So strange when you watch Fires of Pompei and listen to this the similarities and to think `Marc Platt got credited for Spare Parts felt like Steve should have received for this one. Mel at her best and a definitely thrilling and engaging tale
BF did before TV again this time with the Historical
The TARDIS arrives around "Volcano Day" with it and the Doctor knowing they have to be there.
Interesting that as its the 7th Doc (even though its set early in his tenure) you'd assume he'd have a scheme already worked out to get around it but he doesn't, as a result Sylvester gives a resigned but engaging performance as the Doctor and Mel are swept up by petty jealous's and local politics on the eve of catastrophe.
Bonnie Langford returns but with a more real-life optimist version of Mel.
All the Guest Cast give this a sense of day to day realism
Honestly, almost immediately after listening to this episode I was sure that it was a 5th Doctor story. I was really surprised to look at the cover a few minutes later to realize that it was, in fact, Sylvester McCoy's 7th Doctor.
Really love how mysteriously the Doctor plays himself in Pompeii.
Interestingly I don't think I noticed anything in this story that would explicitly contradict the later Pompeii episode in New Who. It seems entirely possible that both stories could be occurring simultaneous—the 10th Doctor running down the same streets as the 7th Doctor, just missing each other, as rumors swirl and spiral about the city.
The resolution of the story is definitely, as Mel said, a bit of a cheat. Obviously they had to do something to explain away the excavated TARDIS in the intro, but simply materializing the TARDIS to that point in time immediately before it was found? It's the least interesting possible solution to the problem. I can't say I'm not disappointed. One of the most artificial aspects of Doctor Who, as a narrative media, is how absolutely essential it is that the heroes remain constantly tethered to the TARDIS—the most effective way to produce tension, therefore, is to sever that link. It would have been very interesting, I think, to see the Doctor devise some method to return to the "present" without the aid of the TARDIS.
I've compiled all of my Big Finishes purchases into a single massive document, alongside those on my wishlist (bolded, right-justified). Check it out to see what I've already listened to (or soon will), or to recommend me something new to listen to!
Apologies in perpetuity for my many typos (FUAC) and poor memory.
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