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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Celebratory Release, 30 Dec. 2008
By 
DB (London, UK) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Following on from 100, Forty-Five is Big Finish's latest release this time celebrating the 45th Anniversary of Doctor Who. Like 100 this is made up of 4 single part episodes, each by new authors to the Big Finish range. While it's a nice introduction to each of the authors works. I'm hesitant to say that giving a one-part story like this is the best way to do it.

The first episode is False Gods by Mark Morris (recognisable as a writer for the books range). The idea is quite nice, but is brought to a conclusion rather abruptly. It could have filled out a bit more time I expect, unfortunately it only had the one part

The next story is Order of Simplicity by Nick Scovell. It's quite an interesting idea, but the science hangs together rather loosely... nonetheless a nice idea.

Casualties of War is the next episode, possibly the weakest plot of them all. Yet having said that there is some very interesting character development with Ace and Hex - dropping some considerable hints hopefully to be explored later and with a great concluding line.

The Word Lord concludes the release, this is perhaps the strongest albeit most ridiculous story. Set in the near future, the number 45 seems to be everywhere in a top secret diplomatic bunker and a seemingly impossible being is up to no good.

With such a wide cast/authorship this has some of the best interviews I've heard and are well worth listening to. All in all nothing to mark it out, distinctly average.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Four mini-adventures with the Doctor, Ace and Hex - Celebrating 45 Years of `Doctor Who', 28 July 2014
This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is a Sylvester McCoy `Doctor Who' treat!

`Forty-Five' is a four one-part episode CD release in the similar vein of `Circular Time'; `100'; `The Company of Friends' and `The Demons of Red Lodge and Other Stories'. It stars Sylvester McCoy's Doctor in the continuing adventures with Ace (Sophie Aldred) and Hex (Phillip Olivier) in Big Finish. This is a significant `Doctor Who' audio as it celebrates 45 years of `Doctor Who' in 2008. Each of the four stories has the number 45 in each of them, like the number 100 being in every story of `100'.

I'm extremely lucky to have had my CD cover for this audio, signed by all three regulars - Sylvester McCoy; Sophie Aldred and Phillip Olivier! This is a CD release worth having, as its four good `Doctor Who' adventures in time and space! You really won't regret listening to this!

`FALSE GODS'

This is the first story in the `Forty-Five' CD release. `False Gods' is a story set in Thebes, Egypt, 1902 where the Doctor, Ace and Hex meet Howard Carter, the archaeologist and Egyptologist who discover Tutankhamen's tomb, but not yet in this story. Carter and his team are in search for lost tomb of Userhat, a servant of the god Amun. But pretty soon as they uncover the mystery, they discover more than they bargain for.

This episode was written by Mark Morris, who has also written some very good Fifth Doctor and Nyssa audios including `Plague of the Daleks' and `Moonflesh'. This was the first Doctor Who story Mark did for Big Finish.

I really like that opening sequence in the TARDIS where the Doctor, Ace and Hex are in the TARDIS and it goes out of control and the three are trying to get out of a time distortion. I've never heard this TARDIS team before. Of course I mean this is the first time I've heard Hex in an audio story with the Doctor and Ace, so it was nice to hear them together and have their banter before going outside to solve the mystery of the time distortion and the voices.

Just to talk about Hex, I've had the pleasure of meeting Phillip Olivier at a convention in Newcastle last year where he signed my CD cover for this story for me. He's a great guy and I enjoyed chatting to him and sharing the adventures he's been as we went through the audios at the Big Finish stall. Phillip thanked me and really appreciated my support. I enjoyed hearing Phillip during a panel talk when I asked him a question about what his impressions were of meeting Sophie Aldred (as well as asking Sylvester at that same panel) and he has fond memories of meeting her during the making of 'The Harvest'. It was great to hear Hex in the TARDIS and how he bounces off the Doctor and Ace.

A big guest star in this episode is Benedict Cumberbatch playing Howard Carter. Benedict is now well-known for playing Sherlock in the new `Sherlock' series with Martin Freeman. I've seen Benedict before in `Amazing Grace' with Ioan Gruffudd; `Atonement' with Kiera Knightley and he's played Khan in `Star Trek Into Darkness' and the voice of Smaug in `The Hobbit' films. This was before he became very famous and it's great to hear him in `Doctor Who', especially in a Big Finish audio play!

