I'm watching Underworld on Doctor Who Day, November 23, 2009, and so I thought, for a change of pace, I would type this review whilst watching the episodes themselves. Underworld is one of my earliest Doctor Who memories, so it's only fitting that I'm watching this on such a momentous day in Doctor Who history (at least that's what I'm telling myself). Like this blog itself, these reviews will include warts and all....
Interesting to see, in the very first scene, how Leela actually seems to be, if not piloting the TARDIS, then certainly monitoring how the controls are functioning. Not even Sarah Jane Smith was granted access like that. Given that Leela was only trying to learn handwriting a couple of stories back, this is a monumental leap forward for here, to say the least.
There's another mention of how the Time Lords have meddled in the development of other planets and civilizations (the last having only just happened in Image of the Fendahl). It's one of the after effects of The Deadly Assassin, it seems. Now that we've seen the Time Lords, met them, and spent a good time on their home planet, it seems as if we'll be seeing and hearing about them a lot from here on in.
One episode in, and I'm already willing to compare this story to the William Hartnell serial The Ark, as both stories are remarkable visual specimens, especially given the time period in which they were created. The model work is fantastic, the main set of the ship is one of the largest and most detailed seen in the series, and the laser effects of the gun shields are better than most laser gun effects ever seen years after this story was broadcast.