Fourth Doctor Lost Story: The Valley of Death

valley

Writer: Jonathan Morris (from a story by Phillip Hinchcliffe)

Director: Ken Bentley

Producer: David Richardson

Companion: Leela (Louise Jameson)

(Note: This is the second of two Lost Stories featuring the Fourth Doctor. It’s part of the Fourth Doctor Lost Stories Boxed Set. I reviewed each story separately.)

Summary: The Doctor and Leela meet Edward Perkins in the Amazon Rain Forest, where he is searching for details surrounding an expedition led by his great-grandfather. They join him on his quest in a plane. After a crash landing, they discover an abandoned spacecraft and tribesmen. The spacecraft belongs to an alien race called the Lurons, who can make copies of anyone they encounter. They’ve even made copies of the Doctor and Leela themselves!

Review: One of the things I’ve always thought would be perfect for Doctor Who is an Indiana Jones-style story, and we get it here. (no, I haven’t listened to the Bernice Summerfield adventures. Why do you ask?)

Edward Perkins almost feels like a companion in his own right.  He has great banter with both Leela and the Doctor and the three of them make a great team.  I was laughing through the whole plane crash scene.

The audio on this one is great. I loved the background animal noises and rushing water. It evoked the rainforest well.

Nigel Carrington is the true star of the story as Godrin, the leader of the Luron. He has all the hamminess of the greatest one-off villains.

The story really felt like a tribute to Hinchcliffe’s tenure as producer with its gothic air and spooky backdrop.

Overall Review: 9/10

Continuity: When Leela is struck by a poison dart, she mistakes it for the Janis thorn, which was native to her planet. Two other stories where the Fourth Doctor was duplicated are “The Android Invasion” and “Meglos”. Leela is blinded, as she was in “The Horror of Fang Rock”.

 

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