shows its roots quite plainly: this is the Frankenstein one, complete with a mad scientist (gloriously played by Philip Madoc), who comes complete with a monster created from assorted bits of various creatures unfortunate enough to have crashed on the planet. And he’s even got an Igor. Not actually called Igor, of course. That would have been silly.

It turns out that the planet is Karn, home to a mysterious and rather old Sisterhood, who have a nice line in chanting and a slightly unsuccessful line in trying to kill the Doctor.

To make things even more fun, the mad scientist is trying to restore to life an old Time Lord criminal called Morbius. The Doctor is not at all keen on that idea…

It’s all enormous fun, even if large parts of the plot make no sense at all[1].

There’s the usual crop of extras, including a commentary, the usual production subtitles, and a documentary on the making of the story, all of which add value to a nice little package.


[1] Caused by rewrites which led to the ubiquitous Terrance Dicks asking to have his name taken off the credits, suggesting that the producers use “some bland pseudonym”. Which they did. The story is credited to Robin Bland. :lol: