“Doctor Who: The Runaway Train”
by Oli Smith
read by Matt Smith
Published by BBC Audiobooks (2010) (now AudioGo)
1 hour and 4 minutes.
Needing my quick fix for some stories from the Doctor Who realm, I sought out and found some short audio only stories. To make things even better I found some that were read by the actors that portrayed the tenth and eleventh doctors, David Tennant and Matt Smith respectively. I went with the Matt Smith narration this time so I could get myself more hyped up for the next season which begins this fall.
Being read by Matt Smith made the book sound as if it were an actual episode. I do have to say that it was mildly funny hearing Matt Smith voicing some of the cowboys involved in the story. I wouldn’t say he captured the authentic sound, but he made the voices work in the story. Once the opening scene occurs and the Doctor Who theme music plays I was in the story until the closing theme.
The story opens on a railroad platform and a group of cowboys are gathered. When a wind blows up and the TARDIS appears, the grizzled men welcome the Doctor and say they are ready to help. Being a time travel based series the Doctor never really knows if he is coming or going and in this case he finds himself surprised that these men he’s never met are waiting for him, and even more surprising is that they were promised some lush farmland as payment.
The task at hand is that a race of beings that were once at war with another race is trying to find a new home. To find this home they have to terraform the planet to make it habitable to their species. They send a device to Earth in the year 1864 to terraform the planet for their new home. It is now up to the Doctor to keep this from happening.
With the help of the grizzled cowboys and Amy Pond, the Doctor puts the terraforming device on a train to get it away from civilization in case he can’t prevent it from activating. While they are on the train the aliens appear to keep the Doctor from stopping their destruction of Earth. In a thrilling joyride through the Old West, this story by Oli Smith will keep you on the edge of your seat and entertained through the Doctors antics.