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< 4.3 - Truant

4.4 - The True Saviour Of The Universe

Rating Votes
10
18%
3
9
47%
8
8
24%
4
7
12%
2
6
0%
0
5
0%
0
4
0%
0
3
0%
0
2
0%
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1
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Average Rating
8.7
Votes
17
Bernice Summerfield - Ruler of the Universe
8.6
Boxset Average Rating
Cover Art:
Director:
Music:
Music:
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Latest Community Reviews

From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
9
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
Yes
Reviewed By: JMChurch25Review Date: 2/28/19 11:00 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

The Doctor has been arrested and is on the verge of being impeached. A trial has been convened and he's being forced to account for his actions while Bernice is distracted with the reappearance of an old acquaintance thought destroyed. With the Master back in the picture and a mysterious hooded android persuading voters against the Doctor in the name of the True Saviour of the Universe, the real question becomes: what final secrets need to come out and does the universe have any real chance of survival left?

As a finale coming off the previous stories, without giving too many spoilers 'Saviour' more or less delivers on what it sets out to do. It's not the most complex of stories or even the most outlandish in terms of atmosphere and concept. But it ends the Unbound stories on a safe and stable note with plans coming to fruition on both sides. The high notes are incredibly high and the low notes while a bit more noticeable don't detract from it too much. Bowerman, Warner, and Gatiss are all incredibly good with strong chemistry in their final performances, the plot and pacing are more than admirable, and it delivers on the whole universe-ending concept appropriately with the Master interfering and yet still finding his way into what he wanted for better or worse. But the biggest highlight for me is Warner's Doctor and what he is ultimately able to accomplish with a scheme that I think some of his other incarnations would be rather proud of. It really sets him in stone as an appropriate Doctor even if he's still a bit more on the outlandish compared to the ones we've come to know and love.

It isn't quite as strong as some others in the set with a few missing plot points, some heavy-handed analogies that even the most oblivious could spot, and lots of ties that make it very dependent on the other stories to fully enjoy. I'm not sure how exactly the Doctor now remembers the Master when he couldn't recognize him in the previous series and using the plot device from 'City and the Clock' was heavily foreshadowed but a bit hampered by the quality of that particular piece. But the ending is satisfactory and very true to what I was hoping for with plenty of interesting potential for more stories to come with the Warner / Bowerman pair in the future.

On the surface, I had some major misgivings as to how this story would tie everything up especially with how it started out. But honestly, I really enjoyed 'Saviour' from start to finish and I think it's a great conclusion to a series that while not perfect still worked and counted when it needed to. I was sad to see it end but I was also more than ready to return back to the normal universe and get back in touch with our more familiar Doctor and companion teams. 
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
8
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 10/18/17 4:06 am
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

This story brings the box set to a conclusion with the Doctor on trial for his presidency and the Master re-appearing with Bennie to announce that he's here to help as a mysterious robot serves as lobbyist for the effort to oust the Doctor. Who's behind the effort to get rid of the Doctor?

This is a story that has a lot of plot twists and the solution is genuinely surprising and quite clever. Bennie and the Master renew their acquaintance from the end of the last box set and her loyalties are challenged throughout the story. The main characters are captivating and the story takes advantage of the unbound setting for some pretty big changes. The end is sweet, yet not overstated, much like Warner's Doctor. Overall, a beautiful release.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
10
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: thisoldcanReview Date: 9/25/17 9:04 pm
0 out of 0 found this review helpful.

In the final story of this set, The True Saviour of the Universe, the Doctor (David Warner) is facing an impeachment hearing, and Benny (Lisa Bowerman) is powerless to stop it. However, Benny is approached by an unlikely ally: the Master (Sam Kisgart). Despite the complete lack of trust Benny has in the Master, she's out of options, and agrees to try and save the Doctor from his impeachment hearing. But underneath it all, the Doctor has some secrets of his own; something he's been keeping close to his chest, all these years, and something that's about to come out. The final story of The Ruler of the Universe set mostly sticks the landing, with an enjoyable story, resolving several lingering plot lines with a good bow. Lisa Bowerman and David Warner are great here, and the very welcome return of Sam Kisgart as the Master and Rowena Cooper as Mother Superior. Goss' script is enjoyable and fun, though I did feel that the resolution went by far too quickly for my liking.

