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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Taking the bull by the horns....
Seasons of Fear is written primarily by Paul Cornell, who penned BBCi's Scream of the Shalka and a few of the novels. However, he is also writing for the new series, and for this reason attracted my attention to this particular drama.
The Doc and Charley finally reach Singapore (where Charley keeps her date with Alex Grayle, promised just before the R-101 events of...
Published on 19 Oct 2004 by Andrew Kyle

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Doctor and Charley chase the bad guys through time
Not quite sure what to make of this, to be honest. The story itself is good; but there are a few flaws that just stop it from being a great production. The concept is good; someone who claims to have met the Doctor before, meets him in his future and the Doctor's past - confused? You'll probably be more confused before the story is complete. The Doctor and Charley...
Published on 18 Jan 2012 by Keen Reader


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Taking the bull by the horns...., 19 Oct 2004
By 
Andrew Kyle "Fangg" (Glasgow, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Seasons of Fear is written primarily by Paul Cornell, who penned BBCi's Scream of the Shalka and a few of the novels. However, he is also writing for the new series, and for this reason attracted my attention to this particular drama.
The Doc and Charley finally reach Singapore (where Charley keeps her date with Alex Grayle, promised just before the R-101 events of Storm Warning). However, as Charley is away cavorting, the Doc is approached by Sebastian Grayle, who boasts he is an immortal and is here to see the man he killed in the past. Realising this is a hideous temporary anomaly, the Doc travels back in the past to discover just how Grayle became immortal and who his masters are.
The narrative jumps from ancient Rome to Jane Austen's England and follows a similar form to the Hartnell episode Keys of Marinus. This works quite well, not confusing the listener but exposing them to a melee of different characters (cleverly played by the same actors in each time frame) from different zones.
McGann is once again fantastic, speaking not only as the Doc in the story but also the narrator (much like the 1996 movie), which makes sense later in the story. There are a few moments of 3-dimensions (or should that be 4) in the doc's character.India Fisher is once again good as Charley. The supporting actors, especially Stephen Perring as Grayle in his numerous forms, are all terrific.
The monsters of the story, which i will not reveal here, are memories from the original series. Paul Cornell has very successfully resurrected a not-so-memorable Dr Who monster and made it quite scary and dominating. The audio medium is ideal for this.
Overall this is a good story, sitting by itself as an episode but also as part of the ongoing series. We are introduced through one reference to Zagreus, who will come to the fore in later episodes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Eighth Doctor Audio Adventure, 27 Mar 2014
By 
Timelord007 (The Tardis) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Cd Info.
2xCd's of a 4 episode story, Running time 120 minutes approx.

Trivia.
1)First appearance of the Nimons in a Big Finish audio adventure.
2)The Eighth Doctor partly narrates this audio adventure.
3)Don Warringtons character who's name I won't spoil here will be a significant threat to the Eighth Doctor in Neverland, Zagreus & the Divergence Arc.
4)The Nimons first appearance was in the classic season 17 fourth Doctor story The Horns Of Nimon.

Synopsis.
The Eighth Doctor manages to arrive in Singapore in the 1930 were he & companion Charley Pollard meet Sebastian Grayle who is immortal, Possessed & ruthless advisory who holds a dark secret to his immortal power & is a former enemy of the Doctor but to the Doctor, Grayle is a complete stranger he's yet to encounter.

The Doctor & Charleys quest to unlock the mystery of Grayles secret takes our time travellers across four different time periods of Earths history if they are to discover Grayles power & stand any chance of defeating him, Yet the Doctor on this quest will also encounter another old enemy the fearsome Nimon.

Timelord Thoughts.
Paul Cornell & Caroline Symcox have written a superb entertaining tightly paced audio adventure which sees the Doctor battling against a past advisory he's yet to meet & the sinister Nimon.

The story is an intriguing audio adventure which is an engaging listen throughout with great performances by Paul McGann & India Fisher as the Eighth Doctor & Charley Pollard.

Stephen Perring does very well as Sebastian Grayle who adds an air of mystery to his character & it's a great twist to pit the Doctor against an advisory from his past he's yet to meet.

With excellent production values, Great sound effects & music score this is one of the best Eighth Doctor audio adventures available & well worth adding to your Big Finish collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Seasons Of Fear - Classic quest with a dark overtone, 20 April 2012
By 
Victor (Hull, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
This is the thirtieth release from Big Finish in their range of full cast audio adventures starring classic Doctor Whos. It stars Paul McGann as Eight and India Fisher as Charlotte Pollard. 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 pictures of the cast and production notes.

This release is the third in the second miniseries of Eighth Doc stories, through which there is a loose story arc revolving around Charlotte Pollard's rescue from the R101 by the Doc back in their first adventure. The arc has a greater presence on some stories than others, and here it is not important, apart from and endnote which links straight to Neverland in 3 releases time.

When visiting Singapore in 1931 in order to keep Charlie's appointment with her friend Alex Grayle, the Doctor as accosted by one Sebastian Grayle, who claims to have already killed the doctor in his past, and started a chain of events that mean the end of the earth and possibly of time itself.

The Doctor and Charlie set off on a quest back through time, encountering Grayle at various points in history to try and thwart his plans, thus saving the universe. Again. All seems to going OK until the true identity of Grayle's masters is revealed, then the Doctor really is in danger.

