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Flip is Back with the Sixth Doctor and Constance
I didn’t expect Flip to come back into ‘Doctor Who’ this way! 😀
‘Quicksilver’ is a four-part adventure by Matt Fitton, directed by Jamie Anderson. I greatly enjoyed this ‘Doctor Who’ audio adventure by Big Finish as it stars Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor, Miranda Raison as Constance Clarke and Lisa Greenwood as Flip Jackson. I was delighted to hear Flip’s return.
I’d been wondering what had happened to Flip since she made her dramatic departure in ‘Scavenger’. I wondered how Big Finish would reintroduce Flip and explain what happened to her since her departure. I didn’t expect Flip to be re-joined with the Sixth Doctor along with Constance. 😀
This audio adventure is the third of the 2016 Sixth Doctor audio trilogy by Big Finish. The previous two stories were ‘Order of the Daleks’ and ‘Absolute Power’. This story does continue the Sixth Doctor/Constance story that’s been going on, but it nicely balances out with Flip being reintroduced.
In the story, the Sixth Doctor returns Constance to her own time and place in 1940s England – albeit he returns her four years later than when she last was. The last time she left home, it was in 1944. Here, it’s 1948. This does tend to happen a lot with the Doctor taking friends home some years late.
Constance has decided to end her travels with the Doctor, following the events of ‘Absolute Power’. But at home, she finds the telegram she hoped never to read. She’s informed that her husband Lt. Commander Henry Clarke was lost in action. The Doctor is really sorry to hear the news of her loss. 😦
But a mystery ensues in Vienna concerning a project code-named Quicksilver. Wanting to help, Constance accompanies the Doctor to Vienna 1948 where they hope to uncover the mystery about Quicksilver. It sets the scene of a painful reunion for Constance and a very happy one for the Doctor.
Matt Fitton wrote Constance’s debut story in ‘Doctor Who’ called ‘Criss-Cross’ where the Doctor met her in Bletchley Park in 1944. It’s nice how Matt revisits that angle of Constance’s character journey and how she catches up with what she missed in World War II as well as reuniting with her husband.
Oh yeah! Constance’s husband Henry happens to be alive by the time she comes to find him in Vienna. Not dead as was written in the telegram sent to her. It also transpires Henry has been cheating on Constance, having fallen in love with another woman named Ana. Constance is upset. 😐
I don’t blame Constance for being upset as I wouldn’t want a lover of mine to backstab me whilst I’ve been parted from her. Matt Fitton does very well in terms of the character drama elements of the story and those scenes were very engaging to listen to whilst I was listening to the four episodes.
It was also exciting to hear how Flip got back into the story since she’d been teleported from 2012, having recently married her husband Jared Ramon. Yeah, the Doctor was supposed to accept Flip’s wedding invitation but never got around to it. A mystery ensues on why Flip had been teleported. 😀
She ends up in 1948 Vienna to meet up with Henry Clarke and Ana who look after her. This is before Constance comes along and naturally assumes Flip for being Henry’s new love. There is tension between Constance and Flip at first, but as the story progresses, the two do get along very well here.
It does take a while for Flip to actually be reunited with the Sixth Doctor as that happens in ‘Part Four’. I would’ve had Flip reunited with the Sixth Doctor earlier than that, but it’s a happy reunion and I’m so glad Flip and Constance managed to get on with each other, despite being very different.
Yeah that’s the thing about Constance and Flip as companions. Constance comes across as prim and proper whilst Flip is spunky and rather cheeky, yet the two share a lot in common with being resourceful and sharing what it’s like to travel in the TARDIS with the Doctor. Intriguing friendship! 🙂
Colin Baker is great to listen to as the Sixth Doctor in this audio adventure. I like how he shows concern for Constance once he hears that she’s received the telegram about her husband being ‘lost in action’. He’s concerned about her well-being, yet Constance is determined to come for the ride. 🙂
Once again, I like how Colin’s Doctor is determined to solve the mystery of the Quicksilver project in Vienna, interacting with characters like Kinvar and the two warring alien races of the Vilal and the Zerith. The Doctor has to put his diplomatic hat on in order to ensure an intergalactic war is stopped.
