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The Time Scales

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Reviewed By: kfb2014 on 3/4/15 12:01 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
ontaran's being the key to the whole process, the title is a twist on the reality of what has occurred leading to the situation that the Doctor, Nyssa, Turlough and Tegan find themselves in.

Landing on the planet of Samur for some R&R they do not discover a peaceful haven of tranquility, due to it's position in the firmament, it as been the host of a war between the Sontaran's and the Rutan's, and it as a planet as not come off the better for it.

The Sontarans, to win the war, released a chemical weapon, that, as left the planet covered in a living purple fungi that is literally sucking the life out of the place. It isn't soon before the purple planet as got one of the passengers of the TARDIS as it's victims also. Meanwhile a battle cruiser with a group of 7 Sontaran's one of which is a veteran of the battle of Samur is travelling back to the planet on the belief that they are following some secret orders of their empire, to be executed. The twist in the tale is to play out. It is a nice little side step of the norm with this release.

The stand out for me in this is Mark Strickson, his character up until now as not been one of my favourites, and, in this he finally does it for me. His presence and characterisation of the ever fearful Turlough is wonderfully believable, Mark for me in this is Turlough and not an actor playing the character. I must also admit a soft spot for the Sontaran's they are becoming a firm favourite with me, their, appearance to me as never been "Troll" like however with the description being banded around by the crew of the TARDIS, I suddenly sort of get it. There charm in this is not misplaced, and, the cast of ohn Banks (Fleet Marshal Stabb/Trooper Jorr/Witch Guard), Duncan Wisbey (Field-Major Thurr/Adjutant/Orbital Command), Alex Lowe (Sergeant Mezz/Trooper Nold), Andrew Fettes (Corporal Clun), Derek Carlyle (Trooper Vend) are simply superb, it cannot be easy putting that voice on for a whole 2 hours.

Peter, and Sarah are always a pleasure to listen to, and the more releases of Peter's Doctor and Nyssa (Sarah Sutton) that I listen to, the more I have come to release that Big Finish have allowed them as actors to grow them, they are not the characters from the BBC, and in fact are in a much better place now in the production and writing hands of Big Finish.
Reviewed By: newt5996 on 3/3/15 4:02 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
After letting the other Main Range Doctors get a Dalek story in the Dalek Empire Arc, Paul McGann gets his turn in Justin Richards' The Time of the Daleks. Sadly this is a story that has many good ideas with the British government plagiarizing the time travel of The Evil of the Daleks to take Shakespeare out of time so the dictator of England can have it all to herself. The Daleks are doing there "We just want to help humanity" stick. This gives us the average first two parts which while average have good enough acting to sell the story. Parts Three and Four hit where the plot turns into a confusing mess. The Daleks plan hasn't really been thought out very well and there are references to the other three Dalek Empire stories shoehorned into the story.
Reviewed By: FlyingTigerComics on 3/3/15 2:07 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Nice time travel episode, good to see Mel get some adult stuff to deal with, and a good story. It has a couple of holes-

Firstly, we have to skip over why the coincidence of Mel and ANOTHER missing girl as used in the Doctor's cover story didn't prompt at least the Doctor from 1782 to say, "hey! could your missing girl be OUR missing girl?" and the second hole in the plot being the resolution in terms of how everyone goes back to normal as though nothing had happened. The second plot hole is not a biggie given how most Doctor Who serials end. :)
Reviewed By: kfb2014 on 3/3/15 12:42 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Old number 6 as he refers to himself is cast along with the fabulous Maggie Stables as Evelyn Smythe. It is a god send that we have such a wonderful depth of Maggie's work, all of it first rate, she is and was one the best Doctor's companions in my opinion. Maggie's always just on her game, she portrays the kindly, gentle soul, with a simmering intelligence equal is some part to that of the Doctor. What makes this a joy to listen to is that she provides us with a foil for Colin, something his other companions don't and for that I treasure the adventures that they have shared.

This by no exception is another outing with No.6, Evelyn with Thomas Brewster along for good measure. Is Thomas a good guy, is he a bad guy or is he just a little too close to what the Doctor was in his past. I get the feeling that John Pickard who plays him, is in some ways mirroring a little of the mischievous nature of Doctor 2 and 4 hence the reason in my mind that they don't get on, they have what l would describe as a tolerable presence with each other.

However what all of this wonderful cast this just misses the target of being great, and only by a very narrow margin is that the story is contrived a little and also it skips around, with the central theme of alien smugglers of salt, and the age old battle of technology taking over mankind, with mankind rejecting it and trying to forge a future without the need for technology, and live a more simpler life. In fact the later half of this I got the feeling and de-javue of "The Tripods" looming as well. The back story of Thomas Brewster doing a escape routine with the salt smuggling alien, leaves the door open for more Thomas Brewster encounters, which would not be a bad thing. Overall this is a good solid release it is just that, since listening quite religiously to the Big Finish releases this is somewhat not up to par.
Reviewed By: nottheusualfangirl on 3/2/15 11:34 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.
I loved the complex, timey-wimey plot. I loved the interaction between Seven and Klein, a complex character who was well worth bringing back. As others have said, the scenes inside the camp rang false as Ace was allowed to get away with all sorts of behavior that never would have been tolerated in a real prison. I have to knock off points for that. However, I thought the scenes between Ace and Kurtz really felt wonderfully creepy. When David Tennant was yelling, he came off as a pretty standard Nazi, but when he dropped into quiet insinuation, there was a glimpse of the extravagantly talented actor who knocked Hamlet out of the park. He put so much menace into those scenes that I found myself wondering just how far Big Finish was going to let this rape-y character go.
Reviewed By: nottheusualfangirl on 3/2/15 11:12 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
This was clearly written by someone who knew the characters, and he found a clever way to play with the story being set shortly after they met. I figured out the mystery a beat or two before the heroes did, but that didn't detract from my enjoyment of the story at all. The guest actors did a good job with a difficult task, which I can't explain without giving away the plot.
Reviewed By: nottheusualfangirl on 3/2/15 11:05 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
I really liked the first 60% this story. The setting is evocative and spooky, and I was drawn into the mystery. The problem is that once the solution was revealed, I couldn't quite get my mind around it. Math isn't my strong suit, but I have a genius level IQ overall and I do understand the specific concept involved, yet how it applies to what happened in the story didn't make sense to me.
Reviewed By: newt5996 on 3/2/15 4:19 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.
Reviewer Says: No previous stories required.
Embrace the Darkness has a great idea to hook you into the story. A story told entirely in the dark which could be a great horror story in the vain of The Chimes of Midnight or The Natural History of Fear. Sadly, Nicholas Briggs does nothing with the idea instead giving us a little gruesome imagery of people with eyes missing, but undermines the fear factor with the trope of an enemy not being an enemy.