Doctor Who: The Sixth Doctor – The Last Adventure (CD review).

May 7, 2016 | By | 1 Reply More

This is it then, the final story for Sixie. ‘Doctor Who: The Sixth Doctor – The Last Adventure’ is a four-hour extravaganza that sees out the Sixth Doctor in appropriate style. Four companions and four hours of tall tales is a good way to signal the retirement of Number 6 (not that one). It’s not really the end though but this is a great bookend to the story of the brightly-coloured-coated one who never really got his due on TV but has become a most singular and popular character on audio.

DW-TheSixthDoctorCD

The End Of The Line by Simon Barnard and Paul Morris

cast: Colin Baker, Miranda Raison, Anthony Howell, Chris Finney, Ony Uhiara, Hamish Clark and Maggie Service

The Doctor (Colin Baker) and companion Constance, Mrs. Clarke (Miranda Raison), to you, are lost in the fog. They seem to be in a railways station but things are not quite right. Tim Hope, legal clerk, is saved from near death by Constance, but he’s not clear on what is happening neither. Tim arrived at the station on a train but all the passengers are gone and it seems something is stalking them in the fog. This teasing opening is setting up the whole series and it manages to intrigue from the start.

This is the first time we have encountered Mrs. Clarke, so a quick search was required avoiding the obvious spoilers of later stories to establish she is a WREN, recruited directly from Bletchley Park. I’m not sure how that aids the war effort but we have to hope she’s only gone for the blink of an eye, a bit like when Clara pops out for an adventure before marking all those books. This is a great self-contained adventure which keeps a certain amount of suspense, especially if you avoid reading the cover blurb.

The Red House by Alan Barnes

cast: Colin Baker, India Fisher, Michael Jayston, Ashley McGuire, Andree Bernard, Rory Keenan, Jessie Buckley and Kieran Hodgson

The Doctor and Charley Pollard (India Fisher) land on a planet where the werewolves are in charge. When Charley takes the Doctor’s coat in a bid to distract them she falls into a pit, gets captured and taken to the Red House. While the Doctor tries to make friends with the locals, he discovers something very disturbing when the sun comes up.

A nice twist on the werewolf legends gives the Doctor and Charley something to work with. Getting the Valeyard (Michael Jayston) into the plot too requires an another turn of the screw on top of this.

Stage Fright by Matt Fitton

cast: Colin Baker, Lisa Greenwood, Christopher Benjamin, Trevor Baxter, Lisa Bowerman, Michael Jayston, Andree Bernard and Lizzie Roper

A trip to Victorian London and a reminder that Jago (Christopher Benjamin) and Litefoot (Trevor Baxter) are always fun when on the case. This is a timely aide-mémoire of the interaction between Doctor Six and his Victorian detectives. We get the full shilling, too, with Ellie getting at least more than a walk-on part this time. Six travels with Flip Jackson (Lisa Greenwood), the delightful and acerbic Londoner who originally featured in ‘The Crimes Of Thomas Brewster’ and took to the TARDIS life herself.

The Brink Of Death by Nicholas Briggs

cast: Colin Baker, Bonnie Langford, Michael Jayston, Liz White, Robbie Stevens, Susan Earnshaw and Sylvester McCoy

And so it ends. This final episode takes us, as it promises, to the brink and gives a very clever explanation of just how the Sixth becomes the Seventh.

This time the Sixth travels with ‘carrot juice’ Mel (Bonnie Langford) and their intellectual jesting is fun to listen to but short-lived as the Valeyard thrusts the Doctor out of space and time. Condemned to wink out of existence in the Matrix, whilst the Valeyard becomes the Doctor, he must take any chances offered to save himself and possibly the universe.

A neatly rounded finish which offers emotional satisfaction and a little ‘ah!’ of recognition. That’s what we want and I got just that. I can’t speak for anyone else but I really enjoyed this and actually felt a little pain of loss when it was over. It is nothing like the TV series and the rather callous destruction of the unloved Sixth Doctor. Nicholas Briggs has righted the historical wrong and I hope Colin Baker feels vindicated as an actor in this fitting send off.

This is, of course, not the actual end of the Sixth Doctor, there are more adventures on the way and all the better for getting this conclusion. After all, the Doctor doesn’t exist in our boring linear way and will always bounce back one way or another.

Sue Davies

May 2016

(pub: Big Finish. 5 CDs 300 minutes 4 stories. Price: CD: £45.00 (UK), Download: £25.00 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-78178-575-1)

check out website: www.bigfinish.com

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Category: Doctor Who, Music/Audio

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  1. avatar John Gatehouse says:

    I NEVER – literally NEVER – leave comments on websites. So it has to be something special for me to do so. In this case, it is Sue Davies’ quite excellent review of Big Finish’s The Sixth Doctor: The Last Adventure. Considering the appalling amount of negativity and bile spewed out on the internet by so-called “reviewers” who only look for the faults in a production, it’s a genuine pleasure to read such a positive review by someone whose passion for the story shines through. Sue certainly brightened up my morning with her refreshing words of praise, and from now on I shall look out for more reviews by her. I have yet to download the story myself, but Colin Baker is my favourite Big Finish Doctor, and it sounds like he goes to his death and rebirth in grand style. Well done, Sue, for a truly quality review!

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