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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 16 May 2016
‘Thumping’, ‘pulsating’, ‘squealing’, ‘hissing’ and ‘bubbling’ out of the depths of “lost” ‘Doctor Who’ comes another classic Second Doctor base-under-siege adventure. North Sea Gas seemed like a natural bonanza from under the waves – but what if the pipes brought up something else too, something roused in fury from the deep…? 5* (6 CDs, 6 hours 55 minutes)

At just under seven hours on six CDs, this six-parter has been given the epic Audiobook treatment by any standards and it’s fully justified for a great novelisation by Victor Pemberton of his original story, making exciting and grownup science fiction. Rich in atmospheric music and sound effects, in a story where sound is a crucial part of the menace and the plot, it’s brilliantly presented and grips the listener, as a group of people working at the drilling edge of new technology encounter something very old and deadly seeking to grow – and grow –and grow…

David Troughton performs the story superbly, in this tale full of human character drama and the menace from beneath the sea. His performance of the Second Doctor is, as you would expect, uncannily brilliant and often sounds as if his illustrious father was playing his own classic role again.

The Doctor is well supported by brave, loyal Jamie, sharing moments of serious danger with his Doctor and some humour too, and spirited Victoria, by her own admission always terrified but determined and demonstrating her own special talent in a pitch-perfect farewell story for the popular companion. Between the three of them they save the day once more, with a surprisingly happy ending to the crisis – but a deeply emotional ending for Victoria, Jamie and the Doctor.

With six episodes to fill in the televised original, as with ‘The Ice Warriors’ and ‘The Web of Fear’ it draws much of its plot from the human friendships and rivalries of the characters, all strongly written and given clear individuality and personalities by David Troughton’s performance.

Mr. Robson runs the gas refinery with arrogant efficiency – he’s very good at his job and boy does he know it! Self-taught over years on the rigs at sea, he’s got no time for his clever, rather shy young deputy Harris – and a huge and obvious class chip on his shoulder about Harris’ university education. Treated with equal scorn by Robson is Mr. van Lutyens, just as educated as Harris AND a foreigner (!), the Dutch representative of Euro-Gas suffers as official adviser to a man who won’t take advice.

The only people who really understand Robson are his friend the Chief Engineer, so deep in his work that his own name is practically forgotten, and the one who appointed Robson in the first place, clever, professional Megan Jones. The normally organised Chairperson for once finds herself all at sea – and she isn’t much helped by Perkins, her chinless wonder of a P.A., bringing a comic element to a deadly story.

That danger seems very real and very well portrayed in the writing and reflected in the sound effects, with repeated literary motifs for each aspect of the menace – the ‘bubbling’ white foam, the ‘hissing’ gas, the ‘squealing, wriggling’ seaweed clumps and the ‘thumping, pulsating heartbeat’ that heralds the monstrous weed-creature itself. There are great cliff-hangers in this story (some timed perfectly for the end of a disk in this Audiobook version) and very sinister happenings with the unforgettable ‘Mr.’ Oak and ‘Mr.’ Quill. Their encounter with the unfortunate Maggie Harris (another fine character) is one of many stand-out moments and one of the clips that survive from the televised story, thanks to squeamish overseas censors.

And beyond the struggling people and the encroaching weed, there is one final character that Victor Pemberton evokes brilliantly – the wild, windswept east coast of England in the depths of winter; a landscape of frost, thin snow, biting air and the ‘cruel, unyielding sea’…

5*
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 26 August 2012
This brilliant story runs for a whopping 6 hours and 55 minutes - nearly 7 hours on 6 cds, with David Troughton portraying the story of the Second Doctor, Jamie and Victoria as they are caught up in a wild North Sea adventure. I've said it before, but it bears repeating - David Troughton reads these books wonderfully, and his portrayal (as he has done in several audio stories) of the Second Doctor is just so spot on you think Patrick's come back to do the voice especially.

