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Doctor Who: Genesis of the Daleks (Vintage Beeb),
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This review is from: Doctor Who: Genesis of the Daleks (Vintage Beeb) (Audio CD)
This is the long-awaited CD release of the classic Doctor Who album originally released on LP in 1979.
In many ways, the story works just as well in this condensed 60-minute version as its six-part TV counterpart. The narration is excellent and not overwritten (like some of the missing episode releases) and acts as a suitable transition between scenes. The thing that everyone remembers fondly about this album is the cliffhanger - which, in fact, was never a cliffhanger in the original television episode at all but was required for the purposes of splitting the album across two sides of a vinyl disc.
The album was released on CD a few years ago ("Doctor Who", Genesis of the Daleks and Exploration Earth: Genesis of the Daleks AND Exploration Earth (BBC Radio Collection)) with the rather controversial move of re-editing the story to "clean up" what were originally tape edits limited by analogue technology of the time. Thankfully, this CD edition is a direct facsimile of the original LP, cliffhanger intact, and even the play side of the CD is black (not silver)! It's been mastered from a mint copy of the LP, but you wouldn't know it (thanks to the wonderful work of Mark Ayres). Sharp-eared listeners, however, will notice that one slight improvement has been retained: on the original LP, the Dalek's final word ("universe") at the end of Part 2 was somewhat curtailed as it cut to the music sting, leaving a rather abrupt and awkward-sounding edit. Here, there is a nice overlap into the music. It's very brief and, for me, a welcome improvement. The original album artwork is replicated on the CD cover, with the back cover of the LP on the inside sleeve. The CD itself is printed with a replica of the LP centre label.
If, like me, you only ever owned this album on cassette - which is now well and truly unplayable - then you owe it to yourself to get this CD. It's a classic piece of Doctor Who merchandise, and no-one will ever forget Tom Baker's immortal line: "I sent Harry and Sarah in there..."