The SevenTh DocTor: The new ADvenTureS Volume One
released OUT NOW! 237 minutes | Cd/download
Publisher Big Finish
The New Adventures were a hotbed of creativity. A line of original Doctor Who novels published by Virgin Books in the ’90s, they gave early opportunities to Mark Gatiss and Paul Cornell, and provided Russell T Davies with his first chance to write Who. Big Finish has been adapting highlights of the series, but this set ventures into uncharted territory, with four tales featuring Sylvester McCoy’s Doctor and companions Chris Cwej (Travis Oliver) and Roz Forrester (Yasmin Bannerman).
“Trial Of A Time Machine” is a strong start, a rare story that foregrounds the idea that the TARDIS is alive. It uses heady SF concepts to explore themes of crime, punishment and the moral grey areas of policing. “Vanguard” is less memorable: an enjoyable but unoriginal future war tale, where the crew find themselves on opposing sides of a conflict. “The Jabari Countdown”, the highlight, is a nifty mystery story with a spooky island, WW2 setting and strong characterisation.
Closing the set is “The Dread Of Night”, a haunted house story with a suitably sinister atmosphere. A strong set overall, but the most impressive aspect is Bannerman and Oliver who, with McCoy, have grown into a winning TARDIS team. Will Salmon