The Moon: an airless body, devoid of life and therefore of
no interest to the British Empire. However, appearances can
be deceptive, as the crew of HMS Indomitable discover
when an alien weapon cripples their ship. They must undertake
a perilous journey deep inside the satellite to rescue a man
who holds the key to a millennia-old mystery...
The Lunar Inheritance marks a change of scene following
the previous three Mars-based audio adventures in this series.
This is a standalone episode, and I fancy it's also easier
for newcomers to get into than the previous arc, since on
this occasion there is no pre-existing British colonial presence
or known civilisation on the celestial body in question. Everything
that is discovered here by our heroes - Indomitable
Captain Nathaniel Blake (Neville Watchurst) and lunar expert
William Brooker (Jack Galagher) - is as new to them as it
is to the listener.
discoveries include insectoid life forms (voiced by Mr Dalek
himself, Big Finish's Nicholas Briggs), which are clearly
inspired by those in HG Wells' The First Men in the Moon.
And that's not all: the Moon's secrets also tie in with the
mysteries of the asteroid belt and the mythical planet Vulcan
(no, not the one from Star Trek).
A more recent mythology that is also alluded to here is that
of Indiana Jones, whose characteristics Blake and Brooker
share. While Blake disguises himself in a stolen enemy uniform,
a la Raiders of the Lost Ark (though in this instance
the antagonists are Russians), Brooker gets the cold shoulder
from his mentor's niece, Annabelle Somerset (Helen Goldwyn),
for walking out on them and their research. Not surprisingly,
William and Annabelle's relationship, which mirrors that of
Indy and Marion in Raiders, thaws out in due course.
the change of location and of characters, in all important
respects it's business as usual in the world of Space 1889.
With an intriguing and adventurous script by Richard Dinnick
and Andy Frankham, and some appropriately "spacey" electronic
flourishes from musician Simon Robinson, you'd be a loony
to miss this.