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< 113b. A perfect World
115a. Forty-Five - False Gods >

114. Brotherhood of the Daleks

Rating Votes
10
5%
6
9
14%
16
8
46%
52
7
18%
20
6
12%
14
5
4%
5
4
0%
0
3
0%
0
2
0%
0
1
0%
0
Average Rating
7.7
Votes
113
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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
6
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 4/16/15 9:18 am
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

This is a story that keeps you guessing throughout. Even when you think the closing music is signalling the end of the story and start of the extras, this story can't quite be believed. It's of course, not so bad that you can't follow it or no one knows what happened.

The line between fact and fiction is blurred from episode one when the Doctor believes they've landed on a world that's icy cold while it actually appears to be tropical. This episode isn't easy listening, it fully engages your mind as good audio drama does. I will admit the ending was a bit of a let down, but still, I think it was another great serial for the doctor and Charley.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
10
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
10
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: kfb2014Review Date: 1/25/15 12:56 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

This is simply the best value from Big Finish ever, and, not, for the immediate obvious. The acting is superb, I love the pairing of India and Colin they are certainly gelling well. I also love the performance from Michael Cochrane who is one of those journeymen actors that is vastly underrated. This story as per the extras recording state is a bit of a "russian doll" it never relents, and you need to ensure that when you sit down for this, or what ever your normally do when you listen, that you give this1000% attention. Put simply this is one hell of a complicated multi level drama. It simply is unrelenting in the pursuit of the end goal. There are revelation of Charlie's true identity at last to the Doctor, there are Thales that are not Thales, there are Thales that are replicant's, there are Thales that are Daleks, or are they.....

There is a theme running throughout all of this very deep and somewhat mid blowing confusion however, and that is the Daleks that the twisted thinking of Murgat, a half Thale and half plant is trying to create are more communist/socialist Daleks hybrid's than just pure bent on total domination. That Daleks of his creation are essentially mutated via the endeavours of Murgat, and his narcissistic beliefs, planet power, and from what my frazzled mind can peace together is sort of Matrix style consciousness that prepares the newly created Thaleks being.

Now back to my first comment, why this is the best value for money release I have listened too. Put simply, I have listened to this release solely for a whole week on and off, and even now I am not 100% sure that I have got all the quirks and foibles, so I will continue to listen, and re-evaluate my review. There is however one thing without question about this release. It is undeniably the finest peace of audio drama written by Alan Barnes, and also superbly directed by Nicholas Briggs. The acting is without compromise and proves why people who listen to Big Finish productions are always blown away with what they manage to create.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
NR
Acting Rating:
NR
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: templetongateReview Date: 6/28/13 6:18 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

What the what?!

There are moments of gorgeous weirdness in this story, mixed up with any number of excellent ideas and layer upon layer of possible realities. It's a hard, stressful listen at times, but I love the speech Charley gives when 'fessing up to her secret knowledge. And ain't it weird to hear non-Briggs Daleks...?

Of all the main range stories, this is the one to lock yourself away in a carefully lit room with a can of caffeine to hand.

And, following the Doomwood stuff, I'm now desperate for a real story about real things...
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
NR
Acting Rating:
NR
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: Crystal LogicReview Date: 9/6/12 1:58 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

I haven't always felt too kindly toward Barnes's stories in the past: They often seem like a big mess of misplaced emotion and ill-advised attempts at being epic and all-encompassing in scope just for its own sake. Yet, always at the core of the stories are some pretty cool and original ideas. I guess this is probably my favourite Barnes script yet, and it is executed brilliantly. I admit it, too: I love the Daleks, and though they're often not handled as the terrible threat that I think they always should be, I usually try and snap up everything with their name on it...I just can't help it!

I liked Charley travelling with Doctor number Six. It was an interesting little twist, and at this point in the arc at least you wonder chiefly how it is that DOctor number eight doesn't remember her in the time of Storm Warning. Here she comes very close to telling Six the truth, but it doesn't quite work out the way she'd planned...

