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< 3.8 - Worldwide Web
4.2 - Situation Vacant >

4.1 - Death in Blackpool

Rating Votes
10
21%
28
9
24%
31
8
31%
41
7
11%
14
6
10%
13
5
3%
4
4
0%
0
3
0%
0
2
0%
0
1
0%
0
Average Rating
8.3
Votes
131
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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
10
Plot Rating:
10
Acting Rating:
10
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
10
Has Prerequisite(s):
Unsure
Reviewed By: JacobzReview Date: 1/21/18 11:30 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

Amazing writing, fantastic performances, gorgeous music. One of the best of the Eighth Doctor Adventures.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
4
Acting Rating:
10
Replay Rating:
10
Effects Rating:
10
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: TCar96Review Date: 2/25/17 11:30 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

A real irritation... after complaining about the ethical quagmire at the end of Zygon Who Fell To Earth not being addressed with any dramatic depth, a few weeks later I found myself tearing up as the consequences are carried through to one of the most emotionally crippling companion departures in all of Doctor Who.

Without spoiling the story, the Doctor and Lucie following Worldwide Web get to Blackpool only to bump back into Auntie Pat. There's an interesting spin on a classic who monster, played with genuine menace - but to focus on the plot mechanics would not only spoil the story, but also get the focus completely wrong.

As has been written far more eloquently by other reviewers, the sci-fi plot is simply a framework to hang on the drama. After putting up with 'arcs' in New Who, it's a real gut punch to see a perfectly executed culmination to a companion relationship - make no mistakes, this isn't a case of following through on the odd line of foreshadowing, the entire thing organically follows Lucie and the Doctor's relationship from Blood of the Daleks.

There's excellent direction and superlative performances all round, but that's no different to any New Who departure. What sets Death in Blackpool apart is the self-restraint. There's the odd point where the serial pivots and twists, sure, but there's no stop-start as we've seen with Clara, the Ponds, Rose... Donna... come to think of it - all new who. Obviously, from CD covers I'm aware Lucie will pop up in future releases (assume this serial is being told with the same chronology of Six and Evelyn), but there's a sense of finality in Death in Blackpool which TV viewers rarely get.

Despite all the gushing praise, I'd hold off a perfect 10. To get to the drama there's some rapid exposition and taking place mostly in a hospital, there's little scope for interesting vistas. Granted - this is to maximise the dramatic weight and I certainly wouldn't want it any other way, but it just left me feeling a bit rushed in parts. Furthermore, the comic relief for me just didn't work. In an irritating trend, he seems indicative of Big Finish's direction and scripting of anybody from North of Birmingham: comically thick accents and Alan Bennettisms left right and centre.

On the whole, a brave and bold sendoff for a great companion. Whilst I've missed other companions more or found departures more tear-jerking - its often been down to personal preferences or melodramatic direction and music (Nyssa & Amy respectively). Death in Blackpool on the otherhand, whilst weak in the story department, handles the departure in particular with more weight, and fulfilling use of character arcs from across the last three seasons than any other I can care to remember. A tremendous accomplishment.

Do not listen in public - you will tear up.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
9
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
10
Replay Rating:
9
Effects Rating:
10
Has Prerequisite(s):
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Reviewed By: newt5996Review Date: 11/20/15 1:00 am
3 out of 3 found this review helpful.

Death in Blackpool is the opening story to the fourth and final season of the Eighth Doctor Adventures before going to the miniseries styled Dark Eyes box sets. It is also Big Finish's first real Christmas special unless you count the final ten minutes of The One Doctor as a Christmas special. My first comment is that the new series should really look at this story as a way to do a Christmas special as Christmas itself doesn't come into play much, it just happens to take place at Christmas in 2009. It also wraps up the story arc concerning Auntie Pat, which is just as heartbreaking after The Zygon Who Fell to Earth. Helen Lederer takes over the part of Auntie Pat and she works wonderfully off of Paul McGann. There is just this tension whenever there in their every scene together and you know something is going to go down.

Now this also sees the official departure of Lucie Miller and Sheridan Smith gives one hell of a performance. Lucie is really a better version of Rose without the bad writing and isn't nearly as much of a cow. The departure scene is Rose's done right with actual sadness happening because of the friendship the two had. It is really sad to see her go and her replacement is going to have to be a good one to win me over completely.

My biggest problem is that the Zygnogs are a stupid name and Jon Glover is a bit annoying at times. He plays a drunk Santa Claus who is great at sometimes, especially once you get his backstory, but cringe worthy at other times.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
9
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
9
Effects Rating:
9
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 4/4/15 10:08 pm
2 out of 2 found this review helpful.

Lucie Miller wants to go home for Christmas after a long time travelling with the Doctor, but instead she encounters her beloved Auntie Pat at the site of one of her first adventures with the Doctor back in Series One. When she reaches Blackpool, she's hit by a car, she lapses into a coma and finds herself in a fight for her life.

The series draws upon the two previous Auntie Pat stories in am Rock and also the Zygon Who Fell to Earth and the terrible secret that the Doctor and Auntie Pat have kept from her.

The writing is good. The name for the banished Zygons (Zynog was the best you could come up with?) is silly but their concept and execution are great, and work well within the context of the story.

But it's the emotional and relationship issues that drive the story. Helen Lederer turns in a great performance as Auntie Pat and makes the character very real. Jon Glover plays down on his luck Santa that's hit the sauce. He's a great side character who provides some surprises as well as a few laughs.

Paul McGann is great at the Doctor. His care for Lucie shines through with his determination to save her. His performance his touching, as he's willing to risk his life on an insane scheme to save her. He shows his compassionate side at the end even when dealing with the enemy.

But the highlight of the story is Sheridan Smith as Lucie Miller. She turns in an amazing performance with a great speech about Christmas at the beginning of the story and then her heartbreaking final scene with the Doctor at the end. This is Lucie Miller at her best and this story is a great example of why Lucie Miller is such a beloved companion, as well as a showcase of how talented Sheridan Smith is. Overall, this is a fantastic production that outshines most of new Who's Christmas specials for sheer quality and its highly recommended.