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The Sirens of Time (Doctor Who)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
The very first big finish story has the fifth sixth and seventh doctors all facing similar threats on their own, and then brought together at the end to deal with as it gets bigger.

Each gets an episode to themselves. Some are better than others. The seventh's doesn't engage, the fifth's is quite good although his companions are written out of it in a contrived manner, and the sixth's is involving due to the quality of colin baker's acting.

On their own those episodes would rate three stars, but this story as a whole gets up to a four as it's a great listen when the doctors come together. Sylvester Mccoy and Colin Baker are a great double act, and Peter Davison is superb in the elder statesman of the trio role.

The rest of the plot is nothing special, but this is still a pretty good listen
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 2 September 2013
Back in the final, fading days of the last century, our good Doctor's brilliant flame was flickering down to its last embers. Briefly fanned by the TV movie in '96, it had been kept alive by books and an increasingly eclectic magazine. It looked like the TARDIS doors were soon going to close forever. And then came The Sirens of Time...

When I first heard this, back in 2000-2001, I found it to be a little confusing, with far more going on than I remembered in the series. Besides, Doctor Who was a visual thing, wasn't it? But time, and the Doctor, has moved on. Now, we hear the Doctor on radio and CD regularly, enjoying a modern series for a modern audience. So, it seems like a good time for a reassessment.
Clearly designed both to showcase and advertise these new productions, we are treated to three single episode adventures for the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors, all of which are entirely different, yet somehow similar. Each ends with a dramatic cliffhanger that seems to spell certain doom for our hero. They are all working alone, without the TARDIS or companion, at least almost: each gets a brief companion to apparently aid them. But are they all they seem? And just why are the Time Lords so keen to first contact, and then try to kill, the Doctor?
The fourth and final installment gives us all the answers, as all three find themselves having to work together to battle a foe as old as time, and just as fickle. But, will they all make it out I one piece?

The cast are clearly enjoying themselves with this story, in particular the Doctors, all of whom seem to settle into their roles with an ease that believe the passage of time. One can see each of them in the mind's eye exactly as they were all those years ago, tastless coat, tacky shirts and dreadful pullover all present and correct. The humour is there, as is the expected bickering, darkness and inspired lunacy.
The production itself is also very solid, sound design generally workng well, the script holding everything together, despite the occasional in-joke and aside throwing things off at a tangent. Presentation is slick and professional, again belying the apparent experience (or lack of) behind the microphone; in short, everything simply WORKS.

The Sirens of Time is not perfect, but it is a good indication of what was to come and was clearly a labour of love, a love that has been rewarded many times over, ever since.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 19 July 2015
This is the first Big Finish audio adventure in 'Doctor Who'!

'The Sirens of Time' is a significant story in the history of 'Doctor Who'. It's a multi-Doctor story featuring the Fifth; Sixth and Seventh incarnations of our Time Lord! It is also is the first of a long-running range of audio stories produced by a fantastic company that has lasted for over 15 years.

In 1989, 'Doctor Who' was cancelled on TV. In 1999, ten years later, Big Finish got the licence to produce audio dramas of the British sci-fi TV series. Producer Gary Russell commissioned Nicholas Briggs to write and direct the first 'Doctor Who' audio drama, and things were never the same again.

This must have been exciting for 'Doctor Who' fans, without the TV show for ten years, to be getting brand-new stories in the form of audio. It would take a while before Big Finish gained its popularity and influence in later years. But this was a 'small start' leading to a 'big finish'! Terrible joke, I know.

It was decided that the first 'Doctor Who' audio by Big Finish would be a multi-Doctor featuring Peter Davison; Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy. Nick Briggs wanted to write an episode for each of the three Doctors and to have them all appear in the final episode for a showdown with the villain.

'Part One' features the Seventh Doctor only; whilst 'Part Two' features the Fifth Doctor only and 'Part Three' features the Sixth Doctor only. 'Part Four' would feature Doctors Five; Six and Seven at the end. I was pleased Peter; Colin and Sylvester all agreed to appear in this Big Finish audio drama.

A crisis occurs on Gallifrey when the Time Lords are attacked by a fleet of hostile warships of the Knights of Velyshaa. Someone wants the Doctor dead and the Fifth; Sixth and Seventh incarnations face their own trails and adventures before working together to deal with the sirens of time...

