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Reviews for Tomb Ship

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Another Booby-Trap Story

By:David Layton, Los Angeles, United States
Date:Friday 10 February 2017
Rating:   7

Tomb Ship is one of those claustrophobic tales that pop up every now and again. The Doctor and Nyssa arrive on a giant tomb in space for the god-king of a lost race. Unfortunately, this tomb is full of deadly traps requiring intelligence and a little more to escape. To make matters worse, there is a tomb-robbing family trying to break in to steal the treasure supposedly hidden in the tomb. Basically, we have something like a 19th-century lost world adventure story set in space. Being set entirely inside the tomb places a limitation on what can happen in the story. It's the City of the Exilons or the Pyramid on Mars episode stretched thin to four episodes. A real problem for me is the mother, the ruthless matriarch of this robber family. As the actress says in her interview on the bonus track, the character is two dimensional. She's all greed and self-interest, a two-note part that really does not provide much of an antagonist for the Doctor. The story is entertaining enough, and there are no major blunders. It just runs a bit longer than it ought to.

A mystery in the bloodline

By:Jared Star, Portsmouth, United States
Date:Wednesday 27 October 2021
Rating:   8

This episode didn't enamor me as much as I thought it would at first, but it takes up until the ending for the listener to fully appreciate this one. This is an adventure, through and through!

This Indiana Jones-styled adventure in space did not disappoint when the final credits rolled, but it did take a bit of work to get there. I couldn't tell some of the characters apart and the audio mixing had a few issues, but those are minor on the whole. The biggest issue this story faced was the fact that it was too visual. Not only with the setting, but the whole idea of tomb-styled booby traps doesn't work the best in audio. On paper it's great, and the scriptwriters did their best with it, but it slowed down the pace a little too much during some places. However, as you get further along into the story, you realize that you are there less for the traps, and more for the twists. Said twists aren't on a "World Enough & Time" level, but they infused an interesting bit of drama that I was keen to hear play out.

The biggest draw for this episode is the ending. It took me until the final 10 minutes to realize that all I had listened to beforehand was buildup. The climax of the story was expertly acted, The sound design was immaculate, and the music was phenomenal. It had an intensity to it that too few monthly stories attempt. Like I said at the beginning, this is an adventure, through and through. As the cast grew and shrank, motives learned, and loved ones lost, you really get a sense of how much had happened in the past 2 hours. Other audios may feel like standstills or like not much happens (looking at you, "Scavenger"), but this story kept moving and everything culminated into a stellar ending!

Side note: For context, there is a character in this episode that was originally introduced in the previous story "Moonflesh." It's not critical to know who she is, but that is where she is from. This is technically her trilogy, though, she doesn't appear until very late into the story.

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