Giving this a re-listen, I'm struck by how well set up all of the cliffhangers and twists are in the story. Too often, Who cliffhangers come just because they're needed to get to the next part of the story and it's baked into the format because of decades of Who storytelling tradition. That sometimes makes for anemic cliffhangers that are shoehorned in and resolved and forgotten about in the first 20 seconds of the next story. In this set, the cliffhangers are top notch. They're the product of the natural build up of tension and they twist the expectations of the listener just enough that one is left breathlessly excited for more. On this listen, I continue to be impressed with this release, but I gained an even greater appreciation for the cliffhangers.
After resisting more Daleks (I love them, but you can have too much of a good thing), I'm now leaping happily into the Dark Universe.
Buying Time was very enjoyable. It helps to listen to Dalek Protocol, I think, to get a feel for the characters, but it isn't essential.
Didn't go for The Wrong Woman at all, to be honest. A shouty comedy episode set on the planet of silly bloody voices (very good cliffhanger, though)! That's one story I won't be revisiting. A goods recreation of RTD's more OTT episodes though (which I also didn't really care for).
The House of Kingdom, however, is a return to form as far as I'm concerned, and a return for the Mechonoids too ("Put your pincers away!"). It's great to hear from Kevin McNally, who is always wonderful I've ever seen him in - even The Twin Dilemma! The setting of Neptune has a Doctor Who Annual/TV Comic vibe about it (maybe that's just me). Andrew Smith always comes up with good, solid, well thought-out stories, and this is no exception.
David Tennant is very good in this, his reactions to various continuity references being of particular note. Possibly as a fan himself, he knows how much listeners will enjoy such moments. For me, his quieter scenes are the most effective.
So a good start then. Possibly even a little low-key for something called Dalek Universe - very little Dalek action, for example - but very enjoyable listening, for two out of three anyway!
Yeah, the more I think on it--let it stew within me--the more I like The House of Kingdom. The preceding two-parter is great still, I think, but more of an adventure story, whereas the third story is a subtler, somewhat more nuanced character piece. Although I almost think it's unfair to rank them--I think they complement each other beautifully.
And I think I may have said this already, but, yeah, I was also pretty reticent about this range from the title. I don't necessarily share the opinion that some people have of the Daleks (or Time War) being overused (in fact, I'd say the Time War ranges in general have demonstrated great reticence with regard to the Daleks, who rarely appear as more than peripheral threats) but the premise definitely made me think, "Oh, a gimmick range, huh?"
And TBH I find the "gimmick" sets seldom work for me--perhaps owing to the weaknesses of the Diary of River Song range? Regardless, I was delighted at the Dalek's absence in this first set. Part of me hopes that the Daleks don't feature in any of the following sets, just to see how far they can push this idea..
Seemed so long ago since i listened so time for a revisit now that am home from work wee glass of Iced Fanta Lemon and my feet up normally i get home at 2139 and have just the energy to stare at the ceiling 😂
Still a fun ending to Episode 1. finished the relisten it still holds up well action packed and interesting and helped by not having it swamped with Dalek voices.It is a strong pairing of the Doctor with Anya and the family history adds to it all.Am not a great fan of Gattis acting wise in too many Who series (for me his peak was the Unbound Master and i was half expecting this in this set) so am actually glad he had very minimal use age and not spread around all the sets...it was my only groan when i first saw the cover and the cast lists. This entire set was very much helped that the releases were not YEARS apart you could go to the next sets with details still fresh in your mind.Great covers too.Some of Tennants portrayal on telly would irritate me and none of these were in these stories excellent stuff. and individual covers-always lovely
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