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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film on a disc!
The daleks have been done to death in doctor who, not many people now do good stories featuring these old classic but in my opinion overrated monsters. But it is great that nearly every big finish play to feature the daleks has been excellent, with new and fresh ideas to revive a waning monster. The guys at big finish always seem to bring back monsters well that otherwise...
Published on 29 Sept. 2007 by big mad doctor who guy

versus
2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars too big for the audio screen
Daleks.

Romana.

Other time Lords.

Gallifrey.

Planets being invaded.

Galactic size threats.

An absolutely epic story that would make a great blockbuster movie, but it's just too big in scale for the audio to properly realise it. As a result we have something that promises to be really great, but never quite...
Published on 21 July 2006 by Paul Tapner


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A film on a disc!, 29 Sept. 2007
This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
The daleks have been done to death in doctor who, not many people now do good stories featuring these old classic but in my opinion overrated monsters. But it is great that nearly every big finish play to feature the daleks has been excellent, with new and fresh ideas to revive a waning monster. The guys at big finish always seem to bring back monsters well that otherwise wouldnt even be that interesting. New stories and new yarns are what are needed!

The apocalypse element is BIG. its one of the few big finish audios that really sound like a film on disc. most stories are great doctor who stories on audio, but not as grand as to make them feel like a film. One of the things about this play is its scale. And it involves Romana, closer to her screen persona than the confused and mixed up idiot she is in the far too politically based spin 0ff series gallifrey. I like Romana as a character and i feel she is badly done in the gallifrey series. But in all of her doctor who appearances she is nearer to her screen counterpart and this is one of her best performances as a captive of the daleks. This story develops well and at quite a fast pace considering how long this play is. But it is highly entertaining with plenty of great dalek moments. They are totally psychotic on this one i tell you. And there are plenty of great and gross moments. Colin Baker of course is on top form as the underappreciated sixth doctor, and Maggie Stables is brilliant as Evelyn.

So, all in all this is a fine adventure, a lot mkore enjoyable than Stephen's last effort for the big finish series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Daleks and Time Lords with the Doctor, Evelyn and Romana!, 17 Mar. 2015
This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Get ready and brace yourself for Dalek non-stop action-adventure!

The Daleks invade Gallifrey! What?! Does that mean the Time War starts here?!

This is 'The Apocalypse Element', a four-part adventure by Stephen Cole with Colin Baker's Doctor and his companion Maggie Stables as Evelyn Smythe. It also features the return of Lalla Ward as Romana, who is now President of the Time Lords, and the Daleks come to attack Gallifrey.

The Doctor and Evelyn arrive on the planet Archetryx where a temporal peace conference takes place. The Doctor learns that his friend Romana is missing and a prisoner of the Daleks. The Daleks soon invade Gallifrey and are about to use their new weapon to destroy the entire galaxy.

I found this a pretty fast-paced and action-packed adventure to listen to by Steve Cole. It feels like an action-packed Dalek movie. There's a lot going on and it's a job to keep up with the plot and characters. You may want to listen to this adventure a number of times, but it's pretty exciting.

What struck me about this audio adventure is that it depicts the conflict between the Daleks and the Time Lords. This is what could have been the inspiration for Russell T. Davies and a precursor for the new series with the Time War between the Daleks and the Time Lords.

This is the first Big Finish audio with Colin Baker's Doctor where he faces the Daleks. The only Dalek story Colin's Doctor had on TV was 'Revelation of the Daleks'. So it's great that Colin has had more Dalek stories on audio compared to the TV series, and this is one of many encounters.

Colin Baker delivers a superb performance as the Doctor in this adventure. I like how Colin's Doctor interacts with the Time Lords and how he copes with the increasing chain of events with the Daleks invading Gallifrey. He also shows his concern for Romana when learning she's been captured.

Maggie Stables is equally good as Evelyn Smythe, the Doctor's elderly companion. For Evelyn, this is the first time she encounters the Daleks and gets to go to Gallifrey with the Time Lords. Evelyn has her own adventure and is the calming presence for the Doctor when he gets abrasive and agitated.

