Big Finish Productions
Renaissance of the Daleks

Written by Christopher H. Bidmead Cover image
Format Compact Disc
Released 2007

Starring Peter Davison and Sarah Sutton

Synopsis: A random landing in London and a trip to the Savoy Hotel yield unexpected results for the Fifth Doctor. Tea, scones, an American general who knows far too much, and the threat of a Dalek invasion of Earth. Meanwhile, the Doctor's companion Nyssa is in Rhodes during the time of the Crusades, where her position proves to be distinctly precarious. It seems the Doctor's deadliest foes have woven a tangled web indeed. And in order to defeat them, he must cross the forbidden barriers of time and walk into the very centre of their latest, most outlandish scheme of conquest.


The Death of Logic by Noe Geric 26/5/21

Wow, wow, wow... What is that? Renaissance of the Daleks is probably how not to begin a new era for Big Finish. From the first scene to the last second, logic and reason get totally slaughtered by Christopher H. Bidmead (forget the ''from a story by'' on the cover, all the clue leads to him my dear Sherlock).

The Doctor arrives somewhere in the future during the Dalek occupation, but there's no Dalek occupation. So the general with the worst American accent ever arrives and captures the Doctor, and then he reveals he has a machine that can see through I don't remember what and then Nyssa is in the past trying to do things I don't understand and then there's Dalek toys and...

Too much happens without anything really happening. This story is just two hours of peoples talking about scientific stuff and trying to survive to the Dalek attack. The idea of Dalek toys was excellent, but Bidmead doesn't do anything with it. The pre-title sequence of episode one is just a weird radio publicity for the toys, and it's another idea in this big mess.

When you call your story Renaissance of the Daleks, everybody will assume this is a Dalek story. Well, the creatures barely appear in episode one and are quite useless in the other parts of that story. They're so blank that the cover credits them at the end in the ''other parts played by the cast'' section.

Davison takes that crap seriously, as if there was constant danger in the studio, and Sarah Sutton tries to do her best with Nyssa and her poor lines, mostly the famous ''Doooooooooocccctooooorrrrr'' cliffhanger. And what is worse than poor regulars? A terrible supporting cast! I don't know who's the big winner: Mulberry the unconvincing king? Floyd the character that never show any emotion? Or Alice, the most irritating creature in the universe? There's even Wilton (or Wilson, I can't remember his name) who's here only to create problems.

And finally, the Greylish. What's the point of that guy? Is he supposed to be the villain? Because his final and totally out-of-place sacrifice at the end describes him as a good guy. But I think the Doctor's reaction will remain one of the most horrendous pieces of dialogue ever:

''Mullberry, and now the Greylish. Why do the innocent have to die to defeat the Daleks?''
The Greylish helped the Daleks to conquer in their conquest, but no one seems to care about that. Can we really say that the Greylish was innocent?

But now, let's see what clues we've got of this being a Bidmead script: 1) The episode entirely set in the TARDIS, with nothing being achieved except Daleks running around the place. 2) The scientific stuff that explains everything. 3) Useless references to Bidmead's previous stories like Logopolis. 4) The whole universe is in danger!

Apparently, Nick Briggs rewrote the whole thing because the first draft was worse than that! And I think that draft now lies in the deepest cave of hell.

Conclusion: Renaissance of the Daleks is the ultimate expression of nothing. It isn't boring, it isn't funny, it isn't bad, it isn't good, it's nothing. The plot has no sense whatsoever, and the characters are all blank. No one could've saved that story from being a big flaw in Big Finish new era: 1/10

I can't believe this was written by a former Doctor Who script editor and rewritten by more productive Big Finish writers!