Starring William Hartnell as The Doctor
with Carol Ann Ford as Susan Foreman, William Russell as Ian Chesterton, Jacqueline Hill as Barbara Wright, Maureen O'Brien as Vicki and Peter Purves as Steven Taylor

09 Planet of Giants

A very unusual story, with a slow pace and the regulars largely detached from the central plot. The giant-size props are impressively made, and the regulars are on fine form, but it's hard not to arrive at the conclusion that the idea of the miniaturised crew came first, and the script was hastily assembled around it. For God's sake, the plot is solved by an old switchboard operator sitting in a chair, excitement is at a premium here.

5/10


10 The Dalek Invasion of Earth

By Who's standards, a big-budget sci-fi extravaganza. The location footage still looks great, but much of it has aged badly, while the plot often resorts to outright stupidity. It all falls down in the last episode as plausibility goes for a Burton, but there's much to praise, including solid performances from a largely impressive guest cast, impressive use of the Daleks, a downtrodden Earth and a great leaving scene for Susan.

6/10


11 The Rescue

Devoted largely to introducing new regular Vicki, the two-parter suffers from the girl being rather an annoying, whiny brat. The story lacks much in the way of a plot, and even then it requires a rather trite wrap-up. At least for once the unconvincing alien costume is meant to be a man in a suit, though to give credit to Bennett is does fool the crew and Vicki...

4/10


12 The Romans

An utterly charming story, and the series' first attempt at (intentional) comedy is an unqualified success. Dennis Spooner once again contributes a lovely little script, and Hartnell has the time of his life. There are numerous genuinely funny moments, often involving the gloriously petulant, randy Nero, and it's great to see the TARDIS crew kicking back early on. There's plenty going on, though, with Ian getting a typically combative plot thread. An absolute joy to sit down and watch.

9/10


13 The Web Planet

Grand ambition turns to ridiculous folly. A rare attempt to make aliens genuinely alien, with attempts to move away from humanoids and regular speech patterns, that falls flat on its' face for numerous reasons. It's like watching treacle, something not helped by the soft-focus making it quite painful to physically look at. Add into that the clumsy Zarbi and the preposterous Menoptera (complete with crazy accents) and it's a genuine slab of solid boredom you'll do well to sit through.

1/10


14 The Crusade

A real gem as Whittaker finally gets to write a proper story rather than a functional fill-in. The dialogue sparkles, and the surviving episodes are as impressive and polished as any television show of the era. A classy guest cast (led by Julian Glover and Jean Marsh) give their all, Ian (of course) gets to swashbuckle his way through another era and even Vicki's not bad. The regulars are at the height of their powers, and the result is a beautifully-made slice of costume drama.

9/10


15 The Space Museum

Not for the first time in the Lambert era, a fascinating start isn't converted. There's another rare use of time travel as a plot point rather than a method of arrival, and some very interesting ideas than promptly dissolve into a very tedious rebels versus bastards story made for about a tenner. Lots of running around corridors and getting locked up ensues.

5/10


16 The Chase

Probably the most undisciplined story in the show's history. The production team seem to think the Daleks are a story on their own, with very little plot added. Nation's script takes cues from the dire "Keys of Marinus", and is a global time-trek through various implausible sub-B Movie cyphers. It averages one jaw-droppingly stupid moment an episode, from Morton Dill to the Aridians to the Mary Celeste to the Frankenstein exhibit to the hilariously inept battle between the Daleks (who disappoint throughout) and the Mechanoids. Ian and Barbara deserved a better send-off, though Steven gets a good start.

2/10


17 The Time Meddler

For the first time overt science fiction is grafted onto a historical setting, resulting in a fine adventure. The Meddling Monk is played superbly by Peter Butterworth (bringing out the best in Hartnell in their scenes together), and is a fine addition to the series, even if the Doctor loses a little uniqueness. The Viking/Saxon elements sag a little and grate a little against the sparring of the Doctor and the Monk, but overall it's a fun little romp that ends the second series on a high.

8/10