Sirens Of Time

Doctor Who: The Sirens Of TimeThe seventh Doctor is drawn to a jungle world, where he rescues a hapless bystander and discovers an elderly couple nearby. The couple have a unique relationship based on a mutual loathing that seems like it could become murderous at any moment – and they both have very dark secrets to hide. The fifth Doctor, meanwhile, finds himself locked out of the TARDIS, which has materialized aboard a doomed British ship in the North Atlantic. The ship is torpedoed by a German U-boat, and the TARDIS is lost at sea. The Doctor, along with an Irish woman from the British vessel, drifts along with the debris until taken aboard the German sub as a spy. Elsewhere, on the starliner Edifice, the sixth Doctor’s TARDIS arrives, coinciding with an experiment being performed on a time-sensitive creature known as the Temperon. But shortly after the experiment fails, the entire crew – with the exception of its android helmsman and a waitress who appears to have survived through pure luck – is killed, and the Doctor must find out why. Each incarnation of the Doctor is unaware that he is facing the same threat, but in different places and times. And each Doctor has a piece of the puzzle that could save their besieged home planet of Gallifrey.

Order this CDwritten by Nicholas Briggs
directed by Nicholas Briggs
music by Nicholas Briggs

Cast: Peter Davison (The Doctor), Colin Baker (The Doctor), Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Andrew Fettes (Commander Raldeth / Schmidt), Anthony Keetch (Coordinator Vansell), Michael Wade (The President), Sarah Mowat (Elenya / Helen / Ellie / Knight Commander Lyena), Maggie Stables (Ruthley), Colin McIntyre (Sancroff), John Wadmore (Commandant / Lt. Zentner / Pilot Azimendah / Subcommander Solanec), Mark Gatiss (Captain Schwieger / Edifice Captain / Knight 2), Nicholas Briggs (The Temperon), Nicholas Pegg (Delegate)

Timeline: part one takes place in an unspecified time frame while the seventh Doctor is traveling alone; part two takes place while Tegan and Turlough are traveling with the Doctor, but since he makes no reference to being Lord President of Gallifrey, this may place it between Terminus and The Five Doctors. Part three takes place between Trial Of A Time Lord and Time And The Rani, since the sixth Doctor is traveling alone.

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The Fearmonger

Doctor Who: The FearmongerIn the present day, the Doctor and Ace arrive in a London gripped by fear. Terrorists seem to be going to extreme lengths to rid Britain of the ultra-right-wing New Britannia party and its Parliamentary candidate, Sherilyn Harper. The Doctor unceremoniously bursts in on Mick Thompson’s political talk radio show to make contact with a man named Walter who, with an accomplice who is now institutionalized, attempted to assassinate Harper and barely escaped with their lives after being attacked by…something. The Doctor postulates that the deadly entity is a non-corporeal creature which incites fear among its victims – and then feeds off that fear, often leaving the victims traumatized for life. Walter says that he can hear this creature in the voice of Sherilyn Harper, but as the crisis worsens and the streets become even more infested with terrorists – some of whom are not political agitators, but hired guns – it becomes apparent that the Fearmonger could be using anyone as its host… even, as Ace comes to believe, the Doctor himself.

Order this CDwritten by Jonathan Blum
directed by Gary Russell
music by Alistair Lock

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Jacqueline Pearce (Sherilyn Harper), Mark McDonnell (Walter Jacobs), Vince Henderson (Mick Thompson), Hugh Walters (Roderick Allingham), Jonathan Clarkson (Paul Tanner), Jack Gallagher (Alexsandr Karadjic), Mark Wright (Stephen Keyser), John Ainsworth (Tannoy voice)

Timeline: between Survival and The Genocide Machine

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The Genocide Machine

Doctor Who: The Genocide MachineThe Doctor and Ace arrive on the rainforest world of Kar-Charrat, where expatriate Time Lord Elgin has become the librarian of the largest storehouse of knowledge in the universe. Elgin eagerly shows the Doctor his latest innovation: a wetworks facility which has assimilated all of this knowledge into a single consciousness. The Doctor is alarmed by this development, as it means that any invading force could take over the facility – and with it, all of the knowledge of the universe. Elgin admits that some races have tried to do exactly that, including the Daleks, but none have been successful. But the Doctor and Ace quickly learn on a first-hand basis that the Daleks haven’t given up – they intend to take over the library of Kar-Charrat and use the wetworks facility to create a new, all-knowing, all-powerful breed of Daleks. But the Daleks don’t achieve the desired results, even when the Doctor is forced to help – and everyone soon discovers that an even greater power than the Daleks exists on Kar-Charrat…a power which, if unleashed to rid the world of the mechanical invaders, could also exact revenge on a Time Lord guilty of enslaving Kar-Charrat’s indigenous creatures.

Order this CDwritten by Mike Tucker
directed by Nicholas Briggs
music by Nicholas Briggs

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Bruce Montague (Chief Librarian Elgin), Louise Falkner (Bev Tarrant), Alistair Lock (Dalek voice), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek voice), Daniel Gabriele (Rappell), Nicholas Briggs (Cataloguer Prink)

Timeline: between The Fearmonger and Dust Breeding

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The Fires Of Vulcan

Doctor Who: Night ThoughtsPompeii, Italy, 1980 A.D.: A UNIT operative hastily takes charge of an archaeological dig at Pompeii when, in the ruins of the city that died in the eruption of Vesuvius, an inexplicable anachronism is unearthed – a British police telephone box, preserved in the ancient ash. The oddity is removed from the site and put in top security storage by UNIT. The Doctor is summoned to investigate, but – in his fifth incarnation – he chooses not to enter the police box.

Pompeii, Italy, 79 A.D.: The Doctor, now in his seventh incarnation, is disturbed when the TARDIS brings him and Melanie to Pompeii a mere day before the eruption of Vesuvius. But despite his misgivings, he and Mel mingle with the locals and explore the doomed city. Earthquakes wrack Pompeii, but the local simply see it as a sign from the gods – and the Doctor and Melanie’s arrival out of thin air is seen as another sign. But the tremors have had a more troubling effect for the time travlers: the TARDIS has been buried beneath tons of rubble. With less than a day to retrieve the TARDIS and escape Pompeii, the Doctor and Melanie become embroiled in local politics…but the Doctor, with his foreknowledge that the TARDIS will someday be found in the ruins of Pompeii, doesn’t seem to be fighting very hard to save himself or his companion.

