Saturday, December 15, 2012

Big Finish - City of Spires

Big Finish release 133 - City of Spires by Simon Bovey, directed by Nicholas Briggs.

The Sixth Doctor visits the highlands of Scotland and finds himself in the middle of a battle between English Redcoats and Black Donald's Highlanders. Except Black Donald turns out to be Jamie McGrimmon who travelled with the Second Doctor and whose memory was wiped by the Time Lords at the end of the War Games. Something very strange and anachronistic is happening and the Doctor must discover who is the mysterious Overlord and why he is pumping oil from wells at least 100 years before the industrial revolution.

Phew! This is more like it. It is not an absolute classic but it felt reassuringly more like the norm for Big Finish Doctor Who. Colin Baker gives us a good Sixth Doctor, and it was great to hear Frazer Hines as no older Jamie who has no idea why this strange traveller knows so much about him. Their double act is impressive and one of the best things in this story. Perhaps Jamie adapts too quickly to all the time travel and technology stuff but the story sort of demands it, and there is a suggestion that Jamie's previous experiences are starting to come back to him.

There is also a bit too much of that standard trope of capture, escape and then recapture, but that is classic Doctor Who and I can forgive them that for now. I was slightly confused by all the different time periods in this story but that may be explained in the next two parts of this Jamie trilogy. As will the big villain behind all this. For the moment the monsters in this story had a suitably creepy voice, and all the actors were pretty good.

A quick enjoyable story which gets a just above average 3 out of 5 Dirks from me.

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