Listen free for 30 days

Doctor Who and the Ark in Space

Narrated by: Jon Culshaw
Length: 3 hrs and 35 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (23 ratings)

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

Jon Culshaw reads this exciting novelisation of a 1975 TV adventure featuring the Fourth Doctor.

At a time in the far-off future, Earth has become uninhabitable. A selection of humanity is placed, deep-frozen, in a fully automated space station to await the day of their return to Earth.

Thousands of years later, the Doctor arrives with his companions, Sarah and Harry, and finds things going suspiciously wrong. The station is under attack from the giant Wirrn, deadly creatures who, in their lust for power, now threaten the future of the whole human race....

Jon Culshaw reads this unabridged novelisation written by Ian Marter, who played Harry Sullivan in the original BBC TV series.

©2015 BBC Worldwide (P)2015 BBC Worldwide

What members say

Average customer ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    18
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    15
  • 4 Stars
    3
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    14
  • 4 Stars
    4
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Wow!

Well .... wow!

What a revelation! What a tour de Force the late Ian Marter was as a writer. Not only did he act and play the part of the fourth Doctor's male companion, Harry Sullivan, but after listening to his novelization of the classic Who story, The Ark In Space, it turns out he is a superb writer too.

The Ark In Space is an early Tom Baker era story and one I remember with fondness, so I immediately short listed this as my next purchase from Audible. After listening to the sample, my mind had been made up and I hit the purchase option right away.

There are many successful writers, some more than others, some more deserving of their success than others. Marter is one of those much lesser know, less appreciated writers. Someone who has a natural ability to put into words the story he has chosen to novelize. Marters style of writing is wonderfully straightforward, vivid and wonderfully immersive, placing the reader right there in the midst of the action. He is able to articulate through his superb and flowing prose style the most difficult scenes with fantastic detail and pace. I just wish my own ability to convey how impressed I was with his work could do it justice.

Marter also excels at adding further detail to the television version, which is done so well and so seamlessly that, for me, it's the definitive version. To be more precise, this audio version is. The production quality of this adaptation is excellent with very atmospheric sound effects that really do add greatly to the experience. In particular, the sounds of the horrific alien parasites, the Wirrn, are done superbly.

I so enjoyed the way Marter adapted this story. He, like Terrance Dicks, really captured the imagination of the reader with their wonderfully articulate style. I was amazed and repulsed at how well Marter was able to describe the horrifying metamorphosis of Noah, I think few other writers could have done as well.

If you talk writers and mention Douglas Adams, most people will have heard of him. Mention Ian Marter and you will likely draw a blank expression from most people. Ironically, in my humble opinion, Marter is a more talented writer than Adams. I was considering another Doctor Who novelization, The Pirate Planet by Douglas Adams, but after listening to the rather lack lustre sample, decided to skip it. I found Adams' style somewhat overly wordy and rather waffely.

It's a real shame Ian Marter died so young back in 1986, his talents as a writer could have reached greater heights - such a shame. I also like that Marter had the love for the show to do this. So many actors seem to shy away from the very thing that made them a house hold name and yet Marter embraced Doctor Who which shows in his superb treatment of this classic story. Marter shows a fantastic imagination when penning the additional elem,ents to this story not included in the television version. For example, he describes so vividly how Sarah felt during her trip via the transmat couch, something we are never privy to in the TV show.

Ian Marter has thoroughly impressed me and I am already seeking out other stories adapted by him. I just listened to the sample of Earth Shock and I was hooked! Now, that's good writing!!

To top off this excellent story, the amazing Jon Culshaw narrates and his Tom Baker impression is flawless. Had you not told me it was Culshaw, I would've sworn it was Baker himself. Culshaw's narration and Marter's writing is a perfect combination, it really is.

If you liked the TV version of Ark In Space, you'll absolutely love this version.

As I reflect on Who's best years and best people, I am saddened to ponder over the loss of so many greats: Elisabeth Sladen, Jon Pertwee, Barry letts, Terrance Dicks and Ian Marter amongst others. At least their wonderful legacy will live on.
!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant Culshaw.

Jon Culshaw excels again in this Doctor Who reading. His narration fully conveys the menace and disturbing nature of the story. Highly recommended.

Sort by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Reed Martin
  • Reed Martin
  • 29-07-16

Re: Culshaw is terrific with amazing voice acting.

If you could sum up Doctor Who and the Ark in Space in three words, what would they be?

If you are a fan of Tom Baker-era Dr. Who and the many classic stories of that era, then you will love the two audiobooks narrated and voice-acted by Jon Culshaw.

He does a spot-on, warmhearted, and accurate impression that often makes me laugh out loud in its exacting precision and care. All the nuances in the line readings are there and they are just wonderful.

Not to go on and on but it's almost like stumbling into a local bar and discovering the most incredible cover band ever with members who clearly have a love for the material and who are clearly fans themselves.

Listening to this audiobook brought back memories of my latch-key youth when the local PBS station would run two episodes back to back and I could imagine being whisked off into time and space with my first crush Elizabeth Sladen.

I would pay 2x as much for this wonderfully-realized nostalgic audio presentations. They are even surprisingly superior than the Dr. Who audio adaptations where cast members read a somewhat flat narration from the original episode's stage direction that is tarted up with a few sounds effects from that actual episode.

In summary, these two Baker-era Culshaw books are far, far superior to those and in my opinion just terrific.

Have you listened to any of Jon Culshaw’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

First-rate.

Any additional comments?

Please commission more of these Tom Baker-era classic episodes with full sound effects to be read by Jon Culshaw. In addition to spending millions of dollars on new, original Amazon Video productions, I would respectfully argue that these far less-expensive Jon Culshaw Dr. Who adaptations would bring Audible members of a certain age, far more appreciation and enjoyment.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for ohcar54
  • ohcar54
  • 18-11-16

Wonderful classic 4th Doctor (is there really any other?)

Bug eyed space monsters, a seemingly dead ship floating in space and alien machines working at cross puropses

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 05-07-19

great

if you like the tv show then you like this book it is a great story