DVD Extras include:
Episode One - by Derrick SherwinScript Editor Derrick Sherwin plays Robin Hood, stealing an episode from "The Dominators" (the previous story) to give to "The Mind Robber" and thus making the Whoniverse a better place. The TARDIS is introduced quite well here, particularly the relationship between the interior and the exterior. No dissolve effects for the TARDIS this time, nor does it make a proper landing anywhere, but with it specifically being scripted that way, and with it being buried in lava, caught in other dimensions and turned inside-out, we really can't complain.
Jamie does manage a complaint against Zoe's appearance in her eye-sore Dulcian outfit which sizes it up pretty accurately. Thankfully, as soon as common sense and continuity allows, she swaps it for something much more practical and better looking, and sticks to better fashions for the rest of her travels.
Episode one focuses on the three regulars, and is a fair demonstration of their relationships with each other and their life aboard the TARDIS interior, something that Doctor Who rarely gives us enough of. In scripting and in execution, this episode is by far better done than "The Edge of Destruction" (story no. 3), which basically attempted to do the same: fill a hole in the production schedule with in-TARDIS only scenes and characterizations. Here, the masterful use of white space, robots, the villain's voice, and the growing mental seduction/battle add much in the way of menace, anticipation, and believability to the rest of the "Mind Robber" story. I wouldn't have this adventure any other way.
Episodes Two through Five - by Peter Ling"The Mind Robber" continues to be excellent all the way through, leaving reality behind and taking up residence in a mental dimension that is perfect for hosting a "candy-horror" story. The believability factor is thus pretty much on-par with "The Celestial Toymaker" (story no. 24), but dramatically speaking "The Mind Robber" is miles ahead. Once again the bizarre takes shape in the mind first, and then in print, before becoming physically tangible. Although mystery surrounds this mechanism at first, its discovery is one of the key elements which the plot is based around, and many of the story's best scenes are of our three travellers exploring the idea.
Bernard Horsfall's Gulliver is very enjoyable and watchable all the way through, particularly the very humorous exchange he has with Jamie as they try to agree on who they are hiding from. One of season six's best moments, for my money. Emrys Jones succeeds in bringing out several interesting personas from the almost schizophrenic character of the poor old story editor slaved to the master computer, including a sneaky schemer, a harsh commander, and an absent-minded likeable old fogey. Rapunzel, the Karkus, and the rest of the odd assortment of characters also get well-done, their crisp fresh dialogue keeping the story both light and interesting all the way through.
This is director David Maloney's first work on Doctor Who, and although he doesn't attract as much attention as a spectacular director as Douglas Camfield, he knows how to turn in solid work, and seems to be able to turn any story with a good script into something extremely appreciable. The number of all-time classic Doctor Who stories that he has helmed is extremely impressive. "The Mind Robber" is no exception, being perhaps the very best example of this style of story in Doctor Who.
This story has become available on DVD and VHS video:
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