Big Finish

Released 2014

Starring Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy

Synopsis: An overview of the latter part of 2014's releases.


Six More Micro Reviews by Stephen Maslin 29/6/16

Season 27c, Part Two

(see also: 159 The Emerald Tiger, 160 The Jupiter Conjunction, 161 The Butcher of Brisbane)

189. Revenge of the Swarm

written by Jonathan Morris

(7th, Ace & Hex)

I like it when they bring back old foes, even crap ones, but it's a hard sell for even Jonathan Morris to make the Swarm interesting. I like the character of Hex too (and Philip Olivier is brilliant playing him), but his transformed self in this story just doesn't convince. Managing to be better than The Invisible Enemy is hardly a glowing recommendation. 5/10

190. Mask of Tragedy

written by James Goss

(7th, Ace & Hex)

Intelligent, always unexpected and with the icing on the cake of Samuel West in outstanding comic form. The mix of historical detail, witty retorts and unusual twists on sci-fi staples is just wonderful. (The music's great too.) One of Big Finish's most inventive releases in a long, long time. 10/10

191. Signs and Wonders

written by Matt Fitton

(7th, Ace, Hex & Sally)

Can't comment on this because I can't really remem. . . um, a bit noisy and. . . lots of. . . no, it's gone. ?/10

Season 23f, Part Two

(see also: 182 Antidote to Oblivion, 183 The Brood of Erys, 184 Scavenger)

192. The Widow's Assassin

written by Nev Fountain

(6th & Peri)

Always loved Mr Fountain's previous full-cast Who audios as, funny though they undoubtedly were, they were not played as comedies. Yet here they've opted for the sound-only equivalent of pulling a comedy face. Right from the off, this tries so hard to be funny that every unsuccessful joke (and there are a lot of those) is as painfully obvious as a fart in the confessional booth. Without the silly voices, cutesy music and the desperate attempts at repartee, this really could have been something. It pains me to say it but it ain't. 4/10

193. Masters of Earth

written by Cavan Scott and Mark Wright

(6th & Peri)

Didn't expect to like this but it's not half bad. Its many references to adventures past may be incomprehensible to anyone outwith the fanbase (and it is by turns rowdy and mawkish: "Remember who you are!"), but there is a genuine and unusual sense of place, with lots of twists and turns. It manages to do the Terry Nation trademark sequence of set pieces but do it well. In fact, it is that increasingly rare beast: a Dalek story that's any good. 7/10

194. The Rani Elite

written by Justin Richards

(6th & Peri)

Had it not been Siobhan Redmond as the eponymous foe, I might not even have bothered listening to this (the Rani being one of my least favourite antagonists from my least favourite era of the show). Mercifully, her take on the Rani is simply stunning: stealing the show par excellence, almost as if she's giving a masterclass on how to play a Doctor Who villain. Sadly, it's not enough to completely salvage a rather straightforward script (with a support cast that is well below par and Colin Baker sounding more grandmotherish than ever). 7/10