|Whispers of Terror|
|Main enemy:||Beth Pernell|
|Main setting:||Museum of Aural Antiquities|
|Publisher:||Big Finish Productions|
|Producer:||Jason Haigh-Ellery, Gary Russell|
|Cover by:||James Arnott|
|Release date:||November 1999|
|Format:||4 Episodes on 2 CDs|
|Big Finish Doctor Who audio stories|
|Phantasmagoria||The Land of the Dead|
|Whispers of Terror|
Publisher's summary Edit
The Doctor and Peri find themselves in the Museum of Aural Antiquities, where every sound is stored for posterity — from the speeches of Visteen Krane to security service wire taps and interrogation tapes. But they also find an intruder, mysteriously changed recordings, and a dead body.
Before long the Doctor realises that there is more going on than a simple break-in or murder. How can he defeat a creature that is made of pure sound?
The date is unknown, but sometime in the relatively near future. The Sixth Doctor and Peri land inside a curious edifice: the Museum of Aural Antiquities. It’s a facility devoted to the preservation and curation of sound, including speeches and other voice clips; and it’s curated by the eccentric Gantman, who is supremely suited for a job involving sound, as he is blind. He and his assistant are assembling a recording of the final, unbroadcast speech from one Visteen Krane, and actor-turned-politician who committed suicide shortly before he would have announced a highly-anticipated bid for the presidency.
The Doctor and Peri arrive in the middle of this, and are quickly brought to Gantman. He explains that an associate of Krane, Beth Pernell, is coming to the museum to broadcast the speech, which will provide support for her own presidential bid. Almost immediately, however, something goes wrong: A strange collection of voices and other noises begins to haunt Peri and others in the museum...and a man is killed.
It becomes apparent that the voices are more than just sounds: they are an intelligent creature, existing only in aural waves. The creature has the ability to travel in any sound, no matter how quiet; and it wants to escape the museum. It is guilty of the murder; and strangely, it is discovered to be a remnant of Visteen Krane!
Beth Pernell arrives on the scene at the worst possible time, intent on making her broadcast. However, the Doctor and Peri discover that her intentions are not what they seem. After capturing the creature, they at last piece together her plan: She is subtly altering the speech to make it appear to support her, when in fact it was delivered in direct opposition to her. The Doctor captures the sound creature; but it is tortured, and then unintentionally released, by Pernell. It allies itself with the Doctor to bring an end to her scheme by first preventing the broadcast, and then by allowing it to happen--but with changes that further make it clear that Beth is not to be trusted or elected. In addition, the edited broadcast makes it clear that Krane’s death was no suicide, but rather, a murder plotted by Beth and carried out by her accomplice, Hans Stengard. Pernell flees the museum, but dies when her vehicle explodes, a final gift from the sound creature. The creature--or rather, Krane’s echo--now restored to sanity by the Doctor, opts to remain in the museum, being supremely suited to helping Gantman with his curation duties. The Doctor and Peri then depart in the TARDIS, leaving the blind Gantman to remark, appropriately, “Well, now I’ve heard everything.”
- The Doctor - Colin Baker
- Peri Brown - Nicola Bryant
- Beth Pernell - Lisa Bowerman
- Curator Gantman - Peter Miles
- Amber Dent / Car Computer - Rebecca Jenkins
- Goff Fotherill / Computer Voice - Hylton Collins
- Visteen Krane - Matthew Brenher
- Miles Napton - Mark Trotman
- Hans Stengard - Steffan Boje
- Detective Berkeley - Nick Scovell
- Radio Announcer - Harvey Summers
- Answerphone Message - Justin Richards
- Audio Voices - Jacqueline Rayner
- The Doctor quotes Macbeth.
- This story was originally released on a double cassette and double CD.
- This audio drama was recorded on 17 and 18 July 1999 at The Nu Groove Studios.
- Oddly, this story doesn't use either the Peter Howell or Dominic Glynn theme tunes associated with the Sixth Doctor's era, but rather the second rendition of the Delia Derbyshire theme tune used from 1967-1980.
- Official Whispers of Terror page at bigfinish.com; note that it is out of print and is available as download only.
- DisContinuity for Whispers of Terror at Tetrapyriarbus - The DisContinuity Guide