Nicholas Briggs

Illuminate! Illuminate!

Big Finish Folly, Part 106e – Order of the Daleks, by Mike Tucker

Order of the DaleksWe’re still on our semi-regular peregrinations around the previous incarnations here, before carrying on with the Seventh Doctor’s Main Range adventures. And the Dalek stories are turning up like buses at the moment. Ol’ Sixey and Mrs Clarke feature against the most intriguing Dalek concept we’ve seen in the last few years…

In the Galactic Census, idyllic Strellin is recorded as a Grade Three planet – its inhabitants possessing neither advanced technology, nor knowledge of other worlds. Accordingly, Strellin is protected: landings by off-worlders are strictly prohibited. Unless, of course, those off-worlders are officials of the Galactic Census itself, come to investigate the origin of a mysterious sub-space signal – a signal no native of Strellin should be able to send…

Breaking all local by-laws, the time-travelling Doctor and his companion L/Wren Mrs Constance Clarke (AWOL) have only just landed on Strellin, too. But they and the Census officials aren’t the only off-worlders to have come here. Inside a nearby monastery, the monks of the reclusive Brotherhood of the Black Petal are guarding a strange and terrible secret. Something that might bring disaster not just to Strellin, but to every civilised world in the galaxy! (more…)

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Mirror (Dalek) Empire

Big Finish Folly, Part 15f – Dalek Soul, by Guy Adams

Alien Heart / Dalek SoulOn the Dalek-occupied world of Mojox, a group of rebels is engaged in a futile fightback against the invaders – but at last they’ve found an ally, in the form of the mysterious Doctor. Elsewhere, however, the Daleks’ Chief Virologist is seeking to perfect a biological weapon to wipe out the Mojoxalli, once and for all.

Her name… is Nyssa.

The flip side of Alien Heart, this is another two-part story. And I’ll be talking possible spoilers below the cut, so beware… (more…)

Spiders From… Traxana?

Big Finish Folly, Part 15e – Alien Heart, by Stephen Cole

Alien Heart / Dalek SoulIn the TARDIS, the Doctor and Nyssa stumble across a trail of ten destroyed worlds, all of them obliterated by means of some utterly monstrous but utterly unknown device. The planet Traxana would seem to be next in line to suffer the same fate. But when the TARDIS lands on an outpost on Traxana’s moon, Nyssa is carried away by a tide of giant green arachnoids, leaving the Doctor behind…

And the coming menace is closer than he thinks.

Now, here’s an oddity. Big Finish have decided to experiment in the Main Range with the same format of stories that they have previously employed with both the Fourth and the Eighth Doctors – hour-long, two-episode stories. This means condensed, faster paced storytelling, sharp set-ups, less room to lay out and get overly indulgent, perhaps. Sometimes, it can be a good thing. Your mileage may vary. Since the Main Range releases are double-disc, four episode releases however, that means we get two stories for the price of one. Hence Alien Heart and Dalek Soul on the same cover picture over there. And hence the thematic echo of the story titles. We’ve had three-episode stories in the Main Range before, and single-episode stories too – but how well do the Legacy Doctors fit into this particular mode of storytelling?

And – the big question, of course – is it any good?

Well…

(more…)

Enemy of the Daleks

Big Finish Folly, Part 159 – Enemy of the Daleks, by David Bishop

Enemy of the DaleksBliss used to be a paradise planet. The Galapagos Islands of space. But when the TARDIS brings the Doctor, Ace and Hex to Bliss, it’s been over-run with ironweed plants, and the air is heavy with the stench of burnt silk and static electricity.

Worse, the Daleks are coming, on the trail of a lost patrol of starship troopers. Holed up in the Roarke 279 research facility, Lieutenant Beth Stokes is preparing her last stand against the invaders.

But there’s a secret on Bliss, a secret guarded by the obsessive Professor Shimura…

This time, could it be the Daleks who need saving? (more…)

Ice Heist Baby

Big Finish Folly, Part 140 – Thin Ice, by Marc Platt

Thin IceMoscow 1967. The Doctor and Ace have arrived behind the Iron Curtain, and the Soviet Union is seeking a new weapon that will give it mastery in the Cold War.

