Review: Doctor Who – Dalek Universe 1

Review by Jacob Licklider


The Dalek Protocol started off the Dalek Universe miniseries with a fairly standard but enjoyable tale with no real connection to what would become the series at least based on the first set. And a day later, Dalek Universe begins itself properly with the first three stories in the miniseries being released to acclaim. To make what’s most likely going to be a long review short, Dalek Universe 1 is a brilliant start to the miniseries and if you haven’t already, go do yourself a favour and buy it. This is one of those sets that I cannot critically evaluate without losing my restraint on spoilers so from this point forward. You have been warned. Each installment of Dalek Universe 1 is truly part of a miniseries, blending together which helps as two of the episodes are from John Dorney, and the third deals with the character fallout from the previous two episodes before moving along to what will eventually become the conclusion of the set while transitioning into the second set. An interesting note, this set barely features the Daleks, like The Dalek Protocol before it, they are an off-screen presence bar a few scenes, the writers instead electing for setting this around the time of The Daleks’ Master Plan and dragging the Tenth Doctor out of time into his own personal timeline.

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Doctor Who: The Ice Warriors coming to vinyl

Demon Records presents the narrated TV soundtrack of a partially ‘lost’ six-part adventure The Ice Warriors set in a future Ice Age, starring Patrick Troughton as the Doctor.

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Audio Review: Carolyn Seymour in Conversation

Review by Ian McArdell


Carolyn Seymour in Conversation is the latest in an occasional range of in-depth interviews with Big Finish’s biggest stars. Perhaps best known in cult television circles for her starring role in the first series of Terry Nation’s Survivors, Carolyn Seymour has worked extensively on both sides of the Atlantic, on both stage and screen. In 2014 she reprised her role as Abby Grant in the audio continuation of Survivors, and has since appeared across a number of their ranges, most notably the Doctor Who spin-off Counter-Measures, where she plays the returning villainess, Lady Suzanne Clare.


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Review: The Lone Centurion (Vol. 1)

Review by Jacob Licklider


With David Tennant joining Big Finish in 2016, and the recent return of Christopher Eccleston in a series of four box sets, the New Series representation at Big Finish increased; yet Matt Smith’s Eleventh Doctor has thus far been relegated to Short Trips and The Eleventh Doctor Chronicles due to only Alex Kingston’s participation in Big Finish. However, an announcement of a two volume spin-off following the Auton Rory Williams while he guards the Pandorica in a now deleted universe brings Arthur Darvill back to the worlds of Doctor Who in a release that nobody was quite expecting. Rory Williams is one of those characters which you really don’t know what to expect, often taking a back seat in episodes and only given companion status by the start of Darvill’s second series in the role. Rory is essentially comic relief and on the surface relegated to supporting roles, so The Lone Centurion is something which doesn’t actually have anything to go on in terms of what it can accomplish, complicated by the fact that as an Auton Rory is more difficult to kill as this takes place in between The Pandorica Opens and The Big Bang. The premise is intriguing: the Pandorica has gone missing meaning that Amy has gone missing, and Rory is attempting to find it, shenanigans ensue. Continue reading

Review: ‘Master!’

Review by Jacob Licklider


With the acquisition of Eric Roberts returning to the role of the Master in The Diary of River Song, Ravenous 4, and Masterful, it became a matter of time before Big Finish Productions gave him his own spin-off box set.  Announced in 2020, Master! is essentially a precursor to Big Finish’s new three disc box set model for releases going forward.  Eric Roberts’ Master is also a character who does not actually have a fully fleshed out character.  He is a character who was over the top and camp in his one television appearance, under the guidance of a director who simply did not understand who the Master was and didn’t allow Roberts to actually give any menace in his performance.  Big Finish obviously worked to correct this in his first three appearances, but giving him a full length box set audiences finally get the chance to explore just what this version of the Master is and what he actually stands for.  Master! contains three stories from three writers, all telling an overarching story of how Eric Roberts’ Master escaped the time vortex and was eventually tracked down by an assassin and the Daleks, and of course escaped.  Interestingly unlike The War Master and Missy where the Master is a protagonist, Master! actually plays it with the Master directly the role of the antagonist, with each story essentially following other characters interacting with the Master and essentially trying to stop him from succeeding in each episode’s plan as things escalate towards the eventual conclusion.

