Hex's first trip in the TARDIS is about as strange as he
could have imagined. He, Ace and the Doctor, not to mention
some lizard people called the Galyari, find themselves on
an asteroid, a city travelling the stars, inhabited by stone
ghosts and mythical creatures. People vanish and cross over
into the Dreamtime. And at the heart of the city lies Uluru
- Ayers Rock...
is indeed very weird stuff - and confusing. I had to listen
to certain bits of it twice to try and get my head around
what was going on.
mythology exerts a potent influence upon events in Simon A.
Forward's narrative, replacing people with standing stones
and hurling the Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) back through time.
The Time Lord sees no need to provide a scientific explanation
for any of this, though the Galyari have a stab at doing so.
This is very much the "magic is real" attitude of the Seventh
Doctor's television era, rather than the "magic is just advanced
science" doctrine of Jon Pertwee's reign.
double CD marks the third "appearance" of Forward's reptilian
creations, the Galyari, who previously appeared in the Sixth
Doctor audio adventure The
Sandman and Professor
Bernice Summerfield and the Bone of Contention.
Steffan Rhodri, who played Commander Korshal in Bone
reprises the same role here. However, barring the occasional
reference to their culture and their home in the space convoy
known as the Clutch, the Galyari could have been substituted
by more or less any old aliens.
companion Hex (Philip Olivier) comes across rather better,
sounding suitably impressed and/or terrified by the strange
goings-on. He makes a great contrast to the more cynical and
battle-hardened Ace (Sophie Aldred), who takes this sort of
thing in her stride.
a staggering coincidence, this CD was released around the
same time as the transmission of the Christopher Eccleston
End of the World. In both stories, the Earth
is about to meet a fiery doom. Coordinator Whitten's (Jef
Higgins) comment about certain unfortunate people being left
behind on the dying planet seems to clash with the Eccleston
Doctor's claims that the Earth has been completely abandoned.
However, Forward avoids specific references to precisely which
"end of the world" he is dealing with here: Whitten could
be referring to the solar flares of The
Ark in Space. Alternatively, Dreamtime
could be set at a point in time before the National Trust
halted the expansion of the sun, as described in The End
of the World.
is weird, but not exactly wonderful.
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