Kaldor City: a Magic Bullet Production

Critical Praise for Kaldor City: Death's Head


"Death's Head marks a watershed for the Kaldor City saga. It is a political thriller in slim sci-fi trappings that is light years ahead of the Doctor Who TV serial and novel (namely The Robots of Death and Corpse Marker) that spawned it and indeed ahead of the first episode Occam's Razor, which was also of a very high standard. This is undoubtedly Boucher's finest work ever; even his best Blake's 7 episodes and his own series Star Cops were never as hard-hitting, dark and as grim as this particular saga. Judging by this episode, it is clear that Kaldor City is in later chapters going to forge for itself a distinctive identity that is very much in spite of the two well loved sci-fi TV series that inspired it, and go in directions that are bold and exciting, yet simultaneously confounding and bewildering."
--Damian Christie, Outpost Gallifrey

"Of all the future worlds in Doctor Who, none is so razor-tongued as Kaldor.... It makes Chris Boucher's tale, touted as "Chandleresque suspense," fun-- Paul Darrow's cold tones could make the line "I love you" sound like "You sack of shit." Returning with Darrow from the first Kaldor City are Brian Croucher, Scott Fredericks, Trevor Cooper, Peters Miles and Tuddenham, and Russell Hunter reprising Uvanov, the company chairholder experiencing another bad day when someone turns up trying to flog him the skull of Taren Capel.... Who's behind it and why, Boucher needn't fear us guessing; this is a very tangled web."
--Vanessa Bishop, Doctor Who Magazine

"Builds tremendously on the established characterisation, giving the listener a real insight into the attitudes and motivations of the main characters. The complicatedness of the story combined with the narrative structure ensures that Death's Head benefits from repeated listening, to untangle the web of cause and effect by showing how unconnected events can be manipulated into affecting each other."
-Simon Catlow, Shockeye's Kitchen

"Boucher... demonstrates that he is a master of sardonic dialogue for any performed medium. The cynical exchanges that take place between, for example, Iago (Paul Darrow) and Uvanov (Russell Hunter) or between Carnell and practically anybody else he speaks to, are laden with barbed double meanings and sometimes almost Shakespearean word play. Dialogue gems include Iago's assertion, delivered in Darrow's trademark deadpan style, that an unexpected visitor has been thoroughly searched: "If he is carrying a weapon, it's not going to emerge for at least six hours... and it'll want wiping down before he can use it." A well-acted head game of labyrinthine duplicity."
--Richard McGinlay, Sci-Fi Online

"Death's Head is a complicated and mature story that is satisfyingly different from Occam's Razor and while initially appearing convoluted, after repeated listening Chris Boucher's story reveals itself as an accomplished piece of writing. It is an excellent follow on chapter and should provide the basis for future Kaldor City story threads."
--Aonghus Heatley with Gene Haddon, Psy Online

"Blayes (Tracy Russell) provides a welcome female voice in the male-dominated world of security... Overall, this tightly plotted play exudes quality. The production, sound, music and performances all add up to a superb sequel to three excellent predecessors. If DWAS members need a better reason than these to buy Death's Head, a quick run through of the cast list might repay attention. Buy this."
--Celestial Toyroom

"It's good to see Carnell getting more of a role... Scott Fredericks does a nice line in bored amusement. There's a real confidence about the productions. Chris Boucher is thoroughly relaxed and comfortable with the world he's working in. The glimpses we get of the desert and the oases seem to add a lot of texture to the society of Kaldor City. I'm looking forward to hearing what's out there! "
-Daniel O'Mahony

"The audience is kept guessing as the plot twists and turns in byzantine fashion, and only towards the end do we, along with Iago, truly begin to understand... Tracy Russell makes a particularly strong debut as Blayes; Trevor Cooper is in fine form as the increasingly psychopathic Rull. Although those two deserve special mention, there is not a bad performance on the CD... It is a story of a very different character from the first one, quieter and more overtly intellectual in tone."
-Sarah McEvoy, Judith Proctor's Blake's 7 Website

"What can I say?? Words fail me, so you'll just have to make do with Kaldor City 2 is even better than its predecessor!! Truly! The dialogue is just out of this world."
-Hugh Howie, Doctor Who Audio List

"I agree!! It is fantastic!! So much is packed in to 55 mins. The chemistry between Hunter and Darrow is wonderful... and the dialogue - OHH! - like wine!!! Congratulations to Alistair Lock. This surpasses Dr Who that, supposedly, inspired it!! Please make some more CDs!!"
--Anonymous Reviewer, Doctor Who Audio List

"Great job on these fantastic productions!"
--David Gevanthor


A full review of "Death's Head" by James Applegate is also available on this site.

Click to return home