Last night, a new inmate arrived at Blackledge Prison. Though
he's never been there before, Michael Kent knows every corridor
and even recognises some of the guards. Sapphire and Steel
arrived this morning, posing as government inspectors investigating
the death of another prisoner. Stuart Kilsby hanged himself
in an empty cell - but how...?
first series of Big Finish's Sapphire & Steel audio
assignments draws to a close with this supernatural prison
drama. In keeping with its setting, the story has a particularly
adult flavour to it. With its harsh language and references
to child murder and sexual perversion, this hard-edged tale
by Nigel Fairs (based on a story by John Ainsworth) is a far
cry from the family viewing provided by the original ATV series.
aspect of this story that sounds rather unusual is the voice
of the young boy, Marcus. If you think he sounds a bit effeminate,
that's because he's voiced by a woman, Fairs' former Faction
Paradox colleague Suzanne Procter, who played Cousin Justine
in the BBV series. What, are there no male child actors or
child impersonators out there?
far more successful aspect of this adventure is the fact that,
unlike several recent stories, I did not work out the nature
of the time anomaly any earlier than Sapphire and Steel did.
The temporal mix-up is a particularly perplexing one this
60 minutes' duration, Dead Man Walking is short even
by single-disc standards, but the drama is supplemented by
a bonus music track and an additional disc promoting Big Finish's
other wares (with the exception, rather oddly, of Doctor
Who). The good news is that this series is far from dead,
and Warner and Harker will be returning with six new assignments
in the near future. I trust they will be as well executed
as this series has been.
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