Mephistopheles Arkadian persuades President Romana to meet
him on the Vienna-Calais Transcontinental Express in September
1939. One of the train's passengers is Cecilia Pollard, sister
of Charley. But what does an intergalactic secrets broker
want with a fascist sympathiser...?
You may notice that I have dropped John (K9) Leeson from the
regular cast named in the "Starring" line, above. This is
because, in the great tradition of the Doctor Who television
series, the metal mutt is forced to sit out most of this intriguing
adventure within the confines of his mistress's TARDIS due
to unfavourable local conditions - in this case, the fact
that Romana (Lalla Ward) is on 1930s Earth, where robot dogs
are not commonplace.
his absence is more than compensated for by the presence of
some excellent guest stars. Hugo Myatt makes a welcome return
as Arkadian, the dodgy dealer last heard in Chapter One of
this series, who offers the President some closure with information
regarding the debacle on the planet Gryben. Susan Engel is
also enjoyable as an eccentric elderly passenger, Ms Joy.
Fisher, better known as the Eighth Doctor's companion Charley
Pollard, plays Charley's nazi-sympathising sister. Her political
views are unpalatable - and certainly cause some friction
with Leela (Louise Jameson), who has confronted more than
her fair share of class and race prejudice in her time - yet
Cecilia is also a rather sad and tragic character. (At least
Leela and Romana don't meet Vicky Pollard, the inarticulate
teen from the comedy show Little Britain. She would
have made their journey truly hellish!)
The period and location prepare us for a mystery, probably
involving a murder. Writer Alan Barnes gives us that and more,
by also mixing in a brain-straining temporal dichotomy. The
train setting also makes a refreshing change from the sterile
world of Gallifrey.
My quest to rationalise this series into the same continuity
as the New Adventures novel Lungbarrow continues!
Regular readers may recall that, in my review of Chapter One,
I suggested that, since Andred is now believed to be dead,
this miniseries and the Doctor Who audio drama Zagreus
could take place after Lungbarrow, if we assume that
the pregnant Leela suffered a miscarriage. It has been pointed
out that Lungbarrow is unlikely to have occurred before
these audio adventures, because in Zagreus Leela and
Romana do not appear to have ever met each other before. Well,
without giving too much away, it has now become possible to
resolve that little issue...
Blind Eye remains on track throughout its journey, and
brings the series satisfyingly to the end of the line.
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