‘Interstitial’ (Audio)


Please feel free to comment on my review.

Marc’s First Adventure with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa and Tegan

Will the new TARDIS team of the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc work for me?

It’s amazing to look back at 2019 and the times I’ve seen Sarah Sutton at conventions. Sarah recorded two CD sets of ‘Doctor Who’ audio stories by Big Finish in-between the times I saw her at the ‘London Comic Con Spring’ and the ‘Film & Comic Con Cardiff’ in March 2019. Pretty amazing!

After Sarah saw me in London in March’s first weekend, she went on to record ‘Interstitial’ and ‘Feast of Fear’ on the 4th to the 5th of March. She then went on to record ‘Warzone’ and ‘Conversion’ on the 7th to the 8th of March. This was before Sarah saw me in Cardiff in March’s second weekend. Wow!!! 😀

Sarah told me she recorded these two sets of ‘Doctor Who’ audios stories with Big Finish at the Cardiff event. And she was still willing to do the April Fools Sketch with me for ‘Bradley’s Basement’. 😀 She must have been pretty worn out after working so hard that week doing conventions and audio dramas.

I’m lucky to have Sarah as my friend at conventions. Nowadays, she shares with me what she’s been doing lately in terms of work at Big Finish with ‘Doctor Who’. She doesn’t share any details of the stories she’s done, which I wouldn’t ask for. But it’s nice to know that Big Finish continue to keep Sarah busy.

The 2019 series of ‘Doctor Who’ audios with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and new companion Marc has been pretty intriguing to listen to so far. I avoid saying ‘trilogy’ because it’s not really three stories featured in the 2019 set of Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc audios. It’s really five stories!

For the first CD, ‘Tartarus’ was a full-length adventure divided into two bumper-length episodes. For the second and third CDs, they’re each divided up into two stories comprising of two episodes each. It’s something similar to the ‘Alien Heart’/‘Dalek Soul’ CD with the Fifth Doctor and Nyssa, which I love.

So for the second CD set of 2019 audio adventures with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc; we have the two 2-part adventures ‘Interstitial’ and ‘Feast of Fear’. I was looking forward to hearing these adventures, although I was pretty nervous when it came to hearing the second tale of this set.

Niamh McGrady, Janet Fielding, George Watkins, Sarah Sutton, Peter Davison and Jeremy Ang Jones in ‘Interstitial’/’Feast of Fear’.

The first story of the set called ‘Interstitial’ is a two-part adventure by Carl Rowens. This is the first time I’ve come across Carl Rowens as a writer and it happens to be his first contribution to Big Finish, I believe.

I enjoyed listening to ‘Interstitial’ as a ‘Doctor Who’ story. It’s quite a complex tale and whilst I may not be geared fully into the concepts of interstitial time going on in this audio tale, it was fascinating.

‘Interstitial’ is of course Marc’s first adventure in the TARDIS with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa and Tegan. He’s just been freed from service to Cicero and is adjusting to a brand-new life on board the TARDIS.

I love that first scene where Nyssa visits Marc in his room. I replayed that scene a number of times as it’s clear Nyssa and Marc have formed an almost brotherly-sisterly relationship between each other.

It’s interesting how Nyssa shows concern for Marc when he’s finding it difficult to adjust, including not feeling comfortable about sleeping on a big bed in his TARDIS room. Tegan hasn’t done this here.

It’s just like Nyssa to show concern for new members of the TARDIS family and being open and friendly about it. Just like when I wrote Nyssa showing her concern for Billy in ‘The Tree of Riverloth’.

I do wonder if Big Finish are taking an example from my ‘Doctor Who’ stories on my blog. 😀 The Doctor and Tegan are also accommodating to Marc adjusting to his new life aboard the TARDIS here.

I like Marc’s wonder of seeing everything that’s new to him, including a futuristic space station that he, Nyssa, Tegan and the Doctor visit. George Watkins conveys that aspect to Marc’s character well.

It almost matches to Katrina’s wonder of seeing amazing things during ‘The Daleks’ Master Plan’. Of course, Marc is here to stay a little while longer. It’s so intriguing how he copes in new surroundings.

I like how amazed he was to see the stars out in space and how he interacts with the Doctor. During the time they spend together, Marc gets to know the Doctor more, despite not knowing everything.

The performances of Peter Davison, Sarah Sutton, Janet Fielding and George Watkins are superb so far in this audio adventure. I like how they seem to balance well with each other in working as a team.

