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< 110. The Boy that Time Forgot
112. Kingdom of Silver >

111. The Doomwood Curse

Rating Votes
10
9%
10
9
13%
14
8
32%
35
7
19%
21
6
17%
19
5
7%
8
4
3%
3
3
0%
0
2
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1
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Average Rating
7.4
Votes
110
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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
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Reviewed By: newt5996Review Date: 1/26/16 9:37 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

The Doomwood Curs is a story akin to The Mind Robber as it takes a historical fiction and mixes it into a real story while creating other fictional characters into reality and changing the Doctor and Charley into the fiction. Now this plan happens because the Doctor goes to return a library book where he finds the Grel an aquatic alien race from the Bernice Summerfield series in stories also written by Jacqueline Rayner in one of her last written stories outside adapting some New Adventures Novels.

The highlight of this release and indeed the other stories written by Rayner is the relationship between the Doctor and his companion. Even though the Doctor doesn't really trust Charley completely yet he still doesn't want to see her get hurt as she becomes fiction as the sidekick to famed highwayman Dick Turpin. And India Fisher gets some great stuff to sink her teeth into as she basically plays three characters, normal Charley, lovesick Charley and Gypsy Charlotte (Turpin's sidekick).

My biggest problem with this story is that it has a lot of pacing problems and there is no tension as the Doctor is killed but comes back from the dead because everything has turned into fiction.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: traves8853Review Date: 10/25/15 10:30 am
1 out of 2 found this review helpful.

"... a tale of curses and tombs; revenge from the grave, scheming gypsies, and highway men of course"

'The Doomwood Curse', was written 'Jaqueline Raynor', who also wrote, 'Doctor Who and the Pirates', and while this isn' a musical it is a melodrama. This audio drama was recorded on 21 and 22 May 2008 at The Moat Studios, and is the first appearance in Doctor Who of the Grel, who previously had only featured in a Bernice Summerfield novel.

This starts with the Doctor and Charley returning a copy of Harrison Ainsworth's romantic novel Rookwood to the Archive of Alexandria IV, which is 300 years past its due date. Once they arrive, they find the Grel (a species driven by a hunger for facts) destroying books. Charley destroys their machine with the copy of Rookwood being almost completely destroyed in the process; leaving the Doctor and Charley searching for a new copy. Their search leads them to England, 1738, where all is not as it seems.

The portrayal of the Grel is silly. As someone who doesn't have a camp sensibility, I thought this just wasn't going to be something I would enjoy. Thankfully, I was wrong. The second half of this story really picked up for me and was rather reminiscent of 'The Mind Robber'. It has a clear unconfused narrative and is an enjoyable piece of fluff. India Fischer gave a wonderful performance and gave a convincing, to my ear at least, West Country accent.

This next paragraph is a bit of a spoiler, so you may want to skip. When it was revealed that the person murdered wasn't Charley, but in fact Susan, I had to wonder how the Doctor could have missed that? There are of course a few possible ways but as this is an audio drama it really has to be made clear what is happening and this didn't. Not that anybody would have been convinced that they had killed Charley off, that simply isn't the point. You just wouldn't expect the Doctor to check the pulse but not the identity.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
10
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: komodoReview Date: 9/8/15 8:21 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

Jacqueline Rayner has done a few "odd ball" stories and this starts as one before veering off into a period piece. Its held together by some interesting concepts, particularly in terms of the balance between fact and fiction. Mostly it is a journey through a gothic romance of 19th century literature, but thanks to the Grel, we get reality changing to fit a story which juxtaposes against the usual scenario of a companion's perspective changing to accept real history over the glamorised remembrances of it.

Simply put: It starts silly, it gets good.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 4/16/15 9:15 am
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

In order to avoid being punished by overzealousd librarians from the Universe's largest library for accidentally burning the 19th Century classic novel Rookwood, the Sixth Doctor and Charley lay in a course for the 19th century to pick up an original to return, but find themselves in the time of the book, They meet a nice English upper class family who are normal enough, but then Charley and nearly everyone begins acting like they're in a novel and then things get weird.

This story has shades of, "The Mind Robbers," though it's still a very different story in many ways. There's a good deal of mystery in the story and a lot of fun as every character is, at one time or another, pulled into the fictional world, so the cast gets to have fun with this. While the menace behind the whole thing could be tedious as a recurring Who villain, as a one episode villain, they were actually pretty fun, with just enough menace to keep the story interesting.

This is just another solid Sixth Doctor and Charley story.

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