Paul Isaacs' Blog

Autism from the inside

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Doctor Who – Series 8 – Blu-ray Review

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This is the beginning of the 12th Doctor’s first series which in the order of the “new” series 8 which consists of the original TV run of episodes plus extras.


Peter Capaldi is spearheaded into the London for his first adventure, the overall tone and quality is very dark in terms of content, plotlines and direction, atmospheric camerawork, lightening and for his first feature long series and tenure as the doctor he has a mysterious, gritty and sometimes quite frightening quality to him. The dynamic of his changing relationship with Clara is rather moving the overall story arc is not about obvious common theme in fact it much about people finding love, acceptance and a place in the world. The dots do however come into place in the final episode with the “mastermind” being the fellow timelord Missy who was The Master in previous incarnations the Doctor has always faced a moral agenda and paradox but I feel this is the first series to go beyond touching upon it and using it a spiritual link between the episodes.

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I viewed this serial in HD (1080i 50fps) Doctor Who – Series 9  which has some rather striking photography and set pieces, one notable effect which is amazing the half-face man in the first episode a splendid achievement which has a true “movie quality”, colours are deep, full of contrast and crisp detailn. The audio is also mastered in HD with deep bass and dynamic range.


I really enjoyed this Series with its many twists and turns a surprisingly mature and gritty ambiance that runs through from the story to story which I would say are at times deeply philosophical, smatterings of humour are well placed but my only concern (if you can call it that) is the nature and maturity of the storylines may polarise some people nevertheless this is bold step and a well-executed one. Highly Recommended


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Dr Who – Revisiting The 11th Doctor

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I have recently gone back into the world of Dr Who the infamous and bold alien time traveler – after David Tennant left the show it was oddly difficult as he brought our family together on Saturday evenings in way that had only happened with game and talk shows. Matt Smith was for the moment hard to digest like a biscuit that had not been drenched in a  warm cup of tea.

I have since grown on his bizarre idiosyncrasies, neologisms and endless quirks through contrasting storytelling arching and swaying, moving me to tears and making me laugh this certainly is a darker doctor akin to what Sylvestor Mccoy was trying to do (but the BBC and the audience didn’t understand) I am thankful to re-visit oddball Matt in more objective widing lense.

Paul Isaacs 2017

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Dr Who – The Invasion – DVD Review


This DVD is a 2-Disc Edition of The Invasion with two missing episodes which have been animated 


The is an “Earth Story” and this would become a staple of the 3rd Doctor Era the title suggests the main plot of the story aliens that are preparing for a global invasion starting with the United Kingdom.

The main plot is an expansion on themes used in the Troughton “cyberstories” which includes the dangers of technology and how this has an effect on people, communication devices such as video links are used throughout preempting such devices that we take for granted now, as well as the political dangers of single force wanting to control the world. The cast are colourful, deep and imaginative with enigmatic performances, tight dialogue and atmosphere.


The picture is sharp, detailed with a good deal of contrast and saturation although at times the picture is a tab soft probably due to age . I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second. Overall there is  higher clearer definition of picture quality.

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The animated episodes are well done with excellent attention to detail, sharp background contrasts, faithful character design and animation lends to the atmosphere of the serial in turns of camera direction which feels less cinematic and more faithful to how it would have looked and excellent job by Cosgrove Hall.


The audio is clear with few hisses and artifactual noise this is something that I have noted in Hartnell and Troughton era that attention by the Restoration Team is paid not only to the image but also the quality of sound which is of course is restricted by technology at the time.


This is really classic Troughton at its best a tight another tight endearing story by  Kit Pedler about technology, fabulous direction with stunning visuals and atmosphere, great memorable and enigmatic performances. One of my favorites.  Highly Recommended.

Paul Isaacs 2017

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Dr Who – Tomb of the Cybermen – Revisitations DVD Review


This DVD is a 2-disc Special Edition of Tomb of the Cybermen with upgraded video and audio as well as new special features.


The plot is a dark and brooding entry for the infamous cybermen instilling a sense of dread as an expedition has found a dormant tomb that holds creatures from a distant past who are slumbering. The characterisation is at times dated but the overall composition of technology gone awry is potent in this story, human greed, selfishness and sacrifice are themes as the doctor who in his sage wisdom warns them of the dangers of tampering with technology that they do not understand. A metaphor in itself.



The Revisitations DVD is a worthy upgrade from the earlier edition with a sharper picture, deeper colour saturation, minor enhancements to the images when the the title are overlaid is a worthy mention too. I viewed this in HD upscaled 1080p 60 frames per second. Overall there is  higher clearer definition of picture quality.


The audio is clear with a few artificial hisses and pops here and there overall a worthy and crisp audio considering its age dialogue is clear as well as the nerve jangling and atmospheric score which is a treat to hear.


With polished and ambitious story  and script by Kit Pedler with high tension and plenty of bite to a worthy video and audio upgrade as well as a host of extras this a must see for fans of classic Who. Recommended

Paul Isaacs 2017

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The Forgotten Davros – Destiny Of David Gooderson

Davros Destiny Of The Daleks 19793

                              Davros & Daleks

David Gooderson’s portrayal of Davros seems to much of an issue over the years – the serial and story Destiny Of The Daleks is unique for many reasons and may well have more reverence in evolution of the Daleks characters themselves but also of their creator

Dalek Personalities & Behaviours 

One of the distinct changes in that comes with this serial is in the Daleks themselves they seem to have more exposition than in other stories, they are not drones nor mindless machines but creatures of more instinct. Firstly they want to got back to the person who created them for his help, guidance and knowledge.

They are able to go against code by willing sacrificial extermination for their leader which is one of the more suspenseful aspects of episode four, they interrogate for knowledge but use the people for their own ends rather than just doing away with them. To me this is certainly a worthy evolution of character some say this isn’t good however for this story and echoes of later stories this would certainly would be used.

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Davros & The Doctor

Davros – David Gooderson

Gooderson’s performance is very good he sets bar that would be used in future portrayals of the character he is angry but at the same time optimistic at what he can do with this creations – to change them and improve upon them this could be seen as the start of the trilogy story arc in fifth, sixth and seventh incarnations of the The Doctor and his “love hate” relationship he has with him. I like his performance for his snide and clever remarks to the doctor with adding dark wit and morbid sarcasm to narrative.

What Could Help?

To be honest a second special edition could help with regards to many of the budgetary aspects of the series at the time. After seeing the amazing job the restoration team had achieved on Day Of The Daleks it seems more likely that it could be done.

Here is my Special Edition wish list

  • Ring modulate Davros’ voice (the problem isn’t Gooderson’s portrayal it is the lack of voice distortion)
  • Give Davros’ eye a real glow when he comes back to life
  • Re-do the Dalek energy blasts again (I liked the Day of the Daleks special edition effects)
  • Re-do Movellan gun blasts again
  • Reduce judder when Davros is in movement (this may be hard to do but attempt would be great)
  • Modify Movellan ship
  • Modify Dalek perspectives shots (looking for the Doctor and Davros)
  • Touch up the Daleks appearance (cracks, bumps, chipped paint etc)
  • Touch up Davros’ chair (cracks, chipped paint)
  • Redo The Dalek pursuit scenes – towards the Movellan ships

Davros’ Fan-Made Voice Distortion & Additional Sound Effects 


Without Destiny & Gooderson’s performance you would not have the key elements that would make the Dalek serials so interesting in the Davison, Baker & McCoy era. His performance has been overlooked by fans and viewers alike put for me he sets the precedent that would be the continual evolution of the character and to me that is a very important thing to happen in “Who” history.

Paul Isaacs 2015