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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Natural History of Fear: What is the truth?
This is the fifty fourth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Paul McGann as Eight, India Fisher as Charley Pollard and Conrad Westermaas as new companion C'rizz. It is the third in a season of four linked Eighth Doctor stories that follow directly from the events of Zagreus. There are 4 episodes,...
Published 19 months ago by Victor

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Slow Paced Eighth Doctor Audio Adventure
Doctor Who:The Natural History Of Fear.
Doctor: Eighth Doctor
Companion(s): Charley, C'rizz.
Main setting: Light City, the Divergent Universe.
Writer: Jim Mortimore.
Director: Gary Russell.
Release number: 54.
Format: 4 Episodes on 2 CDs.
Running time 120 minutes.

Cast.
The Doctor / The Editor - Paul McGann...
Published 1 month ago by Timelord007


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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Slow Paced Eighth Doctor Audio Adventure, 2 July 2014
By 
Timelord007 (The Tardis) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Doctor Who:The Natural History Of Fear.
Doctor: Eighth Doctor
Companion(s): Charley, C'rizz.
Main setting: Light City, the Divergent Universe.
Writer: Jim Mortimore.
Director: Gary Russell.
Release number: 54.
Format: 4 Episodes on 2 CDs.
Running time 120 minutes.

Cast.
The Doctor / The Editor - Paul McGann.
Charley Pollard / Female Prole / Nurse 3 / Conscience 2 / Censor 2 - India Fisher.
C'rizz / Conscience 1 / The New Editor - Conrad Westmaas.
Voice of Light City / DJ - Geoff Searle.
Sub-conscience / Certification Board Member 2 - Alison Sterling.
Sub-editor / Certification Board Member 3 / Citizen / Censor 1 - Sean Carlsen.
Male Prole / Engineer / Fire Chief - Wink Taylor.
Broadcast Lodge Receptionist / Nurse 2 - Jane Hills.
Nurse 1 / Shipping Clerk / Trooper / Certification Board Member 1 - Ben Summers.

Trivia.
1)Big Finish has intentionally left the cast ambiguous by not listing character names aside the actors' as the story utilizes the voice cast in an interesting way. This was done for added suspense.
2)The Editor refers to the Great Fire of Rome in July 64. (Tv: The Romans).
3)The Doctor carries a spinning top, at least two pairs of Ray-Bans, a toy robot and other items in his pockets.
4)The Doctor believes that Light City is comparable to the glory of Rome.
5)C'rizz is able to see the Doctor & Charley's skeletons if he stares at them hard enough.

Plot Synopsis.
In Light City, a prole can remember details from the Information which have not yet been shown, about the three characters the Doctor, Charley and C'rizz, & is brought before the Editor for daring to ask Questions, a terrible Thought Crime.

Timelord Thoughts.
A highly experimental story by writer Jim Mortimer which is not a standard Doctor Who adventure & a story I found rather difficult to get a good sense of the plot as this story failed to keep my interest as The Natural History Of Fear makes for a difficult tale as the Eighth Doctor, Charley & C'Rizz arrive in Light City a utopian dystopia future a setting that is similar to the novel 1984 by George Orwell's & begin upsetting the status quo to an alarming degree.

Paul McGann in particular is chilling as The Editor while Conrad Westmaas as C'rizz once again proves to be a weak link: as he has nothing really to do with this story which maybe have been commissioned by Big Finish before the The Doctor and Charley travelled to this alternative universe.

This is a story that has received high praise from fans including actor Paul McGann but for me it's not a type of adventure I can easily get into & felt it to be a very dialogue based adventure that eventually started to bore me.

No doubt many fans will disagree with my opinion which is ok, I'm glad this story appeals to some Doctor Who listeners but for me The Natural History Of Fear has had 2 listenings by this reviewer & I doubt I'd listen to it again.

Timelord Rating.
4/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Natural History of Fear: What is the truth?, 22 Jan 2013
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is the fifty fourth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Paul McGann as Eight, India Fisher as Charley Pollard and Conrad Westermaas as new companion C'rizz. It is the third in a season of four linked Eighth Doctor stories that follow directly from the events of Zagreus. There are 4 episodes, roughly 25-30 minutes each, complete with original theme music between each, and cliff hanger endings. Two episodes per disc on 2 discs, and a short booklet with some pictures of the cast and production notes.

This is one of the more experimental releases from Big Finish. It all seems a bit confusing at first, as we hear the three main actors giving voices to characters that do not at first appear to be Eight, Charley and C'rizz. You start to think you might know what is going on and why the characters act as they do, but then, right at the end, the rug is totally pulled out from under you as a big twist reveals just what has happened.

I have to say, the first time I heard this it didn't really do much for me. But second time around, a few years later, I thought `WOW'! The story is a bit of a confused jumble, but it draws you in and totally adsorbs you as you try to make sense of it all. Then the ending is sort of `gosh, I never expected that'.

