The Andromeda Syndrome

Captain Patch

May 2005

The Andromeda Syndrome...a few thoughts seemingly random in orientation and hopefully no spoilers

This, the first Doctor Who Audio Drama feature David Segal in the title character's role, has been released after being hidden in the DWAD vaults for nearly 20 years. Re-mastered (indeed, from the sound of it, completely re-recorded), the sound quality and effects are pretty state-of-the-art for fan audios recorded in present times. But without getting into details, what impressed me about this audio drama was the way I was drawn into it right from the start. Though being a continuation of an adventure that remains unavailable should be a handicap to listener interest, the actions and activity that we hear first is compelling, and I was left wishing we knew more about the adventure that caused Vincent Savage's Doctor to regenerate into David Segal's. But what really drew me into this story was the relationship between Segal's Doctor and companion Dr. Kevin Vasavious, UNIT psychologist. Kevin is a great companion; he knows he is in a bit over his head, he knows that the Doctor is lightyears beyond him...but he doesn't let that bother him. It is completely ironic that at one point, Kevin informs the Doctor that he (Kevin) doesn't want to play Watson to the Doctor's Holmes; yet that is to a large degree the relationship that forms here. There are differences; Kevin is brighter than Watson, and unlike Watson, Kevin is able to keep up with the Doctor in the bantering that goes on between them. It is this banter that brings much of the fun to this story. In fact, “fun” is the operative word for this story. Every component of this story...the plot, the acting, the music and effects, all contribute to the fun. The plot is no more complicated than the typical Hinchcliffe-era runaround. (In fact, there are some very clear homages to some of the early Tom Baker stories.) The one twist--well, the one that caught me by surprise—is actually mentioned in the story's blurb on the DWAD Distribution Website. (I had forgotten the blurb details.)

So, again with The Andromeda Syndrome, the DWADs score big. This story is unpretentious, it's airy, it's not “literature”....but it's a darn good way to spend an hour or so, and a great way to kick off the adventures of a new Doctor.

Last updated: Wednesday, May 4, 2005