Somewhere in the depths of space lies a little-known district
called Nekromanteia. The Doctor, Peri and Erimem face the
terrors of the Talderun witches and the wrath of a corporate
empire when they venture into this domain of the dead...
double-CD release picks up Big Finish's ongoing Fifth Doctor/Peri/Erimem
"season" where last year's historical romp The Church and
the Crown left off. Or, if you're a reader of Doctor
Who Magazine, then it follows on from No Place Like
Home, the rather jolly single-episode adventure which
was given away free with that esteemed publication (another
effective and affectionate tie-in with the DWM comic
strip - nice one, guys).
reflection, though, perhaps Nekromanteia should have
been restricted to a single disc as well. That scriptwriter
Austen Atkinson's plot is a little on the slight side is attested
to by the brevity of the final episode, and by a largely pointless
stopover that the TARDIS crew makes at a Garazone marketplace
in Part One.
The high points of the drama are the truly excellent cliffhanger
that rounds off Part Two and some eccentric scenes that take
place during the third episode, featuring a guest appearance
by Simon Williams (who played Captain "Chunky" Gilmore in
Remembrance of the Daleks).
are also decent measures of intrigue and surprise, with several
characters turning out not to be quite what they seemed. A
very unpleasant bunch of characters they are, too, especially
a sadistic military commander (Glyn Owen) who threatens Erimem
(Caroline Morris) with sexual violence. I was reminded of
the warrior Leela when Erimem stands up for herself - and
of events in Logopolis towards the end of the story.
in all, however, there isn't really enough material here to
sustain a 100-minute drama.