Please feel free to comment on my review.
Hallowe’en 1892 with the Fifth Doctor as well as the Eleventh Doctor
Will the Fifth Doctor ever reunite with Nyssa, Tegan and Marc?
Originally, the 2020 set of Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc audios was going to be ‘Thin Time’/‘Madquake’, ‘The Lost Resort’ and ‘Perils and Nightmares’. Sadly, due to the coronavirus pandemic, Big Finish’s production schedule got hampered. Only ‘Thin Time’/‘Madquake’ were made.
This is sad as I was really looking forward to hearing more Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc audios after hearing their first set of stories in 2019. ‘Thin Time’/‘Madquake’ were recorded on the 4th of November 2019, the 13th of January 2020 and the 20th of February 2020 before the pandemic happened.
I suppose we should be thankful ‘Thin Time’/‘Madquake’ got made before the pandemic happened. With so many events planned for 2020 being cancelled because of Covid-19, it’s a ray of sunshine to find that one set of Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc audios got recorded before it went downhill.
I’m hoping we’ll have the other two planned stories with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc soon as I would like to find out how Marc’s time with the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa and Tegan will come to an end and whether it’ll be a happy ending or not. I’d like it to be a happy one but I’m not so certain. 😐
Anyway, yeah, this is follow-up to the events of ‘Conversion’ where Marc got partially converted into a Cyberman and where the Doctor abandoned his three friends on the planet Callanna. There have also been some adventures for the Fifth Doctor gong solo in the four episode anthology ‘Time Apart’.
We’re also back with another collection of two 2-part stories in the 2020 CD release featuring the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan and Marc, much like how ‘Alien Heart’/‘Dalek Soul’, ‘Interstitial’/‘Feast of Fear’ and ‘Warzone’/‘Conversion’ went about. This two 2-part story CD set is also very intriguing for me here.
For you see, ‘Thin Time’ features just the Fifth Doctor with a small appearance of a new series Doctor in it (more on this later) and ‘Madquake’ features Nyssa, Tegan and Marc with the Fifth Doctor appearing at the end. How will all of this work out then? Let’s take a look and see, shall we? 🙂
In the first story called ‘Thin Time’, Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor visits London on the 31st of October 1892. So, Hallowe’en then! I’m so surprised they even had Hallowe’en in Victorian times! 😀
Anyway, the Doctor’s TARDIS lands inside the house of Wilf Scolding as one Charles Crookshap, a celebrated novelist. Yet the Doctor has never heard of him before. Hmm! I wonder why that is then.
Incidentally, I forgot to say ‘Thin Time’ is a two-part story by Dan Abnett, who has written a number of Big Finish audios in the past. He’s also written the Eleventh Doctor book ‘The Silent Stars Go By’. 🙂
You may wonder why I mentioned that detail, but it’ll be explained in due course. Going back to the story, Crookshap also has his guest Zaqi Ismail as John Hobshaw. The Doctor knows who Hobshaw is.
Apparently, John Hobshaw is a well-established writer according to the Doctor. I did check whether John Hobshaw was a real-life person but as far as I can tell, he doesn’t seem to be, which is intriguing.
Also at Crookshap’s house is Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo as Mrs. Polly, the housekeeper and Nicholas Khan as Stubbs. Both are annoyed by the persistent ‘trick or treaters’ coming to the house.
When the Doctor meets up with Crookshap, he’s assumed to be expected. Crookshap claims to have received time communiqués. This is something that bothers the Doctor once he investigates further.
Eventually, the Doctor uncovers that there happens to be a ‘thin time’ spot surrounding the area of Crookshap’s house. It’s also caused time to accelerate, changing things significantly for other people.
This isn’t just with Crookshap and John Hobshaw’s places in history, but also with how Mrs. Polly’s husband ended up dying in some Russia war. Stubbs also gets snatched out of time during the story.
I must admit, there is a creepy atmosphere to this story, especially when things become quiet in certain corridors of the Victorian house. I could imagine it being really cold and gloomy inside and outside.
There are some complicated timey things to get my head around, especially with understanding how time works. Like with ‘Interstitial’, you would need to hear the tale more than once to understand it.
It was an intriguing twist when it turned out Crookshap was responsible for this and he was the alien being that caused the ‘thin time’ spot to occur. Not sure how that works, but again, it’s pretty timey.
There is a mention by the Doctor that the ‘other universe’ Crookshap comes from has its own laws of physics which don’t correspond to our laws of physics. It allows the Doctor to defeat him too easily.
Eventually, once the ‘thin time’ crisis has been sorted, the Doctor receives a visit from a future Doctor. This happens to be the Eleventh Doctor, who’s being played by Jacob Dudman in the story. 🙂
Hey, so there was a reason why I listened to ‘The Eleventh Doctor Chronicles’ after all. 😀 It was great fun to hear Jacob Dudman voicing Matt Smith’s Doctor interacting with Peter Davison’s Doctor.
I would’ve preferred it if the Eleventh Doctor stepped in and joined the Fifth Doctor, helping him to sort out the ‘thin time’ crisis. This is because he only appears in two scenes at the story’s conclusion.
I like the last scene between the two Doctors. In that scene, the Fifth Doctor shares what happened to him with the ‘thin time’ crisis and he reflects his actions over abandoning Nyssa, Tegan and Marc.
In a sense, the Eleventh Doctor helps the Fifth Doctor to overcome the rough patch he’s going through. It seems similar to the Twelfth Doctor helping the First Doctor during ‘Twice Upon A Time’.
At the end, the Fifth Doctor decides to go back to Nyssa, Tegan and Marc on Callanna, not wanting to end up like the Eleventh Doctor without a companion. The Eleventh Doctor hasn’t met Clara yet. 😐
‘Thin Time’ has been an enjoyable audio story featuring the Fifth Doctor. I wouldn’t consider it great, but the highlight is Peter Davison’s Doctor meeting Matt Smith’s Doctor, voiced by Jacob Dudman. 🙂
‘Thin Time’ rating – 7/10
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