Free with DWM
Living Legend

Written by Scott Gray

Starring Paul McGann and India Fisher

Synopsis: Two alien invasions happen at once.


A Review by Richard Radcliffe 7/12/03

Another freebie from those good people at DWM and Big Finish - and I like that very much!

To complete a full set of Doctors for these giveaway stories, Paul McGann lends his services - he really does like doing these stories, doesn't he! Coming as it does just before Zagreus and the new season of 8th Doctor adventures, it is a wonderful starter for us. And India Fisher as Charley is along for the ride too.

Scott Gray has been a stalwart of Doctor Who writing for many a year now - the comic strip is the only medium to benefit from his talents though - till now. Living Legend is a simple, but wholly enjoyable story - very similar in tone to the one-off strips that Gray has written in fact. Maybe I am seeing a convenient connection there though - but that's what I thought when it had finished. I also, funnily enough, saw it as a cartoon - in the style of the comic strip 8th Doctor, drawn by Martin Geraghty. I was really into this writer of comic strips scenario!

Living Legend is a fairly humourous little jaunt, with dodgy aliens with funny names, and some slapstick thrown in for good measure. The 8th Dr and Charley show off how well they get on, again - with both Paul McGann and India Fisher apparently having the time of their lives.

The party that the whole story is set around sounds a great laugh too. Italy 1982 would have been the place to be, without any doubt. A world cup winning team - now that would be worth celebrating! Well done ENGLAND's rugby team (even though I'm not that keen on the sport!). Now just imagine if the footballers could do it - what a party!!!

Rather jolly little piece then, ideally suited to this shortened format. Loved the interviews with members of Zagreus cast too - so much better than a preview episode for the next story - which quickly, once the actual drama is released, becomes a waste of time and space. 7/10

A Review by John Seavey 27/1/04

One part, but what a great part. McGann and Fisher have great chemistry, the concept (posing as "non-interfering" Time Lords to catch aliens off-guard) is great, and the dialogue is perfectly silly ("I have World Cup Fever...") Much fun, and well worth the free I paid for it.

A Review by Stuart Gutteridge 29/10/04

Released just before the mammoth Zagreus and free with DWM, Living Legend is an entertaining diversion from the arc led McGann tales. And a welcome relief it is too, played mostly for laughs, the story shares similarities with The Sontaran Experiment, both in terms of plot and in the cast size. The basic storyline involves two aliens spearheading an attack on Earth; the prevention of which requires a spot of role reversal for the Doctor and Charley, as they attempt to destroy the machine that allows the invasion to happen. With strong performances, Living Legend serves its purpose admirably.

Live for Fun by Charles Berman 16/9/10

After the recent World Cup 2010, I figured it might be an even better time to listen to Living Legend than when it was first released as a gift to Doctor Who Magazine subscribers back in 2003. Not that the setting of Italy just after its 1982 World Cup win in depicted in that exacting detail, but it does prove of a very specific use to the storyline.

Living Legend is, in short, a whole bunch of fun. At one episode that clocks in at less than twenty-two minutes, it's really more akin to a Doctor Who sketch than a whole adventure and - despite some changes in location - that's how it conducts itself: as a still-in-continuity comedy sketch edition of Doctor Who. That's not a bad plan at all, since the plans carried out by Charley and especially the Doctor would be very good premises for comedy sketches on their own.

Probably the least funny bit is the alien Therellips' comedy dialogue between each other in the early scenes. The jokes come across but the scene reminds one of Slipback, with the Therellips sounding a little a little like poor man's Vogons. Once the Doctor and Charley appear on the scene and invoke their plan, however, it's smiles and laughs. McGann and Fisher both clearly have ears for comedy, and hearing Charley take obvious delight in playing Time Lady and bossing the Doctor around is half the fun here.

She's also amusing playing a psychological trick on Thon, the flunkie alien, but by far the most memorable part of this mini-play is the gag of the Doctor's plan to stop the head-honcho alien Vengorr: convince him that the Italians' celebrations are symptoms of the deadly World Cup Fever, bottles of alcohol are the only vaccine, and signs of his drunkenness are symptoms of the oncoming infection. That, my friends, is just a good gag.

Charley seems a bit of a party pooper here, reminding the Doctor that they should go investigate (and then complaining about going into the woods to do so) and then clean up before partying with the joyous Italians, but oh well. It's also nice to see the Doctor and friend defeat an alien invasion on the occasion with pure playacting and trickery.

Assuming the purposes of this giveaway audio are to be a fun bit of fluffy, enjoyable humour and to create goodwill towards Big Finish Productions, it's pretty much a complete success.