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< 2.3 - Old Soldiers
3.1 - Here There Be Monsters >

2.4 - The Catalyst

Rating Votes
10
16%
15
9
21%
20
8
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27
7
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6
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5
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4
4
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Average Rating
7.9
Votes
95
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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: traves8853Review Date: 11/27/15 3:26 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

The writing, directing and sound design of 'The Catalyst' is all Nigel Fairs creation, and it's a success on all fronts. The Doctor and Leela are visiting an old companion of the third Doctor, but it isn't one from the TV series, audio or books – just one invented for the story. Leela finds the trophy rooms which turn out to be a Tardis in disguise and stumbles upon H'mbrackle a member of the Z'nai, a warlike clone race that pursues ethnic cleansing. The first cliffhanger shows us the lengths that H'mbrackle is prepared to go to, a true sadist.

Louise Jameson and Timothy Watson both give great performances in this engaging, memorable and darkly emotive production that constantly builds up the tension. It's well-plotted, well-paced, with loads of atmosphere and a great ending.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
6
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
6
Replay Rating:
6
Effects Rating:
6
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 4/8/15 9:45 am
2 out of 3 found this review helpful.

The Catalyst is a story in two parts. The first third is almost a comedy of manners as Leela clashes with the inhabitants of an Edwardian manner house The Warrior of Severteen is clearly not a fan of the put-on manners of her host and quickly goes on a tour of the house which leads her to a portal to the Doctor's "trophy room" and a fierce being claiming to be the last of his species The story then takes a very dark turn.

Overall, Louise Jameson was superb as Leela, once again bringing to life a character who could be not only courageous, but brash and completely honest. I loved her response to who her favorite author was. "The Doctor is teaching me to read about some very stupid children with a dog and a ball." She also did a great job portraying (at least through voice), the other characters in the story.

I thought the framing story was somewhat unnecessary and didn't add much. I also found the way the doctor's pacifism was portrayed a tad over the top for the story. Still, it was a decent listen.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
8
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: kfb2014Review Date: 9/20/14 10:56 am
3 out of 3 found this review helpful.

An outing with Leela as the fourth Doctor takes a turn in a Companion Chronicles adventure. Louise Jameson is a wonderfully good actress, she uses her skill and her craft in everything that she does, and in the part she made famous in Doctor Who, she carries this through with ease a plenty, her acting skills shines here and she retells the story with virtue and poise, and gets your attention without anything other than her believable portrayal of the Companion Leela, the 4th Doctors, warrior assistant. The story here is quite a neat little tale, examining the fact of the Doctor's previous incarnation taking a peer of the realm off on a out of world adventure some time in his past. It is what he has bought back that is crux of this story. It is the unwelcome past trophy is a Z’nai warrior, one whom as an agenda when Leela and Lord Douglas's daughter are almost transfixed by the Z'nai, whom repeatedly asks for one of them to release him from the forcefield that is holding him in place, it becomes obvious that his intent is more than just to pass the time with Leela and Jessica Douglas, especially as he has admitted to knowing the Doctor. This was a vehicle that admirably shows off Louise ability as one of the best actors that have worked in the Who sphere. She is in total command of this story, and you are drawn in without effort. The only thing I would say is that Louise efforts in mimicking Tom sounds more like your scary odd uncle than Tom. Apart from that a wonderful and entertaining Companion Chronicle.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
NR
Acting Rating:
NR
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: PaulaPenguinReview Date: 8/14/14 5:36 am
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

The Catalyst starts with an intriguing piece of framing narrative, which then leads into Leela's account of one of her adventures with the Doctor.
At first, her tale seems to be very small scale, but in the second half the scope of the story slowly gets bigger and unfolds into some unexpected directions. The ending is well thought-out and all the pieces of the puzzle come together nicely.
Louise Jameson's impression of the Fourth Doctor is ok (albeit not brilliant), but the rest of her narrations is absolutely wonderful. Timothy Watson works well as a strong counterpart.
The Catalyst offers a well-written, character-driven script, with good characterizations of both Leela and the Doctor. A great opening for Nigel Fair's original Leela companion chronicle trilogy.