Also guest starring in this episode is Lucy Adams playing Jane Templeton. Lucy has played Turlough's girlfriend in the story `Kiss of Death'. The character Jane is one of Carter's expedition, but it turns out she's a Time Lady who's got her own TARDIS and its dying. The Doctor tells Jane he must destroy her TARDIS before it's too late.

There's also Paul Lincoln playing Robert Charles, another member of Carter's expedition who dies rather horribly in this story. Paul also does the voice of a Robot who has his own catchphrase, "Neutralise! Neutralise!" There's also Jon Glover who does a Creodont that is some kind of wild animal that attacks the Doctor, Hex and Carter in the tomb.

You have to listen carefully to when the number 45 crops up whether it's figures out of a shabti box; or Jane being a Year 45 student. There's a green button in the TARDIS that gets used where Ace hits it during a comedy moment, and where Hex hits it for the TARDIS to escape. I found that moment when the Doctor's furious very captivating when they lose Jane. "Do you know what you've done, Mr Hex?! I could have saved her!" In the end it's Carter who works out the connection of Thoth to Jane and leaves the listeners with an open ended conclusion.

This is a very gripping episode to open the `Forty-Five' set of stories. I enjoyed this episode very much indeed!

`ORDER OF SIMPLICITY'

The second episode of `Forty Five' is `Order of Simplicity'. It is set on the island Mendolovinia on a remote planet where the Doctor, Ace and Hex get to see Dr. Verryman who is conducting mind control experiments that can threaten the entire human race. The Doctor is determined to stop these Verryman and his experiments, but finds he's been infected when he knows `the code' and his mind begins to degrade.

Again, I love the opening to this episode where the Doctor, Ace and Hex try to get into Verryman's house of the pouring rain and Mrs. Crisp refuses to let them in. Mrs. Crisp shuts the door in the Doctor's face when he's introducing himself and his friends. It was funny when the Doctor opened the letter box and peaked in saying, "Uh, hello?" before Mrs. Crisp frostily replies, "What do you want?" Eventually they're allowed in.

I like to say I've had great pleasure meeting Sylvester McCoy the Seventh Doctor. I've met him four times at conventions and I've enjoyed going to the panels with him there being funny and entertaining as well as having things signed by him. Sylvester signed the CD cover of `Forty Five' for me at a convention in Swansea last year. I remember chatting to him about doing these Big Finish audios and asking him a question about working with Sir Ian McKellen and on `The Hobbit'. Sylvester has enjoyed a wealth of `Doctor Who' stories in Big Finish audio and it's great to have his Doctor developed more greatly which was denied to him on TV.

Jon Glover guest stars in this story, playing Dr. Verryman. Jon plays Verryman as being really eccentric and very over-the-top. Sometimes you wonder if Verryman is mad, and his terrible mind control experiments seem to prove that. But as the story unfolds, it turns out Verryman's not the bad guy as he's a victim for a bad cause. He reveals his experiments to the Doctor about what he's doing, before explaining why the Doctor is starting to lose his mind when saying the code.

There's also Lucy Adams again playing Mrs. Crisp. She's an efficient housekeeper at Dr. Verryman's house. She has a Scottish accent, which Lucy put on very well for this character in the story. Her character put me in mind of Mrs Macready from `The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe'. Crisp is the one who sends Hex upstairs to find the room where the `things' are. She locks him which proves her to be a cruel person. Her true nature is revealed by the end of the story.

Benedict Cumberbatch and Paul Lincoln also return to play the two `Things' in the third bedroom on the third floor of the house. These `Things' turn out to be scientists regressed to cavemen, and Benedict and Paul do the `ug'-like dialogue pretty well.

Hex has his own adventure in this episode. It was quite scary when Hex goes to the bedroom upstairs and he gets locked in by Mrs Crisp. I liked it when Ace finds Hex trapped upstairs and goes off to rescue him before they both get locked in together with the two `Things'. Also the scenes where the Doctor gets plugged into the machine by Verryman and Mrs Crisp are very tense indeed.

There's an IQ level of 45 running through this story, which is what the Things in the bedroom are regressed to as cavemen and what the Doctor has to avoid when his mind starts going.

