‘Precious Annihilation’ (Audio)


Please feel free to comment on my review.

Jewel Hunting with the Tenth Doctor and River Song

Alex Kingston and David Tennant in ‘Precious Annihilation’.

‘Precious Annihilation’ is the second story in ‘The Tenth Doctor and River Song’ CD box set! It’s a story by Lizzie Hopley. This is the first time I’ve come across Lizzie Hopley as a ‘Doctor Who’ writer. 🙂

Lizzie is also an actor and she has done a number of Big Finish audios over the years. She was Gemma, a companion of the Eighth Doctor in ‘Terror Firma’ and she was Yarvell in the ‘I, Davros’ series.

She also appeared in the first ‘Call the Midwife’ Christmas Special in 2012. In my opinion, I feel Lizzie Hopley has delivered a decent ‘Doctor Who’ audio tale featuring the Tenth Doctor and River Song. 🙂

I don’t think it’s better than ‘Expiry Dating’, but I did feel the story was linear this time compared to the flitting about in space and time. Mind you, I also don’t feel the episode was that exciting enough.

This isn’t to discredit Lizzie Hopley’s abilities as a writer as I’m sure she’s very good. I’m looking forward to hearing ‘The Stuntman’ episode starring the Tenth Doctor, Nyssa and K-9 soon in 2022. 🙂

My issue with ‘Precious Annihilation’ is the continual lack of emotional connection I feel towards the Tenth Doctor and River Song meeting each other. This is especially when they meet in the wrong order.

With the Tenth Doctor, it’s fine as David Tennant convincingly portrays the frustration he has of not knowing who River Song is yet. With River, it’s quite difficult for me as she continually flirts with him.

I wouldn’t mind this so much if there was a balance of the Tenth Doctor and River Song getting to know each other without too many ‘spoilers’ revealed. It would be achieved by drama than comedy.

But the comedic and more action-adventure aspects get in the way of that. Also, River doesn’t travel with the Tenth Doctor as a companion since she turns up to meet him and soon leaves afterwards. 😦

That’s another reason why the marriage thing between the Doctor and River in the Eleventh Doctor era didn’t appeal to me as she was always going off and they had a ‘distanced’ relationship together.

The story of ‘Precious Annihilation’ itself has the Doctor and River meeting up in London of 1912. They hear about lethal jewels in the city and soon journey back in time to 1632 to solve a mystery. 😐

They end up on the high seas where a superstitious ship’s crew is about to commit mutiny. The Doctor and River find that gemstones themselves can inspire jealously and that love can be ‘deadly’.

As I’ve stated, David Tennant is excellent as the Tenth Doctor in this audio episode. There is a sense that while he’s very frustrated about not knowing who River Song is, he can have some fun with her.

Alex Kingston also gives a good performance as River. I know I’ve raised my issues about River, but Alex makes the character her own and there are times where she can be quite serious to the Doctor.

I just wish the ‘love’ aspect of this story had been strongly implied between the Tenth Doctor and River compared to the love between Gerrard Pulman and Omara. I didn’t feel this was the case here.

Barnaby Kay makes a special guest star appearance as Gerrard Pulman. He also plays a foreman in the episode. Barnaby Kay has done some ‘Doctor Who’s before and he’s married to Nicola Walker. 🙂

That’s Nicola Walker/Liv Chenka in the Eighth Doctor audios incidentally. 😀 Barnaby Kay was in ‘The Girl Who Died’ on TV. He was in an episode of ‘Dark Eyes 4’ and in an episode of ‘Infernal Devices’. 🙂

It was interesting to hear Barnaby Kay play Gerrard Pulman as a man hopelessly in love with a woman called Omara and is obsessed with jewels/gemstones. Omara is played by Anjli Mohindra here.

Anjli Mohindra is well-known for playing Rani Chandra in ‘The Sarah Jane Adventures’. She recently played the Queen of the Skithra in ‘Nikola Tesla’s Night of Terror’ and she has been in ‘Scavenger’. 🙂

As well as playing Omara, Anjli Mohindra also plays a barmaid and Franny in the episode. There’s also Joe Jameson playing three characters in the story – Captain John Bickell, Joseph and a landlord.

Joe Sims is also in this episode playing Abe Porter, Mr. Chauncey and Pat. Lately, Joe Sims has played the android character of Mark Seven in several Big Finish audios, which I’m hoping to hear very soon.

Overall, ‘Precious Annihilation’ is a decent episode in ‘The Tenth Doctor and River Song’ box set by Big Finish. I wouldn’t call it great, but it was nice to listen to with the Tenth Doctor and River Song. 🙂

‘Precious Annihilation’ rating – 7/10

The previous story

For the Tenth Doctor was

  • ‘Ground Control’ (Comic)

For River Song was

The next story

For the Tenth Doctor is

  • ‘The Sontaran Games’ (Book)

For River Song is

Return to The Tenth Doctor’s Timeline
Return to River Song’s Timeline
Return to The Doctors’ Timelines Index
Return to The Companions’ Timelines Index
Return to Doctor Who Timelines
Return to Doctor Who
Return to Sci-Fi

2 thoughts on “‘Precious Annihilation’ (Audio)

  1. Timelord 007

    Again Tim i completely agree with your comments, i listened to this alongside Expiry Dating excited to hear more stories with my second favourite Doctor & was left feeling underwhelmed by this story.

    It’s not bad but it has nothing memorable to recommend it either, the whole story is very average lifted above because David Tennant is a darn good actor & Alex Kingston as River i can take or leave but overall this is another average audio drama.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi Simon.

      Glad you agree with my thoughts on ‘Precious Annihilation’. It’s such a shame that the first two stories of this box set are uninspiring as they could have been fantastic with the Tenth Doctor and River. I’m hoping ‘The Stuntman’ episode with the Tenth Doctor, Nyssa and K-9 by Lizzie Hopley will be very good.

      Yeah this episode is decent enough, but it’s nothing to get excited about. I’m glad David Tennant and Alex Kingston deliver great performances as their characters in this episode.

      Many thanks for your comments.

      Tim. 🙂



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