In fact, if this had been the TARDIS team for Season 20 of ‘Doctor Who’ rather than the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Turlough, I think the TV series would be a happier one. It’d certainly be reassuring.

It did get unnerving when the Doctor and Marc were separated from Nyssa and Tegan in different time zones aboard the space station Proxima. Some of it is perplexing and mind-boggling to think on.

I wasn’t sure when Nyssa and Tegan were after they came out of the TARDIS following the Doctor and Marc. ‘Interstitial’ is a story that requires multiple listens in order to understand and appreciate.

The concept of interstitial time is not unfamiliar to me. It had been introduced in the ‘Doctor Who’ story ‘The Time Monster’ beforehand. It’s so intriguing how this concept gets explored deeper here.

The story’s guest cast features Anna-Maria Nabirye as Kalu and Jeremy Ang Jones as Chris Jennings. It’s quite interesting how these two scientists ended up and not one of them is entirely trustworthy.

Kalu is a scientist who’s obsessed with her own evolution in wanting to be a ghostly-like thing above consciousness. Jennings has sadly de-evolved into some early form of a man and wishes to stop Kalu.

It got tense when Tegan was abducted by Jennings and got taken to some limbo world in interstitial time. Tegan learns more about what happened to Jennings, but doesn’t quickly sympathise with him.

I enjoyed the scene in the station’s laboratory where Nyssa was talking to herself before she wrote a note for the Doctor and Marc to find. It was just nice to hear a scene all performed by Sarah here. 😀

The story’s climax was rather baffling to listen to, especially with how the Doctor and Marc reunited with Nyssa and Tegan in the TARDIS. It was also baffling how our heroes stopped Kalu’s deadly plans.

‘Interstitial’ is a decent story with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc. I wouldn’t say I fully got it and it does require more than one listen, but I love the character moments between the main leads.

‘Interstitial’ rating – 7/10

The previous story

For the Fifth Doctor was

For Tegan was

For Nyssa was

For Marc was

The next story

For the Fifth Doctor is

For Tegan is

For Nyssa is

For Marc is

Return to The Fifth Doctor’s Timeline
Return to Tegan’s Timeline
Return to Nyssa’s Timeline
Return to Marc’s Timeline
Return to The Doctors’ Timelines Index
Return to The Companions’ Timelines Index
Return to Doctor Who Timelines
Return to The Nyssa Challenge
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4 thoughts on “‘Interstitial’ (Audio)

  1. Timelord 007

    A fair balanced review Tim, its a bit “meh” this story, it’s not bad & does feature some nice character moments but it never really hit its stride.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi Simon.

      Glad you enjoyed my review on ‘Interstitial’. It was an okay story and maybe I’ll enjoy it more with further listens and with the character moments featured throughout.

      Tim. 🙂


  2. Williams Fan 92

    Great review Tim.

    I just finished listening to part 2 of this story. I have to say I felt extremely tense. Professor Kalu was certainly an epic character especially since had the ability to reduce people to dust. It’s lucky she can resurrect them.

    The chemistry between the main cast was fun to listen to. I agree with you on the opening scene with Nyssa and Marc. I hope the rest of his journey as the Doctors companion will be a good ride. One gripe I do have (and I also have this problem with ‘The Peterloo Massacre’ and ‘Tartarus’) is that the incidental music after the main feature goes on for too long.

    P.S. did you get around to reading any of my Fifth Doctor fanfics with my Tardis team of Five, Nyssa, Tegan and Michael?

    Take care, WF92.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi WF92,

      Glad you enjoyed my review on ‘Interstitial’. Glad you enjoyed the story too. I’m looking forward to checking out ‘The Lost Resort and Other Stories’ when the CD box set comes out this month and hope to revisit from ‘Tartarus’ to ‘Madquake’ beforehand.

      I’m glad you like the chemistry between the main cast and the opening scene between Nyssa and Marc. I don’t mind the incidental music suite at the end of Disc 1 of a ‘Doctor Who’ CD release. Sometimes it can be too long, but I often relax to the music and have a little nap whilst listening to it. 😀

      I haven’t been lucky with checking out your Fifth Doctor stories but I have read Chapter 1 of ‘Four time-travellers and a baby’. Interesting where you place Michael as a companion throughout the ‘Doctor Who’ series. I enjoyed Michael, Nyssa and Tegan investigating who the intruder is before they find out that it’s the Doctor. I look forward to checking out more.

      Many thanks for your comments.

      Tim. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person


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