The Web Planet
We absolutely adore this story. It’s completely unique in Doctor Who and is so beautifully created and imagined. If Doctor Who is a show to inspire new generations of directors, writers, designers, etc, then The Web Planet is a creative masterpiece in our opinions and could easily capture the imaginations of young children and adults alike.
When we first watched it we thought it reminded us of Le Voyage Dans la Lune (1902) and we just fell in love with the whole idea of Vortis and the Zarbi and Menoptra. This beautiful planet of Vortis was so alien, all created in one tiny studio, and the only humans are the TARDIS team. There’s flying butterfly/bee (whatever they are) on strings, and giant ants running about. Every thing about this alien world is created to enhance the imagination, and they did a wonderful job of visualising this planet, like the movement of the bugs, or the smeary lenses, or the acid pools etc.
This story got the highest viewing figures of the entire One era and some of the highest of Who ever, but sadly its not that highly regarded today. This was getting 13 million viewers weeks into the story, it wasn’t losing viewers it was gaining them, and all because it was talked about and people were excited. Children could play Zarbi in the playground, and adults could imagine the future of space travel and alien worlds. On minimal budget it dared to be risky!
It also has a great story about colonization, about a race of bugs trying to reclaim the home that’s rightfully theirs, but they’re up against this giant web of darkness, this dark force called the animus.
The team are adorable too, with some great interactions between them all, and an assortment of characters journeys through the story.
Overall we just love it. It was such a brave production and we think it pulled off a true masterpiece.