Doctor Who: Season 19, Episode 23

Time-Flight: Part One (22 Mar. 1982)

TV Episode  -   -  Adventure | Drama | Sci-Fi
6.5
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A British Airways Concord disappears on final approach. The Doctor, still reeling from the loss of Adric, becomes involved when his TARDIS miss-fires from its intended destination of London... See full summary »

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Title: Time-Flight: Part One (22 Mar 1982)

Time-Flight: Part One (22 Mar 1982) on IMDb 6.5/10

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Cast

Episode cast overview:
...
Sarah Sutton ...
Janet Fielding ...
Richard Easton ...
Captain Stapley
Keith Drinkel ...
Michael Cashman ...
First Officer Bilton
Peter Dahlsen ...
Horton
Brian McDermott ...
Sheard
...
Captain Urquhart
Peter Cellier ...
Andrews
Judith Byfield ...
Anthony Ainley ...
Kalid (as Leon Ny Taiy)
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Storyline

A British Airways Concord disappears on final approach. The Doctor, still reeling from the loss of Adric, becomes involved when his TARDIS miss-fires from its intended destination of London 1851 and appears at Heathrow airport. The Doctor follows the lost plane into the deep past only to discover he is part of an illusion. This forces him to ask the question: if there is an illusion, who is the conjurer? Written by chapman_glen@yahoo

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australian | celery | master


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22 March 1982 (UK)  »

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1.33 : 1
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Trivia

This serial was first intended to be included in the final season of Tom Baker. See more »

Quotes

Captain Stapley: You seriously believe that Victor Foxtrot got caught in some sort of time-slip?
The Doctor: It would seem to be the logical explanation.
Captain Stapley: That's pretty rum idea to me.
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User Reviews

 
What the hell did I just watch?

Doctor Who: Time-Flight: Part One starts as Concorde 192 from New York suddenly disappears from radar on it's approach to London Heathrow, the air traffic control are stumped. Meanwhile the Doctor (Peter Davison) decides to try & cheer Tegan (Janet Fielding) & Nyssa (Sarah Sutton) up after the death of Adric by taking them to London 1851 & the Great Exhibition in Hyde Park, however due to problems the Doctor is forced to materialise the TARDIS sooner than he had expected & ends up at Heathrow shortly after the disappearance of the Concorde. Questioned by airport security the Doctor insists they contact Department C19 & Sir John Sudbury of UNIT, the airport authorities are then ordered to inform the Doctor about the missing Concorde & he has theories that it has entered a time vortex...

Episode 23 from season 19 this Doctor Who adventure originally aired here in the UK during March 1982 & was the seventh & final story from Peter Davison's first season playing the Doctor, directed by Ron Jones one has to say I'm not quite sure what to make of Time-Flight. Originally called Zanadin & then Xeraphin the script for Time-Flight by Peter Grimwade has been stark raving mad so far & one could maybe say far too ambitious for the meagre budget & resources the production team had. The whole notion of an entire Concorde along with it's passengers & crew having been abducted through time back 140 million years to the Pleistocene period through a time corridor is a little hard to swallow & then the idea that Heathrow & British Airways would quite literally give the Doctor, Nyssa & Tegan another Concorde complete with flight crew to investigate the disappearance of the first is just taking things that little bit too far. I'm a sci-fi, horror, cult, trash, exploitation fan but there comes a time when even I cannot suspend my disbelief long enough not to see all the gaping plot holes, inconsistencies & downright silliness that's going on here. Time-Flight is one of those programs you have to see to believe & words simply cannot do it justice. This opening episode at least tries to present the missing Concorde as a mystery which works until British Airways gives the Doctor a Concorde of his own (I mean like yeah, I am sure British Airways has loads of the things just lying around to hand out), once Time-Flight goes back 140 million years in the past it gets even sillier with some awful dialogue, odd behaviour (the cabin crew take the situation very well, Tegan just running off into the distance, Nyssa disobeying the Doctor for no reason) & a poor cliffhanger ending.

One aspect of Time-Flight which the production team could never succeed with are the special effects, from awkward looking stock footage of Heathrow & Concorde to some truly dire CSO (colour separation overlay) that is as bad as anything from the Jon Pertwee era. The sets are cheap looking as well with a grounded Concorde represented by the Doctor standing next to it's front wheel & don't even get me started on those hysterically bad looking Plasmaton creatures that resemble a block of cement on legs! Amazingly producer John Nathan-Turner managed to persuade British Airways to allow them to film on their back-up Concorde which is probably the highlight of Time-Flight so far. I also noticed a goof here, when the TARDIS is above Heathrow looking down the ground is clear yet when the Doctor, Nyssa & Tegan board Concorde there's snow everywhere!

Time-Flight: Part One is a bit of a mess, the production is really poor on all fronts & the story is just plain convoluted & bizarre. It's entertaining in a so bad it's good sort of way but at the same time this is the sort of Doctor Who that makes you feel embarrassed for liking the show.


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