This episode by Nick Scovell is pretty good to listen to. I wouldn't say this was the best out of the four stories of this CD release, but it's pretty enjoyable. I like the atmosphere of it raining on a island and it gets spooky and creaking inside Verryman's gothic-like house. I found the end scene funny when the tide's come in and the Doctor, Ace, Hex and Verryman have to swim to get to the TARDIS on the shore from the island. "Fancy a swim?" says the Doctor

`CASUALTIES OF WAR'

This is the third episode of the `Forty-Five' anthology and is written by Mark Michalowski. `Casualties of War' is a historical story set in the year 1945 - aha! 1945! That's a good use of the number 45 isn't it? I was happy that they did a World War II episode set in the year 1945 as it's appropriate for this CD release.

Of course the war is over. The Doctor, Ace and Hex have arrived in London on VE day where the day marks the war's end and the unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany. But when the Doctor, Ace and Hex are there, a cockney spiv has stolen something that make people reveal truths about themselves. This is something the Doctor knows is dangerous, especially to his two travelling companions Ace and Hex.

I like how this episode touches upon Ace and Hex's characters. Ace gets to see her mum Audrey again as a little girl and references are made to Ace's past and 'The Curse of Fenric'. We get to go to the street where Audrey and her mum Kathleen (Ace's grandmother who was also in `Fenric') live. Hex's past is also dealt with as we learn more about his mother's death and a connection to The Forge in another story. There was a hint of Hex's past almost revealed by the Doctor when confronting Joey the spiv, but like a book its closed shut!

I've had the pleasure of meeting Sophie Aldred as Ace six times at conventions. Sophie's a lovely and very friendly person to meet. I've enjoyed chatting to Sophie at conventions during signings or mingling and asked questions to her during panels. Sophie signed the CD cover of `Forty-Five' for me at a convention in Swansea. I really like how Sophie puts so much into the character of Ace and how she develops her relationships with Hex and the Doctor. It's really nice having to hear more of Sophie as Ace and being given a extended life in the TARDIS by Big Finish. I've told Sophie how much I've enjoyed her Big Finish audios and she's very pleased I'm enjoying them.

The guest cast in this episode includes Paul Reynolds playing Joey Carlisle, the London spiv who steals a piece of alien technology. Joey put me in mind of Walker from `Dad's Army' as the archetypical spiv. Joey is trying to earn his keep despite the war being over and not much going in the Black Market. He uses his new toy which is an alien bracelet to get people to reveal their secrets. He doesn't the magnitude of what he's doing when he gets into trouble with this device.

There's also Linda Marlowe playing May, Joey's mother. Linda plays May as a common woman in the London streets living her house looking after little girl Audrey, Ace's mum. May seems pretty rough but has a motherly attitude when looking after Audrey and especially when looking after Ace. She's very protective of her son Joey and doesn't the things he's bought for his spiv activities, including alien technology such as a truth-detector bracelet.

Beth Chalmers also appears in this episode playing little Audrey, Ace's mum. Beth has played Raine Creevy, the Doctor's companion in the audio adventures. I really like Beth's performance as Audrey, sounding very much like an innocent little girl. Beth also plays Miss Merchant, a mysterious lady with a laser pistol on the hunt for Joey. It turns out Miss Merchant is an agent of the Forge.

Andrew Dickens also appears in this episode, playing PC Miller. Andrew has appeared in a Peter Davison and Sarah Sutton story called `Masquerade'.

I really like the last scene where Ace says goodbye to Audrey when she's in bed and gives her a kiss on the cheek. Before she goes, Ace says, "Goodbye Mum," before she shuts the door. A brilliant way to end such a lovely character driven episode, especially with Ace and Hex!

`THE WORD LORD'

The final story of `Forty-Five' is a gripping and pretty scary story where we meet a new and impossible foe for the Doctor to defeat.

The year is 2045. The story is set in a secret bunker in Antarctica, where the Doctor, Ace and Hex have been captured and interrogated. But they are soon set free and are enlisted to help Commander Claire Spencer to solve a murder mystery happening in the bunker. Whilst working out what's going on, the Doctor and his friends discover that a deadly foe has been released from another dimension called the Word Lord. This Word Lord is Nobody No-One and is soon about to wreak havoc. Can the Doctor stop him in time?

The number of 45 is used quite a lot in this story and it's a key to what happens in this story to solve the mystery. The story is written by Steven Hall, who creates this bleak setting of a Second Cold War occurring and we're deep down in the heart of a bunker in Antarctica during some peace negotiations. Also the concept of words and numbers is used effectively as the villain comes from a dimension where words and numbers are physics of another reality and could endanger people's lives. It's pretty scary and wonderfully crafted in the form of the villain Nobody No-One, the Word Lord.