Order this CDwritten by Steve Lyons
directed by Gary Russell
music by Alistair Lock

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Bonnie Langford (Melanie), Robert Curbishley (Tibernus), Andy Coleman (Popidius Celsinus), Nicky Goldie (Valeria Hedone), Steven Wickham (Murranus), Lisa Hollander (Eumachia), Gemma Bissix (Aglae), Toby Longworth (Priest), Robert Curbishley (Roman Legionary), Anthony Keetch (Professor Scalini), Karen Henson (Captain Muriel Frost)

Timeline: between Delta And The Bannermen and Dragonfire

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The Shadow Of The Scourge

Doctor Who: The Shadow Of The ScourgeThe Doctor, Ace and Bernice arrive at a hotel in Kent which is playing host to three simultaneous conventions: one for a cross-stitch club, another for a con artist holding a seance, and the third for the demonstration of a physics experiment that could lead to time travel. But the seance actually does make contact with something otherworldly – an alien group consciousness hell-bent on emerging into Earth’s dimension to feed upon the despair and guilt of the human race. The time travel experiments provide a convenient interdimensional conduit through which the Scourge travel. The Doctor, of course, has orchestrated all of this very carefully…but this time, whether he’s planned it or not, whether he wants it or not, the Scourge have him, and can consume his mind on their whim. With the Doctor out of the way, only Ace and Benny stand in the way of the Scourge…but they, like everyone else on the doomed Earth, have their own personal demons which will render them helpless to the power of the Scourge.

Order this CDwritten by Paul Cornell
directed by Gary Russell
music by Alistair Lock

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Lisa Bowerman (Bernice), Michael Piccarilli (Doctor Michael Pembroke), Holly King (Annie Carpenter), Nigel Fairs (Gary Williams), Lennox Greaves (Michael Hughes), Caroline Burns-Cook (Mary Hughes), Peter Trapani (Scourge Leader)

Timeline: between the New Adventures novels “The All-Consuming Fire” and “Blood Harvest”

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Last Of The Titans

Last Of The TitansThe seventh Doctor, traveling alone, is looking forward to a holiday on the planet Armelia. The TARDIS doesn’t quite get him there, however, landing instead inside an enormous spacecraft. The Doctor becomes stranded there when, moments after stepping out of the TARDIS, he sees his timeship plummeting into the vessel’s gigantic furnace (thanks to a less-than-fortuitous landing on a deck hatch). In the course of trying to retrieve his only means of escape, the Doctor befriends Vilgreth, an enormous and slightly slow-witted being who claims to originate from – of all places – Devon. Vilgreth mentions that many have come to destroy him, and he’s glad that the Doctor isn’t one of them. Just such a creature arrives, and insists that the Doctor leave, since a bomb has just been planted on Vilgreth’s ship. The Doctor, infuriated, disarms the bomb, but also grows increasingly suspicious of why anyone would try to harm his seemingly innocuous host. The truth soon becomes apparent: Vigreth’s ship is, not unlike its captain, a dangerous relic. The ship’s fuel is entire planets. Its next stop is Armelia.

written by Nicholas Briggs
directed by Nicholas Briggs
music by Alistair Lock

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Nicholas Briggs (Vilgreth), Alistair Lock (Stelpor), Lennox Greaves (Professor Pat Trethui), Holly King (Mrs. Burden)

Timeline: after The Sirens Of Time and before Doctor Who

Notes: This was a thirty-minute, single-episode story distributed exclusively on a CD included with issue #300 of Doctor Who Magazine, a CD which also included a preview version of episode one of Storm Warning. Last Of The Titans has not been released on CD to date, but was released as a free downloadable podcast in 2011. The script was originally written by Nicholas Briggs for the Audio Visuals amateur audio drama cassettes.

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Death Comes To Time

Doctor Who: Death Comes To TimeThe planet Santiny is overrun by a massive invasion by a Canisian fleet. Even suicide runs don’t prevent the Canisians, as their leader, General Tannis, seems to be able to forsee every possible tactic. Almost as if in answer to the prayers of the survivors on Santiny, the TARDIS arrives, and the Doctor and his blue-skinned companion Antimony emerge to begin helping Santiny’s resistance movement. Meanwhile, Ace – planted in a strategic position by the Doctor – has been rescued by a Time Lord named Casmus, who begins training her for the next step in her own evolution. Elsewhere, a group of Time Lords called the Fraction, dedicated to interference in time on the side of good, begin falling one by one to a stealthy killer. Finally, the string of deaths draws the Doctor’s attention away from the Canisian problem, and also gets the attention of Casmus. On Gallifrey, Casmus accelerates Ace’s training, speeding her evolution into a new breed of Time Lord. Time is running out, as Tannis is also revealed to be a Time Lord who is using his conquests to disguise his identity. But will Ace learn to use her powers for good soon enough to confront Tannis, or will the Doctor – having witnessed Antimony’s death at the general’s hands – be forced to use his Time Lord powers to a degree that will not only kill Tannis but himself as well?

Order this CDwritten by Colin Meek
directed by Dan Freedman
music by Nick Romero

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Kevin Eldon (Antimony), John Sessions (General Tannis), Leonard Fenton (Casmus), Jon Culshaw (Golcrum / Senator Hawk / President), Jacqueline Pearce (Admiral Mettna), Stephen Fry (The Minister Of Chance), Britta Gartner (Senator Sala), Anthony Stewart Head (St. Valentine), Dave Hill (Nessican), Charlotte Palmer (Dr. Cain), Stephen Brody (Speedwell), Gareth Jones (Campion), Andrew McGibbon (Captain Carne), Michael Yale (Lieutenant Suneel), Peggy Batchelor (The Kingmaker), David Evans (Pilot), Robert Rietti (Premier Bedloe), Julienne Davis (Computer), Emma Ferguson (Megan), Huw Thomas (President of Santiny), Nick Romero (Major Bander / Prime Minister), Nicholas Courtney (Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart), David Soul (Bob)

Originally broadcast from July 13, 2001 to May 30, 2002

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Colditz

Doctor Who: ColditzThe TARDIS has brought the Doctor and Ace to Colditz Castle, the legendary German prison camp, at the height of World War II. The time travelers are captured almost immediately, and the Doctor is shot in the shoulder. Ace instantly attracts the interest of Kurtz, the head of the guards – more interest than she would like. She also befriends English prisoners of war who are already planning their next escape attempt, but are reluctant to let her in on the plot unless she gives them more concrete information about where she’s from. In the meantime, the Doctor – and his TARDIS, which the guards witnessed materializing the courtyard – have gotten the interest of someone who appears to be very closely connected to the upper ranks of the German war effort. When the Doctor is given a choice – hand over the keys to the TARDIS or spare Ace’s life – he gives the Nazis his time machine, setting ripples in motion which will change history forever unless he can regain control of the situation.

