It's fair enough to say that The Space Museum isn't favoured by many. The Chase has also been attacked in the past by a particular "new series" member who I won't get started on.
I didn't see The Chase until it was released on vhs in 1993, I adored it! Until then I'd only read brief summaries of the Marie Celeste, the haunted house, a stuttering Dalek and a robot double for the Doctor that was so identicle it looked nothing like him.
I'd previously purchased three Dalek photos from Forbidden Planet and was finally able to identify the round silver things as Mechanoids. There will never be any better Dalek voices than Peter Hawkins and David Graham. Fact.
The first time I saw The Space Museum was actually only a trailer on UKGold and it looked fantastic (the opening shot of the museum), they broadcast it a week later and probably felt the same as everyone else - episode one was great, not sure why the remaining episodes don't come close to it.
Commentary though, instead of our usual fan moderators we have Peter Purves for both discs. I was dubious after the Daleks' Masterplan commentary of which he had few memories (even after narrating the 5 disc audio cd release) but I think this is a triumph. He's been well briefed, previously viewed the stories and made his own notes and interviews his co-stars very well even though he mistakenly had Maureen O'Brien down as one of the original cast. Occasionally it seems a little false when he can answer any question either asked (or sometimes not asked) whilst moderating, but overall - just great!
Interesting how the production subtitles state the Camber Sands footage of Vicki and Ian was not actually William Russell and Maureen O'Brien as they were filming The Romans, only to be contradicted by Maureen who (even though she can't remember much about her time on the programme) remembers running up the sand dunes.
Maureen was never happy in the role of Vicki. It's fantastic that she's finally on a commentary but also heartbreaking to hear that she just has no interest in the programme. The late Mervyn Pinfield gets a huge slating by Maureen.
Special features - it looks like BBC Worldwide are finally trying to bring elements of the new series into these dvd's to attract in some way a new audience. Ray Cusick looking at how his designs have been changed for the new series in the Cardiff studios is difficult viewing. Similar to a visit from someone in higher authority.
Although I haven't yet had time to check out the other features on The Chase there are still a number of mini documentaries and featurettes including Shawcraft Models who were responsible for realising some of Ray Cusick's designs.
The lack of special features on The Space Museum, a story that has been slated for years and hated by most will seal the fate of this dvd for most people to staying on a shelf or being put into storage (or being sold on second hand).
Jessica Carney makes a welcome return, but she's so softly spoken and not particulaly well recorded that without the subtitles you'd be forever adjusting the volume.
Robert Shearman spells out the good and bad things about The Space Museum. (Thanks for that.)
There's a spoof which starts out well until the second 'innit' when suddenly the joke has run thin.
With the exception of the PDF's and photo gallery, that's it. Not even any interview footage with William Russell, Maureen O'Brien, Glyn Jones, Jeremy Bulloch or Peter Craze which is a huge shame.
To be honest this should not have been released as a box set (just like the mind boggling upcoming "Myths and Legends" box set). I love both stories but The Chase should have had its own single release. Episode 1 of The Space Museum gets 4 stars!