The guest cast includes Linda Marlowe again playing Commander Claire Spencer. Claire seems to know and trust the Doctor since she's read his records on U.N. files and knows he's a member of U.N.I.T. Claire helps the Doctor in solving the mystery about what goes on in the story and discovering the repetition of 45 being used as work of the Word Lord. When Claire gets killed by Nobody No-One, the Doctor falls by her side as she dies in a tear-jerking moment.

Paul Reynolds also returns to play Nobody No-One, the Word Lord. Nobody is of a race of beings like the Time Lords, only they exist on language as principle in their universe. Nobody's a nasty piece of work and seems quite casual about killing anyone whoever he likes. Nobody doesn't seem to care about killing people. It seems that whenever somebody uses the word `nobody' like `nobody goes through that door', it's literally means he's going through that door and is brought into existence. Oh dear! How many times have I said `nobody'! Gasp! He's already here! In the room with me! Argh!!!!!

Don't worry I'm only kidding. There's also Andrew Dickens who plays Captain James Hurst who captures the Doctor, Ace and Hex and interrogates them at the beginning of the story. He's eventually relieved by Commander Claire and suddenly gets killed part-way through the story as Nobody murders him. Oops! I've said it again! Argh!!!!!

Paul Lincoln appears in this episode playing Private Fenton who tells a joke to the delegate who gets murdered on recorded CCTV footage, and Beth Chalmers plays System who gives the Doctor the recorded occurrences of the number 45 in the story.

I really like Ace, Hex and the Doctor's performances in this story. I like it when Ace shouts at Nobody for murdering people and when Hex gets into the TARDIS to help her with the thermo spanner. I enjoyed that first scene when the Doctor, Ace and Hex try to explain to Captain Hurst that they're not spies and they only just arrived. There's a moment of shock and panic where despite the Doctor; Ace and Hex try not to say `you know who', a commanding officer says `nobody to move' and Nobody escapes from the book, shocking the Doctor. I'm a dead man! Dead man! Argh!!!

After the end credits finish, there's a nice moment when the Doctor, Ace and Hex return to the TARDIS and Ace offers to put the kettle on and the Doctor sets the TARDIS in motion, that leaves a very unsettling ending to the story.

The CD extras of `Forty Five' are as follows. At the beginning of Disc 1, there's a `coming soon' trailer for `The Raincloud Man' with Colin Baker and India Fisher as the Doctor and India. At the end of Disc 1, there are behind-the-scenes interviews on the making of `False Gods' and `Order of Simplicity' with Benedict Cumberbatch; Jon Glover; Lucy Adams; writers Mark Morris and Steven Hall, etc. And at the end of Disc 2, there are more behind-the-scenes interviews on the making of `Casualties of War' and `The Word Lord' with Linda Marlowe; Paul Reynolds; writers Mark Michalowski and Steven Hall; and also interviews with Sylvester McCoy; Sophie Aldred and Phillip Olivier. I really like how in the CD extras, Sylvester; Sophie and Phillip reflect and give their thoughts on why at the time `Doctor Who' has lasted for 45 years

I really enjoyed `Forty-Five' and very glad I've had my CD cover signed by Sylvester, Sophie and Phillip and having met them. I listened to this CD release for the 50th anniversary when I was celebrating the Seventh Doctor era. Of course this CD was meant to celebrate 45 years of `Doctor Who'. I'd like to give my opinion about why `Doctor Who' has lasted for 50 years and counting. It's because there are so many stories to tell with the series being set in the past, present and future whether it's on Earth or on an alien planet; and because the Doctor can regenerate into another man makes it explain why it's lasted so long. I'm very glad to be watching and listening to these `Doctor Who' stories, especially this one for the 45th anniversary with the Doctor; Ace and Hex.

Just to say, the Doctor by this point has changed the desktop theme of the TARDIS into the Jules Verne gothic-type TARDIS from the 'TV Movie' for him, Ace and Hex to travel in. I think it's so great to hear those three in the TV movie TARDIS set with the sound effects of the controls and vibrations in the background, and seeing it in the CD sleeve notes too.

