4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The anti-social network,
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This review is from: Doctor Who: Babblesphere (Destiny of the Doctor 4) (Audio CD)
This is the Fourth in a series of Doctor Who talking books entitled 'Destiny of the Doctor.' Each features a different incarnation of the Doctor. And although they are stand alone stories, there is a linking storyline running through all of them.
Since this has no tie in to any of the preceding ones, and since the linking storyline doesn't effect the main one in this release, it is something that casual listeners can get into quite easily without having heard any of the others in the range.
It runs for seventy minutes [approx] and is basically one long episode, complete on a single cd. The only breaks are the usual cd chapter ones.
The inlay gives minimal information about the era of the show in which this story is based, plus copyright details and advertises other bbc product.
this story is read by Lalla Ward, who played the second Romana opposite Tom Baker's Doctor in the last two years of his tenure on the show. She reads the narration in the third person, and does all the character voices, save for one which is read by a guest actor.
K9 doesn't feature in this. But his absence is explained. In a believable way.
In Babblesphere, the Doctor and Romana find themselves on a planet where civilisation is in decay. As the inhabitants spend all their time connected to a computer network that allows them to share their thoughts and feelings with everyone else. Not being part of the network is a crime. But someone has just died in mysterious circumstances. There is danger in the network....
This does have the feel of a story of the time, and you can easily visualise it in your mind's eye in the style of such. Even the music and the sound design do have the feel of the era. Said era did attract criticism for getting silly at times, but this never goes that far. It does bring in some eccentric characters but they're never over the top. There are some fun moments of Doctor and Romana banter that do show how well this writes the two characters.
It's a very good listen for the first third as it sets everything up, and Lalla Ward is a very good narrator. It does threaten to lose it's way slightly in the middle third as the story meanders a little. But it pulls itself together well in the final third for a good finale that is also well in keeping with the style of the times.
There's some obvious social satire here also, but that never gets the least bit annoying.
Regular listeners to this range will know how the linking theme works by now. Which does run the danger of getting repetitive. But this does do it slightly different. And it's fun also.
Not the best of the range, but a fun listen and worth getting.
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Initial post: 13 Nov 2013 12:24:48 GMT
Tim Bradley says:
I enjoyed this story very much since I like the style of Douglas Adams and Jonny Morris does a very good job encapsulate Tom Baker's Doctor from that era. The problem with Douglas Adams era was that the acting was over-the-top and sometimes silly which is a danger as comedy is to be done straight and not played for too many laughs.
The story did go off slightly on a tangeant when the Doctor was taken out of the picture for a bit, but it's good he got back in towards the end.
I like some of the ideas running through it such as the 'babble network' and how some people got killed because of their trivial nature.
I agree it's not the best story of the series, but it's certainly very enjoyable.
Great review. Tim.
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