Quick TV Soundtrack Review – ‘City of Death’ (Doctor Who)

Hello everyone! 🙂

Welcome to ‘Bradley’s Basement’ blog and I’m Tim Bradley!

Last year, I listened to the TV soundtrack of one of my favourite ‘Doctor Who’ stories with Tom Baker – ‘The Pirate Planet’. So it was only fair that I had a listen to the TV soundtrack of another one of my favourite ‘Doctor Who’ stories with Tom Baker – ‘City of Death’. How was it? It was pretty amazing!!!

‘City of Death’ is my second favourite ‘Doctor Who’ story from the TV series (the first being ‘Black Orchid’). It’s also my absolute favourite story from the Tom Baker era overall. I’ve seen the TV story and enjoyed reading/listening to the novelization/audiobook. This TV soundtrack was such a delight!

I love everything about this story including Tom Baker himself; the great writing by Douglas Adams, from the story ideas of David Fisher; Duggan and the brilliant villainous performance of Julian Glover as Scarlioni/Scaroth. So listening to the TV story on audio via a download on Audible was irresistible.

The TV soundtrack is given linking narration by Lalla Ward. I enjoyed listening to Lalla’s linking narration and how she described certain scenes in the story. There were times when the soundtrack paused in certain scenes to allow Lalla to provide the narration of what was happening in the action.

Again, like with ‘The Pirate Planet’ TV soundtrack, I’m not sure why ‘City of Death’ was given a TV soundtrack audio release since it’s not one of the lost stories from the black-and-white days. The same has applied to other Tom Baker tales such as ‘Horror of Fang Rock’ and ‘Destiny of the Daleks’.

But it’s nice to have and it’s good to listen to when you’re on holiday whether it’s on audio CD or as an audio download from Audible. The TV soundtrack has also allowed me to rediscover ‘City of Death’ in a new way by finding new aspects to the tale I hadn’t noticed before when I saw it on DVD.

At the end of the ‘City of Death’ TV soundtrack, there is an interview with Lalla Ward who shares her experiences of working on the story. I hadn’t realised the filming of scenes in Paris was hard work for Lalla. It was also intriguing to hear Lalla compare the approaches of ‘Doctor Who’ in the 70s and 80s.

The ‘City of Death’ TV soundtrack has been great to listen to on audio. The story remains to my absolute favourite from the Tom Baker era. Having revisited the story again in its TV soundtrack on audio and hearing the linking narration by Lalla Ward has been really delightful and delicious for me.

By the way, I didn’t purchase the vinyl of ‘City of Death’ on Record Stores Day last weekend in case you were wondering. I’m guessing the vinyl is the same as the TV soundtrack of the story with Lalla Ward narrating it. Also, why have they done an abridged Target novelization of ‘City of Death’ lately?

Thanks for reading!

Bye for now!

Tim. 🙂

2 thoughts on “Quick TV Soundtrack Review – ‘City of Death’ (Doctor Who)

  1. Timelord 007

    City Of Death, the story a 4 year old me watched at his names on her 22″ black & white tv & ended up hiding under the terrified when Scaroth rips his face off in the episode one cliffhanger lol arh nostalgia, a trip down memory lane.

    What more is there to say this is a fantastic four parter let down slightly by a weak ending as i felt the Doctor didn’t do much in the climax (remember me saying the Doctor should take centre stage in saving the day).

    Still the humour, the characters & the story are all great & Tom Baker is at his absolute bonkers best, fantastic review Tim, how many times you reviewed adaptations of this story i bet you City Of Deathed out lol.

    I reviewed The Mutant Phase on my G+ page & mentioned you in the comments below.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi Simon.

      Glad you enjoyed my review on the TV soundtrack for ‘City of Death’. Glad I gave you more nostalgia memories when you watched this story as a 4 year old. I still can’t believe you were scared by Scaroth ripping off his face at the end of ‘Part One’ in the story. Hehe!

      I actually liked it when Duggan gave the most important punch in history to Scaroth at the end. At least the Doctor tried to stop Scaroth and was there in the prehistoric age to see that he was stopped. It could have been a rushed ending, but there you go.

      I’m glad you still enjoy the humour, the characters in the story. I consider ‘City of Death’ as my second favourite ‘Doctor Who’ story and my favourite from the Tom Baker era, who I agree is at his bonkers best in this. I used ‘City of Death’ as inspiration for my stories including ‘The Space Hotel’, ‘The Austen Code’ and ‘The Stockbridge Terror’.

      I’m amazed how many adaptations of ‘City of Death’ and ‘Shada’ there are out there. I’m sure I’ll be doing a quick book review on the junior ‘City of Death’ novelization next. Next thing, there’ll be comic book adaptations of ‘City of Death’ and ‘Shada’ next? Perhaps theatre productions, I don’t know. 😀

      I’ll happily check out your review for ‘The Mutant Phase’ later on in the day. Thanks for letting me know, Simon.

      Tim. 🙂



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