The TARDIS makes a rough landing in what appears to be modern-day England, though a rip in the fabric of time traumatizes the Doctor by showing him events that he doesn’t remember – a bloody war. As he and Evelyn explore, they discover that they’ve somehow landed on an alternate Earth whose “English Empire” is about to celebrate a jubilee in recognition of their defeat of a Dalek invasion force in 1903 – a victory they attribute entirely to the Doctor, a figure they know as a military hero who led them in battle against the Daleks, while history records that the Doctor’s companion Evelyn was a casualty of that carnage. The highlight of the 100th anniversary celebration will be the very public execution of an unarmed Dalek, kept alive in captivity all these years. This time, are the Daleks the downtrodden underclass, waiting for the Doctor to free them from the tyrannical reign of the all-conquering, merciless human race?
Cast: Colin Baker (The Doctor), Maggie Stables (Evelyn), Martin Jarvis (Nigel Rochester), Rosalind Ayres (Miriam Rochester), Nicholas Briggs (Dalek voices), Georgina Carter (Female movie star), Steven Elder (Farrow), Jack Galagher (Male movie star), Kai Simmons (Lamb)
Timeline: between The Sandman and Doctor Who And The Pirates
LogBook entry and TheatEar review by Earl Green
Review: Robert Sherman, bless his soul, has become the definitive “mindf**k scribe” of audio Doctor Who. Whoever thought they’d hear the Doctor’s companion pleading for the life of a Dalek? Who thought they’d hear the Doctor try to rise up and defeat a war-hungry human race? As he did in The Holy Terror, Shearman demonstrates an ability to carefully misguide the listener into thinking he’s hearing one thing, when in fact he’s hearing something else. Jubilee is another cleverly constructed story, designed from the outset to throw you for a loop.
Keeping the whole exercise afloat is the real-life husband/wife team of Martin Jarvis and Rosalind Ayres, portraying a Royal Couple of sorts, both of whom are utterly, utterly mad. Never thought you’d be rooting for a Dalek? Think again. Never thought you’d hear Daleks singing? Eh…you’d better brace yourself. The story frequently pegs the needle on the surrealism scale.
An excellent start for the Big Finish audio adventures in the 40th anniversary year – I can’t recommend it highly enough, and I can’t really tell you much more than that for fear of giving away something vital and surprising to the story.