This is the ninetieth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Colin Baker as Sixie, Nocola Bryant as Peri, Paul Brooke as Toby and Michael Keating as the Inspector. There are 2 episodes, roughly 75 minutes each, complete with original theme music between each, and a cliff hanger ending. One episodes per disc on 2 discs, and a short booklet with some pictures of the cast and production notes.
This production is an absolute aural delight. Set in pre great war Europe at a posh seaside resort, it starts out almost like a Noel Coward comedy of manners. It creates memorable characters in the form of a talking pig who believes that he is the last human on earth, an English Lady with an unhealthy obsession in old music hall turns and a grandiose and over the top inspector of the Gendarmerie. The verbose and grandiloquent Sixth Doctor fits right in with these characters, like a hand into a glove. Colin Baker clearly recognises that this is a production in which his Doctor can shine and really come into his own, and he seizes the script with both hands to wring every last drop from it. The long format of the two episodes allows the story to slowly simmer and gently come to the boil, developing the flavour as it cooks.
It's totally different from anything else in the Big Finish range. It's a thoughtful adventure with a dose of humour, but it still delivers on the thrills front and has an interesting idea at its heart. The writer has an obvious love of language, and a talented cast clearly enjoy getting their tongues around some of the more over the top verbosity. It's entertaining, thought provoking and provides the odd laugh. What more do you want from Who?
The works of Marcel Proust are a running theme through the play, and Toby's final verdict on the book is probably one of the greatest critic's comments I have ever heard.
5 stars for this exceptionally good production.