Mind Games, cont’d

Through Henry Gordon Jago, Litefoot learns that several people have been having nightmares about committing murders, but nightmares aren’t real — are they?  Between them, they link the people with nightmares to the murders and that they had all been previous placed under the “fluence” by Mr Rees.  When Rees learns of this, he hypnotises a man that’s delivering a new phonograph device to kill Jago.  Fortunately, the arrival of Litefoot (who’d left his coat behind), prevents the killing and also saves the life of the delivery man.


They search Rees’ room, only to find a mysterious musical box that plays a tune heard by those who’d been having nightmares.  This cements their resolve that Rees is, indeed, responsible.  Before they can act, Rees takes control of Lifefoot’s mind and Jago is taken to a mysterious well, a near bottomless pit where Rees’ previous victims ended up.

Rees explains to them that he has the ability to control people’s minds.  It started when he was young, and he controlled the minds of small animals.  Those are the “victims” in the well.  He has no intention of letting his secret out, or to let Jago & Litefoot stop him.  The well would be a fitting place for them to end their lives.

The quick arrival of Sargeant Quick and Ellie the barmaid enables Jago to get the upperhand as Litefoot wrests for control of his mind.  Rees does not win the day and, if he’s not dead now, he soon will be…

Mind Games is a typical low-key Jago & Litefoot adventure in that it doesn’t take place in any epic environment, and there’s no shouting or rushing about (well, not much).  The environment is very similar to that which you’d expect from a Sherlock Holmes adventure – more investigation and deduction than action and adventure.  That’s as it should be, because that’s how the characters were created and continue to be written.

Keeping it relatively low key means we learn sufficient about Mr Rees that we’ve got his backstory before we move on to the next adventure in this The Worlds of Doctor Who set.  If, however, he’s going to be the chief villain in the four stories, it’s not quite so clear why he’s spending so much time performing at a theatre.  Honing his craft, perhaps?

The whole “mind control” thing, especially the ease at which Rees implements it, which results in our two heroes having to fend off each other, is very reminiscent of the kind of thing The Avengers might do with Steed & Mrs Peel, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing because it gives both characters something to get stuck into.

In the final analysis, this is a good story with which to start the set.  The next story moves us well into the 20th Century, as the Counter-Measures team encounter The Reesinger Process.