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TME > Video > Commercial Releases

The Mind Robber

Escaping from a volcanic eruption on the planet Dulkis, the Doctor is forced to use the TARDIS' Emergency Unit, which takes the craft out of normal time and space... and out of reality itself! The time-travellers arrive in a mysterious world peopled by fictional characters - Gulliver and Rapunzel, D'Artagnan and Sir Lancelot - but also by creatures from mankind's worst imaginings...

    -- from the DVD release, 2005

This classic story was left until surprisingly late in the VHS and DVD runs, after around half of the existing Troughton stories had already been released...

Episode timings on DVD: 21'21", 21'38", 19'28", 19'09", 18'13"*
Episode timings on PasB: 13'27"**, 21'38", 19'29", 19'11", 18'00"

*includes unusual 8 second sequence of blackness after the end of the episode
**presumably an error!


VHS releases

07/05/1990: UK - BBC Worldwide - BBCV4352 [deleted 2/1/1996]
01/09/1990: Aus/NZ - PolyGram - BBC43522
??/??/1994: US - CBS/Fox - 5945 [renumbered E1200 in 2000 by Warner Home Video]

Cover art based on an illustration by Alistair Pearson created that year for the Virgin reissue of the Target novelisation.

DVD releases

07/03/2005: UK - BBC Worldwide - BBCDVD1358
06/05/2005: Aus/NZ - Roadshow - Cast# Unknown
06/09/2005: US - Warner Home Video - E2316

Cover by Clayton Hickman for UK/Aus.

DVD Bonus features

Information Text
By Martin Wiggins.

The Fact of Fiction (34'56")
  • Derrick Sherwin and Peter Ling explain the genesis of the story, and the latter's panicked reaction.
  • David Maloney and Sherwin talk about the plot.
  • Wendy Padbury enthuses about Maloney, who admits it was an early job for him. He and Sherwin tell us how he became involved.
  • Sherwin and Maloney on the lack of budget, a white cyclorama and an episode of Our of the Unknown. Evan Hercules explains his input.
  • Frazer Hines tells us his first reaction and Troughton calling a strike to bring the episode timings down.
  • Maloney talks through some of his directorial decisions and Hines through being hit by Wendy. Padbury giggles at the memory.
  • Padbury talks about her sparkly catsuit and Hines about her bottom. Maloney lusts a little as well. The word pert is used.
  • Hines, Maloney and Sherwin on the former's well-documented bout of chickenpox.
  • Hamish Wilson shares his memories (mainly of other stories), Padbury considers how clever Ling was, and Ling himself is modest.
  • Maloney on the toy soldiers, Hines on getting his brother cast, Hercules on the forest of letters - Ling explains his inspiration for them.
  • Sherwin, Hercules and Maloney talk about sticking a horn on a donkey and painting it.
  • Ling and Sherwin on ripping off other authors' characters.
  • Wilson and Hines on the crossover and Padbury wishes Wilson had stayed.
  • Christopher Robbie tells us the Karkus was his TV debut - he seems to find this quite amusing. Ling claims no responsibility for the German accent. Robbie goes on to talk about his anatomy and the fight sequence with Zoe and Wendy Padbury's lovely bum.
  • Ling explains the concept of the Master and Frank Richards providing inspiration. Maloney stakes a claim to the casting decision. Hines explains the real meaning of the word dossier and Hercules talks about the design of the Master's lair and the giant book.
  • Final thoughts from all the contributors on their happy memories.

Discussing The Minde Robber were Evan Hercules, Fraser Hines, Peter Ling, David Monoley, Wendy Padbury, Christopher Robbie, Derrick Sherwin, Hamish Wilson
Cameramen: John Kelly, Paul Rawson, Paul Vanezis
Sound: Mario Mooney
Rights Clearances: Jason May
Title Sequence Art: Pete Wallback
Doctor Who Theme: Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop
Special Sound: Brian Hodgson and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop
With Thanks to Doctor Who Magazine
Designed and Edited by Steve Broster
Produced and Directed by Richard Molesworth
BBC Worldwide (C) BBC MMV

Highlander (22'29")
Hines discusses his early career, being cast in Doctor Who, filming his "final" scene in Highlanders, changing his accent after being signed for a year, contributions to the script, not being in The Moonbase much, his relationship with Michael Craze and Anneke Wills, his previous work with Patrick Troughton, adding comedy to the show, Pauline Collins and The Faceless Ones, Victoria's introduction, memories of Fury From the Deep, working with Bernard Breslaw on The Ice Warriors, his enjoyment playing with the Daleks, reaction to Debbie's decision to leave, meeting Wendy Padbury, Jamie's changing relationship from Victoria to Zoe, his own decision to leave and how it linked to the rest of the cast's decisions, finding success in Emmerdale, the offer to take part in The Five Doctors (we see an outtake of Troughton fluffing his lines), how that lead to The Two Doctors, appearing at cons and last thoughts of Jamie's character.
With Thanks to Doctor Who Magazine, Derek Handley, Paula Bentham, Graeme Wood
'Who's Dr Who?' Performed by Frazer Hines
Producer: Richard Molesworth
Produced and Directed by Steve Broster
BBC Worldwide (C) BBC MMV

With Wendy Padbury, Frazer Hines, Hamish Wilson and David Maloney
Photo Gallery (6'52")
61 colour and b/w photos from the production of this story, and five from the episode of Out of the Unknown that reused the robot costumes.
Photographs supplied by BBC Photographic Archive and Derek Handley

Easter Egg: The Mind Robber Repeat Continuity
(Click left from Episode Selection)

Restoration Notes

All episodes (1-4 from 16mm and 5 from 35mm) were transferred by Jonathan Wood and cleaned up (which was an easy task due to the high quality of the films, although some scratching of the first and third episodes required manual painting out) before VidFIREing. In episode three, some crosstalk interference proved impossible to remove entirely.


21/6/1990 - Story passed as 'G' by the OFLC for Aus/NZ
12/9/1990 - Story passed as 'U' by the BBFC for the UK
06/01/2005 - Bonus features passed as 'PG' by the BBFC for the UK - raising the cert of the disc
18/02/2005 - Menus passed as 'U' by the BBFC for the UK
18/02/2005 - Story and bonuses passed as 'G' by the OFLC for Aus/NZ

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