After the corking outing that was The White Wolf
, this next audio adventure (an exclusive too!), comes another low~key affair in the shape of The Shadow People
. This tale starts out pretty poorly it has to be said. The first few minutes are filled with cheese as we are introduced, in a rather clunky fashion, to the show and its characters. (Though I find it hard to believe that someone who has never seen The Sarah Jane Adventures
is going to be buying this - why bother?) The line "we have adventures" was not only unnecessary, it made me physically groan and roll my eyes.
Anyway, after clunksville, we find Sarah Jane and the gang going off on a school trip - I mean, what could possibly go wrong, on a school trip....? Lots, thankfully. SJ's parent show, Doctor Who
, is evoked with the mere mention of sat~nav. Even more so when the flippin'
thing breaks down - one expected the Sontarans in droves. (They didn't though, boo!) More things go wrong through imagined sightings and odd visions and the creepy factor (no, not Simon Cowell) gets pumped up with a good old sit about the campfire, telling ghost stories.
This facet of the story was highly entertaining and I wonder if the BEEB should look into doing a yearly special (like the Halloween episodes of The Simpsons
) where the viewer is treated to one~off ghost stories from the past told by Sarah Jane, Luke, Rani and Clyde. Might have been slightly more interesting than what was to follow. Elisabeth Sladen does her very best, giving much warmth and playfulness to all the characters, but it's all a bit, well, humdrum. Now, I want to hear more about the "extraterrestrial warlord disguised as a kitten"...