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This review is from: 1001 Nights (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Latest Doctor Who audio story. This one features Peter Davison as the Doctor. Along with Sarah Sutton as his companion Nyssa.
Whereas many of these of late are part of trilogies or stories that benefit from listening to ones that have come before, this is one is completely self contained. Thus casual listeners can pick it up and get into it without any problem.
It adopts a format Big Finish have used before, of telling short self contained stories.
Although whereas previous releases of that nature have just been four stand alone stories, this one is a bit more involved.
In a land ruled by a powerful Sultan, the Doctor and Nyssa have come to his palace. Looking for a certain something. But the Doctor is captured, and Nyssa can only save him by spinning tales of their adventures to the Sultan.
Meanwhile, in the Dungeons, the Doctor makes some surprising discoveries...
The homages to the Arabian Knights are obvious. Whilst you have the main story of Nyssa having to deal with the Sultan whilst the Doctor has to deal with what he discovers, there are self contained stories of him and Nyssa also. These being told by Nyssa, one in each of the first three episodes.
The one in the first episode takes a while to come along, since the bulk of the first half of that is all about the main story. But this particular one is a clever and fast paced tale of guilt and morality and how you shouldn't always judge by appearance.
The one in the second episode is set in Victorian London, where a lady of noble birth has a madwoman locked up in her attic. She is looking after them for an old friend of her father's. Who then comes to call.
While the set up of this one may be obvious, and one big cliche is involved, it has excellent supporting characters. Who are very much people of their time. And the Doctor's interaction with them is great fun, which makes for a delightful listen.
The story in part three is a very clever tale all about storytelling itself. And a world where it is greatly prized. The structure of this one is something that you might have to spend a moment thinking about come the end, but it's full of original ideas and very well played.
Whilst all these stories are being told in the first three parts, the narrative does flash back to the Doctor's storyline every so often. This has a lot of twists and turns and surprising developments. All of which come to a head in part four. This just deals with the main story and doesn't have Nyssa telling any tales. Whereas what has come before has been stories about the Doctor, this one is, in essance, a story about the Doctor himself. And it does develop and resolve itself in a pretty original manner.
The sound design and the production do vividly create the setting and the style of the whole thing very nicely.
The four episodes are spread over two discs, and run from thirty one to twenty six minutes in length [approx].
It's an excellent tale with a lot to delight, and it's well worth a listen.
There's thirteen minutes [approx] of music from the story on the final track of disc one.
A trailer for the next release in this range on the penultimate track of disc two.
And just under fifteen minutes of interviews with cast and crew on the track after that. These are worth listening to especially for Peter Davison's comments on the fiftieth anniversary of the show.....