In Review: Big Finish: Gallifrey: Time War 4

Romana is lost to the Time War though Leela and Narvin still fight to survive.
Time War

Synopsis: Romana is lost to the Time War though Leela and Narvin still fight to survive.

A resistance, caught between Rassilon’s fury and the Dalek Emperor’s mania, have a desperate plan to stop the conflict.

Everything ends. And for some on Gallifrey, the Time War will soon be over.

Review: Gallifrey: Time War 4 is tricky for me to review. First, it isn’t an ending so much as a transition between phases in Big Finish’s Time War Saga. Second, the structure of the storytelling makes plot discussion difficult. 

That said, the four tales in this set are immensely satisfying. Furthermore, the authors coherently and engagingly move the characters into expected and unexpected positions as the Time War inexorably continues.

Story

“Deception” by Lisa McMullin introduces listeners to yet another trippy Time Lord weapon. The story represents a rare instance of the McGuffin actually becoming the narrative. In the process, Leela is front and center.

“Dissolution” by Lou Morgan is a showcase for Narvin. Additionally, listeners get some literally lovely world-building as we learn more about his Chapter.

“Beyond” by David Llewellyn is when listeners finally catch up with Romana. Again, the McGuffin is a Time Lord weapon. However, the weapon doesn’t become the narrative. This time, Romana and her choices are the point.

“Homecoming” by Matt Fitton strips the characters down to their essential selves. In the process, they move farther into Big Finish Time War canon. Moreover, though, they move closer to modern Doctor Who show canon.

I have to comment here on Big Finish and show canon. It’s obvious that the Gallifrey: Time War 4 arc was written before Chris Chibnall’s plans for Gallifrey and the Time Lords were known. I can’t help feeling that Big Finish would’ve made different choices with Romana in particular otherwise. 

Acting

The regulars are all superb as ever. That said, Lalla Ward and Louise Jameson shine. Romana and Leela remain the emotional core of the storytelling.

As for the supporting cast, they are equally top notch. However, I do have to single out Richard Armitage as Rassilon. He presents listeners with a full throttle, old-school god complex. It’s a total treat to hear an actor absolutely commit to that kind of performance.

Overall

Gallifrey: Time War 4 is the inevitable end of an era. Thanks to Big Finish for closing out this chapter with class and an absolute understanding of the characters.

 

You can purchase Gallifrey: Time War 4 here. 

You can check out more Big Finish Reviews Here.

9.5
Big Finish: Gallifrey: Time War 4
  • Story
    8.5
  • Performances
    10
  • Audio Production
    10

Raissa Devereux became a life-long genre fan at the age of four when she first saw The Wizard of Oz at a screening at Arizona State University. Years later, she graduated from A.S.U. as an English major, History minor, Whovian, and Trekkie. Now a Florida transplant, she loves the opportunity Sci-Fi Pulse has given her to further explore space travel, time travel, masked heroes, gothic castles, and good yarns.
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