This story, which I have never seen on the tv, and which in this novelised and audio format offers a great opportunity for those of us who missed it the first time around, is the last story in which Victoria Waterfield is involved. The Doctor, Jamie and Victoria end up on a wild beach where they are taken as saboteurs by the North Sea gas refinery workmen; but not before they have heard what sounds like a strange noise coming from the gas pipeline. Can they convince anyone that there is a threat, and it's not from them? Or will it be too late by the time anyone takes any notice of their warnings?

This is a great story, and because of its length allows the room for complex story development, and the development of a whole host of characters - the conflict between the refinery chief Robson and his scientific `newbie' Harris is great, as is the attempt by van Luytens to steer a path of common sense towards resolution of the difficulties as they unfold. In the last third or so of the story we also get the `Chairperson' and her officious secretary Perkins who are a comic turn in their own right, really, as are Mr Oak and Mr Quill - by the way, whatever happens to them at the end?

There's a sad turn at the end when Victoria decides to leave the Doctor and Jamie, but it all works out all right for everybody, even if Jamie is not convinced that Victoria should stay behind at all.

A great story, beautifully presented by David Troughton, with just the right sound effects for the awful weed creature and its minions, and a great Second Doctor story, with Jamie and Victoria, and a cast of great characters.
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on 3 October 2016
Having never listened to the audio track of these episodes and this being one of the stories I have generally previously tried to avoid hearing/learning anything about just in case it was ever rediscovered, reading the novelisation has proved quite a pleasant surprise. I don’t know how it lives up to the original onscreen version but the novelisation is a well-paced and entertaining story with some strong characterisation and an intriguing foe. It gives the impression that ‘Fury From the Deep’ might be one of the greatest losses of the BBC archive purge.

As far as the novelisation is concerned the weed creature works very effectively. It is used predominantly as a presence in the background where more and more of it is tantalisingly revealed as the story progresses. It is used to create a distinctly eerie atmosphere. Often, the creature is more effective when it is not actually seen, where it corrupts and possess the minds of certain characters or as its pulsing ‘heartbeat’ echoes through the refinery. How it would have been realised onscreen, however, might not have done it any favours. It is hard to imagine how the tendrils and foam wouldn’t have looked a bit poor or silly.

The effectiveness of the weed creature and its nature might also be lessened by the similarities with the previously aired story, ‘The Web of Fear’. Both involve some type of otherworldly entity laying siege to a complex through extensions of itself and the possession of people. What’s more, the foam and the web would effectively be very similar onscreen.

The pacing of the novelisation is well structured. Things are quite slow and leisurely at the outset but the text picks up pace and tension as the level of threat increases until it reaches the final showdown with the creature. It becomes quite relentless in the latter stages managing to capture an intense sense of jeopardy. It is also beneficial to the plot in that it echoes the madness that is seeping through the base and its various characters. It seems that many of them become more and more crazed as the pace quickens as the seaweed creature advances. It helps to create a parallel between the creature’s infiltration of the base and its psychic infiltration of the minds of the personnel.

The story also deals with the exit of one of the Doctor’s companions. Victoria receives a fairly reasonable send off. She might not have a great deal to do throughout the bulk of the story but she is key to saving the day and the author regularly reminds the reader of the issues she is dealing with internally when it comes to her experiences travelling with the Doctor. I don’t know how well this was portrayed onscreen but the novelisation does a good job a creating a sense of Victoria’s emotional turmoil and her decision at the story’s close is well substantiated and understandable.
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on 7 January 2004
One of the best books ever written. An ideal gift for any Doctor who fan. Victor pemberton really knows his stuff and proves that this misssing story ( unfourtunatley destroyed by the BBC)can be one of the best Dr Who stories even without televised material.
Definatley recommended whatever the price.
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on 7 September 2011
I hate to say it but the anticipation for the start of Matt Smith's second series in April 2011 failed to garner the same level of eager anticipation that the release of AUDIOGO's unabridged novelisation reading of a 1960s Patrick Troughton story.

