Review: Vienna: Big Finish Audio: 1.3: Deathworld

Deathworld coverA world full of assassins trying to kill each other – Vienna should feel right at home…

The first box set comes to a conclusion with Jonathan Morris’ suitably convoluted tale which throws so many twists in among its flashbacks and its homages to The Princess Bride and The Hunger Games that you’re left slightly reeling by the end.

There are so many revelations which may or may not be true that I think anyone trying to work out a biography of Ms Salvatore for online sites might be best advised to wait until we find out just how much of what we’re hearing is genuine – the series’ central theme is the reliability of memory and that’s played to the hilt here. The last few seconds of the play sow as much confusion as the first few do, but I guess if the character’s own creator can’t play fast and loose with her continuity, nobody can.

There are numerous questions left unanswered at the end of this first series about Vienna, and plenty of avenues for further adventures. I’d certainly like to see the relationship between her and her ship examined further – an AI with her personality could be an extremely dangerous weapon in the wrong hands (and I’m not necessarily excluding Vienna from that list).

Every so often, one of Big Finish’s spin-offs feels like a step too far, but with an increasingly detailed backstory, and a fine sense of character from both Chase Masterson, director Ken Bentley and the writers, this has been a very different set of adventures. Roll on the second set!

Verdict: Some real surprises along the way in an engrossing tale. 8/10

Paul Simpson

Click here to order Vienna Box Set 1 from Big Finish

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