Classic Doctors, New Monsters Vol 2

  Big Finish Special Release

I absolutely adored this set of stories. There is a framing device of the Vashta Nerada in the first and last stories, and that works fantastic. And it all starts with… 

Night of the Vashta Nerada

-by- John Dorney

The 4th Doctor arrives on FunWorld to supposedly have fun, though it’s before the park opens. And it’s a planet-wise amusement park where the trees have all been destroyed as there were no indigenous species. But indeed there were and now the Vashta Nerada are hungry and angry. This one has some fascinating characters as there’s a hunter trying to hunt down the beasts that killed 30 people and she just doesn’t give up!

Empire of the Racnoss

-by-Scott Handcock

This works surprisingly well for a story about enormous spiders. I was a little unclear on the whole battle/war thing. I thought the empress and emperor were fighting then the Time Lords got involved but perhaps they were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. The 5th Doctor assists in this story, all in an attempt to protect the Racnoss young. Though he has to be a bit brutal about it in the end, he gets to walk away. This is the weakest of the set but that is because the bar was set so high with the other stories. And this one is still very good.

The Carrionite Curse

-by- Simon Guerrier

The 6th Doctor shows up in England where there’s a witch burning about to happen in the 1980’s. He stops the burning but, to his horror, discovers that these women actually are witches, of a sort. And they start killing and burning everyone and everything in site. So he is forced to get to the root of the problem and discovers the secret of the town, hidden behind a flimsy wall in the basement of a building. And almost gets himself a new companion, who would’ve been fabulous, but we know how that goes sometimes…

Day of the Vashta Nerada

-by- Matt Fitton

The 8th Doctor arrives early for an emergency on Synthesis Station, where all hands must be evacuated. And, as he discovers, it may be too late for everyone involved. Though it’s partially a problem created by the Time Lords in trying to stop one staff member, the entire station is devoted to creating weaponized versions of the Vashta Nerada, mostly with Time Lord funding. Which all goes horribly wrong, of course. And the story ends with a gut-wrenching discussion and final line of the box set from the Doctor, “I’m not a warrior, I’m a Doctor.” It’s all wrapped up in that line – the War Doctor, the 8th Doctor, the pain left over with the 9th Doctor, how the 10th,11th, and War Doctors all solve the problem… I cried at that line!  

Tom Baker (The Doctor), Peter Davison (The Doctor), Colin Baker (The Doctor), Paul McGann (The Doctor), Adjoa Andoh (Racnoss Empress), Nigel Planer (Old Racnoss Emperor/ Herrax), Andrew French (Racnoss Consort), Lisa Kay (Alayna), Pam Ferris (Amanda Steele), Lorelei King (Georgia Donnelly), Emma Lowndes (Phelan), Matt Devitt (Bennetto), Maya Sondhi (Katy Bell), Andrée Bernard (Mary Sissinghurst), Adèle Anderson (Eileen Nelthorpe), Michael Fenton-Stevens (Rev Douglas Bell), Jacqueline Pearce (Ollistra), Jan Ravens (Dr Eva Morrison), Himesh Patel (Biotech Dendry), Tim Wallers (Commander Roxita/ Security Chief Raldon). Other parts played by members of the cast.

Writers: John Dorney, Scott Handcock, Simon Guerrier, Matt Fitton

Director: Barnaby Edwards

Release: July 2017

© Laura Vilensky 2019