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Doctor Who: Time Reef by Marc Platt and Jonathan Morris

01/11/2008. Contributed by Sue Davies

Buy Doctor Who: Time Reef in the USA - or Buy Doctor Who: Time Reef in the UK

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pub: Big Finish. ISBN: 978-1-84435-322-4. 120 minutes 2 CDs. Price: CD: 14.99 (UK), Download: 12.99 (UK)) stars: Peter Davison, Sarah Sutton, John Pickard, Nicholas Farrell, Beth Chalmers, Sean Biggerstaff, Sean Connolly and Rebecca Callard .

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When the Doctor crashes on a mysterious time reef, a very angry group confronts him. It seems the so-called Doctor abandoned these returning warriors to their fate and are stuck on this reef, a bubble in time. Commander Gammades (voiced by Nicholas Farrell) is fuming with the Doctor and his sidekick 'Blondie'. Hang on, there's a slight issue of identity here. Recent companion Thomas Brewster is looking a bit sheepish when he has to admit to that his solitary jaunt in the TARDIS involved a little unauthorised disposal of important constituent parts. It seems that Thomas is the Doctor to Gammades. Either way, everyone is stuck now. The TARDIS suffers a catastrophic collapse and appears to be dead. The Doctor and his team have no way of escape and must face the mysterious Ruhk, which haunts the surface of the reef.

Peter Davison returns in this monthly series as the Fifth Doctor. He spends much of the first few minutes being alternately exasperated and angry. Thomas (voiced by John Pickard) is the cheeky London chappie rescued in 'The Haunting of Thomas Brewster' and is a bit of a liability.

Set on an inexplicable part of space and with echoes of the recent TV episode 'Silence In The Library', this is another atmospheric tale that produces some odd concepts including the mysterious Lady Vuyoki who lives in a bottle.

A single episode story accompanies this release as a coda to the three-parter. 'A Perfect World' offers us a vision of perfection. Thomas Brewster visits modern London and meets a girl. Nothing is going right and she wishes just for once, it would. Somehow, everything becomes perfect but perfection can be perfectly annoying. It is up to the Doctor to set things right.

Extras are included here as a matter of course and form a separate element of entertainment in this package.

'Time Reef' is another good adventure from the Fifth Doctor. His personality is nicely stamped onto this one and the surreal components help make this a good old listen.

Sue Davies

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