Nicholas (nwhyte) wrote,
Nicholas
nwhyte

August Books 9) Shakedown, by Terrance Dicks

This New Adventure is an expanded novelisation of a 55-minute video made in 1994 and starring Jan Chappell (Cally from Blake's 7) as the captain of a space yacht whose crew includes Carole Ann Ford (Susan, the Doctor's granddaughter), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Brian Croucher (the second Travis from Blake's 7) and Michael Wisher (the original Davros) as well as a guy who can't act. The setting of the video is HMS Belfast which actually does rather a good job of conveying the cramped quarters of a small spaceship; the Sontarans and Rutans are (apparently for licensing reasons) a bit different to what we saw on the screen in Old Who, but well enough realised for a low-budget production; the worst bit about it is the guy who can't act trying to be Sophie Aldred's lover, and the second worst is the somewhat stereotypical roles given to her and Ford, but these are survivable flaws.

The novel compresses this to 60 pages in the second half of a 270-page book, apparently a partial sequel to lonemagpie's Lords of the Storm which I read and enjoyed three years ago but now cannot remember much about. As usual, when Dicks lets himself run with an idea, he is a competent and solid writer, giving Benny some time alone in a murderous cult-ruled university, while the Doctor (with Roz and Chris, who get a bit marginalised) gets to grips with the Sontarans/Rutans problem with Jan Chappell and Brian Croucher's characters. It's a bit of a change of pace from the last two very colourful volumes in the New Adventures series, but it also ties the post-1989 Seventh Doctor a bit more firmly into the overall continuity.
Tags: bookblog 2013, doctor who, doctor who: 07, writer: terrance dicks
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