Reviewed By: Drew Vogel
Review Date: 8/6/17 4:56 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.
This story really doesn't make a lot of sense to me. I confess that I don't really get it at all. That's not always a fatal flaw for me, but in this case, I also don't find the story to be enjoyable to listen to. It's not as thoroughly unpleasant as something like "Nekromanteia", which is joyless and nasty, but it's very frustrating.
Look at Commander Korshal. He's clearly supposed to be the overly literal, unimaginative character who is simply too closed-minded to appreciate what's going on. And yet, I found myself identifying most strongly with him. Every time he complained about mystical explanations, I found myself nodding along in agreement.
As far as I can tell, and I could have this all wrong, the story has something to do with Uluru launching itself into space as the Earth was being evacuated. The Doctor, Ace, and Hex arrive on the "colony" sometime later, as it apparently floats about in deep space. Then falls into the "dreamtime", which apparently allows him to travel through time and space back to Earth prior to Uluru's departure. I don't understand how that could have happened. But then, I just don't understand any of it.
There seems to be no villain, and the situation the Doctor found upon his arrival was created by him when he traveled back in time. Korshal functions as a villain, because his inability to understand what's hapening leads him to make an error in judgment which will threaten everything, but the danger is averted... and... whatever. I just can't bring myself to invest anything into this story because not one part of it makes any sense to me.
As much as I do like the Galyari, this is the first time we've seen them away from the Clutch. Divorcing them from that context tends to rob them of their distinctiveness. For most of the story, they function largely as general "Doctor Who" aliens. Other than a few references to commerce and the Sandman, they could just as easily be Ice Warriors. Except (and this is a big except) the denouement involves Korshal being deterred by the image of a kookaburra. You could say that this is a bit contrived, but I think it's a nice touch, connecting Galyari mythology to Australian aboriginal mythology to avert disaster.
Still, it's not enough to hang a story on when everything else that happens seems arbitrary and inexplicable.