And so we find ourselves here already; the first series of Fourth Doctor Adventures have come to an end. But don’t worry, the moment has been prepared for, there are plenty more stories to come and Tom Baker is finally back, for at least two more years, as the Doctor.
But what of the Fourth Doctor right now? What’s going to happen to him after events of Trail of the White Worm? Well, it’s very simple really, he’s going to shine. Shine so brightly that, my dears; you’ll wonder how we ever dealt with him being away for so long in the first place.
The Oseidon Adventure is exactly what it says on the tin, an adventure. It picks up the cliffhanger from Trail of the White Worm and then storms ahead with action scenes and funky exposition without getting involved in too many emotional or heart wrenching scenes. If you’re a fan of serious, doom laden drama then this may not be your exact cup of tea, this is a story that is unashamedly fun with writer Alan Barnes clearly relishing in the fact that he’s getting to write scenes for the Fourth Doctor and the Master together and in the same room.
The Master’s plan, which is as gargantuan and as insane as always, is also layered and effective. It captures the essence of this incarnation’s desperation and the levels that he will go to in order to secure his dreams. It also helps that the Fourth Doctor’s loopiness (as opposed to the sombre version that the Master encounters in The Deadly Assassin, The Keeper of Traken and Logopolis) seems to put the Master off his game somewhat. Louise Jameson also gets a bit of one on one time with silk voiced Geoffrey Beevers and suddenly you can think of all the possibilities of the Master trying to sway her over to his side, it’s cracking stuff to listen to the two of them verbally have at it and there’s even a cameo of a set from the third Doctor’s era (that’ll make sense once you listen to the story).
The Kraals provide little more than fodder in this tale; their presence merely there to grab our attention but to be honest, with the promise of the Doctor and the Master facing off against one another, our attention is already well and truly grabbed. They do serve well to evoke memories of running through the woods with Sarah Jane Smith and the Doctor and the second that you hear an android’s loaded finger being fired brings up a wave of nostalgia as great as hearing the ominous “Dalek heartbeat” we all love.
Overall, The Oseidon Adventure is a great end to a great series of adventures for the Fourth Doctor and Leela; everything is wrapped up in a nice neat package with the promise of more tales to come.