The Fate of Krelos

Posted in Audio by - March 17, 2017
The Fate of Krelos

Released July 2015

‘The Fate of Krelos’ marks the opening instalment of the two-part finale to the fourth series of The Fourth Adventures, a run buoyed by some very strong releases amidst the expected sense of nostalgia that pervades the range. Surprisingly, writer Nicholas Briggs begins the conclusion with a rather minimalist piece intended to set the tone for the true finale, the rather experimental nature of the release readily apparent in the blurb that states that, while something gigantic is descending upon Krelos, the Doctor notes that the TARDIS could do with a good clean as Leela and he set off for a spot of fishing.

The title of the conclusion makes no secret that the Cybermen are going to be involved in events, but ‘The Fate of Krelos’ does little to foreshadow their arrival. In fact, the story almost revels in its lack of plot and momentum, allowing for a more intimate exploration of the leads as they prepare for a holiday and then find themselves trying to comprehend the seemingly instant destruction of the city before them. Although there isn’t quite a strong enough sense of horror created to substantiate the sparse action, the mystery and intrigue is certainly more than able to hold attention throughout the release while keeping anticipation high for what will assuredly be a more traditional conclusion.

As mentioned, though, it is the exploration of the TARDIS team that truly carries this release, and the leads all deliver immense performances. Pointedly, Leela and the Fourth Doctor finally have the classic argument regarding why the Doctor cannot simply go back in time to change the history of Krelos to save all of its people, and Louise Jameson and Tom Baker are superb as they delve into the emotional material with gusto. It’s plainly apparent that the Doctor would love nothing more than to do so, but he would be no better than so many others whom he abhors were he to interfere on that level. This is quite a contrast to the opening scenes in which Leela’s comfort around the Doctor is readily apparent as she teases him about landing the TARDIS in the wrong location, and the dichotomy as events take a more serious turn works wonderfully. Baker also excels in a truly melancholy scene in which he finds a piece of Jamie’s wardrobe in the TARDIS, not knowing exactly what happened to his brave and loyal friend but sure that he must have died in battle.

Not to be outdone, though, John Leeson does marvelous work as K9, somehow adding enough nuance to his performance to indicate that something’s not quite right while remaining very true to character. K9’s loyalty to his master is second to none, but the tampering is sure to pay big dividends in the concluding story. That sentiment sums up ‘The Fate of Krelos’ fairly aptly, though, in that it very much is an appetizer for the main course yet to come. The notion of the Doctor and Leela going on holiday and inadvertently causing this chain reaction of devastation is fascinating in its own right, but the script is sometimes a little too overt with its observations of the Doctor’s mistakes. Nonetheless, as a character study, ‘The Fate of Krelos’ succeeds ably and is a surprisingly poignant and emotional opener to the season finale.

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