Vengeance of the Stones

A plane has disappeared under mysterious circumstances, so the Doctor and the Brigadier arrive in Scotland to investigate. On an RAF base they meet Lieutenant Mike Yates and discover a secret that has remained buried for four thousand years.

Vengeance of the Stones is narrated by Pertwee-era stalwart Richard Franklin, who played the treacherous Captain Yates. The story is set between seasons seven and eight, so there’s no companion in place as such, but the Brigadier and Benton are on hand. Probably because its on audio, I was most of the way through the story before I noticed the absence of anything for the dads.

The story serves as an introduction to Yates, who plays a central part here, proving his worth while on secondment to UNIT. At one point he’s captured and interrogated by the alien menace. I wondered if there was going to some hints of his propensity for being brainwashed in this scene; but he’s heroic and loyal, which makes the character’s eventual fall from grace more poignant. Franklin doesn’t exactly try to mimic Pertwee and Courtney’s voices, but there’s enough variation to differentiate between characters easily enough.

I love the UNIT Hercules from The Invasion dropping out of the sky and arriving in Scotland as a ready-made base of operations. They’ve brought Bessie along, but unlike in Terror of the Zygons the Brigadier hasn’t packed his kilt for this jaunt north of the border.

As the title suggests, stones are at the centre of this mystery, continuing Doctor Who‘s occasional series on the origins of British stone circles. Joining the Ogri and the Stone Henge transmitter are the eponymous Stones of Vengeance, actually the tools of an alien survey team.

Full Circle writer Andrew Smith has crafted a tale that perfectly echoes the era in which it’s set, while making the most of the budget-free special effects afforded audio productions. Hugely enjoyable.

Not heard Vengeance of the Stones yet? Buy now from Amazon:

Doctor Who: Vengeance of the Stones (Destiny of the Doctor 3)

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