The next story for the Doctor, Ace and Hex is 'The Magic Mousetrap'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars forty five times four, 16 Dec. 2008
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
another audio adventure for sylvester mccoy as the seventh doctor who, with companions ace played by sophie aldred and hex played by philip olivier. the former appeared on tv but the latter was a new character created especially for the audio series a few years back.

this release slightly alters the usual format because it's not one story in four twenty five minute part. it takes the formula used for an earlier fifth doctor story called circular time, and a sixth doctor story called 100, and has four one part stories instead. all of them, by way of celebrating the show being forty five years old this year, use the number forty five by way of inspiration and other things. this isn't quite as arbitrary as it may seem.

the first disc begins with a trailer for the next release in the regular audio range, a sixth doctor story called the raincloud man.

then comes the first story on this release, false gods. this is set in egypt in the early twentieth century, and has the tardis crew meeting howard carter, years before his most famous excavation. the one he's doing here leads the tardis crew and the rest of carter's expedition into a problem involving monsters and time travel.
there's a surprise development in the middle that may seem at first like a deus ex machina, but it turns out to be anything of the sort, and the central crux of the story. this leads to a good character based climax. it's well written and well acted, especially by the actor who plays carter who makes him a very strong character.

the second story, also on disc one, is called order of simplicity, and is best described as a mad scientist story. the tardis crew are drawn to an old house where a rather mad professor and his housekeeper dwell. there are strange machines in the basement - wonderful sound design gives them a noise like crackling electricity, like machines in old horror movies - and actor jon glover playing the mad scientist does make him a very three dimensional character who's anything but a characature. one stumbling block with this one is that whilst the plot is clever, it's really rather complicated containing some detailed and rather clever science, and you need to really have your wits about you at all times to follow it. it will probably benefit from future listenings, though.

the disc concludes with roughly fifteen minutes of interviews with the writers and cast from the first two stories.

onto disc two, and it starts with casualties of war, the third story. this is set on VE day in 1945 and has the tardis crew on the track of an alien device that has fallen into the hands of a petty crook. in addition to finding him, they also run into doctor who continuity, both in the shape of something from the original tv series and earlier audios. both of these things shouldnt prevent people who don't know the continuity from enjoying and understanding the story, though.

this is another well drawn character piece, and the characters and setting are very convincing. it also seems to push one story arc that has been in the background of the seventh doctor audios a little further on. one minor complaint with this one is that it has a grown up actress playing a very young child, and despite her best efforts in the role the age difference was a bit too obvious.

and next on this disc is another story called the word lord. the writer of this one set out to create a foe who could frighten the doctor, and he succeeds, with a rather amoral character who starts off acting not unlike the tenth doctor. but turns out to be a rather different individual. the tardis is in a military base in the future and a murder that has just been committed there leads to the tardis crew coming face to face with this monster. the creature is quite an original creation and well acted, and the effect it has on the doctor is well portrayed. things work out very satisfyingly in the end, though, with once again something that could be a deus ex machina proving not to be the case. it also manages to tie all four stories on this release together in a clever way.

make sure you don't turn the cd off once this episode ends, as something else on the final track needs to be heard.

and the final disc concludes with roughly eighteen minutes worth of further interviews with cast and writers and crew.

not the most exceptional release in this range, but a good and solid and entertaining one, and well worth a listen
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5.0 out of 5 stars 45 years and going stronger than ever, 27 Feb. 2009
This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Egypt 1902 is the setting for the opening story in this 45th anniversary compilation featuring The Seventh Doctor and his companions Ace and Hex. We are in familiar Doctor Who territory when the travellers meet archaeologist Howard Carter of Tutankhamen fame, several years before he became famous. Carter is in the process of uncovering the secrets of the pyramids; however his student, Jane, is not all that she seems, and Ace finds herself flung into a far-off future where global warming has reached its zenith, and robotic guardians protect the Earth's desolate shell...

Creepy gothic mansions and mad scientists have always made for great Doctor Who; think Ghostlight or The Brain of Morbius. The second of 45's mini-stories: Order of Simplicity is no exception, as The Doctor's search for some stray `psionic' energy sees the TARDIS arrive in just such a place, filled with sinister characters. While Hex nervously explores the house, The Doctor and Ace discover that a virus that destroys the intellect is being manufactured in the house; leaving those infected with an IQ of 45...Moody, atmospheric and tense, the story builds tension nicely, and also has a great twist...

