The Sontaran Ordeal
Audio / August 2, 2016

Released July 2016 Classic Doctors, New Monsters Volume One concludes with ‘The Sontaran Ordeal,’ the earliest glimpse into the Time War afforded yet as the great battle infiltrates real time and brings centuries of untold conflict to the planet of Drakkis, a peaceful world in the unaltered timeline. Obviously the Sontarans are not new monsters, but those on display here are very much the post-2005 iterations, itching to find a way to insert themselves into the greatest war the universe has ever known. Writer Andrew Smith wisely doesn’t focus solely on their battling nature, delving instead into a new aspect of the Sontaran hierarchy and structure, the Ordeal as the fate of those who do not succeed in their conquests. Having disgraced himself by not emerging victorious, the defeated Sontaran is stranded on a planet empty-handed, expected to fend for and eventually sacrifice himself to prove his mettle. Commander Jask is the Sontaran facing Ordeal in this story, wrongly accused by an officer he knows has committed crimes in the past and will do so again and determined to clear his name. Considering the rather blunt nature of the Sontarans, Dan Starkey is able to convey an incredible amount of…

Time Works
Audio / May 13, 2016

Released March 2006 For a programme based around time travel, the actual concept of time is rarely explored other than as a means for setting the story and sometimes moving the plot along. In ‘Time Works,’ however, the Doctor, C’rizz, and Charley end up on a planet where the use of time is strictly regulated, a place where not a single second can be wasted. Interestingly, everything and everyone in the present city of Industry is frozen in time, unable to move or to be moved. With every single window and doorway in the city facing the large clock tower in the middle of the city, it’s clear that time has a larger- at east symbolic- role to play in the story, and the eclectic combination of modern and ages-old technologies makes for a fascinating visual. The story truly kicks off, however, when the TARDIS trio attempts to leave the city while trying to discover what is causing the seeming lack of time, resulting in the Doctor being sent back one hour into the past while stranding his companions in the frozen present. The Doctor, confused by his new surroundings, is afforded no help by anyone because taking time out…

Dark Eyes 3
Audio / February 20, 2016

Released November 2014 The Master is back for the four-episode Dark Eyes 3 and is again seeking universal supremacy, this time by manipulating the Eminence’s Infinite Warriors. Molly O’Sullivan is vital to his plans and, aided by Sally Armstrong, he is perilously close to succeeding. Paranoid from his recent events and not wanting to change history, the Doctor is hesitant to join the conflict; when Narvin, a Time Lord CIA agent, provides the incentive and motivation needed, though, the Doctor and Liv Chenka go up against the Master to stop his scheme and to save their friend. Big Finish makes a bold choice with the beginning of Dark Eyes 3 as the first story, ‘The Death of Hope,’ primarily features the villainous Master. It’s an approach that’s not used very often in any medium, and Alex MacQueen completely controls every scene he is in, relishing the opportunity to be the de facto lead as the events of this box set are set in motion. The Master here is self-absorbed as always, but he’s also incredibly cunning and charismatic and a dominant manipulator, proving again how evil he can be and how fantastic a foe he can be when handled properly.…