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'A Storm of Angels'

CD audio adventure released January 2005, 2 episodes

Writer: Marc Platt
Director: John Ainsworth

Roots: Alexander Pope and Spencer's The Faerie Queene (Elizabeth as Gloriana) The Doctor is called Methuselah "And what do you do?" The Doctor paraphrases Laocoon in The Aeneid Bk II ("Be wary of Greeks bearing gifts") Drake's description of the Firmament as "a churning wall of ice and rock" may be based on Genesis 1:1 Corinthians 15:52 (The Last Trumpet) The Queen refers to "That film, The Comedy of Errors") Dee's shewstone 'angel' Uriel is from the Biblical book of Enoch.

Dialogue Triumphs: [On the Doctor and Susan in the transformed TARDIS] "sweet and sour mixed in one flagon"

"Beware of sweet, my Lady Susan. With time sweet cloys and turns to sour."

"Quiet, you sanctimonious lump of clinker. You should have stayed at home, in the dark with your thoughts."

"God preserve us from the alarums and excursions of women!"

"Susan, you saved me from that terrible stifling trap. You opened a door with a whole universe behind it. You could have escaped, too, but you stayed and got ceremonially archived, just like the rest of Gallifrey"

Continuity: The solar system is not yet circumnavigated and is still being charted by "Sir Francis" (presumably Drake - "slayer of the fiery dragons of Mercury", as it is indicated in the story blurb that he begins to do this in 1585), and in 1508 (Ibid) Vasco De Gama set foot on Mars. Jewels glow in caverns of the asteroid belt, and are in fact a colony species, each crystal is a single thought in a gestalt mind "like scattered brain cells".

Nonesuch Palace is a floating residence of Elizabeth, surrounded by a power field. Technology includes cine film. The Walsingham 68 rapid repeater is a gun favoured by the Queen.

The Aztec Empire is a major rival to Gloriana's fleet. On Earth they developed the wheel a century ago.

Temporal Agent Zeuro of the Central Office of Temporal Observation, arrests the Doctor for "repeated and unregistered interference in the flow of both established and predicted quantile events"

The TARDIS appears as a barrel and previously transformed into a Morris Oxford. The Doctor reverses his ship's time vector drive, dragging both his and Zeuru's TARDISes through a rift in Time.

As Lord President of Gallifrey the 'real' Susan has had to spend her entire Presidential term attempting to cover up the results of her grandfather's meddling.

The Doctor fancies he is a master of the written word. He hasn't visited the Sixteenth Century before (or Shakespeare), though the space between Mars and Jupiter is "familiar territory". He created an alternative Susan in his TARDIS' possibility generator because he couldn't bear to be alone.

The Doctor recalls bread from the Panopticon canteen ("it always reminded me of old exam papers")

Previous Adventures: The Doctor's journeys have also included visits to the Thaleks (mentioned in Auld Mortality) a form of Cybermen (their catchphrase: "resistance will be crushed") and Elvis. He taught Leonardo the technology of flight, rescued the princes in the Tower, crafted a hearing aid for Beethoven and warned the Aztecs of Cortez' approach, during which adventure the Aztecs mistook the Doctor for their reincarnated High Priestess. The Doctor and Susan took Leonardo to visit the Ore, a race who had ships which travelled by astrodynamic principles derived from harmonies of the Spheres.

Links: Auld Mortality. The Aztecs. Thematically and elementally this work makes an interesting companion to Platt's adaptation of Barbara Clegg's Lost Story Point of Entry, which mentions John Dee's obsidian mirror, contains an Elizabethan court threatened by alien artefacts among Aztec plunder, and has Peri quote Gloriana (and Elizabeth II) with the line "And what do you do?" Genesis of the Daleks (time rings)

Location: Between Mars and the asteroid belt, and the orbital Nonesuch Palace in the Earth year 1588 (corrupted time) St Barnabas' Eve is twenty days away

The Bottom Line: "When you're ankle deep in tears and blood you can't let people suffer because its history."

A real flight of fantasy. Like Masters of War, A Storm of Angels picks up the threads of its predecessor and convincingly spins a new tale with the consequences of the first still casting shadows. Geoffrey Bayldon's a delight here, even more irascible than Hartnell, while Carole Ann Ford's fraught yet regal Susan is one of her best BF turns. Typically for a Marc Platt audio the soundscape and canvas is vast and imaginative, with nods to the author's unmade TV story Shrine (the bejewelled zombie Moses in particular would have been spectacular to see). A sheer delight.

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