Customer Review

5.0 out of 5 stars Trading in evil, 21 Mar. 2011
This review is from: The Perpetual Bond (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) (Audio CD)
Latest Doctor Who Companion chronicle. These are talking books which see an actor who played a companion to the Doctor on tv return to the role to read an all new story for the character.

They do all the voices save one which is done by a guest actor.

And they usually run for two parts of roughly thirty minutes each, and are complete on a single cd.

This story sees Peter Purves return to the role of Steven Taylor, who he played opposite William Hartnell's Doctor back in the 1960's.

It takes place right after the end of Doctor Who - The Daleks' Master Plan, where the Doctor stopped the Dalek's latest scheme but lost some friends in the process. Early scenes remind us of this - so you can get into this if you've never heard that - and that the deaths are something the Doctor and Steven won't get over easily.

But prior to that we hear from Oliver Harper. Voiced by guest actor Tom Allen he's a trader in the city in 1960's London. A world of upper class accents, bowler hats and umbrellas and old school connections. His world has just come crashing down and he needs to get away. But then he discovers aliens in his workplace.

As the Doctor and Steven spot the aliens also, the three are drawn together. They discover what evil the aliens are up to. And the Doctor and Steven could end up at loggerheads. Because there might be nothing the Doctor can do about it....

Peter Purves has done two stories in this range before and on both occasions his impression of the First Doctor was fantastic. So it's a pleasure to hear it again. But there are many other delights to be had from this story also.

Steven was conceived as being a man of the future stranded in the past. Something that the tv writers often never addressed. But this does. His reaction to 1960's London is superbly written and played. Vivid descriptions and sound design do create a great image of a city still rebuilding post world war two. And one where it can also rain a fair bit. There are references to Steven visiting London before, in Dr Who Companion Chronicles the Suffering (Dr Who Big Finish), but you don't need to have heard that to be able to hear this.

Oliver also makes an impression because he confounds initial expectations and becomes a fairly decent sort prepared to stand alongside Steven and do something about what they discover.

The alien leader is an interesting creation. Every inch the consummate businessman.

And the First Doctor also comes over superbly in the writing. Sly and scheming and determined and also not wanting to admit that he misses former friends.

Part two isn't quite as strong as part one for the bulk of it because you are left waiting for the Doctor to act for a long time.

But when he does the end result is very clever and very satisfying. And gives a bit of moral food for thought also.

One plot point does remain unresolved at the end. But that will be addressed in time, because this TARDIS crew returns in Doctor Who Cold Equations CD (Dr Who).

A superb and enjoyable story on it's own, though.

There's a trailer for the next release in this range after the end of part two.

And just over fourteen minutes of an entertaining interview with cast and crew after that.
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Review Details

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Reviewer

Paul Tapner
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

Location: poole dorset england

Top Reviewer Ranking: 341