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The Time Scales

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Reviewed By: adamelijah on 7/2/15 10:45 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Terror Firma sees the return of the Doctor from the Divergent Universe and also the first (and so far only) encounter between the Eighth Doctor and Davros. There are some great concepts played with including the introduction of two pre-Charley Companions who traveled with the Doctor between the Movie and Storm Warning.

The plot hinges on Davros who has become even more warped by the desire for vengeance. The story really turns on his twisted tortured stratagems that seem designed more to punish or destroy the Doctor or to achieve his secondary goal of reclaiming his humanity. Some of the plot loses momentum as writer Joseph Lidster struggles to tie all of his disparate plot threads together.

However, the story because of strong characters and actors. McGann has one of his strong performances since Neverland. The Doctor has some great moments of self-revelation while also having some moments of self-doubt and regret over what happened to Jemma and Samson.

Davros is a fascinating characters with his schizophrenia and his battle to maintain control of his own mind. Even through his evil schemes, he's a broken man who doesn't seem to care whether he lives or dies.

Charley felt very real and raw. She's able to encourage the Doctor in one moment while dealing with the horror of what he almost did. While C'Rizz seems almost to have been rewritten, this is a solid story that makes the character far more interesting.

Overall, despite its flaws, this is a great welcome back for the Doctor to his home universe. The cast does a good job, and the characters are compelling and make you want to learn more about their adventures.
Reviewed By: kfb2014 on 7/2/15 2:01 pm
1 out of 2 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
This must have been the first playing around with the idea of the spin offs of Jago and Litefoot and it is without question one of the blueprint drama, It sets out the store of both the depth and quality of the characters original creation, it also demonstrates that in the capable hands of someone like Big Finish then they have now created a canon of work with these two characters who are without doubt the no.1 for me of spin offs. This story does not fail to deliver in fact with only the use of the two of the intrepid detectives of the supernatural and the unexplained, to tell the whole tale it speaks volumes of the whole production whether that be production, direction, writing or acting. Jago and Litefoot deliver on all fronts. The story recalls through recollection the macabre tale of a twisted genius bringing back to life the souls of the departed and implanting them into highly crafter wooden mannequins. The story telling held within this, is both a wonderfully engaging and a story that you will be hooked on until the end
Reviewed By: kfb2014 on 7/2/15 1:24 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
This is based around the third Doctor era, and is told and narrated through the eyes of Mike Yates from Unit. It tells a tale which may well have been one of those that never made it to the BBC to be made into a TV third Doctor adventure, but, I found this entertaining nevertheless, in fact in some instances the intensity of the story telling from the point of view of Richard Franklin's story telling adds more to the tale in the shape of it being just Audio. The main thrust of the the story is of a strange occurrence of winter like weather and storms effecting the center of London in the middle of summer. in fact they have spread to the underground as well, which is more than odd, eventually however the Doctor is persuaded to take a look, what unravels is a strange, very left of center story, of alien entities being part of the whole going's on.

The Companion Chronicles themselves offer the fans a chance to hear stories that we would not have seen, or even known about, it explores the area of all that additional story telling that could have been told had we have had the time. This release is I feel one of the most comparable to an actual third Doctor story and so for me this albeit with just Richard Franklin and Micheal Chance provides one of the most entertaining of this third season of releases.
Reviewed By: kfb2014 on 7/2/15 1:13 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: Previous stories required!
The mysterious fog or mist is finally explained by Aubrey and Fowler, it would appear they have created a machine which is responsible for the mizpah, and moreover what it is causing. Jago & Litefoot find themselves back in London after the bumblings of Jago damages the machine result in it pumping out a mystifying fog that results in them back in their old town. Jago and Litefoot also learn from Fowler and Aubrey are more than acquaintances from the ship, and what is more Fowler and Aubrey are responsible for the evil that is following them now, tracking them down, and ripping apart anything in it's way. It is not soon however that Jago and Litefoot's vigor and valor are put to the test.
Reviewed By: adamelijah on 7/2/15 5:37 am
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
An enjoyable Companion Chronicle originally offered as a freebie for Doctor Who Magazine subscribers. The story itself and the premise is average fare for the Companion Chronicles-a cave that seems to be full of ghosts. Thee final twist is telegraphed fifteen minutes from the end. However, Jonathan Morris manages to work some Time Lord lore into the tale. The soundscape is very atmospheric. Katy Manning does a great job bringing all these characters to life (all but one of whom is male.) There's also a pretty interesting scene where Andrew Whipp actually does voices when he's recalling a scene from which Jo was absent.

Overall, a decent enough representation of the Companion Chronicles. It's not an essential story but succeeded in being a good representative of its range.
Reviewed By: newt5996 on 7/1/15 6:45 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Catch-1782 is a story which for the first half focuses its plot on the character of Melanie Bush. Yes, despised companion Mel gets to have a story to shine and the combination of writer Allison Lawson's writing and Bonnie Langford's emotional performance makes the story a very enjoyable one that cements the fact that Mel had potential to be a great character which is realized here especially. You can really feel for her sadness as Mel thinks the Doctor has abandoned her and can't remember who she is. In the second half when she starts to remember who she is it even gets worse as her ancestor tries to get her to marry him. Lawson also uses the script to make a statement on forms of medicine used on the diseases we don't understand and how they hurt more than harm. Everything about the script oozes a good story, but sadly can't be great for one reason. It is too short of a story. Yes as the story explores a lot of aspects including a paradox that should become the driving force once Mel regains her memory it doesn't causing the story to be less than perfect because of how it just wraps itself up too nicely.
Reviewed By: newt5996 on 7/1/15 6:14 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Dreamtime is the spiritual sequel to The Sandman also written by Simon A Forward and while it had its problems it was still a fairly solid audio, if a bit boring. Dreamtime on the other hand has a really good premise with the Dreamtime being a great idea that isn't explained at all. Also the setting of the story is really mysterious with some of it taking place on a rock in space and the rest in Australia or a place that looks like Australia. Also the writing almost feels like the story was written for just Ace in some places and just being pawned off to Hex while the Doctor is incapacitated in living stone. It even feels like it was written like it was for Six and Mel or Peri and not Seven, Ace and Hex in some places early on.

It is also supposed to be Hex's first trip in the TARDIS which isn't explored at all and feels more like his third or fourth trip except for some of the scenes with Hex near the end of the play. The Galyari are also in this play but really have no purpose except maybe to make a dynamic between the human beliefs and Galyari beliefs with a lot of shameless referencing to The Sandman. It seems pointless to make these references as there are no consequences for the Doctor because of what he did in The Sandman. Also the sound design isn't the best because there are places where the actors sound off and the music is just forgettable. The resolution to the plot is also a bit confusing with everyone living somehow.

There are a few things to enjoy however as most of the acting is solid throughout with a few line oddities here and there. The final scenes with the Doctor, Ace and Hex are also rather nice yet pointless somehow.

Other Recommended/Related Stories

Reviewed By: komodo on 7/1/15 4:24 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
I have not read the novel this was adapted from, but if treated as a stand alone story, this stacks up quite well. I think this is the first novel adaptation that doesn't feel like one.

The timing of the story is really good as it flows from scene to scene with Gareth Roberts sense of humour shining through. It feels like a very typical 4th Doctor story.

The premise is great and there are great scenes for the Doctor, Romana and K9 as well as a great cast of supporting characters including the return of Stokes. He doesn't add much to the story, but its fun to have him around.

The plot focuses on the Doctor arriving in the middle of a war zone where everyone is friendly and there is very little danger (reverse of the usual situation) until they uncover a darker problem beneath the surface and must work with people on both sides of the conflict to resolve things.