The pseudo historical stories of Doctor Who have always had a special place in my heart with my favorite Hartnell story being The Time Meddler. Colditz is no exception of a good historical with sci-fi elements mixed in the narrative. The cast is pretty good with a few annoyances, mostly Peter Rae's character, and Ace gets leaps of character development. It also isn't as good as earlier Big Finish historical stories, primarily The Marian Conspiracy and The Fires of Vulcan
This story is my favorite story of the entire television series on the whole. It marks a turning point of the Sylvester McCoy era, turning the Seventh from a poor copy of Troughton to the chess master he became. The Daleks are back to their evil selves acting without Davros until the very end and they are all the better for it. Sophie Aldred gives a very good performance as does the Counter Measures team who would warrant their own Big Finish spin off. If there was only one problem it would be that it wasn't the 25th Anniversary Story
For me this is a first rate drama, it is not Sci-Fi in any shape or form, it's actually a moral commentary on the futile thing we have and call war. Sylvester Mccoy and Philip and Sophie are way above the normal form, and the supporting cast are also of high quality, in fact special mention should go to Michael Cochrane who is superb in his role. I especially liked the way Mccoy underplays certain elements, and is especially impassioned about the anti war stance, when the actual horror of what is going on becomes apparent to the Doctor, his complete disgust is very well portrayed by Sylvester who comes across so unbelievably understated that it is quite chilling. What is a big win for Big Finish is that the soundscape what we have is the First World War, which as we know paints a picture that we all are all familiar with. I really enjoyed this and I felt that Mccoy has possibly topped the best performance so far of his BF main stream output.
I am not going to comment on the content of the story, but as I said before this is not a Sci-Fi Doctor this is more of a moral tale of the utter madness that is war and what it does to people, the only hook I loved is the end, when we discover why what has happened and why it has been carried out by the Army Lieutenant-Colonel Brook. Superb stuff.
Lots of interesting and intriguing ideas fail to gel into a cohesive storyline. On the plus side, the inclusion of Silver proves charming as ever and the regulars are on good form. Unfortunately the fatal lack of spooky atmosphere (which is essential to Sapphire & Steel in my opinion) means this falls on the side of blandness and only barely holds interest all the way through.
The reunion of Romana and the Sixth Doctor provides some fun in a rather over-stuffed and slightly rushed story which escalates the threat and provides some much-needed character development to the recurring villain. Leela gets to do something a bit different which is always fun. Ultimately the story proves a satisfying resolution to the previous three. Overall, probably the best constructed and well-worked out of BF's linked stories.
Although I wasn't very familiar with the setting and characters, this proved to be a very entertaining story with nice, organic connections to the previous stories. The focus on Mike Yates proves rewarding and nicely leads into the final story in the set.
A very straightforward and linear story with few surprises make this a slightly flat story. Still, the polished quality of the performers and production means even average Jago and Litefoot is still never less than entertaining.