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  • Doctor Who and the Carnival of Monsters

  • A 3rd Doctor Novelisation
  • By: Terrance Dicks
  • Narrated by: Katy Manning
  • Length: 3 hrs and 33 mins
  • Radio/TV Programme
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (20 ratings)

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Summary

Katy Manning reads this exciting classic novelisation of a Third Doctor TV adventure.

The Doctor and Jo land on a cargo ship crossing the Indian Ocean in the year 1926. Or so they think. Far away on a planet called Inter Minor, a travelling showman is setting up his live peepshow, watched by an eager audience of space officials. On board ship, a giant hand suddenly appears, grasps the TARDIS and withdraws. Without warning, a prehistoric monster rises from the sea to attack...

What is happening? Where are they? Only the Doctor realises, with horror, that they might be trapped...

©2014 BBC Worldwide Ltd (P)2014 BBC Worldwide Ltd

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well read

love katy manning. she brought the book to life. very well read. really enjoyed it.

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Drashigs on the starboard side

I have memories of seeing this as a small boy, and the long necked sea monsters that terrorise the 1990's cruise ship, and then the alien Drashigs, also with their dragon like serpentine necks and terrifying roars, captured my imagination. I remember being pretty bemused, though, by the scenes on the alien world with bickering aliens and I had a similar experience listening to this today.
The scenes on the ship, with its time loop mystery, and rampaging Plesiosauruses, is satisfying and atmospheric story telling. When we find out that they are all miniaturised and held in 'the Scope,' a piece of outlawed entertainment tech held by showman Vorg and his 'glamorous assistant,' that's a neat development, with a load of potential, especially when we find out that the box also holds many other alien species including Ogerons and Cybermen, other classic Who monsters.
What stymies it slightly is the seemingly endless stand off between Vorg, his assistant Shima and the alien humanoids whose planet they have come to with the scope, with a conspiracy between the aliens also thrown in for good measure. But all the pieces do click into place in the final act, and the final impression was a light, pacy and fun Doctor Who adventure with some clever story telling and monstrous monsters.
As with many of the other audiobook adaptations of the Target novels, there is good sound production with some sparing but effectively used sound effects and musical cues. These nudge the recording towards audio-drama without losing the cosy quality if an audio-book, here wonderfully read by Katy Manning, the actor who gave us the wonderful Jo Grant, who also features in the story. Katy captures Jon Pertwee's tones perfectly, as well as the range of alien and human characters. I loved her reading, really well paced and very clear.