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< 2.2b - The Daleks: The Destroyers
2.4 - Crime of the Century >

2.3 - Thin Ice

Rating Votes
10
4%
4
9
10%
10
8
29%
28
7
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28
6
19%
18
5
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6%
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Average Rating
7.2
Votes
97
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From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
8
Effects Rating:
8
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: JMChurch25Review Date: 1/31/18 6:27 pm
1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

This story (and the next one on this list) are part of a group of stories that were supposed to be in Season 27 of Classic Who but were scrapped once the show was cancelled in 1989. Thankfully the scripts still exists from each writer and thus they serve as an interesting look into what might've been for the Seventh Doctor had the show continued onward. I hope to tackle more of these in the future with many of the classic Doctors but for my relevant interests, blog entries, and my slight favoritism towards Seven, these two were first on my list. "Thin Ice" in particular was meant to be an important story as it reveals the true intentions of the Seventh Doctor towards his companion Ace and what his ultimate motives and plans were for her in the show (which I won't spoil here). However with the show's cancellation, those plans never happenned and while the story, script, and intentions have remained intact for this audio the ultimate outcome of those plans have been changed to fit where it's new place is in Big Finish and the Seventh Doctor canon. Needless to say, this is a story with a history behind it that enhances its reputation a little but it also happens to be a damn good adventures in its own right even without that extra baggage. The overriding plot of the Russian KGB using Ice Warrior technology for their own purposes and the Doctor and Ace being used as part of a heist narrative for the first half is an intriguing one and then when things turn more sci-fi in the second half it's oddly appropriate. McCoy and Aldred continue to be amazing as our TARDIS pair. McCoy in particular sounds like he's having a lot of fun recording this story as this is the kind of deceptive and secretive environment that his Doctor really excels in. His motivations are also interesting in what his plans end up being for Ace even if they don't really go anywhere by the end and it does a good job at touching the mystery of the bureaucracy of the Time Lords themselves. The side cast is also great as well. Ricky Groves as Marcus Creevy is a lovably interesting thief in Moscow for a mission and Beth Chalmers as the KGB lieutenant Raina is good. The names do sort of ring a bell considering the next story in this series involves a similarly named new companion for Seven and yes that goes exactly where you would expect. In terms of the Warriors themselves, I was expecting their appearance and involvement in this story to go in one direction and while it does to a degree, it pulled enough of a twist that I was still a bit surprised by it. Nicholas Briggs once again plays the Warriors with raspy accuracy and the character of Hhessh in particular is well written especially in his surprising connection with Ace that's built up over the course of the audio. The soundscape is very well realized and 60's Moscow is brought to life in chilly fashion with the suitable Russian touches, decent voice acting, and it ends up fitting well with the Ice Warriors themselves in terms of environment. While the climax is a little messy and a lot of the buildup lost given what was set up, "Thin Ice" is a fantastic story for the Ice Warriors and the Seventh Doctor that's suitably fun, interesting, and chillingly clever.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
7
Acting Rating:
7
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
7
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: adamelijahReview Date: 11/8/15 11:43 am
4 out of 4 found this review helpful.

Thin Ice is a Cold War story set in 1967 that also features the Ice Warriors. The story works on a few levels. The heist story which dominates the first two episodes is a lot of fun, and there are some very superb guest performances. Ricky Groves is superb as the lovable rogue Marcus Creevy. Beth Chalmers has a great turn as Raina and then becomes the leader of the Ice Warriors. Nick Briggs really makes the Ice Warrior Hhesh into a wonderfully sympathetic character. (As he would later do in another lost story, Lords of the Red Planet.)

I even thought the music worked in evoking the 1980s while being an upgrade over so many of the lesser scores that aired on Doctor Who during the McCoy era.

The plot of Ace being evaluated for the Academy was the more iffy part of the production. There were a lack of clear motivations for the Doctor not having told her and the Time Lord process seemed a bit ill-defined. However, her reaction to it worked, particularly when she has a dramatic confrontation with the Doctor. Still, the end of the story was a bit of a disappointment. The story's ending had radically changed from the 1980s, but like it was building up to something and then went another direction.

Overall though, a solid and enjoyable story in its own right despite a few problems.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
7
Plot Rating:
6
Acting Rating:
9
Replay Rating:
7
Effects Rating:
5
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: newt5996Review Date: 4/27/15 8:35 pm
4 out of 4 found this review helpful.

Thin Ice had originally been written by Marc Platt under the title Ice Time and would have been the second story of Season 27. It would have followed Ben Aaronovitch's Earth Aid and be followed by Crime of the Century by Andrew Cartmel. The script remained much unchanged over the years according to my sources which can be a problem. The scripts are twenty plus years old and have to capture the era's feel. It also may seem weird when the writer of your scripts has written for Big Finish before and most of his audios are extremely successful. He is also a very innovative author, but here most of his innovation is lost in the setting. Yes the idea that Sezhyr's armor was programmed to convert whoever puts it on into Sezhyr which is used to its fullest potential. Beth Chalmers playing Raina and Sezhyr is great with the two characters merging in the second half is very well done. It also feels like a heist film which makes up for the lackluster plot. Platt also writes the Doctor and Ace really well moving their relationship forward. Ace especially gets focus in Parts Three and Four.

The supporting cast also works very well together with Nick Briggs giving a great performance as Hhessh. The music also lets down the story because it doesn't keep the feel of the era like it is supposed to.
From the Reviewer:
User Rating:
8
Plot Rating:
NR
Acting Rating:
NR
Replay Rating:
NR
Effects Rating:
NR
Has Prerequisite(s):
No
Reviewed By: MTLReview Date: 8/6/12 7:57 pm
3 out of 3 found this review helpful.

A very enjoyable release. I had little expectations about this story, partly because I knew almost nothing of the story (not a bad position to be) and also because the whole Ace going to Gallifrey sounded so convoluted. In fact this aspect is incredibly inriguing, re-establishing the mystery and beauraucracy of the Time Lords merely through a few conversations between McCoy and Lambert.

As previously stated, at the heart of the story is the relationship between the Doctor and Ace, which near guarantess sublime performances from McCoy and Aldred. Their chemistry together is explosive, even without any Nitro 9, and in the final episode in particular, devastatingly emotional. In fact I feel their realtionship benefits more from this ending then the one suggested at it's orginal conception.

I have no problem with the Russian accents or acting* - in fact the location of 60s Moscow is perfect for emphasising the unease and deception within the plot. The ast as a whole are very solid - I actually forgot Nick Briggs was Ice Lord Hhessh, so convincing was his portrayal of the out-of-character Ice Warrior (The story explains this point better) I'm sure some will groan or be charmed by Creevy and I'm definitely in the latter. A story as dramatic as this needs light relief from somewhere, which Groves performs admirably. But he gets as many serious moments as everyone else, his relationship with Chalmers' Kerenskaya brillianty brought to life by the two actors.

However, the final episode does seem rushed, as most stories are cursed with. Nevertheless the story as a whole is still entertaining and kept me captivated through the sheer twists and turns of it all. It's not as simple as it looks this one! A terrific opening to what looks like to be a brilliant series

*Although I never have a problem with accents usally - even Minuet in Hell, which most fans loathe the American accents used