Monday, 28 July 2014

The Mothership Target Zone: Doctor Who and the Brain of Morbius

Target Zone August 2014

007 Doctor Who and the Brain of Morbius

ISBN 0 426 11674 7
Reviewed by Simon Mallinson

Why do so many spaceships crash land on Karn, a bleak, lonely and seemingly deserted planet?

Are they doomed by the mysterious powers of the strange, black-robed Sisterhood, jealously guarding their secret of eternal life? Or does the mad Dr Solon, for some evil purpose of his own, need the bodies of the victims?

And more especially the body of DOCTOR WHO . . .

Ah another book novelised by Terrance Dicks, from his partnership with Robert Holmes.  The book seems to mirror the horror, suspense, and damn bleak and moody tone of this story.

I remember this story; in fact it was one of the first that really spooked me.  I love this story, never mind the goofs; it is pure gothic horror, rivaling the Horror of Fang Rock or to fans Fraggle Rock.  From the start both Terrance and Robert set out their stall, lightning, bleak rocky environment, and a hulking killer.  Then they up the story by bringing in a Time Lord (ok I know it’s a brain), and a crazed wide eyed doctor (no not Tom Baker).

In the Sisterhood, it works in the book, because the imagination paints a picture.  The show, in all fairness the head sister is spooky and brilliant but the rest may be smoking the tumble weeds.  This is a great reminder that imagination is better than pure visual fiction.

For the horror fans amongst us, it’s a good interpretation of the Frankenstein story, even though the monster is enough to make you laugh.  I swear there is a similar monster in an old 50s B movie.  Also this is one of the first occasions where we get to think the Doctor is older than he says.

All in all it’s a great story featuring Tom Baker as the Doctor and the eternally lovely Liz Sladen as Sarah Jane.

Please buy this book and enjoy, also catch the TV show as well for a spine chilling laugh.  

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