Order this CDwritten by Steve Lyons
directed by Gary Russell
music by Toby Richards and Emily Baker

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Tracey Childs (Klein), Nicholas Young (Flying Officer Bill Gower), Toby Longworth (Hauptmann Julius Schafer), David Tennant (Feldwebel Kurtz), Peter Rae (Timothy Wilkins)

Note: This audio story marks David Tennant‘s first Doctor Who appearance, though obviously not in the role for which he would become most famous later…

Timeline: between Dust Breeding and The Rapture

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Excelis Decays

Doctor WhoAfter refurbishing his TARDIS, the Doctor allows the time machine to decide its own next stop. It takes him to Artaris, once again in the city of Excelis. But things have changed since the superstitious age the Doctor visited in his previous incarnation: a totalitarian government has taken over, the populace is divided between the elite Inner Party, their Outer Party underlings and a helpless proletariat, history now paints Reeve Maupassant and Lord Grayvorn as heroes, and someone is abducting lower-class citizens and stealing their life energy to power a new race of mindless, brutish cannon-fodder soldiers called meat puppets. This government is locked in a bitter stalemate of a war with another power, and the Inner Party seems content to keep it that way. At the heart of the corrupt Inner Party lies Lord Sutton, a calculating, amoral being who has been waiting for the Doctor for centuries. But the Doctor knows Sutton as Grayvorn – and makes drastic plans to free Artaris from the immortal warlord’s grasp. But will freeing the planet’s people from oppression also mean killing them?

Order this CDwritten by Craig Hinton
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Anthony Stewart Head (Lord Vaughn Sutton), Ian Collier (Commissar Sallis), Yee Jee Tso (Major Brant), Stuart Piper (Mattias), Alistair Lock (Reeve Cless), Mark Gatiss (Deputy Warden Baris), Penelope McDonald (Jancis), Patricia Leventon (The Mother Superior)

Timeline: after Forty-Five (the Doctor has just remodeled the TARDIS) but before the TV movie

LogBook entry and TheatEar entry by Earl Green

Review: A more traditional Doctor Who than we’ve previously gotten from the Excelis trilogy, Excelis Decays has a dark, fatalistic air about it. And it’s hard to believe from the seamlessly edited recording, but Anthony Stewart Head and Sylvester McCoy never occupied the same studio at the same time – and yet this story gives us the best verbal sparring yet between Head’s character and any of the Doctors. Adding a distinguished air to the proceedings is Ian Collier, last seen/heard as the voice of Omega in 1983’s Arc Of Infinity, as an embittered warrior who realizes that the whole motivation for keeping the war going is crumbling around him.

Yee Jee Tso, who acted briefly alongside McCoy in the 1996 TV movie, returns here and does a nice job with a role that requires him to be cocksure and elegant. It’d be easy to be shown up here by Head, with whom he shares most of his scenes, but Yee Jee Tso holds his own – well, at least until his character is gently dropped out of the narrative.

If nothing else, Excelis Decays proves that perhaps, of all the remaining Doctors, Sylvester McCoy is the one most able to keep a story afloat on his own. He’s traveling companionless in this adventure, but his tendency to talk to himself in fits and starts keeps things flowing and lets us in on his thoughts without resorting to a lot of painfully obvious “Oh, look, that huge green slimy monster is about to eat us!” signposting.

In the end, Excelis proves to be a worthy experiment – changing Doctors, but retaining a fairly constant (if evolving) setting and villain for the Doctor to fight. An interesting concept, well-scripted by some writers with their own unique takes on the series.

The Rapture

Doctor Who: The RaptureThe Doctor and Ace arrive in Ibiza on the eve of an international broadcast from a recently-opened nightclub called The Rapture. The club’s two DJs, Gabriel and Jude, have established a reputation for throwing quite a party – and that suits Ace just fine, following her harrowing experiences in Nazi Germany. As Ace joins some other people her age for a night of clubbing, the Doctor meets his old friend Gustavo, who warns him that something sinister is afoot at The Rapture. When the Doctor goes to investigate, he finds that Jude and Gabriel’s trance music is living up to its name quite literally – the two DJs who claim to be angels are slowly exerting mind control over their club’s patrons…including Ace.

Order this CDwritten by Joseph Lidster
directed by Jason Haigh-Ellery
music by Jim Mortimoreand Jane Elphinstone, with Simon Robinson and Feel

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), David John (Liam), Anne Bird (Caitriona), Daniel Wilson (Brian), Carlos Riera (Gustavo), Matthew Brenher (Jude), Neil Henry (Gabriel), Tony Blackburn (himself), Jeremy James (Bouncer)

Timeline: after Colditz and before The Harvest

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Bang-Bang-A-Boom!

Doctor Who: Bang-Bang-A-Boom!The Doctor and Melanie arrive at a most inopportune time aboard space station Dark Space 8, and the Doctor is mistaken for the replacement for the station’s recently-deceased commander – a role into which the Time Lord steps eagerly, to Mel’s dismay. Dark Space 8 is playing host to an intergalactic pop song contest in a matter of days, and station security is stepped up accordingly – but apparently not enough, as one of the contestants turns up dead. As more murders occur, the station’s crew is helpless (and clueless), and when one of the suspects seems to have an unnatural hold over the Doctor, Mel worries that she is on her own in solving the mystery…

written by Gareth Roberts and Clayton Hickman
directed by Nicholas Pegg
music by Andy Hardwick

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Bonnie Langford (Melanie), Sabina Franklyn (Doctor Eleanor Harcourt), Graeme Garden (Professor Ivor Fassbender), Jane Goddard (Geri Pakhar), Nickolas Grace (Mister Loozly), Vidar Magnussen (Lieutenant Strindberg), Patricia Quinn (Queen Angvia), Anthony Spargo (Nicky Newman), David Tughan (Commentator Logan), Barnaby Edwards (Waiter)

