» » Doctor Who Frontier in Space: Episode One (1963–1989)

Doctor Who Frontier in Space: Episode One (1963–1989) Online

Doctor Who Frontier in Space: Episode One (1963–1989) Online
Original Title :
Frontier in Space: Episode One
Genre :
TV Episode / Adventure / Drama / Family / Sci-Fi
Year :
Directror :
Paul Bernard
Cast :
Jon Pertwee,Katy Manning,Vera Fusek
Writer :
Malcolm Hulke
Type :
TV Episode
Time :
Rating :
Doctor Who Frontier in Space: Episode One (1963–1989) Online

The Doctor and Jo discover The Master and the Ogrons are the masterminds behind the Galactic war between the Earth Federation and the Reptillian Draconian Empire and the Master has framed The Doctor and Jo as spies working for the Draconians. Only to discover The Master is also working with the Doctor's greatest enemies, The Daleks, who are also behind the galactic war.
Episode complete credited cast:
Jon Pertwee Jon Pertwee - Dr. Who
Katy Manning Katy Manning - Jo Grant
Vera Fusek Vera Fusek - President of Earth
Michael Hawkins Michael Hawkins - General Williams
Peter Birrel Peter Birrel - Draconian Prince
Ray Lonnen Ray Lonnen - Gardiner
Barry Ashton Barry Ashton - Kemp
John Rees John Rees - Hardy
James Culliford James Culliford - Stewart
Louis Mahoney Louis Mahoney - Newscaster
Roy Pattison Roy Pattison - Draconian Space Pilot
Karol Hagar Karol Hagar - Secretary

Last appearance of Roger Delgado as The Master.

Last acting role of Vera Fusek who retired for family reasons.

Jon Pertwee said that the Draconians were his favourite monsters in Doctor Who (1963).

The futuristic "blasters" used by human personnel in this serial (and by the Master, when impersonating a human officer) appear to be slightly modified replicas of the Mauser C96 "Broomhandle" pistol, with additional attachments to the barrel and sights. Three-four years later, almost the same design would be used to construct Han Solo's blaster pistol in Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope (1977).

The last TV acting role of James Culliford who retired because of health reasons after taping this serial.

Malcolm Hulke wrote this story as a Cold War parallel.

The Draconians were originally named Andromedans.

The Ogrons' role in the story was originally filled by the Cybermen.

This episode was watched by 9.1 million viewers on its original transmission.

This episode takes place on Earth in 2540.

Malcolm Hulke intended the Draconians to be like the post-Napoleonic Hapsburgs, although their eventual execution was more akin to a Japanese shogunate.

The original outline had the Cybermen working with the Master but they were swapped for the Ogrons before scripting started.

This serial was released by the BBC on video cassette in the UK in August 1995.

Reviewers have observed that the precipitating incident of the first Earth-Draconia war, as depicted in this story, is very similar to the beginning of the Earth-Minbari War in Babylon 5 (1994). Both space wars begin because an Earth vessel misunderstands the significance of an alien ship's open gunports, and fires on the ship based on this misunderstanding.

The President of Earth was originally a man.

Fans voted this number 88 in a countdown of the 163 Doctor Who (1963) stories in Outpost Gallifrey's 40th anniversary poll in 2003.

User reviews



Review Of All Six episodes - Some SpoIlers

Frontier In Space along with the story that dovetails it is an attempt to make a space opera blockbuster . The fact that it fails is mainly down to the writing . The production values don't help , and this becomes much clearer in the following story , but it's mainly the writing that is to blame . One problem watching 1970s classic DOCTOR WHO today - it becomes more pronounced if very familiar to NuWho - is that there's a lack of brevity to the storytelling . Lots of things might happen but from the start of episode one to the middle of episode three the doctor and Jo seem to spend their entire time being rescued from a cell to being locked up again . In fact the whole story involves the doctor and Jo being locked up every few minutes . It's only the location of the cells and their jailers that change

