Review: Doctor Who Interludes – The Dream Nexus

Review by Jacob Licklider

The Interludes range is the newest addition to Big Finish Productions’ Doctor Who output, released exclusively to the website with specific releases (currently the first yearly release of the Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Doctor Adventures), and seem to be yet another chance to bring in new talent by giving them a trial hour long audiobook featuring the Fifth, Sixth, or Seventh Doctor. The inaugural release was I, Kamelion allowing Dominic G. Martin a story, and the second released with The Sixth Doctor Adventures: Water Worlds from Adam Christopher, a New Zealand writer who has also written for the Star Wars expanded media. The Dream Nexus is very much a novella style audiobook set in between The Tides of the Moon and Maelstrom, which was honestly a surprise. The expectation wasn’t that it would be a continuation of the box set, but for The Dream Nexus it really works to continue what made Water Worlds work in exploring the team dynamic of this TARDIS team. Christopher’s story perhaps suffers most from being limited to a single hour as this is a story which almost needs the full novel length to really do anything conclusive with its plot as it feels as if things finish just as the story gets going. Continue reading

Review: The Sixth Doctor Adventures – Water Worlds

Review by Jacob Licklider

Disability in Doctor Who has never been it’s strong suit. Perhaps the most prominent disabled character has been Davros, a genocidal maniac who created the Daleks, aka space Nazis whose purpose is exterminating all other life. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s there was a streak of characters with physical disfigurements as a mark of villainy, though by 1989 there was some small instances of complexity with disabled characters in Battlefield and The Curse of Fenric while the New Series has been mostly neutral in disability representation with some exceptions (Under the Lake/Before the Flood comes to mind for deaf representation). Oddly enough the 1960s were more progressive than much of the 1970s and 1980s with serials like Galaxy Four where the monstrous Rills being the good guys and The Dalek Invasion of Earth including a good scientist in a wheelchair who dies at about the halfway point of that story. So, here we are in 2022, and Big Finish Productions are once again making a push ahead of television series in terms of representation by introducing the first disabled Doctor Who companion in Dr. Hebe Harrison in The Sixth Doctor Adventures: Water Worlds, a marine biologist who uses a wheelchair. Like their push with trans representation in Rebecca Root’s Tania Bell, Hebe is played by disabled actress Ruth Madeley and producer Jacqueline Rayner worked closely with Madeley to ensure all three scripts from this set reflected disability representation well.

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