It was good to hear Lalla Ward as Romana. Romana has come a long way since escaping E-Space and becoming President of the Time Lords. She's had her own fair share of meeting Daleks and has a hard time being their prisoner. She's surprised when she meets Colin's Doctor for the first time.

The rest of the cast include Time Lords and Time Ladies like Michael Wade as the President; Andrea Newland as Commander Vorna; Karen Henson as Monitor Trinkett and James Campbell as Monitor Ensac. There's also Anthony Keetch as Coordinator Vansell, who the Doctor's met before apparently.

The Daleks are menacing as ever, voiced by Nicholas Briggs and Alistair Lock. The Daleks use their new weapon - the apocalypse element - which is a temporal crystal that could destroy both the Time Lords and an entire galaxy. Things get tense for the Doctor when he has to stop their evil plans.

There's a moment at the end of 'Part One' when the Doctor and Monitor Trinkett go into a 'gravity well' and get attacked by a live Dalek mutant that was quite frightening to listen to and imagine.

There are plenty of references to Time Lords and Gallifrey that I found quite a job to fully absorb in my mind. Some were familiar such as the Seal and the Rod of Rassilon and the Matrix. But there were plenty that I never heard before and would feature in future 'Gallifrey' stories.

A lot of things happen in this story that become links to spin-off series of 'Doctor Who' within the Big Finish audio realm. These include Romana's presidency that links to the spin-off series 'Gallifrey' and also the Daleks' schemes that occur in the 'Dalek Empire' series shortly afterwards.

The CD extras include a special trailer for the first season of adventure with the Eighth Doctor and Charley in Big Finish. There is also a trailer for the next 'Doctor Who' audio CD release called 'The Fires of Vulcan' with Sylvester McCoy's Doctor.

I enjoyed hearing 'The Apocalypse Element' with Colin's Doctor, Evelyn, Romana and the Daleks. I don't think I've grasped everything that happens in the story. But its good non-stop action and you'll have to listen to it a number of times in order to get a clearer grasp of the story.

The next story for the Doctor and Evelyn is 'Bloodtide'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Apocalypse Element, 23 Mar. 2015
By 
Keen Reader "lhendry4" (Auckland, New Zealand) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Listening to Gallifrey VI, Romana makes reference to a time when she was a prisoner of the Daleks on Etra Prime. I thought I should re-listen to this story, which is the aftermath of that time in Romana’s life. This story is important for a number of reasons. Firstly, it is the first ‘official’ reference to Romana’s return to normal space from her time in E-Space, where she left the Fourth Doctor in ‘Warrior’s Gate’ and can be seen as leading into the Gallifrey Big Finish audio series. It is also reference-worthy to the Dalek Empire Big Finish audio series, where the further machinations of the Daleks relating to this story are referenced, particularly in regard to the Seriphia galaxy. The incidents on Etra Prime could also reasonably be seen as important early shots in the ultimate Time War between the Daleks and the Time Lords on Gallifrey. The Monan Host are introduced for the first time in this story. They are referenced heavily in the BF Gallifrey audio series, and are important as introductions to the concept of other temporal powers having time travel capabilities. This story follows on closely from the story in ‘The Genocide Machine’, and the story is continued after ‘The Apocalypse Element’ in ‘The Mutant Phase’, concluding in ‘The Time of the Daleks’. For these reasons, and because this story is actually very good, I would thoroughly recommend it.

The story is one of two parts (each part of two episodes); the first part of the story takes place on Archetryx, where temporal powers are gathering to share information. Archetryx has for the last twenty years been notable mainly for the disappearance from its orbit of Etra Prime, where many scientists and other personnel disappeared along with the planetoid. One of those who disappeared was the President of the Time Lords, Romanadvoratrelundar. When the Doctor (the Sixth Doctor, as played by Colin Baker) and Evelyn find themselves landing on Archetryx unexpectedly, little do they know what else is about to happen.