I did enjoy listening to this multi-Doctor story when I purchased the CD in Big Finish sale in 2012. I'd got into the Big Finish audio adventures pretty early on and was immensely enjoying them. It was fair that I should listen to this first audio drama and find how 'Doctor Who' began in Big Finish.

It was nice to hear a multi-Doctor adventure with Peter Davison; Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy. I was sad there weren't any companions joining the three Doctors in this audio drama. But hearing the three Doctors in their separate adventures and meeting up together in 'Part Four' was enjoyable.

Sylvester McCoy is a delight to listen to as Doctor Seven. For him, this story takes place towards the end of his life before he regenerates in 'The TV Movie'. In his adventure in 'Part One', Doctor Seven arrives on an unnamed planet where he rescues a girl called Eleyna from falling into quicksand.

Peter Davison is brilliant to listen as Doctor Five. This story takes place for him between 'The Five Doctors' and 'Warriors of the Deep' where he's travelling with Tegan and Turlough. In his adventure in 'Part Two', the Doctor is on a German submarine in WWI where he meets a girl called Helen.

Colin Baker is wonderful to listen to as Doctor Six. This story takes place for him when he's travelling alone sometime after 'The Trial Of A Time Lord'. In his adventure in 'Part Three', the Doctor finds is on the spaceship Edifice where he meets a girl called Ellie and finds a being called the Temperon.

This story guest stars Mark Gatiss. Mark has a long association with `Doctor Who' as he's currently an actor and writer for the new series of today. Here he plays a German U-Boat captain called Schwieger who Doctor Five meets when he's on the German submarine in World War I.

The story also guest stars Sarah Mowat. Sarah has an important place in Big Finish as she would go on to play Susan Mendez in the spin-off series 'Dalek Empire'. Here Sarah plays three companions and a villain. Could the four characters be one of the same? Hope I haven't given the game away?!

There's also Maggie Stables as Ruthley. Maggie also has an important place in Big Finish as she's well-known to 'Doctor Who' fans as Evelyn Smythe, companion of the Sixth Doctor. Maggie delivers a delightful performance as Ruthley, who is a cackling old hag that Doctor Seven meets in 'Part One'.

This story features the first appearance of the Knights of Velyshaa. These characters will become important in the history of `Doctor Who', especially as one appears as a regular character in the `Dalek Empire' series. Why they attack Gallifrey becomes a mystery for the three Doctors to tackle.

This story also features an appearance of Anthony Keetch as Coordinator Vansell of the CIA of Gallifrey. Vansell is a Time Lord that the Doctor has met and would meet in many Big Finish audios including 'The Apocalypse Element'. He warns the Time Lord President of the crisis on Gallifrey.

Nick Briggs voices the Temperon creature that becomes pivotal in the story. Doctor Six discovers the Temperon in his adventure in 'Part Three' as it's responsible for bringing the three Doctors together. But the Temporan isn't the threat it appears as it warns the Doctors of the 'sirens of time'...

The CD extras are as follows. At the end of Disc 2, there are trailers for other Big Finish audios in 'Doctor Who'. There's 'Phantasmagoria' with Peter Davison; 'Whispers of Terror' with Colin Baker; 'The Fearmonger' with Sylvester McCoy and 'Storm Warning' with Paul McGann.

If you're a Big Finish subscriber, there is a behind-the-scenes documentary with 'The Sirens of Time' looking into the makings of Big Finish called 'Talking 'About My Regeneration'. This includes interviews with the cast and crew including Peter Davison; Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy.

'The Sirens of Time' has been an interesting and enjoyable audio adventure to listen to. It's not the greatest multi-Doctor story I've heard in 'Doctor Who', but it started a massive series of stories featuring well-loved characters from a very popular TV show. This is one audio drama not to miss!

Oh and I love it when Peter; Colin and Sylvester as the Doctors bicker amongst each other. And this is way before 'The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot' happened!

The next story for the Seventh Doctor is 'Valhalla'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
This is the first in the Big Finish range of Classic Doctor Who audio stories, and great things were to follow.

Dr. Who works superbly well as an audio production, mainly because the production team are no longer hamstrung by cheap visual effects. The monsters are so much better when you cannot see them! Also, as no sets are needed it allows for a much wider and imaginative selection of location, and is able to produce stories with epic, sweeping qualities that just cannot be made for TV.

Following the format of the classic show, adventures are usually 4 part with 25 minutes per episode. In this adventure we are presented with one episode each starring Peter Davison, Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy, in their individual dealings with the main villain of the piece. Then finally in the fourth episode the three come together to battle it out with their foe. This is where it gets really interesting, and the interaction between the three leads is excellent.

