Reviews

Big Finish, Fourth Doctor Adventures – 4.05 – Surburban hell

Somewhere in a leafy suburb of North London, someone’s world is ending in pain and misery, their very existence turned upside down by the lack of Marie Rose sauce just as their guests are expected. How can one host a dinner party without a starter!?
 
4th Doctor Adventures - Surburban Hell
But there is one, small hope! If the Doctor and his companion Leela can be distracted by Ralph’s small talk long enough for some sauce to be borrowed from a neighbour, perhaps the evening can be saved and a disaster avoided! But tasteless prawns and a struggle for topical 70s banter are not the only threats awaiting the Doctor.  There’s a rift in space and time which has lured the TARDIS into another time zone, and now  a strange fog has appeared outside in which lurk blue monsters expecting more than prawns on the menu!

Doctor Who Main Range – The Last of the Cybermen

It’s ten years since the Great Cyber War was ended by a final assault on Telos after the tables had been turned by the Glittergun’s lethal efficacy.  But out in the furthest edges of the galaxy a strange reminder of the Cyberr-ace remains: a hundreds of feet high Giant Cyberhead.  

A monument? A memorial? A tomb? The Doctor sets out to discover what it is… but he fails to return.  Inside the TARDIS Jamie and Zoe’s worried waiting is interrupted by a brightly dressed stranger who insists that he’s the Doctor.  But why here? Why Now?  Has the universe really seen the last of the Cybermen?

The Flash 1×23 – Fast Enough

rs_560x415-150519061537-560.The-Flash-Fast-Enough-JR-51915[1]Whereas many shows are happy to follow the pattern of “intro-build-build-shiny thing” then repeat, spacing out the ‘big’ events across the season as it develops, Flash hasn’t taken that approach. Instead it’s been “shiny-shiny-shiny-giant psychic gorilla”. It’s all been building to this. Last time, Flash had finally managed to capture Wells with help from some of the proto-Justice League. Where do they go from here?

(There will be spoilers) (more…)

The Flash 1×22 – Rogue Air

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With one episode to go to the finale, The Flash serves up a real fan pleaser that not only allows familiar faces from throughout the first season to make a reappearance, but also works nicely to continue building up Barry’s character as he finds his way as a hero.

Indeed it’s Barry’s story that forms the meat of the episode. The spectre of the Reverse Flash looms large as Barry allows his inability to defeat Wells to make him doubt himself. As Wells activates the particle accelerator Barry is determined to save the Metahumans they’ve got locked up in it, but finds himself up against obstacles and bad choices at every turn. (more…)

New on the BBC – Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Magic. In the old days it was everywhere and dominated everything. The legends tell of great magicians and their multitude of feats and miracles. But that was long ago and now people only talk about magic and treat it as pleasant dinner diversion. No one is silly enough to believe it’s real. No one is silly enough to try it out, are they? 

 

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norell

 

When a wager leads to the discovery of the first real magician in 300 years, the mysterious Mr Norrell, a series of prophesied events are set in motion, leading to the reveal of another magician, Jonathan Strange.  While Norrell is bookish and shy Strange is Charming and at ease. But between them they will enter a pact that will forever alter the fate of the nation.

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Big Finish Fourth Doctor Adventures – Death Match

The Death Match is now under new management, with a mysterious new and unbeaten champion, and privacy assured to its rich patrons as they watch their champions fight to the death from the comfort of the orbiting Quarry Station.  Prizes are offered for every kill in a purpose built environment bristling with deadly traps and hidden dangers.  There is only one rule in the Death Match: kill or be killed!

 

The 4th Doctor Adventures - Death Match

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The Flash 1×21 – Grodd Lives

The-Flash-Gorilla-Grodd-Image-TrailerWay back in episode 1, we saw an empty cage labelled Grodd that looked like it had been ripped apart. Since then, we’ve had the odd tease of an intelligent ape down in the sewers beneath Central City. With the show living within the constraints of a TV budget on the CW, the expectation of much more Grodd than that seemed unlikely. However, despite the such limitations, Grodd is realised pretty well, and whilst his time on-screen is restricted, and he’s generally seen in dark sewers, his presence is felt throughout the episode. (more…)

The Flash 1×20 – The Trap

flash-episode-20-barry-bulletWith several episodes to go to the finale, many shows would be sprinkling in the fillers before the final push to season’s end. Not so this show, which feels almost as if they had doubts about getting a second season, and decided to throw everything into the pot. (more…)

Big Finish New Adventure novel adaptations: Damaged Goods and The Well Mannered War

Big Finish’s Who range rarely disappoints. I’ll go further: more often than one has a right to expect, it downright excites.

And then, very occasionally, it goes one step further…

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April 2015 saw the release of two more in BF’s novelisation adaptions, in the shape of Gareth Roberts’s Well Mannered War and Russell T Davies’s Damaged Goods. These New Adventures have been heralded on a variety of counts as something special. The Virgin New Adventure series of which they provide adaptations was something of a golden age for Who. No, hear me out. When the TV series was cancelled it was these books that kept the franchise alive as more than just a fan memory. Written by fans for fans, they were a work of love rather than commercial profit, and the fact that Virgin allowed them to be that, and apparently would have continued to do so had the Beeb not pulled the plug, is immensely to their credit. Also, since they were written by grown ups, they allowed the franchise to move into more grown-up territory – albeit without loss of the joyous childishness of the programme. (more…)

The Flash 1×19 – Who is Harrison Wells?

FLA119b_0342bWith only a few episodes left, this episode felt a little like a breather before the final push to the finale. A serviceable episode, but perhaps not a 5/5 on the excitement scale.

It was nice to take a brief look around Coast City, albeit relegated to the status of pizza shop for Team Flash. Still, perhaps we’ll get to revisit it another time, maybe when it has its own hero… (more…)

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