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Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
10
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
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Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: PaulaPenguinReview Date: 2/5/16 5:13 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

It is probably fitting that the first of the New Series Adventures is a story about identity and provenance, as the audience of 2005 was slowly finding out about the 9th Doctor's past and what kind of person he is. To this end, Justin Richards has the Doctor and Rose arrive in London in 1924 where they quickly fall in with a group of people, who have all been displaced by various wars and conflicts. There is quite a big cast of characters in "The Clockwise Man", some of them with conflicting back stories, others either unaware of their true identity or actively trying to deceive the people around them. Yet, despite these numerous agendas and personalities at play, the adventure never becomes confusing or convoluted. The different characters are easy to remember and they all come fully into their own over the course of the story. There are a number of little clues strewn throughout the tale and it is very satisfying when they eventually fall into place.

As always, Justin Richards manages to weave some interesting historical facts into his tale, without it ever seeming forced. Rose is written as a slightly generic companion, but her scenes with Freddie are absolutely wonderful. There are some gentle references to the Doctor "having been in the Wars", which fits in nicely with this period in history and in Doctor Who. On the flip side, we also see his dark exuberance when he confronts the villain with exclamations of "Wrong!" or "Try again!"

Nick Briggs is an excellent reader. His Ninth Doctor impression in particular is absolutely impeccable, but he also comes up with different voices for all the characters, making this highly enjoyable to listen to.

The ending is a little too drawn out, but on the whole "The Clockwise Man" is a nicely paced and well thought-out adventure for the Doctor and Rose. Definitely recommended.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
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7
Acting Rating:
10
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8
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NA
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Reviewed By: PaulaPenguinReview Date: 2/4/16 2:38 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

Justin Richards knows how to successfully blend a historical setting with sci-fi elements and he does so very effectively in Silhouette. Life in Victorian era London during the Winter months is depicted with lots of atmospheric detail, making it very easy for the listener to envision the snow and the smog, the Carnival of Curiosities and the grand mansions. Also, weaving the concept of Origami into a Doctor Who story works charmingly in this environment.

The Paternoster Gang isn't as integral to the plot as I would have expected from the blurb. Strax does get some meaty scenes, but Vastra and Jenny seem to be sidelined for large parts of the story. That said, their respective encounters with people at the Carnival of Curiosities does add an intriguing touch to proceedings.

Apart from some light incidental music, there is no sound design, but this doesn't matter because Dan Starkey is an absolutely terrific narrator, who brings the story to life brilliantly. His impression of Capaldi's Doctor is impeccable and he comes up with a different voice for each new character which makes the whole thing a joy to listen to.

Silhouette is a great outing for the 12th Doctor, as it offers an enthralling adventure with interesting characters, beautiful settings and some fascinating imagery. Definitely recommended.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
9
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
9
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: StevoReview Date: 11/23/15 7:07 am
3 out of 3 found this review helpful.

Human Nature by Paul Cornell is the book which the Tenth Doctor TV episodes 'Human Nature' & 'Family of Blood' are based on, but the book is way better! For me this is one of the best Doctor Who novels ever published, and this BBC audiobook version read by Lisa Bowerman is magnificently good, bringing Paul Cornell's novel of humanity to life.

This is a Seventh Doctor story with Bernice Summerfield as his companion, and was originally published as part of the New Adventures range in 1995 when there was no Doctor Who on the TV. The plot of this book is similar to the TV adaptations of course, but the details are quite different, so this book can be enjoyed separately from the TV episodes without any real conflict... unless you are a person who wonders how the same story can fit in to Doctor Who continuity twice, with two different Doctors!

Human Nature is a Doctor Who story about love, war and the emotions that make people tick, fearuring real characters not cardboard cut-outs. The humanised Doctor and his resourceful companion Bernice Summerfield excel in this adventure, which has the usual sci-fi elements you'd expect from a Doctor Who story, but is full of humour and wit too. I thought the alien villains were a bit weak when it comes to being fearsome, but that is only a small minus to an otherwise excellent story.

Overall, Human Nature is one of the best Doctor Who novels ever published, and this reading by Lisa Bowerman is one of the best Doctor Who audiobooks.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
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Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 9/15/15 6:28 am
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

Slipback was the only Doctor Who Story aired during the show's 18 month hiatus during the mid-1980s. It was broadcast over the children's program Pirate Radio Four. It essentially attempts to be a comedy, but is hit and miss (mostly miss) in that regards. I couldn't help but think of what Douglas Adams would have done with it. Instead, we get a weak imitation of Adams. The Comedy policemen worked actually earned a chuckle or two from me. The ditzy computer was funny a couple times and the idea of the Captain who produced spores to infect the crew with diseases was mildly humorous. Let's all give the story credit for making the Doctor a little less edgy than on TV. In the scenes he and Peri share (particularly in the first episode), their relationship has evolved and is a far warmer than it was throughout season 22. They're quite good together. It's a pity they didn't share more scenes.

This was originally broadcast as six ten minute episodes and of the five cliffhangers, four were Colin Baker shouting or screaming something. The story was kind of okay for the first five part but the end really spoiled it for me. I won't even go into all the Doctor Who stories the ending contradicts because it deals with the origins of the Universe and most Doctor Who stories about that contradict other stories, however it essentially has a Time Lord with a deep computer synthesized voice appear to stop the plot just as it's getting going with our hero being put in his place by the High Council of Time Lords. And isn't that just what every fan wants from an episode of Doctor Who?

What's frustrating about this episode is that it's such a lost opportunity. BBC Radio Four freed the show from so much of the restraint of budget that the show had to deal with on Television. We could have gotten a story that was special, grand, something that they could have never done on television and would have made kids excited about the show and eager for its show and given fans a treat. We now know that the story Leviathan (impossible to produce in the 1980s over television) had been written for Season 22 originally even though it was never put into production. Instead of dusting off this script or another lost story, writer Eric Seward (also script editor on the TV series) opts to write a story with the Doctor, Companion, and other characters running around corridors in a spaceship.

There's also this sense of timidity about the show and about the incumbent Doctor that come from Seward. Our villain tells the Doctor he's a disappointment and the Doctor confesses that most people say that. Seward does little to help the Sixth Doctor's overall reputation in this story with him mostly being an irrelevancy to the outcome who nearly makes a big mistake that would have destroyed us all if not for the interference of the Time Lords. It feels like the story reflects Seward's opinion of Colin Baker as the Doctor and the lack of confidence in the show and its direction that would lead to putting the Doctor on trial when the show returned form hiatus. Overall, this is yet another misfire from the 1980s that only a little bit better than the Twin Dilemma.

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