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Audio Review: Blake’s 7 – Lucifer Genesis

Review by Ian McArdell


Lucifer Genesis is the final instalment in the late Paul Darrow’s trilogy of Blake’s 7 stories, charting the ongoing exploits of the character he so memorably brought to life: Kerr Avon.
First published by Big Finish in 2015, it has been recorded as an audiobook by Darrow’s colleague, Stephen Grief. Grief, of course, played the role of Travis in the television show’s first year. Up front, it is worth saying that I have not read either of the other Lucifer books, but it does not seem to matter – Lucifer Genesis is a relatively self-contained epic. It is also one that has a tremendous scope, with an intricate plot charting Servalan’s rise to power, then weaves in and out of established onscreen Blake’s 7 events. Throughout Avon is positioned as Servalan’s nemesis, with characters such as Blake and Travis merely diversions to be handled along the way.

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Review: Doctor Who – The End Of The Beginning

Review by Jacob Licklider


So here we are. March 2021 and the end of The Monthly Range of Doctor Who. Over 20 years and 275 releases, and Big Finish Productions have decided to give their flagship range on final multi-Doctor send-off adventure. Relative newcomer Robert Valentine was given the task of writing The End of the Beginning, a story which harkens back to the very first release in the range, The Sirens of Time, telling three connected adventures for three Doctors before bringing them together for the final episode in one big overarching plan. Each episode adds to the drama and ends with the Doctor (and this time companion) in some sort of danger while everything builds towards some universe breaking danger. The production of The End of the Beginning is put in the hands of Ken Bentley, one of the range’s most prolific directors, and the sound design and music by Wilfredo Acosta. This is an entire story based on making an homage to the range; including appearances from range exclusive characters for one last hurrah before Big Finish moves into a new era of box-sets and new adventures with different Doctors and companions. There is at least one Monthly Range release which is still coming as it was delayed, but this truly is the end of an era for Big Finish Productions.

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Review: Doctor Who The Lost Stories – Return Of The Cybermen / The Doomsday Contract

Review by Jacob Licklider


When The Lost Stories was revived in 2019, listeners thought it could only be for a one-off run of two extra stories. Nobody really expected Big Finish Productions to announce the range to continue with more frequency than the occasional production, but only a few months later the announcement came that March 2021 would see the release of two stories featuring the Fourth Doctor, and last month a third release was announced from Russell T. Davies featuring the Sixth Doctor and Mel. The Sixth Doctor and Mel story may still be a long while off yet, but bringing Tom Baker back to The Lost Stories range is an excellent choice as he had only one release in the range: a box set featuring two stories, a six part story from Robert Banks Stewart and a four part adventure from Phillip Hinchcliffe. It is March 2021, nearly a year since the initial announcement, and Big Finish have made good on that release date. Return of the Cybermen and The Doomsday Contract have been released and the range is truly revived in a new form recovering previously abandoning Doctor Who scripts for a new audience to enjoy in a whole new way. Continue reading

Review: Doctor Who – Stranded 2

Review by Jacob Licklider


Stranding the Eighth Doctor on Earth was by no means a new idea, it had been done in the Eighth Doctor Adventures novels, but making him a landlord with Liv and Helen made for an interesting change. Stranded 1 was released way back in June 2020 when we were all in lockdown and the future releases were sadly delayed, with Stranded 2 moving from its original November release date to March 2021. Stranded 1 was one of those releases while where I enjoyed it quite a bit, I felt slightly underwhelmed by the premise as it was very much Doctor Who does a soap opera, but sitting down to listen to Stranded 2 made me acutely aware of how I have missed this ensemble cast and their interactions. Like Jon Pertwee’s second season bringing some time travel back, Stranded 2 still contains four earthbound stories, it is the first to actually bring these new companions and residents of Baker Street into the TARDIS and exploring their history and interpersonal relationships. This premise allows it to stand out from the first set and the Pertwee era in a number of ways which makes it incredibly fun. As Stranded 2 is still kind of like Doctor Who does a soap opera, this review may contain minor spoilers for certain plot developments in the characters. This review was also written with each section right after listening, so each section may not reflect how any story arcs happen.

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Doctor Who/Big Finish actor dies

Actor David Bailie, known for his performances on stage television and film has passed away at the age of 83.


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