Lisa Bowerman is the unquestionable star of this set, starring as title character Bernice Summerfield. Bowerman was a delight to listen to throughout the story; as I said in my review of the first story, she can run the gamut of the emotional spectrum depending on what's asked of her, and she's given the opportunity to do it all. She's able to portray relief and elation at the end of the story, and she's able to portray a real anger and sadness at other parts of the story. She's sarcastic, she's biting, but more than that, she's never dull, and she's always engaging and compelling. David Warner is the main co-star of this story, reprising his role as the Unbound Doctor. Warner has been a jaded delight throughout the entire box set, and here he's on rare form again, delivering a rather excellent performance. I particularly like his careful performance during his big speech to the assembled government members. And that's not to

Returning also are Sam Kisgart as the Master and Rowena Cooper as Mother Superior. Kisgart, who was criminally underused in the first set, is once again underused here. His sly, silky smooth performance as the Master belies a deeply dangerous streak that Kisgart just hints at throughout the story. What's more impressive is that for once, it seems like the Master really isn't the cause of all these issues, and instead, he's actually simply trying to help for once. And Kisgart delivers this convincingly, a rare feat for actors who often delve too far into the schlocky sometimes with these kinds of evil roles. Cooper too is enjoyable as Mother Superior, the Ohila to the Warner Doctor, giving an excellent performance alongside Warner and his Doctor throughout the story. I particularly liked the small nod she gives at the end of the story to Warner as he goes off into the sunset, as I felt that was so in character for her and her character, and that it was such a sweet little moment.

Tasked with ending the set, James Goss mostly delivers on that front, with a solid ending that pulls together the best elements of the Warner Doctor's era of Doctor Who, for a finale to remember. The highlight of the set is absolutely the character work for the three main characters of the story: Benny, the Doctor, and the Master. The Master's character was my favorite for this story, because he truly was innocent in this story, compared to other stories. He wasn't trying to conquer the universe, and even as he competed against the Doctor for the presidency, it wasn't his plan. He had planned for the Doctor to win, because that's what he wanted, and when he won it instead, it was an excellent about face for the story. Similarly, the arcs of Benny and the Doctor in this story were excellent little arcs; I quite liked how Benny decided not to wait for the Doctor here, even though the Doctor was convinced she would. It was a sad little scene, and it was one of my favorites of the story. However, the story did lack in one respect: the ending. At the end of the story, Goss is forced to pack about 20 minutes of ending into about 5 minutes of actual storytelling, having to explain the Doctor's plan to Benny in record time. It goes by so quickly that you practically have whiplash after hearing it, which is shame because I quite like how the ending plays out.

The big news from the ending is that Benny has been returned to the main universe... as has the Doctor. This is a development I had almost been hoping for, but not one I was expecting; I was frankly either expecting Warner's Doctor to regenerate into someone new, or for Benny to get dropped off in the main universe. I had hoped for this ending, but I didn't think it would happen; that it does is excellent in my opinion, and bodes well for the series moving forward. I don't know what this could mean; maybe we'll have some adventures with both the Seventh Doctor and the Warner Doctor together, or maybe we'll have the Warner Doctor interacting with characters from the main universe for the first time. Either way, I'm excited to see where future box sets lead to.

Overall, the final story of The Ruler of the Universe is a fitting ending to the set, reuniting all the key players for an excellent ending. Bowerman and Warner are both at the top of their game as Benny and the Doctor, sharing their excellent chemistry once again, and both selling the hell out of their performances. Kisgart's return is a welcome one too, providing an excellent character for Benny to bounce off of, and providing a bit of menacing fun to the story, and the return of Cooper from the first set is another welcome return. Goss' story manages to mostly stick the landing, though it stumbles a bit at the end, trying to explain how the story is being resolved. Given all those aspects, and the excellent look towards the future at the end, this was an extremely enjoyable release, and on I'm very happy Big Finish took another chance on.