Time Lord Victorious: Genetics of the Daleks cover art

Time Lord Victorious: Genetics of the Daleks – Doctor Who audio review

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Genetics of the Daleks is a surprise spin-off audio drama for Time Lord Victorious multi-platform story. As well as being a Big Finish play, it also sets up Escape Hunt’s A Dalek Awakens adventure too.

On Ice

Bound for a new world, the passengers of the Starship Future are in cryosleep, looked after by a skeleton crew. As Pilot Finlay (Joseph Klolska) is revived to begin his shift, he is surprised to meet a new crewmember; a Security Officer he doesn’t know, replacing one who has died unexpectedly. Meanwhile, the Future’s scientist has retrieved an apparently lifeless Dalek, frozen in deep space, and he soon falls under its thrall…

From the crew dynamics  to the Dalek threat, a fair amount of story plays out before the Doctor appears; having not chosen his destination, he suspects the Time Lords have prompted his arrival, as they are often wont to do.

Jonathan Morris’ script employs plenty of familiar sci-fi elements, with a base (ship) under siege and cryogenic suspension. However, they are freshly presented in a polished storyline, with some good old-fashioned human criminality. This is a work of greater depth and complexity than the other TLV audios so far. We cannot help but wonder if its distance from the main storyline helps? Or is it simply testament to the combined experience of the writer and his script editor, Jacqueline Rayner. Either way, while the story connects to the Escape Hunt experience, which we imagine most listeners will not have enjoyed, it remains a great thriller its own right.

Wider Connections

Linking to the wider TLV storyline, this Dalek has fallen back from the Dark Times. It references the events of Mutually Assured Destruction, as well as warning this Doctor about what he will become. Not that he appears to take that very seriously!

As only Doctor Who can, the story is one of the last in the TLV timeline, yet involves  its earliest Doctor. Tom Baker is on warm and witty form here, surrounded by a solid guest cast. We loved Pippa Haywood’s ruthless Captain Graff, as well as Clive Mantle’s shady Medical Officer Chuke. Nicholas Briggs is at his manipulative best too, playing with a Dalek mutant who reminded us of the reconnaissance scout from Resolution.

With its clever title, Genetics of the Daleks is a highly entertaining tale; we hope it will hook some newer fans for the glorious Fourth Doctor!

Doctor Who – Time Lord Victorious: Genetics of the Daleks is available on CD and download from Big Finish.