Monday, September 2, 2013

Doctor Who - The Ripple Effect Review

Doctor Who:
The Ripple Effect
By Malorie Blackman

The Doctor and Ace are trapped in a Temperal Plexus which is a type of void that traps spaceships of all kinds and there is hardly any way to get out of it.  While stuck there Ace claims that she saw another TARDIS but the never got to see investigate that as The Doctor was able to get the TARDIS free they make an emergency stop at the closest planet.  Everything loos normal but The Doctor has his doubts as he hopes nothing happened from what he did to escape the Plexus. 

Things get stranger as when The Doctor and Ace begin to explore the planet they see kids playing but then they see Daleks.  The Daleks then follow them back to the TARDIS when one follows them in and the Doctor immobilizes it.  In comes a girl named Tulana who scolds The Doctor and asks why he would attack a defenseless Dalek.  The Doctor is puzzled by this as Daleks are anything but defenseless and it appears he has landed on a planet where the Daleks are pacifists.  This is not good or is it as peaceful Daleks means tons of people will not die.  The thing is The Doctor knows their escape from the plexus changed time and it is his fault and unfortunately it is his responsibility to put things right and that means changing the Daleks back to the way they were.

The Ripple Effect is reminded me of a Virgin New Adventure Book a little bit.  It had the 7th Doctor as a cranky and manipulative figure that seemed more like the protagonist than the Daleks were.  In fact the resolution of the story reminded me a lot of what he would do in the New Adventure books by sacrificing an entire race to preserve the timelines.  There was even the argument with Ace about whether it was the right thing to do or not with The Doctor eventually proving he was right.  The ending is a tad bitter sweet and you can probably guess what happens to Tulana and her planet.

This short story is a really good story and more like a Doctor Who story than some of the other stories in this series.  What I liked about it is the questions it forms like would it be a bad thing to keep the Daleks as pacifists using their scientific knowledge for good.  It is that moral dilemma that Malorie Blackman presents us and The Doctor that makes this book pretty interesting to read and makes you wonder if you could make the tough decision that The Doctor has to make.   Reading The Ripple Effect was really interesting and it was strange seeing the Daleks as good guys and it is a story that is worth reading.
Grade A

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