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Dark Shadows: The Creeping Fog by Simon Guerrier

01/01/2012. Contributed by Sue Davies

Buy Dark Shadows: The Creeping Fog in the USA - or Buy Dark Shadows: The Creeping Fog in the UK

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pub: Big Finish. 1 CD 60 minute story. Price: CD: GBP 9.99 (UK), Download: GBP 7.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-84435-566-2. cast: David Selby and Matthew Waterhouse.

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Quentin Collins is enjoying a quiet drink in The White Rabbit in London during the darkest times of the Blitz. He is annoyed to be interrupted by a chatty local. Stumbling outside into the pea -souper fog, Quentin is disturbed to hear voices in it and they seem to know him.

Waking up with no memory of how he got there, Quentin finds himself in a museum with its curator, John Cunningham, the annoying man from the pub.

Trapped within the museum and aware of the encroaching fog, the two start to discover things about each other as the grim night wears on.

If you love the sound of David Selby as the original Quentin Collins you will also be intrigued to hear the voice of Matthew Waterhouse playing John Cunningham. Matthew was the companion Adric who suffered a sad demise in a shocking episode of ‘Doctor Who’. Although he doesn’t intend to return to the ‘Doctor Who’ audio, Waterhouse is absolutely superb here making an first-rate foil for Selby.

What makes this a stand-out story is the gradual build of tension between the characters as we wait to see which way they will jump. As listeners, we know Quentin’s past and, as the pressure is applied, we also know he won’t be satisfied with the cup of tea that John Cunningham keeps offering him.

Simon Guerrier’s script has a brilliant depth to it which makes it a really good listen. So much of the script deals with repetition and jarring notes leading to a tremendous finish. Far from being limited by only having two actors, this play, ‘The Creeping Fog’, as with the Big Finish ‘Doctor Who Companion Chronicles’ uses this constriction to good effect and ratchets up the tension. Although parts of the story are, by necessity, narration and exposition, this is woven well into the narrative. The end is foreshadowed but still keeps you guessing and I thought it was one of the best audios this year. The quality of the writing and acting makes this a standout piece and long may ‘Dark Shadows’ continue to menace us.

Sue Davies

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This book has 68 votes in the sci-fi charts

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