There is a link to a fourth Doctor adventure (I can't say which one for fear of giving too much away), and even a reference to events in the First Doc adventure `Edge Of Destruction', as well as forward links to the Zagreus cycle.

It's a classic quest story, played up for all it is worth by McGann and Fisher, who have a great chemistry and were clearly loving every minute of the recording. The rest of the cast get right into the spirit, and a rip roaring adventure results. I love this series, 5 stars.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The Doctor and Charley chase the bad guys through time, 18 Jan 2012
By 
Keen Reader "lhendry4" (Auckland, New Zealand) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
Not quite sure what to make of this, to be honest. The story itself is good; but there are a few flaws that just stop it from being a great production. The concept is good; someone who claims to have met the Doctor before, meets him in his future and the Doctor's past - confused? You'll probably be more confused before the story is complete. The Doctor and Charley have to go back to the first time that Sebastian Grayle appears to exist in Earth's history and attempt to stop him. But there's more to it than just that. Grayle, in his first incarnation, appears to be in contact with aliens who are using him for their own purposes. How does that affect what the Doctor is trying to do? And can he stop him/them in time? And if you're a Time Lord, what does "in time" even mean?

The scenes at the court of Edward the Confessor really set my teeth on edge. I may be a bit of stickler for some historical accuracy; so I confess (geddit?) it really did bother me when Edward's wife Edith is referred to as Edith Swan-neck; that was the nickname of Harold Godwinson's common-law wife, not King Edward's wife, Godwin's daughter. Then, there was the statement that William of Normandy's men-at-arms would have been a common sight at Edward's court, keeping guard - I don't really think so. And then the conversation between Edward and Edith that "William the Bastard" had spent the weekend at court with them, and Harald Hardrada! That really made me grind my teeth - do they imagine the Duke of Normandy popping over to England for a weekend with Edward? Not likely! And as for he and Hardrada being in England at the same time, and spending a lovely weekend away with Edward and Edith!? Seriously!? But, anyway, those are quibbles that really just struck at my "historical scholar" nerve. Probably nobody else would be bothered by them. And that was only one part of the story, as the Doctor and Charley move through time after Grayle, attempting to stop what seems to be his destiny.

I found the aliens, when they eventually were unmasked, to be a bit of a wet blanket. The Doctor seemed to deal with them without much trouble, and all a bit conveniently really, considering the build-up that the story had been given so far. I think that's it really - the ending of the story just didn't match up to the promise. So - good, but not great.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Revival of an old format (and old villains!), 19 Aug 2006
By 
M. Wilberforce "mwilberforce" (Bristol, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
"On New Year's Eve, 1930, the Doctor lets Charley keep her appointment at the Raffles hotel in Singapore. But his unease at what he's done to time by saving her life soon turns into fear. Sebastian Grayle: immortal, obsessed, ruthless, has come to the city to meet the Time Lord. To the Doctor, he's a complete stranger, but to Grayle, the Doctor is an old enemy.

"An enemy that, many years ago, he finally succeeded in killing. And this is his only chance to gloat.

"The Doctor and Charley desperately search human history for the secret of Grayle's power and immortality. Their quest takes in four different time periods, the Hellfire Club, the court of Edward the Confessor and the time vortex itself. And when the monsters arrive, the stakes are raised from the life of one Time Lord to the existence of all humanity."

Paul Cornell and Caroline Symcox's "Seasons of Fear" bravely attempts to revive a long-lost Who tradition: the 'road' story, where one ongoing theme connects several mini-adventures set at different points in space and time, a format popular with the First Doctor in such stories as "The Keys of Marinus", "The Chase" and "The Daleks' Master Plan" but barely seen since.

Whilst "Seasons of Fear" is refreshing in many ways for this departure from the norm, it is also the story's undoing. Great efforts are made to flesh out the characters inhabiting these various settings and indeed we certainly get to know who is who even though the characters have limited exposure, but there is no particular reason for the use of many of the settings presented, and the events that take place in each location are largely generic in favour of the broader story arc. The whole nature of the paradox around which this story revolves seems contrived - that is, the mini-paradox peculiar to this story, not the bigger paradox of Charley being alive when she should have died (lest you were getting confused); and indeed, the larger paradox is better handled, with the story clearly contributing towards events that are yet to come, including narration by the Doctor that turns out by the end of the story to be a flash-forward.

The story is rescued, thankfully, by the enthusiasm of Paul McGann and India Fisher, the latter getting a more emotional role to play than in some past outings and making the most of it, and an excellent turn by Stephen Perring as evolving villain Sebastian Grayle. The eventual revelation of the real villains may or may not be unexpected, depending on the listener's knowledge of Who history, and the sound design and score are decent, if not the best that Big Finish has produced.

It is possible that my opinion of Seasons of Fear will improve on subsequent listens. For now, however, I would describe it as an average tale that is both liberated and confined by its format.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Fear not, 18 April 2009
This review is from: Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) (Audio CD)
A pretty solid Eighth Doctor and Charley Pollard adventure that has echoes of the 1960 Doctor Who story 'Marco Polo' and which develops the ongoing saga of Charley's escape from her pre-ordained death and the repercussions of this on the timelines.
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Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who)
Seasons of Fear (Doctor Who) by Caroline Symcox (Audio CD - 1 Mar 2002)
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