Timeline: between Paradise Towers and Delta And The Bannermen

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The Dark Flame

Doctor Who: The Dark FlameHaving left Bernice on a research facility on Orbos to visit a colleague of hers, the Doctor and Ace are on their way back to Orbos when an unusually powerful distress call washes over the TARDIS’ telepathic circuits – powerful enough that even Ace picks up on it. The message, which the Doctor believes to come from his old friend Remnex, warns of the Dark Flame…and ends abruptly in a scream of agony. As it happens, Professor Remnex is also conducting research on Orbos, and the Doctor is relieved to find him in perfect health. Bernice, on the other hand, has waited two weeks for her colleague to arrive, to no avail, and no one can account for his whereabouts. The Doctor discovers that a pair of scientists on Orbos are planning to trigger a black light explosion in a nearby star, an ill-advised experiment that could have far-reaching consequences if not properly contained. Soon after his warnings about the impending experiment fall on deaf ears, the Doctor discovers that Remnex has been murdered, having sent his warning through time to the Doctor at the time of his death. The Doctor and Bernice recognize the hallmarks of the Cult of the Dark Flame, a group (thought to be extinct) which worships an energy being from a parallel, but dark, dimension. And if that cult gains control of Orbos and its black light experiment, the universe is in imminent danger. What the Doctor and his friends don’t know is that the cult is already in control.

written by Trevox Baxendale
directed by Jason Haigh-Ellery
music by Andy Hardwick

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Lisa Bowerman (Bernice), Michael Praed (Slyde), Steven Wickham (Victor / Joseph), Andrew Westfield (Remnex), Hannah Smith (Lomar), Toby Longworth (Broke)

Timeline: between the novels “The All-Consuming Fire” and “Blood Harvest”

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Project: Lazarus

Doctor Who: Project LazarusThe Doctor returns to Norway, where he and Evelyn are eager to catch up with Cassie, who they left to fend for herself – away from other humans – after their horrific encounter with Nimrod, the Forge, and Project Twilight. The Doctor believes he has created a cure for the vampire virus that infected Cassie, and he even finds her soon enough – only to discover that she is now in Nimrod’s employ. Nimrod has been waiting close to Cassie, knowing that the Doctor would return to help her. Nimrod has obtained some top secret information regarding the Doctor, including UNIT records of his past regenerations – an ability Nimrod wants to study and harness for himself, even if it means forcing the Doctor to regenerate by torturing him. Evelyn, in the meantime, brings Cassie back to her senses and together they rescue the Doctor from Nimrod’s hideous experiment. As the three of them make a desperate dash to the TARDIS, which Nimrod has also brought to the Forge, Nimrod guns Cassie down…

Years later, in his seventh incarnation, the Doctor returns to the Forge, following telltale signs of dangerous disruption in the time vortex. He finds that the Forge is under attack by an alien race whose technology – and one of their travelers – has been stolen by Nimrod, who promptly dissected both the alien and his vehicle to uncover their secrets. The Doctor discovers something even more horrifying as well – his sixth self is still here, working for Nimrod, but with no sign of his TARDIS or Evelyn. The seventh Doctor is troubled by his inability to remember any of this, but when the aliens return in force, he may be in worse trouble than he thought when his sixth self is the first to die in the attack.

Order this CDwritten by Cavan Scott and Mark Wright
directed by Gary Russell
music by Andy Hardwick

Cast: Colin Baker (The Doctor), Maggie Stables (Evelyn), Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Stephen Chance (Nimrod), Rosie Cavaliero (Cassie), Emma Collier (Oracle), Adam Woodroffe (Sgt. Frith), Ingrid Evans (Dr. Crumpton), Vidar Magnussen (Professor Harket)

Timeline: after Doctor Who and the Pirates and before Arrangements For War (Sixth Doctor); after The Harvest and before the 1996 TV movie (Seventh Doctor)

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Flip-Flop

Doctor Who: Flip-Flop…just then, the “other” Doctor and Melanie arrive on the human colony planet Puxatornee, discovering that the alien Slithergees have all but taken over, using humans are seeing-eye dogs and servants, and even edging human traditions, history and beliefs out of the humans’ own teachings by way of claiming rampant anti-Slithergee discrimination. Two terrorists, Stewart and Reed, are out to restore the balance and put the humans in charge again, and when they discover that the Doctor and Mel are time travelers, they force the TARDIS crew at gunpoint to take them back in time to change history. But the history they bring about is one where the Slithergees were refused permission to settle in the Puxatornee system, resulting in a war that left the planet permanently contaminated. Stewart and Reed are killed, and the Doctor makes a hasty exit, worried about encountering his and Mel’s counterparts from the divergent timeline that has been created. Just then, the “other” Doctor and Melanie arrive on the doomed planet Puxatornee, where two soldiers, Stewart and Reed, wish to change history so the human-Slithergee war never fatally polluted Puxatornee. When they discover that the Doctor and Mel are time travelers, they force the TARDIS crew at gunpoint to take them back in time to prevent these events. But the history they bring about is one where the Slithergees were granted permission to settle and slowly took over. Stewart and Reed are killed, and the Doctor makes a hasty exit, worried about encountering his and Mel’s counterparts from the divergent timeline that has been created…

written by Jonathan Morris
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Bonnie Langford (Melanie), Richard Gibson (Mitchell(, Daniel Hogarth (Slithergee voices), Trevor Littledale (Potter), Francis Magee (Stewart), Trevor Martin (Professor Capra), Pamela Miles (Bailey), Audrey Schoellhammer (Reed)

Timeline: between Bang-Bang-A-Boom! and Dragonfire

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Master

Doctor Who: MasterIt’s a dark and stormy night in the town of Perfugium, and old friends have gathered at a stately Edwardian mansion to celebrate the birthday of their mysterious friend, Dr. John Smith. Only it’s not really his birthday – it’s the tenth anniversary of the day that the amnesiac, seemingly horribly burned, and yet compassionate-to-a-fault Smith first appeared in Perfugium. His inability to remember anything beyond the past ten years troubles Dr. Smith greatly, but he has become even more concerned recently with thoughts that seem to betray his gentle nature – thoughts that can only be described as pure evil. Even more unnerving is the arrival of a strange little man, also claiming to be a doctor, who begins to drop disturbing hints that Dr. John Smith does indeed have a past – a past in which he was known as an irredeemably evil genius called the Master.

written by Joseph Lidster
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Geoffrey Beevers (The Master), Philip Madoc (Inspector Victor Schaeffer), Anne Ridley (Jacqueline Schaeffer), Charlie Hayes (Jade), Daniel Barzoti (The Man)

Timeline: before the 1996 TV movie and apparently after Excelis Decays since the Doctor assumes the nom de plume of “Vaughn Sutton,” whom he defeated on Excelis.