Cast and production crew were still finding their feet, but nonetheless this is good start. The three leads slip back into their roles easily, and after a few minutes it is as if they had never been away. Great stuff.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 16 April 2009
A curious one this, The fifth Doctor's companions Tegan and Turlough spend the entire story inside the TARDIS where they are inexplicably trapped. The Sixth and Seventh Doctors are travelling alone whilst The fifth Doctor is taken from somewhere between 'The Awakening' and 'Frontios'; the Sixth Doctor from between the end of his trial and, according to Big Finish's website 'Time and the Rani'; and the seventh Doctor from immediately prior to Doctor Who The Movie.
While it is fun for fans to have three Doctors together in one drama I felt that more could have been done with this, particularly given that it is an audio and therefore potentially unconstrained in terms of 'visuals'.
There is plenty going on but there is too much waffle about 'time distortion' and not enough interplay between characters; there are also some impressive monsters and another 'Gallifrey under siege' storyline. Overall a decent enough story just don't expect too much.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 20 October 2013
In my mission to listen to all of the Doctor Who audios, I started my journey with The Sirens Of Time.

It was nice to hear Peter, Colin and Sylvestor back as the Doctor, but the story was a little hard to follow. Each Doctor gets their own episode before joining together in the fourth.

It's a good start, but I think there are better ones to comes.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
This is Big Finnishes first Dr Who story and in all honesty is a bit of an oddity. As you will know its a multi doctor story featuring the 5th, 6th and 7th Doctors. The story is basicly each Doctor getting an episode to themselves and meeting up in the 4th episode to fight an enemy. (as you can see BF kept the 4 part format) Out of the solo episodes Colin Baker (6th Doc) does the best, while the other two are finding their feet on audio (this echoes how they performed in their own solo stories released later) but are quite good. The best bits are when they meet up and the interplay in the 4th episode.
I havent gone into detail much because honestly I can't remember it - but thats not the point. Big Finnish are finding their feet (as are a few of the actors) and in terms of quality its a bit dodgy to be honest but it gets 4 stars for being the start of a very good audio series and for getting the actors together and for being a multi story. If these factors don't float your boat I can't recomend it but if it does buy it.
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on 8 May 2013
I don't want to spoil the storyline but it was extremely clever. I'm very pleased with Big Finish productions. If only my resources let me purchase disc.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
"The Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors, together for the first time! Gallifrey is in a state of crisis, facing destruction at the hands of an overwhelming enemy. And the doctor is involved, in three different incarnations - each caught up in a deadly adventure, scattered across time and space. The web of time is threatened - and someone wants the Doctor dead.
"The three incarnations of the Doctor must join together to set time back on the right track - but in doing so, will they unleash a still greater threat?"
How fitting that the first of Big Finish's Doctor Who audio plays should feature the fifth, sixth and seventh doctors all working together! And how fitting also that the events of the story should ultimately lead to Gallifrey, the Doctor's home planet. Although it wasn't the first Big Finish story I heard (that was Whispers of Terror), this one made an immediate impression. Maybe it was the writing, or maybe it was the truly excellent, atmospheric audio design (from the crashing of waves to the bubbling swamps)... I really couldn't say. Keen to avoid starting the story in too chaotic a way, writer Nicholas Briggs gives each Doctor an episode and a mini-adventure to himself before plunging them together for the finale. And, indeed, these solo episodes are the best ones, with each Doctor acting bang on character and embroiled in contrasting and inventive scenarios. It's just a shame that none of the regular companions could feature in the story (I suppose to do that would have been attempting to cram too many elements into the plot). It's only the final episode that's a disappointment. With a lot of story to resolve, three Doctors to handle and not much time to do it in, it all ends up a little confusing... but it's very atmospheric. A good start to what looks to be a promising series!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 19 August 2009
I have just started to work my way through the BF audio's and started with this - it being no 1 after all. I felt that what started out as a strong story fell away in the final episode. The first three episodes, each focusing on one of the doctor's with mystery building around what the timelords's were up to and how the events were connected, fell away in part 4 when the doctor's were united on Gallifrey. The story became confusing and the interaction between the doctor's felt forced and was undramatic.
Still, it was an exciting enough adventure (in particular parts 1 and 2) and bodes well for the forthcoming series.
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