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First released in 2010, this is the second part of a five part adventure for the Fourth Doctor released on audio. It is a single hour long episode on a single disc, with some well realised artwork on the inlay. Following the events of the opening episode (Relics of Time) the Doctor and Mrs Wibbsey are on a quest across time, following clues left by their mysterious adversary as they try to track down some missing parts from the TARDIS.

Here their quest takes them to 19th Century Paris, where Toulouse Lautrec appears to be caught up in some very shady shenanigans as his muses are disappearing. What follows is a reasonably entertaining tale as the dynamic duo track the mystery to it’s dark heart and uncover some grisly truths. It’s an ok adventure, one that is open ended ready for the next episode so cannot really be listened to in isolation from the rest of the series. There are some good gothic set pieces that are well realised, so in all 4 stars.
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VINE VOICEon 12 July 2011
The first volume of Paul Magrs' Demon Quest audio series was an enjoyable romp for Doctor Who fans. Tom Baker was back again as the Legendary Time Lord, with Susan Jameson in tow as companion Mrs Wibbsey, the Doctor's Housekeeper. After Mrs Wibbsey exchanged crucial components of the TARDIS for four mysterious, historical artefacts (all featuring a likeness of the Doctor), the time travellers must travel back and forth throughout Earth's history to learn the significance of the items, reclaim the TARDIS components, and unravel the identity and motives of the being who has put them on this chase.

Upon returning from Ancient Britain, The Doctor and Wibbsey's mission has now brought them to Paris in 1894, where the Doctor is surprised to discover himself in a painting almost identical to the famous poster for real-life comedian/cabaret singer Aristide Bruant. Painted by the exact-same artist, Toulouse-Lautrec! But while the Doctor tries to solve the mystery, a more sinister one is plaguing Paris. People are disappearing and Lautrec is being notoriously suspected. But as the truth slowly starts to unravel, what consequences will this spell for the Fourth Doctor and his companion?

The first part of Demon Quest - The Relics of Times - was an entertaining start that established the premise of Paul Magrs' arc, but there was some content in it that felt lacklustre, and you were left thinking that the stakes weren't as serious as implied. And instead of `hungering' to check out the next instalment, I felt merely `intrigued'.

The Demon of Paris changes the mood altogether. Things take a more darker tone here, and the haunting, eerie music and sound effects reflect this perfectly. Magrs deserves props for the direction he takes his story in. Not only will it have you more on the edge of your seat, but this second part utilises history and its players with terrific creativity. More so than The Relics of Time.

Case in point; Toulouse-Lautrec. Magrs captures the real-life struggles and inner turmoil of the famous artist so faithfully, and Mark Meadows gives a convincing performance. It's all reminiscent of Richard Curtis' TV masterpiece "Vincent & The Doctor" and Tony Curran's inspired performance as Van Gogh. The French accents are convincing, and Finty Williams (La Charlotte) and Rowena Cooper (La Concierge) make for an excellent supporting cast.

The Demon of Paris is also presented with plausibility, and paints a nice atmosphere of the late nineteenth century and the Doctor and Mrs Wibbsey's travels. Magrs credibly stresses the gravity of their situation by having them travel from England to France and back again via boat and train. Along with the well-described setting of 1894 Paris, Magrs again feeds the listener enough for their imagination to visualise, which is nothing short of wonderful.

But the one thing I love perhaps most of all about this second part is the narrative. Where Tom Baker's Doctor was in charge of narration for part one of Demon Quest, the honours of storytelling this time fall to Susan Jameson as Mrs Wibbsey. Not only does this help keep Demon Quest fresh, it also allows Susan a chance to carry the story and provide more insight into her character, for those who may not have listened to Hornets' Nest yet.

Mrs Wibbsey is a strong character, and a rarity among companions. She doesn't really want to be travelling with the Doctor, and can't appreciate the experience as most companions have and would. She makes the best of it, though and proves herself worthy despite her reluctance. Her longing to go back to her own time, a temptation to see her parents in 1894, and her old-fashioned personality make Mrs Wibbsey a tremendous success. Susan Jameson makes the character her own; venting her thoughts/feelings and describing happenings, weaving both narratives together in intricate style. In fact, Jameson narrates the story's events just as good as Tom Baker did for part one.

Tom Baker's continual legendary performance as the Fourth Doctor, another welcome cameo from Richard Franklin as Captain Mike Yates (with a major appearance promised for part three) and a fab cover booklet featuring (again) old-Radio Times style cut-outs, and a handwritten love letter from La Charlotte (which has relevance to the audiobook), round things up delightfully. The Demon of Paris is superior to The Relics of Time and has now made me want to check out the third part of Doctor Who: Demon Quest right away. A dark, gripping chapter in a series that is steamrolling. Simply cannot be missed.
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TOP 50 REVIEWERon 8 August 2011
This is the second part of the Demon Quest series of adventures, with Tom Baker reprising his role as the Fourth Doctor; and he's in fine form. You can hear his hat and scarf, really. Mrs Wibbsey is her usual charming self, as she and the Doctor head off from ancient Briton to Paris, France in the late nineteenth century where the clues seem to lead them to Toulouse-Lautrec, the great Post-Impressionist painter. Cue seedy bars, bohemians drinking absinthe, missing callgirls and artist's models, and Monsieur Lautrec who doesn't seem to be his usual self.

