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Doctor Who - Other Lives

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A four-part story written by Gary Hopkins with Paul McGann, Ron Moody, Mike Holloway, Francesca Hunt, India Fisher as Charley and Conrad Westmaas as C'Rizz.

Scene of of the Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations. Scene also of a plot to unseat the Government, dethrone the monarch, and start a republic.
If the Duke of Wellington is himself to be believed...

While the Doctor and Charley are drawn into the murky world of nineteenth-century politics, C'rizz struggles to maintain his dignity against growing odds.

What begins as an attempt to prevent murder quickly become a desparate race to avert revolution, Separated from the TARDIS, the travellers are left to wonder if they'll get their own lives back or be forever entangled with the lives of others.

And who is Mrs Georgina Marlow? What need does she feel that the Doctor can satisfy?

I was looking forward to giving Other Lives a relisten. I remember enjoying the story but was also intrigued as I could also remember feeling the whole thing a little inconsequential and wanted to refresh my memory as to what issues, if any, I had with the story. Thankfully, this turned out to be one minor niggle which is explained by the style of the piece and therefore I can forgive in what is a thoroughly enjoyable story.

Released in 2005, Other Lives sees the Doctor, Charley and C’Rizz arrive at the Great Exhibition at the Crystal Palace in 1851. What ensues is, to all intents and purposes, a Doctor Who version of a Charles Dickens’ novel.

Dickens wrote novels which were full of coincidences and this Other Lives’ plot hinges on many of these. It is also chock full of Dickens-style character names – Fazackerly, Dimplesqueeze and Crackles; which help add to the tone of the story.

Other Lives sees the Doctor ‘mistaken’ for a long-lost husband; Charley mistaken for a prostitute and a French diplomat and C’Rizz treated as a freak in a travelling show. The catalyst for this is the Great Exhibition and two of its visitors, French diplomats - Monsieur and Madame de Roche. When the TARDIS arrives, the Doctor and Charley set off to explore the Exhibition whilst poor Eutermesan C’Rizz is forced to remain in the TARDIS lest his alien, reptilian looks upset the sensitive Victorians. An assassination attempt on the French diplomats leads to C’Rizz being forced into a freak show, Charley ending up on the streets of London and the Doctor losing the TARDIS when it dematerialises with the de Roche’s aboard!

130 minutes