In Review: Big Finish: The Third Doctor Adventures, Volume 04

Rufus Hound eats the scenery with every known condiment and invents a few more condiments before he’s done.

Synopsis: It’s 1973 all over again! The Third Doctor and Jo Grant continue fighting alien menaces on behalf of UNIT. This time, they face two foes for the first time — The Meddling Monk and The Cybermen.

Review: The Third Doctor Adventures, Volume 04 contains two well-crafted tales linked by first encounters, well-intentioned scientists, and collective threats. Indeed, “The Rise of the New Humans’ by Guy Adams and “The Tyrants of Logic” by Marc Platt are so seamlessly put together that it feels as if The Third Doctor had always been dealing with The Meddling Monk and The Cybermen.

Tim Treloar and Katy Manning embody their roles as superbly as ever. This is important with antagonists like The Wedding Monk and The Cybermen. After nearly 55 years, these Big Bads are running on the inertia of internal logic and tropes. The character beats Treloar and Manning bring to life are ultimately what separate one story from another.

Of course, The Doctor and his Companion are only half of the equation. Rufus Hound eats the scenery with every known condiment and invents a few more condiments before he’s done. If The Master is a megalomaniac, then The Monk is King Midas, oblivious to the fact that he’s turned everything to gold. Hound plays that obliviousness to perfection.

Nicholas Briggs matches Hound’s perfection in his own way. Briggs’ task is a difficult one. He has to play The Cybermen with enough nuance to vocally differentiate them, but not so much nuance that listeners lose sight of the fact that they’re a collective species. I can’t imagine how much effort he puts into walking that line, but I’m thankful he does.

I’m really enjoying The Third Doctor Adventures. Here’s hoping we don’t have to wait long for Volume 5.

Written By: Guy Adams, Marc Platt

Directed By: Nicholas Briggs

Cast

Tim Treloar (The Doctor), Katy Manning (Jo Grant), Rufus Hound (The Monk), Mina Anwar (Dr Kurdi), Joe Sims (Chief Orderly / Wilde / Jumper), Clare Corbett (Harriet / Woman / Radio Technician), Silas Hawkins (Francis / Morgue Attendant / Patient / Orderly), Linda Marlowe (Gusta Pardo), Carolyn Pickles (Professor Marian Schaeffer), Ronan Summers (Hollisen Grier), Jeff Rawle (Chad Caramel), Deli Segal (Skippa) and Nicholas Briggs (The Cybermen). Other parts played by members of the cast.

 

Producer David Richardson

Script Editor John Dorney

Executive Producers Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery

9.5
Big Finish: The Third Doctor Adventures, Volume 04
  • 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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