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Walking to Babylon is the first part of the Time-Ring trilogy, a set of stories that sees Benny and her ex-husband Jason Kane struggle through time and space, trying to get back to their home in the 26th century. The opening episode sets the scene perfectly for this ongoing story-arc. All the necessary information about the main characters and their respective backgrounds is woven rather nicely and unobtrusively into the dialogue; it manages to bring any newcomers are quickly up to speed, without boring those who have followed the New Adventures.
Ancient Babylon is a fascinating setting and it is brought to life brilliantly with lots of atmospheric detail, wonderful sound design and some great characters. Actually, one of the main strengths of this story is that this is a very strong character piece. The changing group dynamic is explored throughout by paring up different cast members in different situations. This way we get some truly layered personalities, which is highly engaging to listen to. And even Jason gets a moment to shine.
Unfortunately the baddies aren't as convincing as the rest of the cast of characters. Their motivations aren't entirely believable (or at the very least, their stubborness when Benny spells out what is going to happen to them if they continue with their scheme, is completely implausible)
The other small niggle I have with this production, is the repetitiveness of the appearances of the members of the People. Pretty much all they do throughout the story is remind the listener in a doom-laden voice that "Benny only has x hours left to return! Time is running out! Oh no! She'd better hurry!" It's tiring and unnecessary.
All in all however, Walking to Babylon is a highly engaging adventure featuring a stellar cast of performers and evocative sound design to boot. A great start to the Time-Ring trilogy.