Review: Doctor Who: Big Finish Audio: 4th Doctor Adventures 5.5: Gallery of Ghouls

DW4D0505_galleryofghouls_1417A theft from a waxworks intrigues the Doctor and Romana…

Alan Barnes presents an enjoyable lightweight adventure for the Doctor and Romana, filled with the repartee that characterised their period on television and that Tom Baker and Lalla Ward deliver so well. You get the sense that Baker is absolutely in his element as the Doctor presents a revised version of history to the enthralled audience at the waxworks – to the extent that I wondered how much was one of his infamous adlibs in the recording booth (and full marks to Barnes since the whole thing was scripted!) – while Ward gets a chance to show off Romana’s more “human” side.

Despite the Doctor’s concerns about the Black Guardian sending spies in unlikely forms, there’s nothing universe-shattering about the disagreements between Madame Tissot and her rival Mr Goole – two terrific performances from Celia Imrie and Nickolas Grace – both of whom are hiding secrets that alter your perception of them in the second part. After the timey-wimey antics of the previous two-part release, it’s good to have a moderately straightforward tale – and one that, for once, seems to have a happy ending for most of those involved.

Verdict: An entertaining trip to the seaside. 8/10

Paul Simpson

 

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