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wshaffer
Audio Review: Doctor Who: The Lost Stories - The Hollows of Time 
20th-Apr-2010 11:40 am
evil_laugh, minimaster
The Hollows of Time (Doctor Who: The Lost Stories) The Hollows of Time by Christopher H. Bidmead


My rating: 3 of 5 stars
This audio is an interestingly mixed bag. As nearly everyone on the CD extras feels compelled to admit, the original television script from which it was adapted was very visual, and while everyone involved has made valiant efforts to adapt it for the audio medium, it's not completely successful.

The writing is also vintage Bidmead, complete with his tendency to take stuff out of the popular computing magazines of the day and turn it into science fiction. Case in point: a robotic "turtle" that behaves exactly like the turtle from the Logo programming language. Now it seems like a cheesy and dated detail, but I'm forced to admit that if this story had been made and aired in the mid-80s as was originally intended, the teenage computer geek me who actually programmed in Logo would have *loved* it.

In a general plot sense, I quite enjoyed part 1, which has a lovely sense of mystery and some delightfully weird imagery. The first half of part 2 is laden down with technobabble as things start to be explained, and then it picks up again towards the end, but doesn't really completely find its feet.

So, this is the first of the Lost Stories that I've really regretted wasn't made for television. Not because it would have made a brilliant TV story, but because it's one where I can really be confident that being made for its intended medium and its intended time would have allowed such strengths as it had to shine through. (In contrast with Leviathan, which, while probably a stronger story in either medium, doesn't suffer nearly as much in the transition to audio as The Hollows of Time.)

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