The Doctor discovers the dark side to explorer Christopher Columbus


FOLLOWING on from Houdini’s guest appearance in last month’s DoD release, here we have another historical celebrity turning up alongside the Sixth Doctor and Peri, and he actually comes across far worse than the escapologist.

This time round it is Admiral Christopher Columbus, self-professed “greatest explorer in the world” according to this story, as the time travellers embark on a mission to retrieve an omni-paradox – a reality-warping space-time event – on behalf of the Eleventh Doctor.

As you might expect, the Doctor is overjoyed at the thought of meeting another of his historical heroes, but as American student Peri emphasises, Columbus was far from the romantic explorer many people perceive him to be.

In reality he was a slave-trader, murderer of innocents and all-round unpleasant sort, who flouted Spanish law for his own rewards. So when the TARDIS arrives on board the Santa Maria, moored off-shore of the New World, the Time Lord and his friend must tread carefully if they are to avoid his wrath.

Mistaken for a tribal witch doctor and his acolyte, they must not only try to thwart Columbus’ machinations, but also what a babbling crewman described as a horned beast resembling the Devil, in reality another time traveller with schemes of his own…

Nicola Bryant takes the narrative lead for this release, comfortably switching between her natural English accent and the faux-American she uses for Peri, with back-up duties from Cameron Stewart as Columbus.

The pace romps along nicely, and the attention to historical detail cannot be overlooked, giving this reviewer at least a fresh insight into the career and character of Christopher Columbus along the way.

The high standard of the Destiny of the Doctor releases has not faltered since we moved past the uninspiring opening instalment, and although the linking theme is little more than a vague plot device for most stories, it does all seem to be leading somewhere.

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