Credit to cast and crew - the cast for managing to play outside their usual characters so believably, and the writers/producers for making it adsorbing rather than too confusing to be entertaining. It's a great production, 5 stars.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Not a museum piece, 17 April 2009
This review is from: The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
IT IS A CRIMINAL OFFENCE TO COPY OR ATTEMPT TO COPY ANY PERSONALITY OR MEMORY-RELATED ARTICLE SHOWN OR DISPLAYED IN THIS PUBLIC THEATRE, INCLUDING THIS WARNING. PUNISHMENT OR CONVICTION IS AN UNLIMITED REDUCTION OF AUTHORISED OVERTIME HOURS AND TOTAL PERSONALITY REVISION. YOU ARE NOT PERMITTED TO BRING ANY JUKEBOX OR RECORDING EQUIPMENT INTO THIS PUBLIC THEATRE. THIS WILL BE TREATED AS AN ATTEMPT TO BREACH COPYRIGHT. ANY PERSON DOING SO CAN BE EJECTED AND THE EDITOR MAY CONFISCATE SUCH ARTICLES. WE ASK THE PUBLIC TO BE VIGILANT AGAINST ANY SUCH ACTIVITY AND REPORT ANY MATTERS AROUSING SUSPICION TO THEIR LOCAL CONSCIENCE. THANK YOU.

Public Warning
Faction Against Character Theft

Featuring the Eighth Doctor, Charley and C'rizz, this story takes place after the Big Finish story The Creed of the Kromon.
Three people are sitting in a room with a child's top, which is spinning so quickly that it seems to be standing still. The people in question sound like the Doctor, Charley, and C'rizz, but they are about to do something for the common good, and the sound of marching footsteps is growing louder. Whoever they are now, they won't be themselves for very much longer...

A dystopian vision of an all powerful state and an innovative idea; Jim Mortimore's scripts are never anything if not challenging and relentlessly creative and The Natural History of Fear is no exception with it's ironic commentary on fandom and its subversive take on the very show it is written for. This is consequently one of those love it or loathe it 'Marmite' stories and I have to say I loved it.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Why? Why? Why?, 13 Dec 2004
By 
Jane Aland (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Following the highly unimaginative Creed of the Kromon, Big Finish's 3rd season of 8th Doctor adventures goes all experimental again, with Jim Mortimore's The Natural history of Fear. A challenging and unique audio adventure, the play highlights the effect of the Doctor's arrival in a regressive regime where questions are forbidden for the good of the state. The story plays with the audio setting itself, with the authority figures constant 'revisioning' of characters leading to a heady mix of sound collages as characters rewind each others memories. The series regulars don't play their normal roles - Paul McGann spends most of the play as The Editor, frantically attempting to stop a revolution that no-one else can see, and unwittingly ending up brining it about - but the impact of the Doctors arrival is crucial to the story. Sparkling dialogue, great performances, some thought-provoking ideas and a lovely twist ending make this not only the sole worthy play in an otherwise lacklustre season, but one of the best audio Doctor Who stories ever. Essential.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The smallest things create ripples, 31 Mar 2007
By 
M. Wilberforce "mwilberforce" (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
"IT IS A CRIMINAL OFFENCE TO COPY OR ATTEMPT TO COPY ANY PERSONALITY OR MEMORY-RELATED ARTICLE SHOWN OR DISPLAYED IN THIS PUBLIC THEATRE, INCLUDING THIS WARNING. PUNISHMENT OR CONVICTION IS AN UNLIMITED REDUCTION OF AUTHORISED OVERTIME HOURS AND TOTAL PERSONALITY REVISION. YOU ARE NOT PERMITTED TO BRING ANY JUKEBOX OR RECORDING EQUIPMENT INTO THIS PUBLIC THEATRE. THIS WILL BE TREATED AS AN ATTEMPT TO BREACH COPYRIGHT. ANY PERSON DOING SO CAN BE EJECTED AND THE EDITOR MAY CONFISCATE SUCH ARTICLES. WE ASK THE PUBLIC TO BE VIGILANT AGAINST ANY SUCH ACTIVITY AND REPORT ANY MATTERS AROUSING SUSPICION TO THEIR LOCAL CONSCIENCE. THANK YOU.

"Public Warning

"Faction Against Character Theft"

"The Natural History of Fear", by Jim Mortimore, coming after Philip Martin's disappointing "The Creed of the Kromon", is far more the type of weird and wonderful story one might expect from Big Finish's controversial Divergent Universe arc.

At some stage, the Doctor, Charley and C'rizz arrived in Light City, where the people act like robots in thrall to the all-powerful State: not the sort of society that the Doctor would normally tolerate for very long. Now, however, the Editor (Paul McGann) is the ultimate arbiter of the State and actively seeks to suppress any trace of individual thought amongst his people. Said people, including a pair of obedient citizens who sound very much like the Doctor's two companions, love the State and the State loves them.

It appears that the Doctor and his friends have been drawn into the society of Light City and undergone personality revision, like so many of its people, and as the characters they have become go through the trials and tribulations of their daily lives, the question becomes how they are going to regain their true memories and identities and escape from the nightmare they have found themselves in: particularly the all-powerful Editor, whose love of the State seems unassailable. Of course, there's a fantastic twist at the end, which will probably delight and frustrate the listener in equal measure.

The performances from regulars Paul McGann, India Fisher and Conrad Westmaas are bang on target, as are most of the supporting players. However, newcomer Westmaas' voice isn't very recogniseable after only one previous performance, tending to get lost amongst the remainder of the male cast.

"The Natural History of Fear" dares to be different and is generally a great success. However, listeners must be prepared for an ending that may alienate them to the rest of the story.
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The Natural History of Fear (Doctor Who) by Jim Mortimer (Audio CD - 1 Feb 2004)
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