THe TenTH DOC­TOr aDVenTures VOL 2

Play the Piper

SFX - - Reviews -

re­leased OUT NOW! 297 min­utes | Cd/down­load

Pub­lisher Big Fin­ish

How you feel about this set of new au­dio adventures for the Tenth Doc­tor and Rose will de­pend on how you felt about David Tennant’s Time Lord. This is a pitch-per­fect evo­ca­tion of the re­vived show’s sec­ond year, right down to its fun-loving, fast-talk­ing, some­times-a-bit-an­noy­ing hero. Tennant’s por­trayal grew into a more com­plex and nu­anced fig­ure, but here he’s very much the mo­tor-mouthed “HALLO! I’m the Doc­tah!” type of sea­son two. Still, the chem­istry be­tween Tennant and Bil­lie Piper (mak­ing her Big Fin­ish de­but) re­mains as scorch­ing as it was a scarce­ly­cred­i­ble 11 (yes, 11!) years ago.

In “In­famy Of The Zaross”, aliens are in­vad­ing Earth once again, al­beit this time for a rather un­usual rea­son. Mean­while, Jackie Tyler (Camille Co­duri) is stuck in Nor­wich with her snooty friend Marge. One of these plot­lines is more en­gag­ing than the other – and it’s prob­a­bly not the one you think. Jackie is one of the great un­sung Doc­tor Who char­ac­ters, and it’s won­der­ful to have her back, as hi­lar­i­ous and hu­man as ever. The alien plot, on the other hand, is a de­cent-enough joke stretched too far.

“The Sword Of The Che­va­lier” is bet­ter, match­ing a gen­uinely funny script to a fas­ci­nat­ing real-life fig­ure, the 17th cen­tury Che­va­lier d’Éon (Nick­o­las Grace). If the episode had been a purely his­tor­i­cal ex­plo­ration of the Doc­tor and d’Éon’s bud­ding com­rade­ship it would have been enough. As it is, you also get a solid plot and a gen­uinely un­nerv­ing alien vil­lain for your money too.

The third and fi­nal story, “Cold Vengeance” is the box’s tra­di­tional mon­ster tale. The TARDIS lands on Cold­star – ef­fec­tively an in­ter­galac­tic freezer store that’s in the mid­dle of a melt­down, and that’s soon home to some an­gry Ice War­riors. For the first half it’s a ser­vice­able enough ac­tion-ad­ven­ture, but it im­proves con­sid­er­ably as the hu­man drama comes to the fore and chief vil­lain Hasskor re­veals a few more lay­ers. Will Salmon

Aliens are in­vad­ing Earth once again

The lim­ited edi­tion has two bonus discs: one go­ing be­hind-the-scenes on these sto­ries, one on the wider Who range.

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