Doctor Who: Sword of Orion

Sword of Orion is the second Doctor Who audio drama featuring Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor. In it, he winds up aboard a salvage ship where an unknown creature is killing off crew members, and it is linked to their latest mission. And judging from the cover, you can guess the Cybermen are involved.

Sword of Orion is a straightforward, old school Doctor Who adventure. Doctor and companion arrive, they find a dying crew member. Said crew member dies, the crew blames the Doctor and companion, and much confusion and delay ensues. This doesn’t hurt Sword of Orion a great deal, but the story feels (like a lot of the Eighth Doctor’s first season) like a “safe” one to tell. The construction of the story creates a satisfying, creepy atmosphere, and the Cybermen are pulled off well here, better than on some of their previous TV outings. Being one of the iconic Who villains, what new can really be done with them, given the time frame when this story was released (before the new series and its first Cybermen two-parter)?

McGann and Fisher are good, as usual. They aren’t really challenged in this story, from an acting perspective, but they manage the most out of the material. The twist in the latter half of the story is a okay, but by the end of the story, you feel like you’ve seen (or rather, heard) this tale before. Sword of Orion is good, it manages to be a decent tale, and retains an old school charm, but disappoints in that it underachieves to a great degree.

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