What is the secret of the Martian relics? As the legendary War Lord Sezhyr returns to life, the Doctor is faced with some of his oldest and deadliest enemies.

The fate of Earth – and the future of Ace – are now intertwined… (more…)

Bug in the System

Big Finish Folly, Part 130 – The Brink of Death (Last Adventure: 4), by Nicholas Briggs

And at last the Valeyard’s scheming comes to fruition – rising, with new power, from the dark places where he has been lurking, he has fooled Mel into believing that he is the Doctor, while the Doctor has been stranded in an off-shoot of the Matrix. An off-shoot that is about to be decommissioned and wiped by junior Timelord technician Genesta… (more…)

Telos a Story…

We continue the Locum Doctors trilogy, celebrating Big Finish’s 200th Main Range story, with a tale that matches Ol’ Sixey with the classic Troughton-era companions Zoe and Jamie – and with an auld enemy who made several appearances over the course of that era…

Big Finish Folly, Part ℑ – Last of the Cybermen, by Alan Barnes

Last of the CybermenIt’s a gigantic monument – a massive cyber-head, located out in the fringes of known space. Ten years after the end of the great Cyber Wars, Zennox and her team have come to excavate and explore the place. The Doctor has come too, drawn by a message that doesn’t make sense. When he realises the danger he is in, he flees back to the Tardis – but the Doctor Jamie and Zoe are expecting has been replaced by a fiery chap in multi-coloured clothing… (more…)

Seven Minus Three…

At this point I should be diving headlong into the worlds of the Seventh Doctor. But, after the diversion afforded by the recent Fifth Doctor trilogy, there’s another trilogy that needs some attention. This one’s bloody hard to classify and chronologise, however, since the central conceit surrounding Big Finish’s celebration of 200 Main Range releases is that Doctors Five, Six and Seven have temporarily taken the places of their younger counterparts One Two and Three. They have become locums. While it might be easy-ish to place the stories from the point of view of the supporting characters – Jo Grant, Jamie and Zoe, Vicki and Steven – it’s a lot harder to do so for the Doctors themselves. So these stories, while they are obviously officially part of the Folly’s remit, aren’t going to have official numbers.

I think I said, way back in the mists of time, that this was going to be something of a quixotic crusade. How right I was, how right….

Big Finish Folly, Part ℜ – The Defectors, by Nicholas Briggs

The DefectorsCaptain Mike Yates has gone missing. So have the rest of the UNIT personnel – only Jo Grant is left to witness UNIT HQ taken over by Captain Cornelius and his soldiers, all in the name of national security. Fortunately, the Doctor is on hand to make sense of things for her – but it would seem that this little fellow with the hat and umbrella is not quite the Doctor Jo was expecting… (more…)

Imminent Eminence

Big Finish Folly, Part 129 – The Seeds of War, by Matt Fitton and Nicholas Briggs

The Seeds of WarIt’s one of the tallest freestanding buildings man has ever constructed. There’s a restaurant at the top. It even caters for vegetarians. So that’s where the Doctor and Mel are going. Only trouble is, they’ve arrived fifty years too late – the tower, most recently the headquarters of the terrifying aliens The Eminence, is scheduled for destruction. And now, instead of an easy meal, the Doctor finds himself battling inside his own mind with a presence he thought he had rid himself of several regenerations ago. And that’s just for starters… (more…)

Mechannoyed…

Big Finish Folly, Part 124 – The Juggernauts, by Scott Alan Woodard

The JuggernautsCaught up in a space battle, the Doctor and Mel are separated. Mel spends months as a technical assistant on the colony world Lethe, working on Professor Vaso’s Juggernauts program while she waits for the Doctor to return for her. She enjoys her work, and even has the beginnings of a relationship with a co-worker. Meanwhile, the Doctor wakes as a prisoner of the Daleks – and they have a job for him. Davros has escaped, and intends to destroy the Daleks with his new creations, and the Daleks demand that the Doctor stops him. Where is Davros? Ah. Lethe… (more…)