The second part of the story takes place on Gallifrey itself. The events of the first two episodes of the story lead into the third and fourth episodes seamlessly, as the scope of the Dalek plans become ever more horrifying. Can the Doctor and Evelyn do anything to stop them? And at what cost in lives and to time itself?

Brilliant – I would recommend this unreservedly. Colin Baker and Maggie Stables are on top form in this story. The other actors (I won’t itemise them for fear of spoilers) are totally brilliant in their roles. The Daleks (no spoiler that they are predominantly active in this story) are at their amoral best. Totally wonderful; 140 minutes of pure classic Doctor Who at its best.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Daleks Vs Timelords !, 18 Oct. 2013
By 
Timelord-007 (The Eccentric Wanderer) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Doctor Who: The Apocalypse Element (Audio).

Product Info.
2xCD
4 - Episodes
Running Time 140 Minutes

Positive.
1) A wonderful written Dalek adventure by Stephen Cole.
2)Colin Baker gives a less arrogant Sixth Doctor than his tv persona making his Doctor far more likeable.
3)Lalla Ward returns for the first time since (Season 18 Warriors Gate), As Romana.
4) The Daleks are back in this adventure & are as ruthless as ever.

Negative.
1)The plot demands full attention from the listener to appreciate all the plot points.

Cast.
The Doctor -- Colin Baker
Evelyn Smythe -- Maggie Stables
Romana -- Lalla Ward
Monitor Trinkett -- Karen Henson
Assistant Monitor Ensac -- James Campbell
Commander Vorna -- Andrea Newland
Coordinator Vansell -- Anthony Keetch
Monan Host -- Toby Longworth
The President -- Michael Wade
Dalek Voices -- Alistair Lock and Nicholas Briggs
Vrint -- Andrew Fettes
Captain Reldath -- Andrew Fettes

What's Up Doc?
The Daleks are destroying planets obliterating them from existence with a new destructive weapon The Apocalypse Element & on Galilfrey Madame President Romana has been missing for 20 years in mysterious circumstances.

With the Doctor discovering the Daleks grand masterplan The Apocalypse Element he realises that the whole fate of the galaxy is in his hands.

Can The Doctor solve the mysterious disappearance of President Romana & locate her whereabouts?

The Daleks are arriving on Galilfrey but are unable to deactivate the energy barrier around the planet that causes a confrontation with the Timelords of universal conquenses.

The Doctor has a choice to make, One that could have dire consequences on the fate of the universe.

Timelord Thoughts.
This adventure is "EPIC" & a real fast paced adventure that sees the return of The Doctor's deadliest enemys The Daleks whom are at theremost disturbing psychotic form in this adventure thanks in part to actor Nicholas Briggs sinister tones that add a malevolent edge to Skaros finest pepperpots.

From the obliteration of planets to mass murder on a galactic scale, Big Finish have taken real efforts to restore these classic villians to there dark & devious best making them a real threat for The Doctor once.

Actor, Colin Baker rises to the challenge as he tones down his Doctor's arrogance erratic streak here in what are the first signs of his incarnation mellowing, something Colin wasn't allowed to achieve on tv due to his dismal after 'A Trial Of A Timelord'.

The character of companion Evelyn Smythe helps play a big part in the Doctor's more calmer personality as she's a positive influence & a reassuring companion whom ways up the pros & cons & doesn't stand any of the Doctor's nonsense as she makes him face up to his choices & it's consequences.

Actress, Lalla Ward reprises Romana so effortlessly it's as if she's never been away from Doctor Who for over 19 years as she slips back into the role like a comfy pair of slippers & adds that touch of witty sarcasm to her character.

With great direction by Nicholas Briggs who ramps up the storys pace & tension brilliantly, while writer Stephen Coles script delivers The Daleks at there most cunning, ruthless & destructive & concludes this story with a superb unexpected ending.

Overall, 'The Apocalypse Element' is a excellent written story & a tense first encounter for the Sixth Doctor on audio that's a highly recommended listen.