That said as a child a shiver went up my spine in the first episode where it was revealed that the Ogrons that are attacking the cargo ship and this presage gives a clue as to who is trying to instigate the war between the Earth empire and Draconia . The Draconians themselves are amongst the most impressive creations to have appeared in the show and Jon Pertwee was very fond of the tale where during rehearsals he'd be talking to one of the actors in his Draconian garb about new age theories and for several unearthly minutes he genuinely felt he was in the presence of an alien visitor . When things like this happen on set it sometimes gets communicated towards the young viewer and the Draconians are like the Zygons classic one off monsters and you do fear that it'd be a mistake bringing them back to NuWho for the sake of it . Like the Silurians it sometimes better to let sleeping reptiles lie

Frontier also marks the final appearance of Roger Delgado as the Master . Again I felt a shiver go down my spine as a child when he suddenly appeared in episode three . Delgado plays the role with his customary mix of dry humour , charm and menace . The unfortunate thing is that his final scene is ruined by an editing blunder which leaves the viewer confused as to what is happening . It wouldn't have mattered so much but Delgado was killed in a car crash three months after the final episode was broadcast which meant this was sadly his swan song . It's also the only Pertwee adventure that dovetails in to the next story which is Planet Of The Daleks

All in all Frontier In Space was a remarkable and epic story when I saw it as a child . Watching it again years later it's somewhat laboured but it does contain an on form Jon Pertwee along with Roger Delgado's final appearance as the Master along with Draconians , Orgrons and Daleks in a flawed epic


I've often wondered if this was an attempt at recreating something along the lines of the Dalek Masterplan. Frontier in Space is a terrific story, but all events lead to the events on Spiradon.

Part 1 is a great episode, I love the story, I love the ideas, and most of all, I love the Draconians, known for being Pertwee's favourite monster, they were terrific, a great design, with a personality and culture seldom seen. It amazes me that The Draconians have never returned in new Doctor Who, they were a real triumph of the Pertwee years.

A very rich content, we learn that Earth and the nobles of Draconia are on the brink of war, but someone is obviously behind it. It's always good when The Doctor is separated from his TARDIS.

Pertwee and Jo are delightful together, she had now become so resourceful.

The news broadcast reminds me a bit of Masterplan also, we witnessed similar scenes.

Why all the high collars, they must have been so uncomfortable to wear.


Review of all 6 episodes:

Frontier in Space succeeds where The Space Pirates failed, it is a very good adventure in 'space opera' epic style. There is very good model work in both stories but unlike its predecessor the model work is matched by almost all other aspects in this story being of a very high standard.

Proceedings begin with The Doctor finding himself in the middle of a very tense situation between two powerful empires in the galaxy on the brink of war. Earth's empire and the Draconian empire both believe the other is attacking them but The Doctor and Jo find there is another power orchestrating events to bring about a huge war. The Ogrons, under orders from an unknown superior, are in fact carrying out the attacks with hypnotic signals causing them to be wrongly identified.

Spoiler alert - There are a couple of wonderful surprises as the story develops as first The Master is revealed to be behind the scheme to provoke war and finally it is also revealed that he is working with The Daleks. These revelations and the excitement of seeing two of The Doctor's greatest enemies working together provide huge enjoyment.

The Draconians are famous for being Jon Pertwee's favourite aliens and are well thought of by most reviewers ever since. This is well deserved as they are truly excellent alien creations. The make up and costuming is brilliant and convincing and their acting lives up to the excellent presentation on screen. The writing of them as a sympathetic alien race with some depth just adds even further and makes them one of the best created races in the series history.

The plot meanders a bit too much with too many captures and imprisonments but that is the only real flaw until a slightly dodgy space walk in episode 4 and then a tragically chaotic final scene for The Master in episode 6. Chaotic because it is badly edited and shambolic leaving you wondering why the Ogrons and The Master disappear in such a rapid and unconvincingly feeble way. Tragic because this is the last scene ever with Roger Delgado as The Master. Delgado was very sadly killed in a car accident meaning that when The Master eventually returns to face the 4th Doctor he is played by another actor.

Although his final few seconds on screen are somewhat ruined this is a fitting story for Delgado to finish on. It is an excellent, well written and exciting adventure with good twists and great aliens.