Doctor Who: Protect and Survive. Audio Book Review

protect-and-survive-cover.jpg_cover_largeDOCTOR WHO: PROTECT AND SURVIVE by Jonathan Morris

Big Finish Productions, CD £14.99, download £12.99

Reviewed by Matthew Johns

Another of Big Finish Productions’ excellent audio dramas, this features the seventh Doctor – Sylvester McCoy.  McCoy was definitely a ‘Marmite’ kind of Doctor – you either loved him or hated him, but his crisp enunciation and dulcet tones definitely bring the Doctor to life.

However, the Doctor is not the star of this story – as he only appears in flashbacks and as a hologram, that accolade must go to his companions, Ace and Hex.  They awaken in the Tardis, to find it out of control and the Doctor missing.  They manage to land it and find themselves in a remote part of Northern England, where Peggy and Albert Marsden, an elderly couple are preparing for a nuclear war.

At times reminiscent of Raymond Briggs’ “When the Wind Blows”, this is by far the bleakest Doctor Who audio book I’ve ever heard.  In the aftermath of the nuclear bomb, Peggy, Albert, Hex and Ace slowly succumb to radiation poisoning.

This is a haunting tale, and Sophie Aldred’s portrayal of Ace is superb – emotionally powerful, but Philip Olivier’s Hex really does steal the show.

Unusually for an audio drama, this ends on a cliff-hanger, so tune into the next episode to find out what happens to Ace and Hex…