BBCDVD 1355 Doctor Who - The web planet by Bill Strutton

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Release pictures

Front cover
Picture of BBCDVD 1355 Doctor Who - The web planet by artist Bill Strutton from the BBC records and Tapes library
Rear cover
Picture of BBCDVD 1355 Doctor Who - The web planet by artist Bill Strutton from the BBC records and Tapes library

BBC records label code
BBC DVD label

Release details

Catalogue numberBBCDVD 1355
TitleDoctor Who - The web planet
Artist(s)Bill Strutton
Cover conditionNear mint
Record conditionNear mint
BBC records label code-
Item deleted?No
Distributed / printed by2 entertain
Country of originUK UK flag
Media typePrimary
Media genreDramas - Sci-fi
View all other tracks listed as Dramas - Sci-fi.
Run-off codes / Shop bar codesA0100625057-A911 18 IFPI L558 Sony DADC
My rating*****
Guest rating*****

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Number have1
What type of seller was used?Other online shop
Where can I buy this release?You may be able to purchase this release from the following websites (others are available!)

All release pictures

Below is all the cover (front, back, middle and inserts if applicable) and label pictures I have for this release.
Front cover
Front cover of BBCDVD 1355
Back cover
Back cover of BBCDVD 1355


Below is a list of tracks for this release.
Side & trackTrack and ArtistLength
A1The web planet23.53
A2The Zarbi23.16
A3Escape to danger22.53
A4Crater of needles25.45
A5The invasion26.05
A6The centre24.28
A7Tales of Isop - The making of The web planet37.51
A8The lair of Zarbi supremo (from the first Doctor Who annual - Audio only)56.45
A9The Doctor Who annual [PDF]
A10Give-a-show slides (Slides)
A11Photo gallery6.46
Total length of media 4:07:42.


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Extra notes on cover, middle (gatefold sleeve) and any inserts


William Hartnell
William Russell
Jacqueline Hill
Maureen O'Brien
Roslyn De Winter
Arne Gordon
Jolyon Booth
Jocelyn Birdsall
Martin Jarvis
Arthur Blake
Ian Thompson
Barbara Joss
Robert Jewell
Hugh Lund
Kevin Manser
Jack Pitt
John Scott Martin
Gerald Taylor
Catherine Fleming

Written by

Bill Strutton

Produced by

Verity Lambert

Directed by

Richard Martin


A mysterious force pulls the TARDIS off course, stranding the Doctor, Ian, Barbara and Vicki on the mysterious alien world of Vortis. A fierce battle is raging between the moth-like Menoptra, and giant insects known as Zarbi. But what is the dark secret that hides at the centre of the Zarbi's lair ... ?


Although Doctor Who's first season had been well received by the viewing public, it was really only the ironic Daleks that had captured children's imaginations. For the show's second season, a rematch with the Daleks was planned early on, but still the production team hoped that they could achieve the same degree of popularity with other alien creatures.

When writer Bill Strutton was a young child, he witnessed a fierce fight between rival fractions of ants, only to be badly bitten by both protagonists when he tried to intervene. Inspired by this recollection, he suggested a story about battling insect factions to the Doctor Who production team, who straight away hoped that the idea might provide them with an alien race that could match the Daleks popularity.

The Web Planet was a truly brave and bold move the the series. Strutton's story of a battle between insects on a far-off alien planet was an idea that less-confident production teams would have perhaps passed on, but the idea was approached with vigour and enthusiasm. For the first - and only - time in Doctor Who's history, the only 'human' characters in the story were the regular cast. Every other character seen on-screen was alien. And what a selection of aliens Strutton came up with! Zarbi, Menoptra, Optera, Venom Grubs and the mysterious Animus.

One of the main limiting factors for the story at the time was the requirement to record an episode a week. Sets and costumes which were new and shiny for the first week tended to quickly deteriorate after being taken down or put away, then reused and re-set a number of times. This became all too-apparent with the Zarbi props, as they got more and more fragile and creakier as the weeks progressed. It also meant that when members of the regular cast were given time-off to go on holiday, their characters tended to vanish from the narrative for weeks at a time - as does Jacqueline Hill's Barbara in the third episode in this tale.

Further information

BBC Radio Enterprises Ltd and BBC Enterprises Ltd, predecessors of BBC Worldwide / BBC Worldwide Ltd., the BBC's commercial arm. Formed 1968 and 1979 respectively, they were a subsidiary wholly owned by the BBC and merged into BBC Worldwide in 1995. In that time, there were companies set up within or structured brands as part of the company to deal with separate parts of the business, e.g. BBC Records for recorded audio. Sometimes written as BBC Enterprise Ltd.

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