The 5th Doctor (Peter Davison), Nyssa (Sarah Sutton), Teagan (Janet Fielding) and newcomer Marc (Geroge Watkins) are back for a release that sees the Doctor and his friends parted after the events of their last release.
Thin Time by Dan Abnett
Firstly in Thin Time by Dan Abnett The Doctor, having left his friends behind, finds himself at a point in time, where time itself is stretched thin. A focal point where time is more susceptible to changes. A famous author, John Hobshaw (Zaqi Ismail) the Doctor knows from history lives in obscurity whilst a writer the has never heard of, Charles Crookshap (Wilf Scolding) is his famous friend. This thin time is off course and the Doctor must put it right to save a people and events.
Thin Time is one of those Doctor Who’-isms that is perfect fodder for a story. Time is thin in this point, so more susceptible to changes. A couple of lines to explain it, but adds lots of scope for ‘Timey-Wimey’ events. for a shorter adventure this allows them to go straight into the action and have the Doctor get to the heart of putting time right. Without the companions it’s also a nice opportunity to explore the guest cast. It’s a pleasant, well paced story. Where as I don’t think it would be a Big Finish top 10 of the year, it’s nice sometimes to just go with a straight up simple Doctor Who story you don’t need to remember of lot of other adventures to enjoy. It also gives thin time as a premise to use for future adventures.
Madquake by Guy Adams
Our other story Madquake by Guy Adams joins up with the Doctor’s friends, left to their own devices on the planet of Callanna. Nyssa seems happy to try to move on and be at peace there. Marc is dealing with feelings of being less than human after the changes made to him by the Cybermen. Further, due to the calming effects of the planet, Teagan is feeling relaxed — and she doesn’t like it. Our three friends must deal with their emotions, but things get really tricky when the planet is dealing with emotions of its own.
It’s nice to have Teagan dealing with the emotional fall out from the Mara and where most people are enjoying feeling more relaxed by the natural properties of the planet, her worrying this is a further violation of her free will, so even the free will be be angry. Same goes for Marc. If you were taken over by the Cybermen and you had been altered permanently you would feel the need to unpack that. Nyssa too having felt the loss of her home would of course feel the need for some stability this planet would provide. These characters have been through a lot and to give them space without the Doctor to explore this is a neat idea. I care about these characters and it’s good to have the emotional heft. However, all that said, it’s hard to feel a Doctor Who story without the Doctor. It’s a fine character piece, but not quite Doctor Who.
All in all this two story release is good. A fine throwaway listen that you don’t have to over think, with a cameo and few surprises. Great every day listening, nothing more or less.