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HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERon 26 March 2014
Released in 2009, this is the fourth part of a five part story that saw the return of Tom Baker to the role of the Fourth Doctor. It is part of a story arc, and can probably be listened to in isolation but I would advise listening to Stuff of Nightmares, the Dancing Shoes and Circus of Doom first. It is a single hour long episode on a single disc, with some well realised artwork on the inlay.

Following the events of Stuff of Nightmares, the Doctor and Mike Yates are trapped in the cellar at Nest Cottage for the night while the murderous menagerie of possessed taxidermical terrors roams the rest of the building. The Doctor uses the opportunity to fill Mike in on his other encounters with the Hornets. Here he recounts his most recent (for him) but earliest (for the hornet’s) encounter. The TARDIS takes the Doctor back to 8th century Northumbria, in the depths of winter. The local nunnery is coming under siege night after night from a pack of crazed wolves, trying to get to the nun’s abbess. The Doctor recounts the desperate siege, and then the terrible mistake that he makes that nearly allows the Hornets to conquer him.

The first half of the tale is a well realised and described dark age setting, the second half is a desperate run around the TARDIS. Both halves are well realised and narrated, and recall those Saturday tea times of my childhood perfectly.

The tale is largely narrated by Baker, with a few lines from other cast members. It’s more than a simple audiobook, but not quite a full production. It’s an effective style and allows us to glory in Baker’s orotund tones as he slips right back into the role. I rather enjoyed the story. In all 4 stars.
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on 8 December 2009
The Hornet's Nest saga hits new heights with this fourth installment, which is easily the best one so far. Tom Baker has improved in leaps and bounds as the stories have progressed, and is at his gloriously eccentric, Doctorish best here. He's totally got back into the role now, and sounds exactly like the fourth Doctor of old. The story has a great setting and the visual descriptions are very evocative, while the plot is sinister and bizarre as usual but easy to follow. An added bonus is that the TARDIS features strongly in this adventure, having been all but absent till now, and the excellent use of authentic TARDIS sound effects really give it that genuine 'Who' feel. Guest star Rula Lenska is excellent as the Hive Queen and all the threads and plot arcs that have been developing all come neatly together at the end and lead nicely into the set up for the final confrontation. I can't wait for the final episode, which thankfully has been released simultaneoulsy with this part. Onwards to the Hive of Horror!
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VINE VOICETOP 500 REVIEWERon 27 December 2009
Fourth in the new series of talking books featuring tom baker playing the fourth doctor once again. Dont start with this one if you've not heard any, go back to "Doctor Who": Hornets' Nest: Stuff of Nightmares v. 1 (BBC Audio).

If you have heard them all then read on.

As with the last few in the series tom baker reads the bulk of the tale as narration, in the guise of the doctor telling it to mike yates. The disc runs for roughly an hour. Here he tells how the tardis visited northumbria in the middle ages during a very bleak winter and found a hornet infestation there. And how at a local abbey the nuns fought to protect their mother superior. Who is not quite like any ever before.

The narrative then takes the doctor into the tardis for a chase through the interior. and a confrontation with his foes that leads to...

the one big problem with an otherwise entertaining listen. you can see from halfway through exactly how it will end out. so it doesn't offer any surprises. A pity because the supporting cast are very good - the nuns having excellent regional accents and rula lenskas voice being very effectively modified to make her sound like a swarm leader - and both settings are very imaginative and well depicted.

Whilst tom baker really does get his teeth into this one there is perhaps a bit too much narration, and a bit more dialogue with supporting characters would have provided good breaks in the middle of it all. as good as his narration is, you need a break occasionally.

but all in all this one does offer a fair amount of entertainment, and now all the back story is out the way the series cna proceed to what should hopefully be a good wrap up.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon 1 April 2011
This is the fourth in the 5 part cd audio series and it's just getting better and better - Tom Baker is totally into this role; his wonderful voice just rolling out those words like reading a gothic horror. You feel like you're in the cellar with him in the Nest, listening to his tale of horror and dawning realisation unfold slowly before you.

This fourth part continues to tie up some earlier storylines from the first three parts - and we finally reach the point in time where the Doctor and the hornets meet for the first time, from the hornets' perspective.

The story ends poised on a cliff edge for the fifth part, as the Doctor and Mike gather themselves together for the final confrontation. And it sounds like it's going to be a big one!
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on 1 February 2010
It was a pleasure to hear Tom Baker in a new story as the Doctor and have the enjoyment of listening to a story that I had not heard before. However, having waited many years for Tom Baker to be persuaded to undertake a Doctor Who audio adventure, I have to admit I was expecting something more profound than this. In my view, the story in this series of linked plays is at the sillier end of the Dr Who spectrum. True, it was good to hear those wonderful Baker tones again, but at times this sounded more like a parody than the real thing; With implausible character names, excessive use of the thesausrus and a weak story line. Captain Yates is an odd choice of companion and a stonger personality would probably have helped Tom, who seemed at times to be carrying the play single handedly. Big Finish - who could certainly do silly stories - produced many much stronger productions than this. Having said all that, there aren't too many Tom Baker audio adventures to choose from, so beggars probably should not be too choosy. I did enjoy it - and I certainly hope Tom does more audio - but I do hope he gets a stronger story next time that resists the urge to parody itself.
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on 19 July 2017
Good cd
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on 5 December 2016
not as good as some
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on 26 December 2012
The story is ok but the author has managed to meander just enough to leave you wondering if he forgot the story line on more than one occasion
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on 12 March 2010
This is quite possibly the best of the stories so far. The Doctor has followed his enemies back to the Dark Ages. He finds himself at a nunnery besieged by savage dogs. Not only that but the nuns have a rather strange "Mother Superior". The story is extremely fast moving and filled with tension - for the first time in the series we really feel the Doctor may have met his match. Not only that but this story ends with a proper cliffhanger, one that would have done a Philip Hinchcliffe era story proud.

Wonderfully read by Tom Baker. The actresses playing the nuns are also rather good.
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