Full Circle

Doctor WhoThe Doctor and Romana are en route back to Gallifrey when something strange happens to the TARDIS. Though it takes time for them to realize it, the TARDIS has fallen through a kind of wormhole into the alternate universe of E-space. Instead of Gallifrey, the Doctor has arrived on Alzarius, a planet whose small humanoid population is threatened by the onset of a deadly mist. During the time of mistfall, legend has it that spiders emerge from the indigenous fruit and deadly creatures appear. A troubled kid named Adric is trapped outside during mistfall, but stumbles into the TARDIS and befriends the Doctor and Romana. The Doctor soon finds that the horrific creatures that roam Alzarius during mistfall are more closely related to the besieged humanoids than either party realizes.

Download this episodewritten by Andrew Smith
directed by Peter Grimwade
music by Paddy Kingsland

Guest Cast: Richard Willis (Varsh), Bernard Padden (Tylos), June Page (Keara), James Bree (Nefred), Alan Rowe (Garif), Leonard Maguire (Draith), George Baker (Login), Tony Calvin (Dexeter), Norman Bacon (Marsh child), Andrew Forbes (Omril), Adrian Gibbs (Rysik), Barney Lawrence, Steve Kelly, Stephen Calcutt, Keith Guest, Graham Cole, James Jackson, Steven Watson (Marshmen)

Broadcast from October 25 through November 15, 1980

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green

Review: When you put a very clever story together with tremendously effective location filming and some of the show’s best rubberized monsters, and add a catchy, atmospheric and positively hummable musical score by Paddy Kingsland, you get a knockout like Full Circle. The Doctor, Romana and K9 all have plenty to do in the story, and the guest characters are unusually well-rounded. This is also the story in which Adric joins the TARDIS crew, becoming one of the least-liked companions in the show’s history – quite unjustifiably, since he’s one of the most intriguing parts of this particular story.

Full Circle gets one of my highest recommendations of the Tom Baker era of Doctor Who, though sometimes I wonder why the E-space trilogy was deemed a necessity – all three of the stories under that umbrella would have worked just fine as stand-alones. This is one of the most brilliant installments in Doctor Who’s final decade on the air, and a testament to the occasional benefits of JNT’s policy of seeking out new talent, as the story was originally sent in by a teenage fan of the show.