Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Destiny of the Doctor Parts 1-3
Title: Doctor Who: Hunters of Earth
Series: Destiny of the Doctor, Part 1
Author: Nigel Robinson
Narrator: Carole Ann Ford & Tam Williams
Title: Doctor Who: Shadow of Death
Series: Destiny of the Doctor, Part 2
Author: Simon Guerrier
Narrator: Frazer Hines & Evie Dawnay
Title: Doctor Who: Vengeance of the Stones
Series: Destiny of the Doctor, Part 3
Author: Andrew Smith
Narrator: Richard Franklin & Trevor Littledale
Audio Production: Big Finish
Rating: 4/5 stars (combined)
So, this is an interesting 50th Anniversary story for the Doctor. Each of these stories can stand on their own, but there is also a background thread that is tying all these stories together as Eleven is contacting his previous regenerations and directing them to an end means that I'm sure will be revealed as more productions are released.
I've never listened to any of the Big Finish productions before, and I'm thoroughly enjoying them. Having previous companions come in to do the voice work for the stories is really quite a treat for me. I like that these are original stories written for these productions as well, as I thought at first that these were just older productions being re-released for the 50th anniversary. When Eleven contacted One in the first production, and then contacted each subsequent Doctor, that's when I realized that these were all new productions with the running thread through them of Eleven directing his previous selves so that they didn't destroy the future. Or something like that. Clearly there is an overall story arc going on in the background that won't be revealed until I assuming Eleven's story is released.
The first story, Hunters of Earth, is a decent story. It seems to take place before the events of An Unearthly Child, as Ian and Barbara don't seem to be involved in Susan's life yet. Susan is trying to fit in with the current school that she's attending, but there seems to be something wrong, as the other teenagers in the area are becoming increasingly violent and hunting down anyone who isn't normal, or who are "alien". Carole Ann Ford reprises her role of Susan Foreman, the Doctor's granddaughter, and does a great job.
The second story, Shadow of Death, is IMO the best of the three that I have listened to so far. Frazer Hines reprises his role as Jamie and does a fantastic job of also reading for the Second Doctor. His rendition of Two is spot on. The Doctor, Jamie and Zoe, after an emergency landing on a remote planet sometime in the future, discover a human outpost there, where scientists are studying an uninhabited city. They need to be careful, as the star this planet orbits causes time to move differently than normal, so when inside the base camp, time moves "normally", while outside time moves much slower. The Doctor needs to begin to piece together what is happening to the inhabitants of the city before the scientists and the Doctor and his friends are killed.
The third story, Vengeance of the Stones, was the hardest to follow. There are several characters in the story, and sometimes it's too difficult to follow who is speaking. Richard Franklin is back as Mike Yates, and he also does a decent job of acting for Three as well, but overall, I felt that there were just too many characters for only two voice actors to act out. The story wasn't exactly clear on what was happening either, something to do with the recumbent stone circles that are found around Scotland and how an alien race is going to use the power found in the circles to exact revenge against the Earth for a past grievance. Overall, not bad, just too much going on all at once.
Eleven pops up in each of these stories via messages that he is sending to the past. I'm going to continue downloading these as I'm really enjoying the audio productions and I'm intrigued to see what has Eleven so troubled that he needs to contact all his previous regenerations. Overall, I'm really pleased with these productions and will probably look for more from Big Finish in the future!