01/01/2012. Contributed by Sue Davies
pub: Audio Go/BBC. 1 CD 67 minute story. Price: CD: GBP 5.95 (UK), Download: GBP 6.15 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-40846-887-6. cast: Tom Baker, Susan Jameson, Sophie Ward, Guy Harvey, Simon Shepherd, Terrance Hardiman and Su Douglas.
check out website: www.audiogo.com
Life’s a pantomime. Oh no, it isn’t! It’s Aladdin Time!
As we reach the third episode of ‘Serpent Quest’, the Doctor (Tom Baker) and Mrs Wibbsey (Susan Jameson) are trapped. At the end of 'The Broken Crown', events with the heir to the Robotov Empire came to a head and the Skishtari Egg he was holding took control flinging them all out of the world and into one of imagination. Not as uncomplicated as a panto plot is it?
Such has been the lad’s education in 19th century England, he has conjured up a network of caves and tunnels in a completely imaginary land where anything can happen. Yes, in the tradition of a budget-conscious Doctor Who, Paul Magrs has set the whole thing in a very large cave. Somewhere in there, is a lad looking for a magic lamp. Oh yes, he is.
As the Doctor and Wibbsey try to find out where they are and where they should be going, the Doctor has a near-death encounter and discovers that his larger than life scarf (Andrew Sachs) has a life of its own. ‘Ah, the treachery of knitwear.’
‘Aladdin Time’ is part three of ‘Serpent Quest’ and the plot thickens like your mother’s gravy at Christmas and there’s even a genuine cliff-hanger. The extended cast features Sophie Ward as the storyteller in the manner of Scheherazade; Guy Harvey is Aladdin and Simon Shepherd as The Magician. There is also an appearance by a Gryphon (Terrence Hardiman) and a Toad (Su Douglas).
As the tale begins to tell itself and the world starts to come apart, the players must assert their reality before they disappear forever inside the egg.
‘Aladdin Time’ is more fun and more erudite than your average play and is never less than entertaining and with plenty of banter between the Doctor and Mrs Wibbsey, it is a continued delight to listen to these rather unusual Doctor’s visits.
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