Timelord Rating.
8/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Apocalypse Element - The pepperpots get really MEAN!, 2 Mar. 2012
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is the eleventh release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Colin Baker as Six and Maggie Stables as Evelyn. It also sees the return of favourite old companion Romana II (played by the ever lovely Lalla Ward) to the Whoniverse. There are four episodes, roughly 25-30 minutes each, complete with original theme music between each, and cliff hanger endings. Two episodes per disc on 2 discs, and a short booklet with some notes from the author.

As other reviewers have said, the scale of this adventure is really BIG. The tinpot dictators have, as ever, a plan to take over the universe. It's complicated, involving disappearing planets, a kidnapped time lady and lots of running around screaming `Exterminate', `Obey' and other motivational phrases. The scope and ambition of the story is almost too much for a hundred minute audio adventure, with lots and lots going on as things reach a final thrilling dénouement.

Credit to the Big Finish team, they manage to hold it all together. The script is excellent, and allows all the actors to shine. Baker is in form as Six, all galloping energy and imperiousness but with less arrogance and more compassion than his TV persona. Romana is given a high impact re-entry, and Lalla Ward plays it to perfection. Big Finish have done well with the Daleks, and in this and their previous appearance (the excellent Genocide Machine) they have managed to do something new with them, amplifying their cunning, ruthlessness and dedication to the masterplan. The audio effects are window rattling, and there is plenty of high energy action. It's entertaining, thrilling and in places moving. A credit to all involved and one of my favourite stories in the entire range. 5 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The First Act Of The Time War, 23 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Russell T Davies once referred to this story as the first act of the time war and I can see why. Insane Daleks attempt to destroy Gallifrey and the rest of the universe using the apocolypse element (slightly similar to the reality bomb in Journey's End from Series 4).

This story is grand and epic. It signals the return of Romana to the Doctor Who universe (and it's as if Lala Ward was never away).

You will really have to listen closely to this audio because there is so much going on. It has such a cinematic scope, which sometimes confuses things when the story is moving at such a fast pace.

I really enjoyed this one, and I think it's one of the best ones I've listened to so far.

However, I do have two negative comments. The ending felt rushed and too abrupt and Evelyn is a lot more irritating in this story than previous ones.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Daleks I love you, 15 April 2009
This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
An epic Doctor Who adventure from Big Finish, The Apocalypse Element is sweeping and grandiose and is one of the best in the series so far. Apart from the ever-irritating Evelyn Smythe this is top-notch; the addition of former companion Romana as incumbent President of Gallifrey is simply the icing on a damn fine cake.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Doctor Who Audio drama with the Daleks and Romana ..., 25 Jan. 2015
By 
D.L (barnsley) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Great Doctor Who Audio drama with the Daleks and Romana and Colin Baker is Good as the Doctor. He gets better in these Audio drama's. you can imagine whats happening in these stories with all the sound effects and very good acting. Great for any Doctor Who fan.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Doctor Who - The Apocalypse Element, 22 July 2006
By 
Mr. P. Johnson "pjohno" (leicester england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is in my opinion one of the best Big Finish adventures - it sweeps along at a cracking pace to its unexpected ending. The Fifth Doctor and Evelyn are on top form - the scope of the story is worthy of being made in to a TV film - would be great.

The main tenet of the story is interesting - how far do you go to stop destruction of other worlds even at the possible destruction of your own. The ending is a shock too and thought provoking - listen to it and make your own mind up.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars too big for the audio screen, 21 July 2006
By 
Paul Tapner (poole dorset england) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Daleks.

Romana.

Other time Lords.

Gallifrey.

Planets being invaded.

Galactic size threats.

An absolutely epic story that would make a great blockbuster movie, but it's just too big in scale for the audio to properly realise it. As a result we have something that promises to be really great, but never quite clicks. And it may not stick in the mind too long as a result. Which is a shame.

Great cliffhanger to episode two, though
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The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who)
The Apocalypse Element (Doctor Who) by Stephen Cole (Audio CD - 1 Aug. 2000)
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