“Doctor Who: Dead Air”
by James Goss
read by David Tennant
Publisher: AudioGO (2010)
1 hour and 12 minutes

I was hitting a dry spell for a while in my audiobook listening, I just couldn’t find a book I liked, so I went back to something I knew would satisfy.  This also served the purpose of missing my favorite Doctor, the Tenth Doctor, portrayed by David Tennant.  Just recently on my local PBS station a Christmas special episode of Doctor Who aired featuring David Tennant, and reminded me of how awesome he was.  So I searched and found this audio exclusive story.

It must have been meant to be, being a radio DJ, the tile “Dead Air” attracted me.  Dead Air is the worst thing to happen to a DJ and as it turns out is even worse when you have an alien weapon known as “The Hush” invading a 1960s pirate radio station.  So with My Doctor Who craving about to be filled and a story relating to my profession I was ready to hop in the TARDIS and join the 10th Doctor.

This story is read by David Tennant the Tenth Doctor, himself, so all the quirks are performed perfectly.  I was pleasantly surprised to hear his vocalizations of the other character were well done.  Tennant provided each character their own voice to the point that it almost sounded like a multi-cast performance. David Tennant’s acting skills, I already knew about, but to find out he can perform some vocal gymnastics to make the story more fun, makes him that much more my favorite doctor.

This production also features some incidental sound effects and some really neat auditory scene change triggers, and as always it is great to hear the opening and closing theme song to let you know you are going on an adventure.

Before the story begins it sounds as if the listener is hearing a lost tape from a Pirate Radio station.   “Hello, I’m the Doctor. And, if you can hear this, then one of us is going to die.”  This opening line from the Doctor reminds me of my all time favorite episode of Doctor Who, “Blink,” and I was thinking, “Cool, there are going to be Weeping Angels,” but no angels.  No loss though, this story is perfect as is.

This story begins as the Doctor has landed the TARDIS on a pirate radio station in the 1960s.  The station is on a boat off the shore of the UK. The station, Radio Bravo, is having some transmitter problems and is down for the moment.  The Doctor has travelled to Earth in search of the Hush, a terrible weapon that kills, silences and devours anything that makes noise.  The Hush has already killed some of the DJs but with the help of Layla, the Doctor tracks down the Hush but loses it when the ship’s generator shuts down and the power goes out.  Now going by sound only becomes difficult with a weapon that can intelligently imitate any person by voice.

An excellent Doctor Who adventure that stays true to continuity and the essence of the Doctor himself.

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