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< 65. The Juggernauts
67. Dreamtime >

66. The Game

Rating Votes
10
10%
11
9
6%
7
8
19%
21
7
36%
39
6
15%
16
5
6%
7
4
6%
7
3
0%
0
2
0%
0
1
1%
1
Average Rating
7.1
Votes
109
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Music:
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Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
6
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: BrainofMorbius23Review Date: 3/4/18 2:48 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

Good story and easy listening but it falls short of greatness often.

Still the idea of a game that is war or war becoming that of a game is a frightening little gem of distopia!
It’s a descent story and for £3 I think it’s worth a grab
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: Drew VogelReview Date: 8/6/17 4:12 am
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

I really enjoy this story a lot. I'm not entirely sold on the idea of Naxi, a "sport" that consists of nothing more than two teams of players trying to kill one another in an uncontrolled free-for-all, but the story is sufficiently engaging that I'm happy to go along with it. Let's just say that there's a lot about Naxi that doesn't much sense if you think about it, so perhaps it's best not to.

There's really a lot to say about this story. Let's start with William Russell, who is an absolute joy. He's given a very good character to play, and he nails it. The script does a really masterful job of handling this character. The Doctor sets expectations extremely high by telling Nyssa that he considers Lord Carlisle to be a personal hero. Obviously, he has to be pretty impressive if the Doctor considers him a hero. Then we meet him, and he turns out not to be particularly impressive at all. Then it seems like he's hiding something sinister, and he might turn out to be a villain. But the truth is better than any of these possibilities.

The story is in six-parts, which is highly unusual. The script makes use of the old 4/2 trick, where you structure a six-part story as a four-parter followed by a two-parter (or, in the case of "The Seeds of Doom", the other way around) in order to prevent the story from getting stale. In my opinion, the final two episodes of the story are quite a bit weaker than the first four (with the exception of the resolution of the Carlisle storyline, which is beautiful), but the structure basically works. Just as the Naxi/peace conference storyline runs out of juice, the story introduces a whole new villain to take us the rest of the way through.

There's also a real confidence to the script. Just listen to the second episode, for example. The main focus of the episode is the Naxi match, and the script maintains a lot of tension and a fast pace throughout. Without interrupting the flow of the action, the script also lays the groundwork for subsequent developments in the story. It sounds effortless, but it's extremely deft.

I've dropped my score a little bit because, mainly because the story really does lose focus in those last two episodes, and the resolution is perhaps a bit too easy. Even so, it's a highly enjoyable story overall.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 5/5/17 12:03 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

The Game finds the Doctor and Nyssa on the planet Cray where the local sport is Naxy and fans and players take it so seriously that it's played to the death, leading to the death. The casualties from the game are so high that the loss of life is on the same level as war, and a peace delegation has been dispatched.

The story has an unusual structure. It's six parts long but it's length isn't that much different from other main range releases at the time at around 2 hours. The structure's main effect is to have the story move at a much faster pace.

I like this take on the Fifth Doctor, the most genteel of the Doctors and the Doctor most likely to play whatever local game is going on is horrified to find himself in the middle of a Naxy game and even more aghast when his attempts to get away lead to a slaughter. His determination and nobility shine throughout.

The culture of Naxy as well as the Naxy culture and players are well thought out. Even though they kill for sport, you rarely get the impression that these people are evil-they're doing a job, following a culture that's presented to them. The story manages to be a satire both of war but also of the overzealousness of some sports fans, particularly when it's led to riots.

The story has some great ideas in it, including an old friend of the Doctor who the Doctor has yet to meet (played by William Russell) who is actually one of the Doctor's heroes. The story's strength is it's ideas, but it also can be a bit of a weakness. As I got to the final parts, we kept having new things introduced such as genetically modified humans who could be an addictive drug themselves, alien monsters used to control the populace, etc. This was writer Darrin Henry's first and only Doctor Who story and there's a sense he's throwing every idea he ever had for Doctor Who up on to the page. This is a very good story, but with a few less ideas and concepts, I think it would have been even sharper.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
1
Plot Rating:
1
Acting Rating:
1
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: charlieboyReview Date: 12/28/16 9:38 pm
0 out of 4 found this review helpful.

Jonathan Pearce is a football commenter, and not a good one at that. Really spoils the story.
However, its not a great story! Avoid!