Monday, 2 January 2012

Review: Third Doctor Audio - Paradise Of Death

Our latest forum review comes from the brilliant Vampyros Adric who this time has shifted his focus to the Third Doctor in the audio story The Paradise Of Death.....

I've held off from this one as it lays open a can of worms "canon-wise". But no, I must look straight into the eye of the time vortex and think that if the movie is canon, then this story must be at least half canon. Although the "Blurb on the back of the box" man must have been paid by the word for this, I will still give you the benefit of his wisdom to set the scene.
"When a horrific and inexplicable death occurs at Space world, a new theme park on Hampstead Heath, Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart and UNIT are called to investigate."
The Paradise of Death was like a life-belt, tossed into the barren, Who-Free waters of the early nineties. A full cast audio adventure..with Jon Pertwee... And UNIT...written by Barry Letts.... YES PLEASE!!! Therefore when you listen to this, try and see it in that context and the whole thing becomes easier to love. I must confess, although this story gets a fair bit of stick from the fans, I really enjoy it. It has a tangible beginning, middle and end. The bad guys are fairly bad and the good guys are awesome. Special little mentions must go to the three "stars" Pertwee, Sladen and Courtney who are all utterly brilliant - having been written for radio, some of the dialogue can be a little ponderous at times, but this is all necessary exposition. The pacing is generally good and the beginning and the ending of the story belts along.

To be sure, it is not without its problems. This is undoubtedly "Who-by-Numbers" with very little to surprise or shock. Lis Sladen's dialogue is especially clunky given her role of our "eyes and ears" in the Whoniverse. Furthermore, towards the middle there is a little feeling of padding. This could easily have been a four parter and had it been so, would have been perfectly paced.

Nonetheless, this is a perfectly enjoyable romp which suits being an audio adventure. It will never shake any trees, but is a great way to spend a couple of hours with some old friends. 

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