Doctor Who: The Time Monster (Story #64)

6.5 Overall Score
Story: 7/10
Acting: 7/10
Visual: 6/10

Like the Cambridge parts

The Atlantis part loses steam


Oh no! A guy in a costume!!!

The Doctor (Jon Pertwee) has had another dream of the Master (Roger Delgado) and uses his TARDIS to track him Cambridge University.  The Master has been reaching into the past to communicate with a being called Kronos, and the Doctor and Jo Grant (Katy Manning) learn that he lives in the legendary city of Atlantis.  Traveling back in time to Atlantis, Jo and the Doctor must locate the crystal of Kronos which is hidden with a maze guarded by the Minotaur and stop Kronos and the Master.

Doctor Who:  The Time Monster was the final serial of the ninth season of Doctor Who.  The series aired in six parts from May 20, 1972 to June 24, 1972.  Following Doctor Who:  The Mutants, the series has been collected in The Jon Pertwee Years as Story #64.


Dave Prowse warms up to bench press the Emperor in Return of the Jedi

The longer format serials always seem a bit too long for me.  Like many Doctor Who stories, the first half of the story has one direction (the Master’s research at Cambridge University) and then switches direction in the second half (the Atlantis story).  The two stories do work rather well together and the story is a good Doctor Who tale.

I do have to say that this serial is rather full of techno babble.  There is a lot of TARDIS time and dealing with aspects of time travel.  In more recent years, the writers have tried to be a bit more authentic on the science aspect of the show, but here, it feels rather made up and arbitrary.  Time crystals, time ramming, vortexes, and TARDIS battles all take place over the course of the story, and you just have to go with it.


Your TARDIS is much cooler than the Master’s TARDIS (which looks like a Coke machine)

I enjoy the third Doctor and he is strong here, but this is really a Master show.  Delgado was great as the Master and it is too bad his run was cut short by a car accident.  This is also one of Jo Grant’s better episodes.  The usually flighty Jo is a bit more dependable and helpful.  The Kronos monster is rather ridiculous and just a guy in a white costume on a rope that just flaps his arms, but the Minotaur is cool and played by Darth Vader himself Dave Prowse.

The visuals in the early parts of the story (except Kronos the Chronovore) are kind of strong.  You have time slowing down with some people moving at normal speeds, and you have some fun time collapse moments where knights and soldiers show up.  Once you get to Atlantis you get some really bad sets, bad costumes, and the visuals (like the story) is weaker.

Doctor Who:  The Time Monster is a pretty decent old Doctor Who though it does get long in the tooth during the Atlantis sequence.  Despite losing steam, stick with it because I enjoyed the kind of trippy ending with the TARDIS “ramming” and the non-space.  Doctor Who:  The Time Monster is followed by Doctor Who:  The Three Doctors.

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Preceded By:

Doctor Who:  The Mutants (Story #63)

Followed By:

Doctor Who:  The Three Doctors (Story #65)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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