Somewhat unusually, much of this story is narrated by Mrs Wibbsey - who comes across as somewhat less crusty and unapproachable as a result, which is good.

Can the Doctor and Mrs Wibbsey find out what is going on? And what does it have to do with the mysterious clues that Mrs Wibbsey got when she inadvertently sold part of the Doctor's Tardis console in part one of this series? Why would the poster have the Doctor's face on it? Why did the previous episode's mosaic have the Doctor's face on it? Who is leaving these clues, and why? And where does Mike Yates fit into the future part of the puzzle? The Doctor does not like people luring him ... so watch out as he dashes madly about Paris chasing for clues with Mrs Wibbsey in tow. Some questions are answered (in part), but more are left for us to chase.

Great stuff, wonderfully narrated by Tom Baker and Susan Jameson with great characters in the story, including the historical Toulouse-Lautrec. Onto the next part of the adventure!
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on 16 October 2010
The second installment of Paul Magrs' latest Tom Baker-starring original Doctor Who audio doesn't quite match the first part in terms of originality and verve but remains a hugely enjoyable romp, as The Doctor and his acerbic housekeeper find themselves in Nineteenth century Montmartre, on the trail of some missing components from the Doctor's TARDIS. Meeting notorious painter and raconteur Henri Toulouse-Letrec along the way, they have to solve the mystery of Letrec's apparent homicidal spree and how the enigmatic good-time girl Charlotte fits into it. Baker's range of tones - from sonorous to booming - are as delightful as ever, whilst Susan Jameson continues to nail the part of woman out of time; the brilliantly named Mrs Wibbsey.
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VINE VOICEon 9 January 2011
The second story in the linked series of Demon Quest is one of the richest in atmosphere. Set in the murky depths of Paris amidst the Moulin Rouge the Doctor and Miss Wibbsey attempt to solve the mystery set up in the first play. Its a good deal darker than the first play, a nice little mystery as some answers are provided and new questions asked. The narration is by Wibbsey as opposed to the Doctor this time and helps provide atmosphere as essentially the narration is from a character who doesn't want to be involved in the events. In short wonderfully dark and it feels like this series in going to be a good one.
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on 22 October 2010
I've just spent a wonderful hour in the Paris of the belle epoque with the Doctor and his fabulously prim and dowdy companion, Mrs Wibbsey, haring around in hansom cabs and exploring Montmartre cemetery by moonlight. It's fantastic to hear Tom Baker in full flight as the Doctor once again, by turns charming and curious and eccentrically inventive. Even given the many incarnations, indiscretions and reinventions of both the Doctor and Baker himself since the 1970s, somehow we are back with the 'reckless innocent' - a hero somewhat unaware of his own otherworldliness - which is both endearing and very funny.

It's also a surprise that we can have a completely new kind of companion for him - and Mrs Wibbsey has a naivete too, one that an adventure with mad murderers in Parisian bohemia manages to prick - "I didn't think I'd like coq au vin - but it's just chicken stew, really, isn't it?'

What I really loved about this - and the first in the series - were the liberties the production team has taken with the familiar set-up of the series, giving us scenes the regular series cannot give us but which are nevertheless steeped in Who-ish atmosphere: the Doctor's travel by boat-train, for example, when the Tardis is grounded in West Sussex, and the house he occasionally returns to there. Like the cafes, attics and cemeteries, these scenes are richly steeped in atmosphere, cosy, slightly claustrophobic, not to mention unfamiliar.

It's fantastic that the BBC is once again producing spin-off material that operates with this license to invent, to spring surprises - who would have thought you could do new things with Doctor Who? But with this and the forthcoming Michael Moorcock novel, I really think we're getting something special. Tom Baker certainly deserves it, and seems to be relishing his performance. Can't wait for the next one!
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Following on from Doctor Who: Demon Quest: Relics of Time v. 1 here's the second - of five - in the latest series of Doctor Who audios from the BBC featuring Tom Baker back in the role.

This series sees the Doctor and his housekeeper Mrs. Wibbsey on the trail of a mysterious foe who has vital components of the TARDIS in their possession and who wants the Doctor for something.

This episode runs for one hour and ten minutes approx and is complete on single cd. It's one long episode and the only breaks are the cd chapters.

The inlay has minimal sleeve notes giving cast and crew details and details of other bbc audio Doctor Who products, plus a couple of rather clever mock ups of something from the episode and a radio times listing for it.

