Doctor Who (1963–1989)
6 user 1 critic

The Centre 

The Doctor and Vicki are taken before the Animus but the isoptope is left behind in the laboratory.The only hope of victory lies with Barbara and her Menoptera allies.


Richard Martin


Bill Strutton


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Episode cast overview, first billed only:
William Hartnell ... Dr. Who
William Russell ... Ian Chesterton
Jacqueline Hill ... Barbara Wright
Maureen O'Brien ... Vicki
Roslyn De Winter Roslyn De Winter ... Vrestin
Arne Gordon Arne Gordon ... Hrostar
Jolyon Booth Jolyon Booth ... Prapillus
Martin Jarvis ... Hilio
Jocelyn Britton Jocelyn Britton ... Hlynia (as Jocelyn Birdsall)
Ian Thompson Ian Thompson ... Optera Hetra
Robert Jewell ... Zarbi
Hugh Lund ... Zarbi
Kevin Manser Kevin Manser ... Zarbi
Jack Pitt Jack Pitt ... Zarbi
John Scott Martin ... Zarbi


The Doctor and Vicki are taken before the Animus but the isoptope is left behind in the laboratory.The only hope of victory lies with Barbara and her Menoptera allies.

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This episode was watched by 11.5 million viewers on its original transmission. See more »


A wire can be seen suspending the Animus from the ceiling. See more »


Animus: What Vortis is, I am. What you are, I will become.
Dr. Who: Oh, no!
Vicki: Doctor. Leave us alone, you parasite!
Animus: Parasite? A power. Absorbing territory, riches, energy, culture. You come to me.
Vicki: You filthy, great spider! You won't get us because... we won't move.
Animus: Do not fight against it. Approach, approach. Both of you.
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Featured in Tales of Isop (2005) See more »

User Reviews

S2: The Web Planet: Manages to be bewilderingly creative and yet dull at the same time
15 September 2013 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

The previous story in this season mixed serious drama with 1970's sex romp comedy and produced a rather odd series of episodes. For this next serial though there is really no relation in terms of tone or content and it does feel like the show has dropped a massive tab and just seen what happens. The plot sees the Tardis landing on a plant filled with weird creatures and, well, I would describe what happens but to be honest I'm not totally clear on it. It is delivered slowly though, whatever it was, because these 6 episodes really feel longer than they are and everything is delivered in an odd haze.

What it deserves credit for is creating this world of creatures because in the early episodes it was fascinating to see these moth and ant creatures kicking around. Soon though you do start to see they are of course people and it is hard not to see their legs when you look at them, but I did still enjoy the array of creatures and the invention in their design. It is a shame then that more isn't done with this trippy setting, but as I say, the plotting is pretty dull and the delivery is also surprisingly poor. Some shots seem good but generally the planet always feels like a soundstage and it isn't helped by the creatures bashing into each other (and the camera).

The cast seem a bit lost in all of this. They are professionals and they go along with it well – with Hartnell, Russell and Hill all doing good work. O'Brien is better here than she was in her last serial, but I didn't really get a full sense of her as the screen was frequently focused on blurry images and trippy characters as opposed to characters and their stories. In terms of other performances, the supporting cast are heavily costumed and mostly asked to act "otherworldly" in a drugged-up type of way, so it is hard to really get into them as characters even if I did like their look.

This serial deserves lots of credit for trying to be different – even without directly following The Romans, this would still stand out. It sadly doesn't work as a story though and the average delivery wastes the imagination of the creatures, which just ends up feeling like a bad trip for all involved.

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Release Date:

20 March 1965 (UK) See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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