Released in 2011, this is the fifth part of a set of 5 interlinked stories featuring many people’s favourite doctor, the 4th incarnation as portrayed by Tom Baker. It is the third and final such series to be produced by the BBC before Tom finally agreed to work with Big Finish. It’s one episode, about an hour long on a single disc.
These three series (Hornet’s Nest, Demon Quest and Serpent Crest) have been a little hit and miss, not quite the glorious return of Baker to the role that we had all hoped. But this final episode manages to make up for all of that with a great deal of chutzpah. Baker is on tip top form, and plays off David Troughton’s second Doctor beautifully. Baker is always at his best when he believes in the material and has someone to spark off, and here is at his magisterial best. The episode exists to tie up all the loose story threads, but is also a fascinating tale in its own right for the most part. It looks at the ways in which the villagers of Hexford deal with being stranded in space, and this character study is nicely done. And when the action takes off it is awe inspiring.
A superb finale to the 4th Doctor’s Nest Cottage adventures, and one that makes up for a lot of the dross that has gone before. 5 stars.
This is the fifth and final part in this audio series, featuring Tom Baker as the Doctor, with Susan Jameson as Mrs Wibbsey. In this episode the listener anticipates all the threads in the previous four parts coming together in a grand finale, as it were. We're not disappointed. The village of Hexford, taken by the Skishtari ship in the fourth episode, is surviving, three months later, in some kind of eco-dome on a planet - they don't know where or when they are after going through the Skishtari wormhole. The Doctor (the Second Doctor, untrusted by both Mrs W and "her" Doctor) professes not to know where they are, and he is attempting to send out Mayday signals to see if anyone picks them up. But is that really what he's doing? Or is he playing a deeper game? Could the Doctor be betraying them? Gasp!?
When Mrs Wibbsey and the Fourth Doctor catch up with Hexford, all the pieces start to fall into place - we are greeted again by old enemies, old friends, and the fate of the Skishtari egg ... Mrs Wibbsey and the Doctor dash off in the Tardis again, and the listener is left hoping eagerly for more adventures with these two - Mrs W has really grown on me since her first appearance so many stories and episodes ago, and I hope there are more adventures for us to hear.
This is great stuff; and David Troughton is excellent as the Second Doctor - you'd almost swear it was Patrick Troughton all over again. More please!
on 11 May 2012
Bit disappointed with the climactic story in the Serpent Crest mini-series, hence the mediocre rating. Yes Tom is as excellent as ever, and yes David Troughton is brilliant playing the distinctly dodgy Doctor #2, however my beef is that nothing at all really happens in the episode; the Scishtari don't appear until right near the end and for a very brief cameo, whilst the Robotovs are equally underused, and Richard Franklin's Captain Yates just dithers around ineffectually - where's the Brig when you need him?!