It begins with a reprise of the story so far so new listeners may be able to get into it without having heard relics of time.

And it sees the Doctor and Mrs. Wibbsey in paris in the 1890's on the trail of their foe. Meeting Toulouse Lautrec and investigating some grisly murders....

Following on from the format of relics of time this is mostly audio drama with some narration. But whereas that was narrated by the Doctor this is narrated by Mrs. Wibbsey. Which works ever so well. The narration gives some real depth to her character and Susan Jameson turns in a superb performance reading it.

The atmosphere of Paris of the time is also very nicely created thanks to judicious use of sound effects and background music.

It's not quite a five star story though because at heart it's a rather slender plot and whilst the atmosphere sustains it for the first thirty minutes that does drop off a bit afterwards. It is also rather dark and gruesome but that does fit the era of the show in which it is set.

But in trying to do a standalone story whilst advancing the ongoing storyline this does work much better than relics of time did. So it's a worthwhile and enjoyable listen all in all.

The story continues in Doctor Who: Demon Quest: Shard of Ice v. 3: A Shard of Ice
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on 19 July 2013
Baker was one of my favourite Doctors so I was very eager to see how stories I had never heard of would fit into his chronolgy. I was not disappointed. I could visualise this series of episodes as if they were on TV.
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on 21 December 2010
Like its predecessor, Hornets' Nest, the Demon Quest sequence (Relice of Time, 3/5; Demon of Paris, 3/5; Shard of Ice, 5/5; Starfall, 3/5; Sepulchre, 3/5) is a rummy old thing: beautifully packaged, with stunning cover artwork; gorgeous, immersive sound design; and a trump card in the return of Sir Tom Baker as the fourth Doctor (a feat even the estimable Big Finish hasn't yet wangled). Even the price - some used models were hovering around the three-guinea mark at the time of writing - is right. So what's not to like?

Well, it's like this... the plot, narrative, story-arc, call it what you will, is slender to the point of non-existence, and it makes the six-hour journey (12 if you pop Hornet's Nest on the mp3-player) somewhat unsatisfactory upon arrival at your ultimate destination.

Now, that's not to say it isn't fun getting there, because it is: Baker is in larky mode, the fourth Doctor no longer the implacable, alien odd-bod of old but an avuncular (lustier?) force of nature, a character mapped somewhat on to the actor's current public persona (they have, finally, become each other), and there is fine support from Susan Jameson as Mrs Wibbsey (a figure seemingly plucked from Baker's relentless imagination by author Paul Magrs) and Richard Franklin as Mike Yates (no, we don't know what Yates is doing here, either, but Franklin provides sterling support all the same).

Pleasingly, it's almost impossible to place within standard Who lore, and seems to exist in a little fun bubble of its own, where, perhaps, the fourth Doctor didn't fall to his doom from the Pharos Project radio telescope, but instead discovered the `attractions' of women (let's put it like that; cf, City of Death) and a spot of sherry, and bought a nice little cottage in Sussex where it's nearly-always Christmas. That world is wonderfully realised, and is a pleasure to visit, Magrs recasting Who as a freewheeling, time-travelling romp somewhere between the comic-strip adventures of the Seventies and Eighties and the Douglas Adams era, though without the insistent nudge-nudge `humour' of the latter. The author here has a reputation for good-natured shakings up of the show's established order (see "Verdigris", and anything featuring Iris Wildthyme), but he never quite goes over the top.

No, there's no problem with the set-up here, and the tone is perfect and consistent; it's just that too little happens... or rather, plenty happens, in many colourful times and places, but it doesn't amount to much. The quest structure supplies a sort of imperative, but crises seem to get resolved perhaps a bit too conveniently, even for a goose-chase of this sort. This might be missing the point, of course: it's in the journey, not the conclusion, that the real adventure lies (the Doctor would surely agree), and the medium is the message, or something. After all, we do get to revel for hours in Magrs' ripe language, and no one enjoys it more than the lead; Baker even makes the end credits sound fun. Audio imbibers won't lack for sheer sensation, distraction and delight on the commute; that has something of the show's original ambition about it, and on its own terms is refreshing.

It's perhaps for these reasons that episode three, Shard of Ice - a story about the telling of stories - is the most satisfactory entry, thrilling to the narrator's last utterance. And these tales do stand alone (sort of), so if you're plumping for one, plump there; you won't, of course: the packaging, if nothing else, makes all five irresistibly collectible, even in these straitened times.

Yarns, then, knitted up into a long, multi-coloured and eccentric trail... remind you of anyone? Grab your scarf and hat then, and come along; just don't say you weren't told ....
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on 15 December 2010

2nd of 5 excellent stories.

If you love the Doctor and Tom Baker's Doctor and audios then get these.

They are inexpensive and 100% hard work has gone into them.
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