Big Finish Audio, July 2013
Set in the Everglades of Florida,
The Picture of Loretta Delphine has our eponymous hero (Alexander Vlahos) encountering Kayla (Katharine Mangold),
the daughter of an old friend. Initially the encounter is civil, if a little edgy, as Kayla suspects Dorian of being
her father, and neglecting her mother as she (the mother) was dying of cancer.
However Scott Handcock's production takes a more sinister
turn as we discover that Kayla is not all she appears to be. Dorian enters a property overflowing with blood, and understands
to his horror that a killing spree has taken place. This experience forces him to contemplate his own past - especially
when he sees a familiar picture that holds a dreadful secret. The shades of Wilde's original story become extremely
apparent at this point. The tale ends with Dorian escaping a possibly grisly fate, but not without some painful self-discoveries
on his part.
Picture of Loretta Delphine makes some trenchant points about the "dead hand" of the past often inhibiting present and
future progress, while suggesting at the same time that the most attractive female are often the most dangerous. This
last point might be thought of as misogynist, were it not for the fact that we think Dorian deserves everything he gets, having
spent much of his - fairly lengthy - life trying to escape responsibility for past actions.
Alexander Vlahos turns in a tortured performance
as the central character in a production that is quite definitely not intended for younger listeners.