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The Harvest

Doctor Who: The HarvestThe Doctor and Ace have insinuated themselves into the staff of a London hospital in 2021, trying to discover what they can about a top secret project called “C Program,” which the Doctor suspects is using alien technology. The Doctor’s nasty suspicions about the origins of that technology come into sharp focus when Ace befriends a young medic nicknamed Hex in an effort to find out more about C Program, and a hulking humanoid tries to kill both of them shortly afterward. Ace lets Hex into the TARDIS, and he quickly becomes involved in the time travelers’ plans to find out what’s going on. He might even join Ace and the Doctor for more of their travels, if any of them survive the harvesting of the human race for the organs needed by an invasion force that could overrun Earth in mere weeks.

Order this CDwritten by Dan Abnett
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), William Boyde (Subject One), Richard Derrington (Dr. Farrer), David Warwick (Garnier), Paul Lacoux (Dr. Mathias), Janie Booth (System), Mark Donovan (Polk)

Timeline: after The Rapture and before Dreamtime

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Dreamtime

Doctor Who: DreamtimeThe TARDIS arrives on what appears to be an asteroid with a city on it, a city where the cars, the people and even the buildings have turned to stone. Some of the human colonists on the asteroid have escaped that fate – some of them steeped in Australian Aboriginal lore, and others much more determined to return the colony to normality, by brute force if necessary. The strange situation is not helped by the arrival of a Galyari ship, its crew determined to salvage something from the asteroid before they leave. When the Doctor vanishes into something called the Dreaming, and Ace is knocked out cold, Hex finds himself on his own in a situation he can barely even begin to fathom.

Order this CDwritten by Simon Forward
directed by Gary Russell
music by Steve Foxon

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Tamzin Griffin (Trade Negotiator Vresha), Jef Higgins (Coordinator Whitten), Brigid Lohrey (Dream Commando Wahn), Josephine Mackerras (Toomey), Andrew Peisley (Dream Commando Mulyan), Steffan Rhodri (Commander Korshal), John Scholes (Baiame)

Timeline: after The Harvest and before Live 34

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green

Review: Well…I guess it looked like a good idea on paper. For the first time in quite a while, a Doctor Who audio has left me not elated, not annoyed, but just simply nonplussed. There are some interesting ideas in Dreamtime, including references to “cultural terraforming,” and perhaps a message about preserving cultures even in the face of progress and industrialization, among other things, but somehow the cumulative effect of the four episodes were to leave me…well, a bit uninterested. Actually, a straightforward discussion on the latter issue would likely prove to be more interesting than this story’s subtle-as-a-sledgehammer attempt at topical storytelling.

DreamtimeUnless it was of Hex’s scenes, that is. Philip Olivier continues to make his new TARDIS traveler likeable, and when he’s thrust into danger that’s beyond what he can grasp, his part of the story quickly becomes the most compelling thing to follow. Ace has to deal with an uncooperative brute determined to gain control of the situation by any means necessary – hardly a situation she hasn’t been in before – while the Doctor finds himself in bizarrely unfamiliar circumstances to which he reacts with what almost seems like calm familiarity. Sophie Aldred and Sylvester McCoy turn in fine performances, and the first episode is gripping stuff, but it gets a bit muddled after that, leaving the cast to do the best they can with what the script gives them. There are even tantalizing hints that we’ll follow up on the Galyari’s relationship with the Doctor – something explored much more deeply in The Sandman – but even that doesn’t materialize.

Somewhere in Dreamtime, there are fascinating ideas and an interesting story to be told – but it could be that both of those things were crowding each other out here, and not leaving adequate room to full explore either. Sadly, the weakest Doctor Who audio release in quite some time.

Unregenerate!

Doctor Who: Unregenerate!Mel is alarmed when the TARDIS materializes without the Doctor at the controls. After leaving her on Earth briefly to take care of unspecified business, he has vanished without a trace, leaving her a holographic message in the TARDIS instructing her to follow his trail to the Klyst Institute, a grim-looking mental hospital. Rather than risk trying to fly the TARDIS herself, Mel enlists the reluctant help of a rough-and-tumble cabbie who helps her as she breaks into the Institute. There, she finds the Doctor – but his mind is gone, and he speaks in almost nonsensical phrases. Mel and her new friend try to escape with the Doctor, but they find that the Institute is no longer on Earth, having transported itself to an asteroid in an instant. The Institute also seems to be bigger inside than out, and other aliens (and humans) have been captured for horrific mind-transfer experiments. Are Time Lords operating in secret on Earth? And if so, are they renegades like the Doctor…or something darker interference in human history going on with the Time Lords’ full knowledge?

Order this CDwritten by David A. McIntee
directed by John Ainsworth
music by Ian Potter

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Bonnie Langford (Mel), Jennie Linden (Professor Klyst), Hugh Hemmings (Johannes Rausch), Gail Clayton (Rigan), Jamie Sandford (Louis), John Aston (Louis #2), Sean Peter Jackson (Shokhra), Toby Longworth (The Cabbie)

Timeline: between Time And The Rani and Paradise Towers

Notes: “Lindos” is mentioned here, despite being a term never heard in the original television series. It was a hormone vital to the regeneration process first mentioned in Eric Saward’s novelization of The Twin Dilemma. Jennie Linden’s last appearance in a Doctor Who story was in 1965, when she co-starred as a very different version of Barbara in the Peter Cushing film Doctor Who And The Daleks.

