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The Dark Husband (Doctor Who) Audio CD – Audiobook, 30 Mar 2008

2.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Big Finish Productions Ltd (30 Mar. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 184435315X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844353156
  • Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 1 x 12.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 484,649 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

This is the hundred and sixth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Sylvester McCoy as Seven, Sophie Aldred as Ace and Philip Olivier as Hex. 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.

I really cannot describe this production. It is awful. Even worse than Nekromantiea. In my mission to listen to and review all of the Big Finish Doctor Who releases, this is the one that I was dreading having to listen to again.

The Doctor, Ace and Hex land on a planet that seems to be one huge war grave, and are soon mixed up in the big war between the Re and the Er. It transpires that Seven came to the planet for a reason, and wants to try and the war by marrying someone.

Around this weak premise, which seem so to owe a lot in places to Jim Henson's Dark Crystal, is built a script that tries to be funny instead of thrilling and falls wide of the mark. It's plain awful. The script writer has no idea how to write for the regulars, turning Hex into an intergalactic Chav in search of beer and a party and Seven into a bellowing version of his earlier `clown' persona rather than the scheming `Dark Doctor'. The jokes are just unfunny. Which is a shame, because there are a lot of them in there. The cast treat the material with the contempt that it deserves and phone in performances. Often they are given lines such as `Oh dear oh dear oh dear', `there should be a better way', `get me out of here' and `that's just not funny' which they deliver as though they are comments on the production.
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When Doctor Who does comedy the results are usually variable to say the least and usually quite divisive. Look at the reception `Love and Monsters' received in Series Two of the new television show for a good example of this.

For this reason I approach stories such as `The Dark Husband' with a sense of apprehension. Experience has taught me not to expect to like a story and then I am pleasantly surprised when I do.

Perhaps the biggest surprise for me when listening to this story was how little I found myself laughing. This was not the fault you might expect it to be - instead of a stream of one liners, David Quantick serves up gentle character moments that fit the tone of the Ace-Hex relationship perfectly.

The story is however as fluffy as you might expect a comedic Big Finish story to be. Those comedic aspects diffuse much of the dramatic tension when our heroes are placed in peril; aliens are much too silly to be taken seriously and some of the plot twists can be predicted by the listener simply asking themselves "how could this get any sillier?".

The overall result is a thoroughly charming audio adventure (snot jokes aside!) that manages to capture the characters well and gently amuse for well over a hundred minutes. This is a fun and charming addition to this year's line up of Big Finish releases, however in a year that is packed with departures, new companions and returning villains I suspect that this will be the release that many will choose to skip.
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By Paul Tapner TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 10 April 2008
Another audio adventure for doctor who. this one features sylvester mccoy as the seventh doctor, sophie aldred as his companion ace, and philip olivier as his companion hex - a character who was created especially for audio and has been in quite a few stories with the doctor and ace.

As usual this contains two discs, with two story episodes on each. The episodes do run a little longer than the usual twenty five minutes. and both discs end with approx fifteen minutes of interviews with the cast and crew, and the last track on disc four is five minutes of the music from the story.

This story involves the doctor and his companions visiting the planet tuin. Advertised as holding the most amazing festival ever it looks like just the place for a nice break from what they usually go through. but they land in the middle of a war zone, and find that there's more to this planet than meets the eye. and certain sacrifices will have to be made to end the fighting...

Written by top tv comedy writer david quantick, this strives to be fairly humorous. And that part just about works. It's not laugh out loud funny but comedy coming from character based situations, and there are some decent moments as a result. The alien world is very strange and well realised and populated by two warring species. The truth about them is a good twist in part four.

But this story is a bit too long, and drags at points, especially in part two. The fact that it's also not laugh out loud funny may mean some people don't find it involving.

There's a fair amount to like here, but whilst it's not bad, it's not the strongest audio ever.
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To be honest this is downright silly. The Doctor, Ace and Hex are, at Ace's behest, seemingly going to a planet where they can have `fun' for a change rather than battle enemies and thwart invasions. However, once they arrive Ace realises that the Doctor has manipulated them into coming to the planet Tuin in order to interfere in the planet's politics - two warring factions (the clumsily named `Ir' and `Ree') are set on destroying one another.
The tone is set early on with Ace and Hex being chased into the TARDIS by an angry `snot beast' and the young Scouser subsequently being covered in `snot'. Things go from bad to worse when a warrior of the Ree (sounding like Brian Blessed bellowing for all he's worth) captures the time travellers and an Ir soldier (sounding like Richard O'Brien in full snake whispering mode) arrives in a big spaceship. Much of the remainder of part 2 is spent listening to the two `warriors' (one hairy and one completely bald for extra comedy effect) bicker and snape at one another whilst The Doctor twinkles and twitters and eventually decides to get married to `the shining bride' in order to end the war.
As a big fan of the Seventh Doctor on audio I was disappointed to say the least. The last few audio CDs featuring the TV Doctors have been uniformly excellent but this is just lame. Come on Big Finish, you can do better than this!
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