‘THE COMPANY OF FRIENDS: MARY’S STORY’
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The Eighth Doctor’s Audio Adventure with Mary
The fourth and final story of ‘The Company of Friends’ is ‘Mary’s Story’ by Jonathan Morris. It stars Julie Cox as Mary Shelley with Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor. This has to be my favourite episode out of ‘The Company of Friends’ collection as it’s so well-crafted and well-written by Jonny Morris.
This tale features the Doctor’s first meeting with Mary Shelley. Mary wrote the gothic novel called ‘Frankenstien’. She had been mentioned a few times during the Eighth Doctor audio adventures including ‘Storm Warning’. This is where we actually get to hear how the Eighth Doctor meets Mary.
Mary Shelley’s meeting with the Doctor is a complex one since it’s not just one Doctor, but two Doctors. It starts when Mary’s in Switzerland 1816 with her husband Percy, Lord Byron, John Polidori and Claire Clairmont. They both receive a visit from an older Eighth Doctor who is badly injured.
Very soon, the story turns into ‘Frankenstien’ as the Doctor gets an electric shock by a lightning bolt and becomes a horrific monster. It isn’t long before another TARDIS arrives and a younger Eighth Doctor appears. The story is complex and you need to pay attention, but it’s so wonderful and so enjoyable.
Julie Cox is wonderful as Mary Shelley. Her performance is so natural and lovely to listen to. It’s no surprise that Julie was asked back to do more ‘Doctor Who’ stories as Mary Shelley. Mary gets her inspiration to be a writer from the Eighth Doctor. The episode ends with her travelling in the TARDIS.
The CD extras for ‘The Company of Friends’ CD are as follows. On Disc 1, there’s a trailer for ‘Patient Zero’ with Colin Baker and India Fisher. There are also behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and crew including Lisa Bowerman, Matt Di Angelo, Jemima Rooper, Julie Cox, etc.
At the end of Disc 2, there’s the fourth episode of ‘The Three Companions’ with Anneke Wills as Polly; Nicholas Courtney as the Brigadier and John Pickard as Thomas Brewster. This is the fourth episode of Polly’s segment of the story. ‘The Three Companions’ is now complete in ‘The Companion Chronicles Specials’.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed ‘The Company of Friends’ CD collection. My eyes have been opened to more of the Eighth Doctor’s life in comics and books as well as audio. It shows Big Finish can do anything with these stories. Here’s to more adventures with Benny, Izzy, Fitz and Mary with the Eighth Doctor.
‘The Company of Friends: Mary’s Story’ rating – 10/10
‘The Company of Friends’ (CD) rating – 9/10
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