Doctor Who: Lost Stories: The Queen Of Time by Brian Hayles, adapted by Catherine Harvey (cd review).
One of the Lost Stories, ‘The Queen Of Time’ was to be a Second Doctor adventure with JaMie and Zoe accompanying him into this strange world. Far out might be a term applied to the ‘60s and this adventure certainly feels like someone might have been slightly tripping when they suggested it. I can see why it wasn’t eventually made, although its tightly claustrophobic locations would have suited the studio settings. it was generally confined to, it may well have been abandoned for other reasons. One of the things I noticed about this version is it is pretty scary and quite graphic in many scenes.
I think ‘The Queen Of Time’ would have given me nightmares, as did great films deemed suitable viewing for young minds such as L. Rider Haggard’s ‘She’ and HG Wells’ ‘The Time Machine’. I never quite recovered from their inherent creepiness.
This also fits in well with the general premise of Doctor Who where the companions are subjected to some horrific events and the Doctor must try to save them.
Things I do like about this are the attempt to make a more modern story. The actors and writers do discuss the way women were thought of and portrayed in the original plot which they have attempted to update. ‘The Queen Of Time’ has some wonderful word pictures. As this was not originally an audio, they have done the best they can, but there is necessarily a deal of description which is done very well, leaving the listener with some wonderful images.
One of the things I’m not so keen on is the breathless Second Doctor. He’s well performed by Fraser Hines and it certainly makes the story flow better but this works better in a ‘Companion Chronicle’, when the Doctor has less to do.
This is one of those unexplainable Doctor Who adventures that take place out of normal space and time. As such, it can get away with more and also provide some larger than normal set pieces, such as trapping Jamie and Zoe in a giant hour glass.
I think that it might have been a good story to film with the Second Doctor but as the BBC would probably have wiped it anyway! ‘The Queen Of Time’ is great fun with a marvelous enemy for the Doctor, the Queen of Time, played by guest actress Caroline Faber, as a superb cackling harridan who serves up possibly the worst ever dinner to die for.
(pub: Big Finish. 2 CDs 120 minute story with extras. Price: CD: £12.99 (UK), Download: £10.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-78178-096-1)
cast: Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury and Caroline Faber
check out website: www.bigfinish.com