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green Read More

Live 34

Doctor Who: Live 34A radio broadcast unfolds live on the disant Colony 34, recounting the day’s events, including another in a string of terrorist bombings. The incumbent leader, Premier Leo Jaeger, denounces the violence, promises further crackdowns in the name of security, and openly accuses his opponents, the Freedom & Democracy Party, of being behind the attacks. The FDP’s new leader, known only as the Doctor, has a different story to tell: he criticizes the bombings, but also claims that Jaeger is trying to divert attention away from the upcoming elections that the FDP has forced through legal channels – elections that have been delayed for five years. Other news broadcasts profile the “Rebel Queen,” a young woman calling herself Ace who says she’s leading the resistance, and a bewildered paramedic named Hex who stumbles onto a secret during a live broadcast – a secret which could get Live 34 shut down by the government.

Order this CDwritten by James Parsons & Andrew Stirling-Brown
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Andrew Collins (Drew Shahan), William Hoyland (Premier Jaeger), Zehra Naqvi (Charlotte Singh), Duncan Wiseby (Ryan Wareing), Ann Bryson (Gina Grewal), Joy Elias-Rilwan (Lula)

Timeline: between Dreamtime and Night Thoughts

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green Read More

Night Thoughts

Doctor Who: Night ThoughtsThe TARDIS brings the Doctor, Ace and Hex to a stormy island, where Hex admits to experiencing strange visions of an incident in an operating room that he’s never personally witnessed, and Ace has a vision of her own near a body of water, and falls in. Spotting a nearby house, the Doctor decides they should seek shelter there, but the handful of people in the house are as unsettling as any of the strange things they’ve seen so far. Everyone there seems to be trying to keep some kind of a secret under wraps, but when one of them turns up dead, they’re all suspects…and so are the time travelers. It turns out that the TARDIS may not be the only time machine on the island, and that none of the residents of the house may have chosen to be here – and every layer of the secret that is revealed seems to cost another life.

Order this CDwritten by Edward Young
directed by Gary Russell
music by ERS

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Bernard Kay (Major Dickens), Joanna McCallum (The Bursar), Andrew Forbes (Dr. O’Neil), Lizzie Hopley (Sue), Ann Beach (The Deacon), Duncan Duff (Joe Hartley)

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green Read More

The Veiled Leopard

Doctor Who - The Veiled LeopardIt’s Monte Carlo, 1966, and Peri and Erimem are on an assignment: the Doctor has sent them to steal the Veiled Leopard, a spectacular diamond with unusual markings at its center. But this time, the TARDIS travelers are on their own, and the Doctor isn’t there to help them deal with someone else who’s there for the same reason, to say nothing of the other shady characters populating the casino. Two of the other guests in particular stick out like a sore thumb, which is an odd coincidence, because their names are Hex and Ace – and they’ve been sent by the Doctor to make sure that nobody steals the Veiled Leopard.

written by Iain McLaughlin & Claire Bartlett
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Nicola Bryant (Peri), Caroline Morris (Erimem), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Lizzie Hopley (Lady Lillian Hawthorne), Alan Ruscoe (Peter Mathis), Steven Wickham (Gavin Walker), Stephen Mansfield (Jean, the Commisionaire)

Notes: Alan Ruscoe appeared in almost half of the episodes of the first season of the revived Doctor Who, playing heavily-costumed parts such as Autons, Slitheen and assorted androids; he also appeared in the first two movies of the Star Wars prequel trilogy. Steven Wickham was Lister’s blushing GELF bride in the Red Dwarf episode Emohawk: Polymorph II. If you’re trying to fit written and audio Doctor Who into the same continuity, the fifth and seventh incarnations of the Doctor met up again both before and after this story; the Missing Adventures novel “Cold Fusion” takes place further back in the fifth Doctor’s life (when he’s traveling with Tegan, Nyssa and Adric), and much later in the seventh Doctor’s (when he’s no longer traveling with Ace or Hex, but instead shares the TARDIS with Chris Cwej and Roz Forrester).

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green Read More

The Settling

Doctor Who: The SettlingThe Doctor, Ace and Hex arrive in Ireland, 1649, to the sound of thunder…only it’s not thunder. The TARDIS has brought the time travelers to Drogheda, just before Oliver Cromwell and his New Model Army raze the town to the ground, and there are almost no survivors. The Doctor befriends a pregnant widow named Mary, after sternly telling Ace and Hex not to get involved in historical events. But when the moment comes, Hex and Ace take up arms alongside the Irish. Ace is injured in battle, and Hex is captured by Cromwell’s forces. Hoping he can change history and prevent another massacre like Drogheda, Hex becomes Cromwell’s personal advisor, trying to steer him toward more humane treatment of prisoners, civilian and otherwise. Hex tries to get Cromwell to be more concerned with how history will see him. As the Doctor tries to help Mary bring a new life into the world, Hex is helpless to watch as his best efforts only ensure that Cromwell will continue carving a bloody path through history at Wexford.

Order this CDwritten by Simon Guerrier
directed by Gary Russell
music by David Darlington

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Clive Mantle (Oliver Cromwell), Roger Parrott (Doctor Goddard), Hugh Lee (Fitzgerald), Clare Cathcart (Mary), Ian Brooker (Colonel Sinnott)

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green Read More

Red

Doctor Who: RedThe Doctor follows a psychic attack on the TARDIS’ telepathic circuits to a living city called the Needle, but the moment that he and Melanie step out of the TARDIS, they realize that their problems are just beginning – they stumble onto the scene of a grisly murder. The two time travelers are separated, Melanie barely surviving being ejected from the city’s walls, and the Doctor is brought before Chief Blue and the Needle’s central computer, White Noise. White Noise’s function involves the careful control of both the Needle and its residents, via chips implanted in their brains which allow the computer to prevent violent impulses from becoming violent actions. Rescued by a resident of the undercity beneath the Needle – people whose chips have been deactivated and whose crave the exciting sensation of violence with little thought given to its consequences – Melanie finds that she’s quite a sensation, as her rescuers believe she’s capable of anything, even extreme acts of violence…and her insistence that she isn’t likely to do any such thing seems to fall on deaf ears. White Noise is rapidly losing control of the Needle’s even more docile populace, with murders continuing to occur…only now, via his chip implant, the Doctor can see, hear and feel the thoughts and actions of the killers as they go into “red condition.” But with White Noise attempting to control him, is the Doctor capable of fighting whatever evil is stalking the city at random?