Miranda Raison is great to listen to as Constance Clarke. I like how she handles the situation of her husband’s disappearance and eventually discovering that he’s been living in Vienna all this time. She is really angry and upset about him cheating on her, since she has never been unfaithful to him here.
I’m curious though as to why Henry would cheat on his wife since Miranda Raison is very easy-looking on the eye. 😀 Then again, this did happen quite a bit with married couples in war-time and Constance’s prim-properness might have something to do with it. Still glad she is pretty resourceful.
Lisa Greenwood is superb to listen to as Flip in this ‘Doctor Who’ adventure. It’s like she hasn’t been away. I’ve seen Lisa Greenwood in an episode of ‘Call the Midwife’ recently. She sounds exactly the same as she would play Flip in the Big Finish tales of ‘Doctor Who’ in that ‘Call the Midwife’ episode.
I enjoyed the interaction Flip had with Constance and getting to know her, nicknaming her ‘Connie’ as they went through some dark tunnels in the story. It was amusing when Constance was about to tell Flip to address her properly as ‘Mrs. Clarke’, but in the end decided that ‘Connie’ would be okay.
By the way, did I mention the Doctor wears his tweed outfit from ‘Criss-Cross’ again in this story? The guest cast includes Matthew Cottle as Henry Clarke, Constance’s husband. He’s been talked about quite a bit in the Big Finish audios and it was very interesting hear what he sounds like in this.
I think it’s a shame that Henry cheated on Constance. It could’ve been a happy reunion between them if he hadn’t fallen in love with another woman in Ana and ended up living in Vienna. But hearing it, you get to understand from his point of view why he fell in love with Ana in the first place.
Joel Fry guest stars as Kinvar in the adventure. Kinvar is someone the Doctor meets who’s on the run from the alien Vilal chasing him on Earth in the 1940s. He’s rather naive especially when he gives out advanced technology to humans, which he shouldn’t be doing, but he’s willing to amend his actions.
As well as playing Kinvar, Joel Fry also plays a young British soldier called Rogers who’s meant to keep watch on Henry Clarke when arrested as a prisoner. Unfortunately, Rogers falls for a trick by Henry. He ends up getting knocked out. 😐 I am reminded of something I did in ‘Doom of the Daleks’.
In that a security officer got outwitted when meaning to keep an eye on the traitorous Colin Wilson. Whoops! 😀 The story also features Oliver Cotton playing Major Callahan; Kate Kennedy as Ana, Henry’s other woman and Robbie Stevens playing the Vilal General and Boyarov. All are very good. 🙂
The story concludes with the Doctor settling a peace between the Vilal and the Zerith. The Doctor is about to take Constance and Flip back to their own times and places as they return to the TARDIS. I wonder if this is the beginning of a brand-new TARDIS trio in the Sixth Doctor, Constance and Flip. 😀
I greatly enjoyed ‘Quicksilver’ as a ‘Doctor Who’ audio adventure. It resolves things nicely with what happened to Constance’s husband and how she reunites with him. It was also great to hear Flip’s re-introduction into the series. I look forward to what happens next for the Sixth Doctor, Constance and Flip.
The CD extras are as follows. At the end of Disc 1, there’s a suite of incidental music to enjoy. At the end of Disc 2, there’s a trailer for ‘The Star Men’ with Peter Davison, Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton and Matthew Waterhouse. There are also behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and crew including Colin Baker, Miranda Raison, Lisa Greenwood, Matthew Cottle, director Jamie Anderson, writer Matt Fitton, etc.
If you subscribe to Big Finish for ‘Quicksilver’ via a 6 or 12 CD/download subscription, you’ll get the following extras. There’s a PDF script and extended extras for ‘Quicksilver’. There’s also a bonus Short Trip called ‘The Christmas Dimension’ with the Third Doctor, read by Stephen Critchlow.
‘Quicksilver’ rating – 8/10
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