Despite being somewhat in awe of the revelations and inherent cleverness of the script, i have a few problems:

The story is too dependent on one's knowledge of past adventures. Even if one can follow the narrative reasonably without, teh script is littered with nods and winks. This is a common Barnes trait, it seems, and I must say I'm not terribly fond of it. Everything from Planet of the Daleks to Resurrection of the Daleks to Big Finishs own The Mind's Eye and Terra Firma is referenced in some wayy, and there's even what I think is a gag against Terry Nation, with Antares being referred to as a galaxy instead of a solar system at one point. I think this is actually a misunderstanding of Doctor Who fans, who misinterpreted some of the statements in The Dalek master Plan, and that Nation knew exactly what a galaxy was, so this gag is not only kind of lame but falls flat as well. The sad thing is that unless you know all this stuff, you'll just be befuddled for a good portion of the play, or at the least wondering why the characters are talking in such a stilted, strange fashion.

Then there are a couple of questions, or holes which the script seemingly forgot to plug. Either that or I'm misunderstanding a couple of things myself. Spoilers here!!!!:

If the experimental subjects remember Charley from Folkestone, this presumably refers to the events of Terra Firma. I assumed this took place far in the Daleks' future, given Davros's condition in that story, but it seems to be the past from the perspective of Brotherhood of the Daleks. So, if the experimental subjects remember her, why don't the Black Dalek and its entourage? Of course, Daleks being time travellers means they can occasionally reach different points in their own timeline, too, but you'd think the Daleks would check on this sort of thing periodically to make sure they don't erase their own history by accident. Presumably that's what the Time Controller Dalek is for. Perhaps he needed to be present in this story to sort out this mess! Linked to this is the matter of the Doctor himself, who hasn't experienced the Folkestone events yet, yet presumably must have experienced other events in the future timeline of the Daleks. So, why are they more interested in Charley when they create a replicant of the Doctor? Hasn't it been a big deal ever since Genesis or maybe even Day of the Daleks that the Daleks get their hands on the Doctor's memories and knowledge so they can have a glimpse into their own future? Yet they seem obsessed with the idea of Charley and that she reveal where she really comes from. Admittedly the idea of Charley possibly being a replicant designed to infiltrate the TARDIS is a good one...and Charley even thought of it herself! This would sort of have consequences by the time of Patient Zero, though they aren't what one would expect, and for this bit of subversion and cleverness Big Finish should be commended. However, all this begs the question: when was the Doctor replicated anyway? I don't think he was separated from Charley at all up until that point. While the twist of the Doctor in the cell being a replicant was pretty potent and gave me a real chill, I don't see how or when it was done, or why the Daleks never really made a bigger deal of it, since the process of replication usually involves a detailed recording of one's memories. Charley's question of "what have you done with the real Doctor?" never seems to be answered.

The disorienting feel this story occasionally has is something I really like, though. There are basically two false endings; three if you count the fact that the Doctor and Charley nearly clear off in the TARDIS at the end of episode three. There's a real feeling of tension throughout and Charley is at several points just about to break with the truth. She is acting a little obvious, though, I must say; the Doctor always seems on the point of catching on throughout these arc stories and it's kind of bizarre to me that he doesn't. TO be honest, while parts of the Charley arc work for me, and I do like the character, generally I feel it is simultaneously too obvious and convoluted (I assure you such a thing is possible) to work. I admit that it's really interesting, though; Doctor Who has never worked so hard to keep a character going and make her history with the Doctor so strange and complicated.

And, you know...Daleks singing Bolshevik anthems! My god...what'll they think of next. Yet, despite this sort of being played for laughs, the gravity of the story and its implications means that we don't at all stop taking it (or them) seriously. This is probably the weirdest thing that's ever been done with the Daleks, and while a part of me was dubious as to whether this would really work, I found the result really captivating. I nearly felt sorry for Daleks having their natures pulled at and subverted in such a way. Also, The Word is lurking just around the corner, struggling to get out. I knew that it would escape in the end, and when it did, it was both a horrible end and a grand moment of triumph. Exterminate!