Order this CDwritten by Stewart Sheargold
directed by Gary Russell
music by ERS

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Bonnie Langford (Mel), Denise Hoey (Nuane), Sean Oliver (Chief Blue), Peter Rae (Draun), Kellie Ryan (Celia Fortunaté), Sandi Toksvig (Vi Yulquen), John Stahl (Whitenoise), Steven Wickham (Uviol)

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green Read More

No Man’s Land

Doctor Who: No Man's LandThe TARDIS deposits the Doctor, Ace and Hex in harm’s way on the front lines of World War I. After a close call with a German shell, they wind up in a makeshift military hospital, and as soon as the Doctor is fully recovered, he’s startled to find that there are orders awaiting him: they ask the British commanding officer to accord the Doctor and his associates full access to the hospital in order to investigate a murder that has yet to happen. Completely mystified, the Doctor begins investigating, but not before Hex warns him of one disturbing possibility: the future murder victim could be one of the time travelers. Hex discovers first-hand that horrifying experiments in mind control are taking place at this hospital, far ahead of their time, and crude – but effective. The Doctor and Ace find themselves on the receiving end of a none-too-subtle warning about poking around where they’re not welcome. They find an ally in a man who’s being kept off the front lines for fear that his pacifistic views will send him running into the arms of the enemy, but with the rest of the soldiers turned against him, he can’t offer the Doctor much help. When the murder finally takes place, however, it seems that the base commander has his own ideas as to who should face the music for the killing, whether his suspicions are founded in truth or not. But who knew about the murder ahead of time?

Order this CDwritten by Martin Day
directed by John Ainsworth
music by Simon Robinson

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Michael Cochrane (Lt. Col. Brook), Rob Dixon (Sgt. Wood), Rupert Wickham (Captain Dudgeon), Oliver Mellor (Private Taylor), Ian Hayles (Lance Corporal Burridge), Michael Adams (Private Dixon)

Timeline: between The Settling and Nocturne

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green

Review: A dark historical story with nary an alien influence anywhere, perhaps the only weakness of No Man’s Land is that – if you’re listening to the seventh Doctor audio adventures in their intended order – it follows on from another dark historical story with nary an alien influence anywhere (The Settling). The reality is that there were a few months between the two releases, but even the characters comment on the slight similarity – Ace warns Hex against causing another debacle like the one he precipitated in The Settling. Read More

Nocturne

Doctor Who: NocturneThe Doctor brings Ace and Hex to Glast City on the planet Nocturne, home of the Artists’ Enclave, a community of poets, musicians, writers and other creative types, which happens to be one of the Doctor’s favorite places in the universe. But death seems to arrive on the Doctor’s heels: one of the community’s prominent artists is murdered and his home is set ablaze. Hex arrives to try to help, but he’s found by the authorities and arrested on suspicion of murder. The Doctor arrives to vouch for him, but that only brings the Time Lord – and his history of unauthorized visits to Nocturne – to the attention of the city’s security forces. He discovers that someone has been conducting experiments in bioharmonics, the science of living sound, and may have summoned a dark force to Nocture. But by the time there are more deaths for the security forces to investigate, they’ve already decided that the Doctor is their prime suspect.

Order this CDwritten by Dan Abnett
directed by John Ainsworth
music by Steve Foxon

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Trevor Bannister (Korbin Thessinger), Paul David-Gough (Will Alloran), Eric Potts (Lothar Ragpole), Ann Rye (Lilian Dillane), Helen Kay (Cate Reeney)

Notes: Nocturne was the final Doctor Who audio to use the centered-logo cover template established in the earliest Big Finish releases. The following release, Renaissance Of The Daleks, began using a new cover template inspired by the covers of Virgin Publishing’s Doctor Who Missing Adventures novels, although that cover design had already appeared on the first Companion Chronicles CD releases.

Timeline: between No Man’s Land and The Dark Husband

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green

Review: The Doctor, Hex and Ace finally get back to the future, so to speak, and it’s a welcome departure after a string of trips into Earth history. Since the earliest days of Big Finish’s Doctor Who license, all the way back to Whispers Of Terror, there’s been a conscious effort to do stories that would work well in audio form but not necessarily on television, and the various stories that have tried to accomplish that have either been very good or very bad, but very seldom “eh, that’s okay.” Nocturne is one of the better attempts. Read More

Valhalla

Doctor Who: ValhallaThe Doctor arrives in the city of Valhalla, on Callisto, one of Jupiter’s major moons, in the widely-human-colonized future. But despite the marvels of technology that Valhalla represents, something is amiss: the Doctor and the city’s administrator alone know that an alien invasion is imminent. As the city descends into panic and chaos, the Doctor enlists reluctant help from a few of the locals, but even his modest attempts to slow down the invasion draw the attention of the queen of the termite-like hoardes. They’ve arrived from another world, apparently having done a deal to buy Valhalla and its entire population – as livestock. But if the Doctor has anything to say about it, the deal is off.

Order this CDwritten by Marc Platt
directed by John Ainsworth
music by Simon Robinson

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Michelle Gomez (Jevvan), Phillip Jackson (Laxton), Susannah York (Our Mother / Registry / Tannoy), Fraser James (Gerium), Donna Berlin (Tin-Marie), Duncan Wisbey (Clerk / Sergeant / Pilot / New Tannoy), Dominic Frisby (Groom / Drome Guard / Resolute Pilot / Worker 1 / Marketeer), Jack Galagher (Worker 2)

Timeline: between Master and Frozen Time

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green Read More

Frozen Time

Doctor Who: Frozen TimeAn expedition to Antarctica in 2012 uncovers an unexpected find: an old fashioned British police box, buried under millions of years worth of permafrost. On the heels of that surprising find comes another discovery: a man frozen more or less intact, probably for millions of years…but wearing machine-woven clothes (or at leas the rotting remnants of them). Even more amazingly, the man awakens when he is thawed out, though with little idea of who he is or what he was doing in the ice. The expedition’s financier, Lord Barset?, surprises the scientists on the expedition by wondering aloud if the man is a reptile. Before long, more figures are found in the ice, large and reptilian. The mystery man’s memory gradually returns, enough that he knows that the scaly figures frozen in the ice are very dangerous, and he himself is known as the Doctor. Despite the Doctor’s warnings, Barset orders the huge creatures thawed out. They too reawaken, but the moment they’re back on their feet, they begin a reign of terror, killing almost the entire expedition. The Doctor’s memory continues to return slowly, the result of a self-induced coma to survive being frozen alive, and he recalls that these creatures are called Ice Warriors – and that the enclave of them that has been discovered represents the most warlike of the lot: exiled war criminals put into deep-freeze on prehistoric Earth. Even though they’re millions of years old, modern man won’t be an obstacle when the Ice Warriors renew their craving for conquest. Only the Doctor can stop them…if he can remember how.