The question is why?

Thankfully, the answer is equally simple.

David Troughton.

Across six discs spanning nearly seven hours, Troughton's confident and irrepressible performance (yes, it's slightly more than a plain, off-the-shelf reading) clearly demonstrates - BBC WALES, are you paying attention? - that for a DOCTOR WHO story to grab you assertively around the throat (metaphorically speaking, of course), dragging you deeper within you don't need a complicated time-defying (read: timey-wimey) plotline that even Professor Stephen Hawking would struggle to be engaged with and a budget of a small Micronesian country.

Approachable in his deliver and avuncular in his timbre, Troughton has, for this reviewer at least, become the preferred choice for all unabridged CLASSIC SERIES releases.

Though the televised six-parter was broadcast in 1968 (with the novel published by TARGET BOOKS in 1986), the story itself feels incredulously fresh and astute (its conceit of the human race raping the environment for its rich yet exhaustible resources that would have consequences from the "bogey man" is more on-topic than it was over 40 years ago), added to which that the BBC TAPE ARCHIVE is devoid of any surviving episodes (albeit a selection of clips and studio footage have been located and restored, presented on the BBC DVD 2004 boxset, Doctor Who - Lost In Time [DVD] [1963]) then this reading could be considered as a "brand new DOCTOR WHO story". If you had not been there (1968) then Victor Pemberton's FURY FROM THE DEEP self-penned novelisation would be your first encounter with the evasive "weed creature" that has the unnerving ability to control humans. Patronisingly, when compared next to several NEW SERIES episodes, this Second Doctor adventure is more intelligent, driven by character rather than "tick box" comic vignettes and acted with passion & perilous realism.

And, unsurprisingly, an undaunted David Troughton ensures that professionalism is transferred to this audiobook.

Effortlessly delineating each character with a deftness of a magician, Troughton enriches Pemberton's reliable novel as he jaunts from the soft & reassuring lilt of the Second Doctor to a vulnerable Victorian orphan to a sadistic & business-like tones of Mr. Quill and Mr. Oak. Periodically, his delivery is as aurally engrossing as David Tennant's was as "can't-take-your-eyes-off" performance in Doctor Who - Complete Specials (The Next Doctor/ Planet of the Dead/ Waters of Mars & Winter Specials) [DVD].

Remarkable.

However, I should issue a warning for those who already have had their heart broken by a break-up or a loss that you could be again shedding a tear as Troughton concludes the reading with the departure of the TARDIS as Victoria casts a solitary yet significant figure on the windswept beach.

Supporting Troughton's performance is, once again, Simon Power (MEON PRODUCTIONS), providing a creative eloquence with an incidental music score (cleverly avoiding a 1960s style) and a disturbing, haunting special sound treatment that gathers apace as the unstoppable weed creature and all encompassing foam as it infiltrates seemingly irrevocably the lives of those it touches no matter how briefly.

The ever-present ethereal "heartbeat" of weed creature is particularly effective, hypnotically and dispassionately drawing you against your will.

Predictably, DOCTOR WHO - FURY FROM THE DEEP continues with the highest level of production quality that has become synonymous with this range of unabridged novelisations, but where this release excels is the combination of David Troughton's accomplished delivery and the obscure nature of the story.

An amalgamation that could be, no, should be explored in forthcoming AUDIOGO releases. Troughton reading the novelisations of POWER OF THE DALEKS or EVIL OF THE DALEKS (supported by Nicholas Briggs) would be most welcome.
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on 7 November 2013
One of the missing Pat Troughton stories - I've only ever heard the BBC Audio Collection sound version which is atmospheric and gives some idea of what we are all missing. This is based on the novel, obviously, and is longer and more detailed. A very worthwhile alternative, I'd say and I'm glad I bought it.
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on 25 August 2011
"when i got my copy from amazone it was smashed to bits in the post the case had fallen a part so i had to buy a copy elise where and pay more the story is ace and well told
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