The Doctor takes Evelyn to London to try his favourite takeaways - but they find more than they bargain for (when do they ever not?!). This is a wonderfully complex story; the action starts with a mysterious scientific/medical experiment which appears to be going on during WWI; we soon switch to late twentieth century London where a gangster-run casino is having troubles of its own; but they do have their own unique way of dealing with troublesome customers. And here enter the Doctor and Evelyn. When they find dismembered corpses of animals in a dark alleyway, and then witness someone apparently being shot with an arrow, they enter the world of the gangsters; but it's a much wider world than they might ever have expected, and the Doctor is in for some surprises.
There's a reference to Zagreus early on in the story, with the Doctor singing the rhyme; there's blood and gore enough to suit the most bloodthirsty; there's Evelyn at her best, along with the bludgeon she calls her handbag; and there's the Doctor - barging in where he's not wanted, trying to make sense of who should be helped in this many-layered story. This is a fairly violent story, but it peels the layers back on the complexity of the story very cleverly; and we are left wondering at the end just what may happen next. I'm guessing there's more to come in the story eventually (even if I haven't quite got to it yet), and I enjoyed this one thoroughly. It's one that you definitely need to listen to more than once to really pick up all the nuances.
After relistening to this lately I was surprised at how pretty effing great it was. By no means anything near the best BF have produced but if it's an average story it shows how high the standard is. The best thing about it has to be the atmosphere which ranges from scary (the situation) to seedy (the setting). I distinctly remember feeling that it dragged a bit on first listen but this time it was jam packed with plot and a very good one.
The two major guest characters help lift this story Amelia is wonderfully played by Holly De Jong and despite the fact he rarely appears the character of Nimrod and the fear of him are perhaps the best parts of this story. However I must say Reggie was a complete cliché and could have done with appearing less often.
Very good indeed and all involved deserve praise, all be it bar the fool who stuck a major spoiler on the inner cover of the CD. By all means buy it, enjoy it, but don't read the spoilers after all some of us tend to avoid them.
I picked this up (along with Project Lazarus) as they are part of a story arc that ends with Project Destiny (Released Sep 2010) the covers off the activities of the sinister 'Forge' and how they intersect with the Doctor. There are other Forge items, but these are the main three.
Coming to this story cold I was familiar only with the Doctor, his companion is also a doctor and I struggled to identify with the character and found the realisation very dry and seemed to need a lot of back story. This is thrown into sharp relief by the wonderful characters of Amelia and Cassie. As is often the way most male characters are one-dimensional, apart from the fabulous Nimrod.
Without spoiling too much, there is a big story going on here and it is one that I think would largely run its course without the Doctor being involved. Many dark things happen and we all spot what the baddies are before the Doctor does. It all ends well via explosions, murders and much wringing of hearts.
What is interesting here is the Forge (a prototype Torchwood created before the TV show) and its work (For King and Country) in researching alien technology for the benefit of Britain.
I look forward to the further unwrapping of the plot in Lazarus
on 15 April 2009
In the renovated docklands of South East London, on the bank of the river Thames, the doors of the Dusk are open for business. Bets are called, cards are dealt and roulette wheels spun. As fortunes are won and lost, an inhuman killer stalks the local avenues and alleyways a killer with a taste for human flesh.
Is there more to casino owner Reggie "The Gent" Mead or is he just a common gangster? What secrets are hidden in the bowels of the Dusk? And what connection does the apparently sleazy Bermondsey casino have to a long- buried government initiative known as Project: Twilight?
The Doctor must form uneasy alliances where the line between friend and enemy is blurred, playing games of chance...
But are the stakes too high?
A great atmospheric slice of Doctor Who from Big Finish. The Sixth Doctor is played splendidly by Colin Baker whilst his temporary companion Amelia is far more palatable than either Evelyn Smythe or Peri. With vampires, vicious human experimentation, and a particularly nasty returning foe, this is a fast-moving and highly entertaining audio drama and one of the best from Big Finish in quite a while.
This is the twenty third 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 Smyth. 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.
The Doctor and Evelyn land in mid nineties London, and soon find themselves embroiled with a group of people who have survived unchanged since they were experimented upon during the first world war. Six determines to help them fight their condition, but do they really want to be saved? Evelyn takes a young nightclub hostess, Cassie, under her wing and lurking in the shadows is a foe who might prove to be a match even for the Doctor.
This is a great story in it's own right. Full of really quite creepy moments, and an intelligent script that shows Six plunging into a situation with all of his usual enthusiasm, and the consequences of his not thinking things through first. Baker really pulls it off, and delivers a Doctor who is heroic, wants to help, wants to do the right thing, but is hindered and frustrated by his own mistakes. It's a classis performance. Maggie Stables as usual shines as Evelyn, a perfect foil for the brash and enthusiastic Six. Intelligent and compassionate, she clucks around Cassie like a mother hen, and he strand of the story is believable and well realised. The story is nicely set up, has some great characters and concepts and leads to an intriguing conclusion. It's a real corker.
It's also a release that starts to set up a few future strands. Showing just how far ahead Big Finish plan, there is a first reference to the Zagreus story arc, which would take another 27 releases to be explained. It also introduces the Forge, Nimrod, Cassie, and an oblique reference to Cassie's son Thomas, all of whom would play important roles in future releases. And finally, the story and the resolution, in particular the Doctor and Evelyn's inability to help a certain victim of the devilish plot that they have foiled, starts to cast a shadow over their relationship that would come to a head in Arrangements for War and Thicker Than Water. The set up of all these continuing story lines is almost incidental, and does not interfere with the enjoyment of the release. They do however, provide the foundation of some of the strongest threads running through the BF releases.
An excellent production, 5 stars.