Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Doctor Who: The Roots Of Evil - A Review

When The Doctor's current companion - the warrior woman Leela - expresses a desire to go somewhere with trees, The Doctor is all too happy to oblige.  The TARDIS takes them to The Heligan Structure - a massive moon-sized space-station that is composed of one massive genetically engineered tree!

The Doctor only knows of The Heligan Structure by reputation but it seems the tree's settlers are familiar with The Doctor.  And all of them bear names like "Vengeance-Will-Be-Ours-When-The-Doctor-Dies-A-Thousand-Agonizing-Deaths" or "Agony-Without-End-Shall-Be-The-Doctor's-Punishment.".  This leaves The Doctor feeling quite unwelcome even before people start threatening to kill him or plotting to torture him.  And that is before the station itself seems to come alive and start trying to destroy him... and everyone else!

The Roots of Evil is a fun little story that perfectly captures the feeling of a Fourth Doctor/Leela story.  One can hear Tom Baker's voice while reading Philip Reeve's dialogue for The Doctor and the entire script has a dark humor common to the stories of the era.  The novel's twist for just why the people and their home hate The Doctor so much is an honest surprise and it, as well as some references to the New Doctor Who series, will be sure to tickle the funny bones of younger fans.  This story is a must-read for all fans of the series, particularly Fourth Doctor fans.

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