Book Review. The Showstoppers by Jonathan Cooper.

Twaddle, Lethbridge-Stewart thought, as the plucky theme tune started up, and he flicked the television off.  Absolute twaddle. He knew it was only supposed to be a bit of make-believe, but that didn’t excuse the productions general shoddiness. Bad acting, a silly premise, and the wardrobe department hadn’t even managed to get the correct insignia for the so-called Colonel’s epaulettes.

– oh, not the epaulettes! 

Alistair Lethbridge-Stewart is having to deal with admin in The Showstoppers, pre-move to Dolerite Base. Anne Travers is without equipment that she requires to complete any work at all and is bored out of her tree, so Samson the stunt-man, an old friend of Alistair’s, shows up with a feeling something odd is happening at the TV studios where he is working. This is catnip to Anne.

The lead actor at the TV studios Aubrey Mondegreene assumes every character in the show, rubbing people up the wrong way and demanding constant re-writes of the script. The initials for the TV Show in production is B L I M E Y which amused me. I liked Anne had more of an active role in The Showstoppers, at one point getting trapped in a maze of tasks Mondegreene has given her, only to be saved by Wing Commander Shepstone, another of Mondegreene’s identities – who all seem to be in different places, at the same time. The cod German accent begins to grate very soon into the story. I groaned that Chorley appears again, although I ended up liking his character in The Showstoppers. Lethbridge-Stewart receives his promotion to Brigadier in The Showstoppers. His character was written very well by Jonathan Cooper.

‘Ah,’ said the voice with genuine British contrition. ‘Terribly sorry about this, but it seems I’ve activated the old poison gas dispenser. Rather embarrassing, truth be told. You must think I’m an awful boob.’

– anybody else feel Wing Commander Shepstone would be best played by Mark Gatiss?

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