The third story on 45 brings the travellers to London 1945 - and VE Day. Ace is disturbed to find herself back in her old neighbourhood as The Doctor continues to search for the source of the leaking psionic energy. Hex finds solace in the local pub while Ace tries not to jeopardise her own timeline when she again meets her mother, but this time as a small child. Shades of 1989 TV adventure `The Curse of Fenric' abound; the presence of alien technology in post-war Britain alerts The Doctor, and the race is on to find and remove it before a calamity occurs. This is an emotionally resonant story that follows the new series' lead of focusing on the lives of the Doctor's companions and basing the story around them. The Doctor, Ace and Hex make a great team; the subtle undercurrent of sexual tension between Ace and Hex is noticeable but not intrusive, whilst Sylvester McCoy's Machiavellian Timelord is on top form.

The final story is set in an Antarctic bunker in the year 2045; a conference delegate has been murdered and the TARDIS crew are naturally the prime suspects due to their (un)timely arrival. Strangely enough The Doctor's old employers UNIT are again involved, and the time-travellers quickly find themselves at the centre of events. As the situation escalates the TARDIS crew find themselves caught up in a desperate race to avert the destruction of all life, as the deadly `Word Lord' appears on the scene, and begins to annihilate the bunker's inhabitants one by one...

The four stories all stand alone nicely but are loosely linked by the theme of 45. CD extras are the usual interviews with cast and crew, and are as informative and entertaining as ever, with the contribution from the delightful Sophie Aldred being the pick of the bunch.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Seventh Doctors Deadly Adventures, 13 July 2014
By 
Timelord-007 (The Eccentric Wanderer) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Doctor Who: Forty Five.
Doctor: Seventh Doctor.
Companion(s): Ace, Hex.
Release number: 115.
Format: 4 stories on 2 CDs.
Running time 120 minutes.

Extras.
Trailer.
Behind the scenes interviews.

(Please Note: The sleeve design differs from the picture shown here).

Trivia.
1)Ace's mother was last in the (TV: The Curse of Fenric), Hex's mother was killed by the Forge in (Tv: Project: Lazarus).
2)Nobody No-One returns in (Auduo: A Death in the Family), Having regenerated, he is played by Ian Reddington.
3)Benedict Cumberbatch is better known as Sherlock Holmes in the BBC drama 'Sherlock'.

Main Cast.
Sylvester McCoy -- The Doctor.
Sophie Aldred -- Ace.
Philip Olivier -- Hex.

False Gods.
By Mark Morris.
In the blistering heat of the Egyptian desert Howard Carter & his team search for the lost tomb of Userhat, a servant of the god Amun, What they discover sheds new light on the history of the world as we know it.

Guest Cast.
Benedict Cumberbatch -- Howard Carter.
Lucy Adams -- Jane Templeton.
Paul Lincoln -- Robert Charles.
Jon Glover -- Creodont.
Paul Lincoln -- Robot.

Order of Simplicity.
By Nick Scovell.
experiments on a remote planet threaten the entire human race only the Doctor can help - if he puts his mind to it

Guest Cast.
Jon Glover -- Dr Verryman.
Lucy Adams -- Mrs Crisp.
Benedict Cumberbatch -- Thing 2.
Paul Lincoln -- Thing 1.

Casualties of War.
By Mark Michalowski.
Opportunity knocks in postwar London. But when a tea leaf steals from the wrong woman it becomes a race against time to discover the truth, Only some truths are best left untold.
Guest Cast.
Paul Reynolds -- Joey Carlisle.
Linda Marlowe -- May.
Beth Chalmers -- Audrey.
Beth Chalmers -- Miss Merchant.
Andrew Dickens -- PC Miller.

The Word Lord.
By Steven Hall.
In a top secret military bunker deep beneath the Antarctic ice a mysterious death threatens peace negotiations and could spell disaster for the inhabitants of Earth, Can the Doctor cross the t's and dot the i's? Or will his efforts get lost in translation?

Guest Cast.
Linda Marlowe -- Commander Claire Spencer.
Paul Reynolds -- Nobody No-One.
Andrew Dickens -- Captain James Hurst.
Paul Lincoln -- Private Fenton.
Beth Chalmers -- System.

Timelord Thoughts.
Four storys by four unique writers but do they deliver the goods or are they lost in translation?

