Review: Doctor Who: Big Finish Audio: Short Trips 5.9: Etheria

DWST0509_etheria_1417The Doctor and Vicki are desperately trying to find Steven…

Nick Wallace’s intriguing story is read by Peter Purves, although it’s primarily centred around his character’s on-screen companions as they traverse a land with just a less than fully competent guide to help them. Wallace builds up the atmosphere well, and skilfully takes advantage of the fact that as an audience we create a picture in our minds based on the information that we’re given – allowing him to pull the rug out at appropriate points – almost hiding certain things in plain sight.

Purves’ Hartnell is as imperious as ever, at least initially, and while he doesn’t try to do an imitation of Maureen O’Brien’s Vicki, he does give a good impression of her – although it does slightly surprise me that this story wasn’t actually read by O’Brien for the range. Toby Robinson’s sound design is very effective, and director Lisa Bowerman ensures a suitably spooky feel infuses the whole production.

Verdict: A short but effective tale. 8/10

Paul Simpson


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