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DVD Review

DVD cover

The Daemons of Devil's End


Starring: Jon Pertwee and Damaris Hayman
Distributor: Loch Media
RRP: £19.99
Certificate: PG
Release Date: 13 November 2017

Koch media has been re-releasing the Mythmakers series of Doctor Who interviews for a while now. So, not content to just offer up content which originally appeared on VHS they have broadened their range with original Reeltime material based on Doctor Who..

The Daemons of Devil’s End (2017) is a series of tales based around a character which originally appeared in John Pertwee’s 1971 story, The Dæmons. Damaris Hayman played Miss Hawthorne, a white witch who protected the village of Devil’ End.

The title comes as a three DVD set. Disc one contains the tales narrated by Damaris Hayman which generally follow the stories in the companion book (sold separately). On disc one you get an introduction (59 sec) with Nicholas Briggs, the voice of the Daleks who sets the scene for the stories.

You get the six-part drama (2 hr, 11 min, 28 sec), which consists of the actress narrating the stories with live action cuts to flesh out the experience. The length of the stories hover around twenty minutes with the shortest being approx. sixteen minutes, the longest twenty-eight. Miss Hawthorn relates the stories as if she is telling you her life story across one evening. You can read the book review for the various merits of the individual stories.

Weaving Magic: Behind-the-scenes During the Making of The White Witch of Devils End (40 min, 56 sec). The Scriveners (15 min, 05 sec) has interviews with the various writes of the stories and finally Linzi’s Tune (5 min, 30 sec) has a musical video of the music used in the menus, with an introduction by the singer, Linzi Gold.

Disc two has another Introduction (2 min, 25 sec) again with Nicholas Briggs talking about the documentary about making the The Dæmons, which also includes the reissue introduction by Nicholas Courtney (Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart).

The bulk of the disc is made up of the documentary, Return to Devil’s End (56 min, 42 sec). The documentary returns the cast and director to where they shot the original story to reminisce about old times. With many of the actors now passed away it’s a timely reminder of a wonderful time in the show's history.

Recording the Return (19 min, 49 sec) takes you behind the scenes on the making of the documentary. Reporting the White Witch (14 min, 53 sec) with Robert Dick, covers a book signing by Damaris Hayman and David Simeon. Lastly you get Morris Men (8 min, 48 sec) which is a short piece on Morris dancing, with a lot of discussion around the history of the dance and the troupes involvement in the show.

Disc Three has a single documentary, The Dæmons Revisited (23 min, 25 sec), again with Nicholas Briggs. This is a narrated show about a Doctor Who convention held at the location of the show.

Overall, it’s a good a package for Whovians with the reissue of rare material as well as the new White Witch content. Just remember that the content's visual quality can be variable due to age.


Charles Packer

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