False Gods by Mark Morris is anastonishingly adventure of troubled Time Lords & Osirian history which delivers a intriguing compact 30 minute adventure that starts these four short story's off to a great start.
Timelord Rating.
8/10

The second story on this CD, Order of Simplicity by Nick Scovell doesn't quite deliver on it's premise as it simply didn't intrigue me enough like the previous story False Gods, A story about experiments threatening Earth should've been edgy & tense but this adventure just seemed to plod to a unsatisfactory conclusion.
Timelord Rating.
5/10

Disc 2 of Forty-Five kicks off with Casualties of War by Mark Michalowski, a very impressive adventure which manages to capture the Seventh Doctor & Ace perfectly as Michalowski seems to write there characters exactly as they were on television & is one of Sophie Aldred's most emotionally character driven performances at Big Finish, Mark Michalowski writes a more vunerble side to Ace here that we rarely get to see or hear & as for Hex well we get to find out about his character that slowly reveals a little nore about his murky past.
Timelord Rating.
9/10

The final story is 'The Word Lord', by Steven Hall involves the Doctor, Ace & Hex battle against a strange mysterious being from another dimension... that lives inside language & uses words as a weapon.

This is a captivating 30 minutes of drama with a outstandingly good performance by Paul Reynolds, who plays the eponymous Nobody-No-One/The Word Lord while Sylvester McCoy as the Doctor is at his most dangerous when confronted by a sinister opponent & delivers a fantastically strong performance here as he pits his wits & intelligence against a very devious advisory who can't actually be vanquished from our universe.
Timelord Rating.
9/10

Overall, Forty Five is a a decent set of four adventures to feature the Seventh Doctor, Ace & Hex allowing that allows each character a moment to shine in the spotlight of each story, With a great set of guest actor's including a young Benedict Cumberbatch as Howard Carter & the brilliant Paul Reynolds as the Nobody-No-One/ The Word Lord, you have a enjoyable & entertaining compilation of audio adventures.
Timelord Overall Rating.
8/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Forty Five: Forty five minutes to find an impossible murderer and save the earth? Easy., 11 April 2013
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Forty Five (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is the hundred and fifteenth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Sylvester McCoy as Seven, Sophie Aldred as Ace and Philip Olivier as Hex. This is another of the anthologies of four stories that Big Finish are wont to produce to mark anniversaries, and this marks forty five years since Ian and Barbara first followed the mysterious Susan home to a junkyard and a mysterious blue box. There are four episodes, roughly 25-30 minutes each, complete with original theme music between each. Two episodes per disc on 2 discs, and a short booklet with some pictures of the cast and production notes. There are some interviews with cast and crew at the end of each disc.

Each of the episodes is a self contained adventure but linked by the number forty-five featuring prominently in each. The four episodes are:

False Gods - An interesting start to the set, the Doctor Ace and Hex wind up in the presence of the great Howard Carter on an archaeological exploration in Egypt, some years before the dig that would make him famous. The piece ends with a rather dramatic and moving scene, which allows Sylvester McCoy to show just what Seven is all about with a rather fine piece of acting that evokes both rage and sorrow. It's a good story, enhanced byt the presence of Benedict Cumberbatch as Carter.

Order of Simplicity - Probably the weakest story in the set. Seven, Ace and Hex answer a mysterious signal with a code hidden in it. They are soon up to their eyeballs in a gothic mystery full of mad scientists and frightening creatures. It's OK, but not as satisfying as the others on the set.

Casualties Of War - A perfect piece. It's VE day, and Seven, Ace and Hex are in town to track down some alien technology that is being misused. Fans of the Curse of Fenric will enjoy meeting Ace's family again. Hex and the Doctor get some nice moments as the truth of Hex's heritage is explored, and there is a satisfying return of an old foe. It's a piece for long time fans of the series, but perfectly executed and an absolute delight.

The Word Lord - The best episode on the set. Seven, Ace and Hex are in a secret base where an impossible murder has just occurred. They have just 45 minutes to solve it and save the world, but a new foe for the Doctor has other ideas. The concept of the foe is brilliantly realised, and the ending is breathtaking. I loved it.

In all a decent release in which each of the three regulars gets their moment to shine, especially Sophie Aldred who seems to be having a lot of fun. Episode 2 is a bit weak, but apart from that excellent. 4 stars.
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Forty Five (Doctor Who)
Forty Five (Doctor Who) by Mark Michalowski (Audio CD - 30 Nov. 2008)
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