Friday, 5 February 2010

Galaxy Four - February 2010


  1. And Season 3 opens with a story that has an interesting concept with a nice twist. Two races trapped on a dying planet about to explode and trying to escape destruction. The Drahvins, all female and humanoidly alluring - though I'm not sure humanoidly is a word - and the monstrous and secretive Rills. The twist being that the scary looking Rills are the reasonable and humane ones while the Drahvins are automatons designed for war and conquest. I LIKE!

    The Doctor and friends are once again on good form, though Vicki naming the Rill robots Chumblies I find a bit childish, and that's probably indicative of why this story overall fails to gel for me. The interesting concept is constantly undercut by the feeling the writer is explaining things very simply so children get it with not enough layering for parents. Compare this story, for example, to the Viking attack on Edith in "The Time Meddler", where the details are implied to older viewers and not shown to younger ones and so gives something to the entire audience. Here everything is there on the surface.

    The story is nonetheless an entertaining listen and certainly has some fine moments that makes me wish I could see them. The first sight of the Rill cliffhanger in particular comes across fantastically on audio. Though I'm quite glad I can't see Steven being beaten up by Maaga, not because she's a woman but simply because it even SOUNDS stagey.

    Overall, a nice tale that could have been better but is certainly not awful, and an improvement over much of Season 2 for my tastes. 5/10

  2. "Oh, we have a small number of men. We keep as many as we need, the rest we kill. They consume valuable food and perform no particular function."

    See that, men? That's the future. Get used to it.

    Ah, Galaxy Four. In which it's swiftly established that the majority of Drahvins are a) blonde, b) boobylicious, c) do whatever you tell them to.

    Barbara Wright, this adventure should have been yours.

    I've never seen this before, and despite the lack of much visual material, thoroughly enjoyed it. Nice aliens, nice material, nicely written. And the restoration, by Loose Cannon productions really helped me. As this is one of the stories for which few telesnaps survive, the team have reconstructed some of the shots themselves - and it works. Very nicely done.

    A great little story, and a terrible shame that William Emms never wrote for the series again.

  3. I'm pretty much going to agree with the above comments. This is a really pacey and exciting adventure. Once again the visuals for this one are lost but even based on the soundtrack (and Peter Purves' excellent narration) this seems like a really good story.

    Some observations...

    Galaxy Four has kind of a Star Trek feel doesn't it? I can just imagine how things would have turned out for Maaga if Captain Kirk had turned up instead of the Doctor.

    Stephanie Bidmead puts in a terrifically villainous performance as Maaga, leader of the statuesque but simple Drahvins.

    One of my favourite lines from an alien race so far is when the Rill spokesperson tells the Doctor "We are not deaf, you know."

    Another good story for Vicki, and I thought for Steven although I read that his dialogue was written for Barbara and just swapped over to him.

    Interesting that everyone joins in the use of "Chumblies" as a nickname for the Rills robots, including the Rills themselves!

    An interesting and fun story which, although (based only on the soundtrack) not as good as The Time Meddler, maintains the momentum of the preceeding story and is a great start to series three.

    Better than - The Sensorites
    Not as good as - The Rescue

  4. Good point Rob - it is a very Trek like story this one.