Order this CDwritten by Nicholas Briggs
directed by Barnaby Edwards
music by Steve Foxon

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Anthony Calf (Lord Barset), Maryam d’Abo (Genevieve), Tony Millan (Professor McIntyre), Gwynn Beech (Harman), Gregg Newton (Ben), Nicholas Briggs (Arakssor)

Timeline: between Valhalla and The Death Collectors

Notes: Frozen Time is based on Endurance, another of the 1980s Audio Visuals adventures starring Nicholas Briggs (who wrote both versions of the story) as the Doctor. Some character names are shared between the two versions of the story, but Endurance concerned itself with Silurian renegades frozen in Antarctica, and dialogue in Frozen Time tries to lead the listener in that direction as well. The 1929 expedition led by Lord Barset’s grandfather may well have encountered Silurians, but they’re nowhere to be found in the Big Finish version of the story; pre-release internet speculation frequently pegged Frozen Time as a Silurian story as well. This story and Valhalla both feature the seventh Doctor flying solo; this came about because of Sylvester McCoy’s tight schedule, since his Big Finish recording days had to be scheduled around his stage appearances in King Lear.

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green Read More

Return Of The Daleks

Doctor Who: Return Of The DaleksThe TARDIS arrives at the height of an alien world’s occupation by the Dalek Empire. Susan Mendes is there as well, serving as the Daleks’ “Angel of Mercy,” urging local populations on subjugated worlds to cooperate in order to live (and perhaps fight another day). But the locals here know all about the Daleks – this is far from their first encounter with them. Even with the Doctor and the rebellious Kalendorf working side-by-side, it may not be enough to stop the Daleks’ audacious schemes as they enslave the planet’s citizens and begin a desperate dig beneath the surface for an objective they refuse to name. The locals also have a history with the Doctor, as it was he – in a different incarnation – who helped them begin the fight against the Daleks…when their world was known as Spiridon.

written by Nicholas Briggs
directed by John Ainsworth
music by Nicholas Briggs

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Gareth Thomas (Kalendorf), Sarah Mowat (Susan Mendes), Christine Brennan (Skerrill), Hylton Collins (Mendac), Jack Galagher (Aytrax), Nicholas Briggs (The Daleks)

Notes: This story combines elements of Doctor Who with the Big Finish audio spinoff series Dalek Empire (namely, the characters of Susan Mendes and Kalendorf), and is a direct sequel to the Pertwee-era TV adventure Planet Of The Daleks.

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green Read More

The Dark Husband

Doctor Who: The Dark HusbandAfter a particularly harrowing adventure, the Doctor promises to take Ace and Hex somewhere where they can all relax, and by virtue of having both a spa and a beer tent, the Festival of the Twin Moons of Tuin wins the toss. But of course, the Doctor hasn’t shared everything he knows about Tuin: the societies of its twin moons, despite being very closely related biologically, are locked in a seemingly endless war, from which the Festival is the only break in hostilities. Furthermore, the Doctor takes it upon himself to bring that war to an end, having read some local lore. He declares himself the suitor to an unknown bride, the marriage of whom will bring peace to Tuin at last. But instead of being one step ahead of the game, this time the Doctor’s information is woefully incomplete, as he has no idea who he’ll be marrying. And even when the bride is revealed, the Doctor discovers that the peace their wedding vows will bring will not be the peace of a war ended, but the peace of a dead world.

Order this CDwritten by David Quantick
directed by Nicholas Briggs
music by Steve Foxon

Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Sophie Aldred (Ace), Philip Olivier (Hex), Danny Webb (Ori), Andy B Newb (Irit), Benny Dawb (Tuin), Katarina Olsson (Bard), Sean Connolly (Bard)

Timeline: between Nocturne and Forty-Five

LogBook entry and TheatEar entry by Earl Green

Review: A bizarrely dark metaphysical comedy, The Dark Husband is a bit misleading at several points in the story, but it certainly keeps you on your toes. It’s not like anything that’s been done in Doctor Who before, audio or television, though some longtime fans might find some similarities to the logic trap posed in the classic series phrase “Who who loses shall win, and he who wins shall lose” – it’s that kind of crafty misdirection. Read More

The Death Collectors / Spider’s Shadow

Doctor Who: The Death CollectorsThe Death Collectors: The TARDIS materializes in an airlock connecting a human research skystation with a Dar Trader ship, orbiting the quarantined planet Antikon. The planet is off-limits for good reason: a disease called Antikon’s Decay, which consumes all life with which it comes into contact, runs rampant there, and even explorers in full space suits aren’t safe. The Dar Traders, a species capable of reviving the dead just long enough to record their final memories, are there at the request of Professor Mors Alexandryn to assist in his search for a cure to the Decay. Given that Alexandryn has just sent a member of his expedition to his death – quite possibly deliberately – so he can track the growth of the Decay, he’s very wary of any outside observers such as the Doctor. The Doctor, who has a passing familiarity with the havoc that Antikon’s Decay has caused in the past, offers to lend his help, but the sacrifices he will have to make to save the expedition may include another of his precious lives.

Spider’s Shadow: The Doctor arrives on a planet where a quaint tradition is being observed on the eve of battle with an overwhelming enemy force. Has he found the right time and place – a planet worthy of unleashing Antikon’s Decay anew?

Order this CDwritten by Stewart Sheargold
directed by Ken Bentley
music by David Darlington

The Death Collectors Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Alastair Cording (Professor Mors Alexandryn), Katherine Parkinson (Danika Meanwhile), Derek Carlyle (Smith Ridley / Dar Traders), Katarina Olsson (Nancy), Kevin McNally (Henry), Rebecca Bottone (Opera singer)

Spider’s Shadow Cast: Sylvester McCoy (The Doctor), Katarina Olsson (Martial Princess Keldafria Alison), Carol Fitzpatrick (Martial Princess Keldafria Louisa), Alastair Cording (Guard), Derek Carlyle (Colonel)

Timeline: between Frozen Time and Kingdom Of Silver

LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green Read More