Doom Coalition #2

     Big Finish - 8th Doctor Special Release

2.1 – Beachhead by Nicholas Briggs

This story is by far the most fun of the group. The Doctor visits England again, to rectify the error of a previous incarnation, namely the 3rd Doctor. The explanations are straightforward and the Voord defeated very handily, with all of the characters cooperating, though somewhat reluctantly at times. It’s just fun! Except for the little thing the Doctor can see on the console out of the corner of his eye… Why Liv doesn’t believe her is beyond me.

2.2 – Scenes from Her Life by John Dorney

This story has a most interesting twist throughout and at the end – who exactly is the villain evolves and turns on its head multiple times in this story. And we finally get to the ultimate henchman/villain of the Eleven, though strictly in flashbacks. Then, as usual, saving all of the innocents onboard has a cost for the Doctor, Liv, and Helen.


2.3 – The Gift by Marc Platt

So off the team goes, following the path of Caleera. Rather, careening and crashing after it. And they land in San Francisco in 1906. That date was a big DING in my mind as I have a clue of that date in US history at least -- lived in the US all my life. So I knew the adventure would focus on the big earthquake there and the Doctor's part in it. He seems to be there for all of the big catastrophes, of course. And here is where we start to realize that Caleera the Time Lord could be our real villain of the Doom Coalition stories. At the end of the first box set, the Eleven admits that he's not the main person behind the attempt to destroy the Doctor. So could it be Caleera across time and space, reaching out?

This box set doesn't resolve that but it gives its own hints. We'll see how that pans out. And the Doctor finds a problematic power that the few who have possessed it (or is it the other way around?) call the Gift. Liv and Helen follow the noise and activity that the current Gift-holder is making to see an exchange of the Gift, as it moves from one person to the next. And so begins the downward spiral into the earthquake and disaster for San Francisco!


2.4 – The Sonomancer by Matt Fitton

So Caleera has given herself a new name and is tearing a world apart, with no concern for the natives who are living on it. But the same could be said for the miners who are there to steal the natural resources of the planet. Showdown time has come! Liv and the Doctor head to the heart of the mountain where Caleera is waiting. Waiting for what is a bit of a mystery but she and the Doctor have a talking through of the purpose and plot, naturally. While Liv faces off with the Eleven.

Meanwhile, Helen meets a future old friend of the Doctor's - River Song. I'm of two minds about that. I had to roll my eyes when she made an appearance -- how many stories can she be shoehorned into now? But at the same time, she makes complete sense for the plot of this story. The girls team up to take down the Eleven while the Doctor takes down Caleera. Of course this isn't the last we'll see of them but it's really a bit mysterious why Caleera feels the need to destroy a whole planet. She vibrates the molecules of it to pieces, basically.

 But why? I wasn't clear on how that helps her out. And so another villain is added to the pantheon of Doctor Who, on the level of the Word Lord for her power and abilities. Some new, all powerful beast for the Doctor to stop! Other then her lack of a real purpose, I rather like her. Perhaps it's just revenge for being treated badly by her people, the Time Lords? I do think that there should be more villains from the Doctor's people. That much power corrupts them on a daily basis so it should create more crazy people than it had previously.

Paul McGann (The Doctor), Nicola Walker (Liv Chenka), Hattie Morahan (Helen Sinclair), Alex Kingston (River Song), Rebecca Night (Matilda Gregson), Julia Hills (Phillipa Gregson/Dispatch), Kirsty Besterman (Ishtek/Lilly), Andrew Dickens (Voord Guard/Police Sergeant/Mr Rogers), Emma Cunniffe (Caleera), Vincent Franklin (Lord Stormblood), Jacqueline King (Lady Sepulchra), Hamish Clark (Swordfish), James Jordan (Charles Virgil McLean), Paul Marc Davis (Pepé Gonzalez), Cory English (Sam Sonora), Laura Harding (Ethel Halliday/Mariam), Enzo Squillino Jnr (Aldo Deluca), Derek Ezenagu (Ruslan/Ivo), Janet Fullerlove (Yeva/Wife), John Banks (Husband/Guard/Mineworker/Galactic Heritage/Shopkeeper) and Mark Bonnar as The Eleven

Writers: Nicholas Briggs, John Dorney, Marc Platt, Matt Fitton

Director: Ken Bentley

Release: March 2016

© Laura Vilensky 2019