‘ENERGY OF THE DALEKS’
Please feel free to comment on my review.
Leela meets the Daleks
The Daleks are back and Tom Baker’s Doctor fights them once more!
I was excited when I discovered Tom Baker’s Doctor would be facing the Daleks again in the first season of ‘The Fourth Doctor Adventures’ by Big Finish with Leela. It was a real treat and so worthy of Tom Baker’s return to ‘Doctor Who’ through Big Finish by pitting him against the evil Daleks again.
Also, this would be the first time Leela gets to meet the Daleks. I was looking forward to hearing to this ‘Doctor Who’ audio adventure where the Doctor and Leela face the Daleks together. I’ve now had the CD cover of ‘Energy of the Daleks’ signed by the lovely Louise Jameson as Leela when I saw her at the ‘Big Blue Box 2’ convention in Tunbridge Wells, March 2013. It was so lovely to see Louise!
Of course, Tom Baker’s Doctor has met the Daleks before on TV in ‘Genesis of the Daleks’ and ‘Destiny of the Daleks’, though they were with their creator Davros in both stories. It was very refreshing to have the Daleks on their own for a change with an evil plan and being at their evil best.
‘Energy of the Daleks’ is a two-part audio adventure by Nicholas Briggs who writes, directs and does the voices of the Daleks at the same time. Even for two episodes, this audio adventure kept me hooked all the way throughout and was an exciting romp of an adventure with the Doctor and Leela.
In the story, the Doctor takes to Leela to Earth where he hopes that they’ll end up in London, 2015. But instead they end up in London, 2025. The London society of this period is where people are more Internet-obsessed than ever before and where an energy crisis takes place. Pretty interesting!
Early on, there are protests against the The GlobeSphere Corporation who are intending to resolve the energy crisis with solar panels and this could produce disastrous results. But behind all this, there is a devious plot designed by the Daleks who are intending to absorb power for their time ship.
Louise Jameson is a lovely, warm-hearted person that I’m glad to have met at conventions. She puts a lot of thought and energy into Leela’s character and she enjoys the extended areas Big Finish provides for her character. It is great to hear Leela meeting the Daleks for the first time in this story.
Leela gets to wear new clothes as well as new shoes, although she prefers the trainers rather than the high heels. Leela becomes fascinated by this Internet culture of 2025 and is very inquisitive about what’s going on. Leela defies the Daleks when she’s being interrogated and tortured by them.
Tom Baker is superb as the Doctor. I like how he uncovers more about the energy crisis and when he meets up with Jack Coulson. Both of them go under the National Gallery into the heart of Dalek operations. I found it funny when Tom’s Doctor kept going ‘ssh’ to Jack. It’s funny in the outtakes. 😀
Tom and Jack pass themselves off as Robomen, which I can imagine them very easily doing and wearing black leather uniforms when they’re rescuing Leela. Tom is pretty bold in emphasising and stressing the urgency of stopping Damien Stephens and the Daleks, getting to stop and outwit them.
Mark Benton (who played Clive in ‘Rose’) guest stars as Jack Coulson, who leads the protests against the GlobeSphere Corporation. Jack becomes a quick ally to the Doctor and despite being bewildered and baffled by everything that’s going on with the Daleks, he does overcome it very well in the story.
I like how Jack is the everyday man that you can relate to as he tries to connect to Damien Stephens, his former friend, and break him out of his Dalek conditioning. I found it funny when the Doctor, Leela and Jack go onto the transmat pads and end up in someone’s bed on arrival to stop the Daleks.
I enjoyed the Daleks up against Tom Baker’s Doctor. The Daleks are so evil and spine-chillingly terrifying, especially when Nick Briggs does the voices for them. I like how they turn out to be the cause for this energy crisis in London and how they intend to involve the moon with their time ship.
The Daleks use Damien Stephens in their plans to take control of the GlobeSphere Corporation and they show no mercy. The Daleks also get to convert humans into Robomen to do their work just as they’ve done before in ‘The Dalek Invasion of Earth’. I found this to be a very nice ‘Who’ connection.
The guest cast also includes Alex Lowe as Damien Stephens, CEO of the GlobeSphere Corporation under Dalek control. I’ve heard Alex before in other Big Finish audios. He was Huxley in ‘Find and Replace’ with Jo Grant and also played a Sontaran in ‘Heroes of Sontar’ with Peter Davison’s Doctor.
There’s also Caroline Keiff as Lydia Harding, one of Damien’s colleagues. And there’s Dan Starkey as Kevin Winston, another colleague. I’ve met Dan as well and he’s very well-known for playing the Sontarans in both the TV series and audios. It was so nice to hear him playing a human for a change.
The Robomen appear in this story and are voiced by three actors – John Dorney (actor and script editor on ‘The Fourth Doctor Adventures’); Alex Lowe and Dan Starkey. I enjoyed hearing the Robomen. I imagine they are Robomen from the Peter Cushing film ‘Daleks – Invasion Earth 2150 AD’.
I don’t think the Robomen are used very much though in the short space of time of two episodes really. Although I did like it when Leela tried to attack a Roboman with her knife and he reacts with no pain. This is similar to when a wasp stung a Roboman in the Fifth Doctor audio ‘The Mutant Phase’.
‘Energy of the Daleks’ has been a worthwhile and thrilling adventure. It’s great to hear Leela meeting the Daleks for the first time and for Tom Baker’s Doctor to face them again without Davros. I really like how this audio adventure is action-paced throughout and of course is so fuelled with ‘energy’! 😀
The CD extras are as follows. At the end of the disc, there are some behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and crew, including Tom Baker, Louise Jameson, Mark Benton, Nicholas Briggs, etc. As I said before, I enjoyed the ‘sshing’ sessions between Tom Baker and Mark Benton when recording. 😀
There’s a trailer for the next story with the Doctor and Leela called ‘Trail of the White Worm’.
‘Energy of the Daleks’ rating – 9/10
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