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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Return of the Rocket Men, 20 July 2014
By 
Keen Reader "lhendry4" (Auckland, New Zealand) - See all my reviews
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: Return of the Rocket Men (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) (Audio CD)
"When do you know?"

This is another in the Companion Chronicle series of Doctor Who stories, stories told generally by a companion of one of the previous Doctors, and narrated by them. In this story, Steven Taylor (as played by Peter Purves) tells of a story when he was travelling with the First Doctor and Dodo - a story that changed his outlook on life for ever.

In the 2011 Companion Chronicle The Rocket Men, Ian Chesterton told of a time he, Barbara and Vicki were travelling with the First Doctor and met the Rocket Men, notorious space travelling pirates who used rocket propulsion units to pounce on unsuspecting victims, robbing and killing indiscriminately. In this story, Steven tells of a time before he met the Doctor when he first met the Rocket Men. And then the narration moves to a time when he, Dodo and the Doctor meet the Rocket Men again - landing on a small planet that has just been colonised, the Tardis crew are shocked to find the colonists living in fear of constant attacks - by the Rocket Men! What can they do to help? And what is it that Steven must do to save his own life?

I thought this story was fantastic; the early part of the narrative with Steven telling of his early days as a young pilot was shocking and really immediate in its action. The listener is left for some time wondering how all this can relate to a story with the Doctor's involvement, and the revelation, when it becomes clear is all the more shocking for its intensity of emotional clarity - for the listener, and for Steven. Peter Purves does a great job revising his character of the young space pilot, and does a fair job reminding the listener of William Hartnell's iconic First Doctor - the tones, the snappy dialect, all is extremely well done. Dodo's character plays a small but pivotal role in this story, and it's nice to have some more stories featuring Dodo who was very underutilised before she disappeared abruptly from the small screen in the original Doctor Who series. Tim Treloar as Van Cleef is great - brutal, nasty, and irredeemable - all round perfect Rocket Men material. A great story, well characterised, well portrayed and well played - a real keeper, and a great natural follow up from The Rocket Men.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Prequel/Sequel To The Original Audio Adventure, 28 Nov 2013
By 
Timelord-007 (The Eccentric Wanderer) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Return of the Rocket Men (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) (Audio CD)
Positive.
1)Peter Purves enthusiastic narration & mimicry of the First Doctor is exellent.
2)The Prequel/Sequel by Matt Fitton does the impossible of making the Prequel/Sequel as good as the original story by John Dorney.

Negative.
No negatively here all positive with this release.

Audio Info.
1 CD x 2 episodes, Running Time 60 minutes, Trailer, Behind the scenes interviews.

Review.
This story matches the original in scale & storytelling & yet adds something new to the adventure as we find out a little more about Steven Taylor.

This adventure has flashbacks to a time when Steven Taylor first met the Rocket men when he was a space pilot which was long before meeting up & joining he Doctor on his travels in time & space.

The story's flashbacks are pivotal to the plot as when in the present day the Doctor,Dodo & Steven arrive in the Tardis on another remote frontier planet that is being attacked by the Rocket Men.

The Doctor & Steven then argue on a different outcome of dealing with these jet packed pirates which makes for some great character drama between the Timelord & his companion.

The first episode is the slow build up to events that happen in episode 2 but by know means is this a dull episode it's more character driven allowing the 2nd episode to drive the action & eventual conclusion of foiling the Rocket Men plan's that is written superbly well by Matt Fitton.

Writer Matt Fitton had a huge task of writing a sequel to John Dorneys exellent original adventure which is highly praised by fan's but Matt Fitton has written not on a worthy sequel but also in part a prequel to which adds more depth & how the earlier narrative drives Stevens thoughts on how to deal with the Rocket Men compared to the Doctors solution.

This is a exellent story & proves to be a highly thrilling & enjoyable Companion Chronicle follow up that equals it's predecessor & adds it's own merits in superb storytelling.

A highly recommended must buy audio adventure of fans of the First Doctor at Big Finish.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cool, 14 April 2013
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This review is from: Return of the Rocket Men (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) (Audio CD)
Steve Taylor (Peter Purvis) was always the best companion of the 1st Doctor in my opinion and his acting in this tale is great!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Steven's day of destiny, 9 Dec 2012
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Return of the Rocket Men (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) (Audio CD)
Latest Doctor Who companion chronicle. These are a range of talking books which feature an actor who played a companion to the Doctor on tv returning to the role to read an all new story for their character.

They usually do all the voices as well, save for one which will be played by a guest actor.

They normally run for two part of roughly thirty minutes each, and are complete on a single cd.

This one sees Peter Purves return to the role of Steven Taylor, whom he played opposite William Hartnell's Doctor back in the nineteen sixties.

This story is a two parter, the epeisodes running for thirty five and thirty two minutes each [approx].

It sees the return of the Rocket Men, vicious space pirates who first featured in an earlier companion chronicle The Rocket Men (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles). There are some references to events in that story in this one, but this story does stand largely on it's own and you can hear it without having heard that.

There are also a few references to another story that featured Steven The First Wave (Doctor Who: The Companion Chronicles) but you don't need to have that one either to understand this story.

This one begins with Steven recounting his first meeting with the rocket men. Well before he met the Doctor, when he was a spaceship pilot. The use of present tense in this scene takes a short while to get used to, but you swiftly do because it does become rather gripping. Guest actor Tim Treloar comes into this after a few minutes as Rocket Man Van Cleef, and he's such a strong and well acted character that it really commands the attention.

The story does then slow down slightly as we get back to Steven in the TARDIS, and there's a few minutes with him and the Doctor and Dodo in a TARDIS scene. Those who have heard Peter Purves's earlier efforts in this range will know how superb his take on the First Doctor is and it's a pleasure to hear that again. He also does a pretty good voice for Dodo.

The time travellers reach a frontier world that has been attacked by the Rocket Men. And then the story really kicks into gear once again. The setting is very well realised and the sound design is great. And once the baddies are revealed, Steven and the Doctor are at loggerheads because of their ideas about what to do clashing. This offers some interesting moral food for thought.

The final quarter of this episode makes you look at it all again in a whole new light, because there's a little more to some of it than may have caught your attention at first listen. It's a very clever bit of scripting. Although I did spot one clue early on. All of this leads to a great cliffhanger.

The second episode is slightly more conventional but it flies by. It's full of some great character moments for everyone involved. And as ever with a lot of this series the main character does have an epiphany. The one is this story is touching and very nicely handled.

The music is quite stirring at points as well.

A cracking good listen, this is a superb story and well worth getting.

There's a trailer for the next release in this range on the track after the end of part two.

And just under nine minutes of interviews with cast and crew on the track after that.
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