Review by Jacob Licklider
The Audio Novels range is the newest Doctor Who range from Big Finish Productions, essentially taking over from their original printed short story collections which ran until 2009 when they lost the license to print Doctor Who books. Several of the short stories would find their way as Subscriber Short Trips, four released a year, but with the ending of The Monthly Range and the normal Short Trips range being moved to box sets 2021 saw the introduction of The Audio Novels with Scourge of the Cybermen, essentially released every six months in January and July. The second installment is also an interesting contribution as it isn’t from an established writer, but an actor. Matthew Waterhouse wrote Watchers, a seven-hour audiobook set after The Keeper of Traken and exploring the final days of the Fourth Doctor, in universe, bridging the gap to Logopolis. It is an interesting look at the end of the Tom Baker era from a meta-textual standpoint as Waterhouse uses it to ultimately comment on how each of the three producers during the run produced the show, and especially how stark a contrast Season 18 was in respect to the end of the Graham Williams era. Gone was the previous era’s characteristic humour, brought into stark contract as Season 17 was script edited by Douglas Adams and was an out and out comedy.