‘The Havoc of Empires’ (Audio)


Please feel free to comment on my review.

Attow Eels and a Space Wedding with the Third Doctor, Jo and Mike Yates

Tim Treloar, Katy Manning and Richard Franklin in ‘The Havoc of Empires’.

‘The Havoc of Empires’ is the second story in Volume 1 of ‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ by Big Finish. It’s a pretty gripping adventure as the Third Doctor, Jo and Mike Yates become a TARDIS trio.

In the story, Jo and Mike plan to go out on a date together. Jo is wishing to see the Beatles play at the Cavern Club whilst Mike is wishing to see W. G. Grace’s last cricket match at Trent Bridge in 1899.

It doesn’t go according to plan as the TARDIS soon ends up on a futuristic space station in the middle of a diplomatic crisis. An arranged wedding is about to take place as this is to prevent a galactic war.

But explosions occur aboard the space station whilst Jo is pretending to be a security consultant and the Doctor and Jo are his aides. The Doctor is soon accused of murder. Can our trio escape the mess?

It was interesting to hear this ‘Doctor Who’ adventure with Mike joining the Doctor and Jo as a travelling companion. It’s rare that happens and it was nice to hear Mike be a companion in this one.

There has been a book featuring the Third Doctor, Jo and Mike travelling together as a TARDIS trio. That book was called ‘Speed of Flight’. I believe the trio also visited Karfel, according to ‘Timelash’.

Mike does well work as a TARDIS travelling companion in this adventure, having worked with the Doctor and Jo during their U.N.I.T. escapades. Richard Franklin excels playing Mike’s character here.

There was a tense moment when Mike went missing during ‘Part Three’ of the story, but thankfully he’s alright in ‘Part Four’. Mike also does well being Jo’s aide once she is playing security consultant.

Tim Treloar continues to be good as the Third Doctor in this adventure as well as the story’s narrator. It was tense as the Doctor got accused of murder, having traces of a material on his hands.

Despite being tied to a chair in ‘Part Three’ of the story, the Doctor continues to be resourceful and helpful during a time of crisis. This is especially when Jo frees him and they have to tackle a menace.

Katy Manning as Jo Grant gets the spotlight in this adventure, especially when she has to take on the role of security consultant Alex Filton. She also forms this relationship with the Harmony Station’s AI.

Jo gets to show how resourceful she can be when tackling a crisis and as ever shows her fierce loyalty to the Doctor. She even threatens a guard with a gun before freeing the Doctor as a prisoner.

The story’s special guest star is George Layton as Louis Markell. George Layton was Technician Pen in the ‘Doctor Who’ TV tale ‘The Space Pirates’. He was also the Doctor in a ‘French & Saunders’ sketch.

In ‘The Havoc of Empires’ story; Louis Markell is a commander aboard Harmony Station and in charge of station security. He was mostly an aide to Tina Andresson who is the bride in this wedding.

Speaking of marriage partners, Lucy Briggs-Owen stars as Tina Andresson, who is the Director of the Teklarn Incorporation. Tina is not keen about getting married, but soon gets to know Regent Tharlar.

Hywel Morgan stars as Regent Tharlar, the leader of the Chalnoth Hegemony. They’re a warlike alien race. The Chalnoth could be similar to the Chalnoth from the ‘Star Trek: TNG’ episode ‘Allegiance’. 🙂

I like how Tina Andreeson and Regent Tharlar form a bond with each other whilst trapped together and eventually agree to marry each other. Hywel Morgan also plays the real Alex Filton in this story.

Helen Goldwyn guest stars as May Zalrick, an overbearing woman who organises the wedding and keeps some eerie eel-like aliens called Attow Eels. Helen also voices the Harmony Station’s AI in this.

Joanna Bacon guest stars as Lady Gurlen, who provides security for Regent Tharlar. Lady Gurlen isn’t happy with the political wedding arrangements in this story and would rather have a war to happen.

I like how the story ends with the culprits found out; the wedding taking place and the Doctor, Jo and Mike slipping away quietly. There are nice things said and good camaraderie between the three.

‘The Havoc of Empires’ is an enjoyable four-part adventure featuring the Third Doctor, Jo and Mike. I like the tension and suspense created throughout and there are good touches of character drama. 🙂


Richard Franklin, Tim Treloar and Katy Manning in ‘The Havoc of Empires’.

The first disc of ‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ CD box set is the behind-the-scenes making-of documentary and features interviews with the cast and crew. I enjoyed hearing the anecdotes of the cast and crew about what it was like to make these two thrilling ‘Third Doctor Adventures’ on audio.

There are two sections to this documentary disc – the ‘Prisoners of the Lake’ section and ‘The Havoc of Empires’ section. We go straight into the ‘Prisoners of the Lake’ section and have interviews with writer Justin Richards and director Nicholas Briggs on the creative process to make these audio tales.

There’s then a section about how Tim Treloar got cast to play the Third Doctor and what the process has been like for him to recreate Jon Pertwee’s Doctor and get the essence of his character. There’s Katy Manning and Richard Franklin who share what it’s like working with Tim Treloar’s Third Doctor.

There are interviews with the cast featured in ‘Prisoners of the Lake’. This includes Caroline Seymour, Robbie Stevens and John Banks. I enjoyed how they’ve found the story and what it was like to play their characters. It was nice to hear their backgrounds with Big Finish whilst interviewed.

We then move onto ‘The Havoc of Empires’ section where director Nicholas Briggs introduces the making of this story as well as writer Andy Lane. We then have Tim Treloar and Katy Manning being interviewed together, who seem to have terrific camaraderie together, as well as Richard Franklin. 🙂

There are also interviews with the cast featured in ‘The Havoc of Empires’. This includes Helen Goldwyn, Hywel Morgan, Lucy Briggs-Owen and Joanna Bacon and George Layton together. The guest cast really seemed to enjoy making ‘The Havoc of Empires’, sharing insight for their characters.

I enjoyed the outtakes in the behind-the-scenes documentary where Helen Goldwyn had to do some strange call to the Attow-Eels as May Zalrick and Tim Treloar couldn’t help laughing with Katy Manning joining in. Disc 5 concludes with producer David Richardson sharing his thoughts about the box set

‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ has been a very enjoyable collection of audio adventures featuring Jon Pertwee’s Doctor, portrayed by Tim Treloar, as well as Katy Manning as Jo Grant and Richard Franklin as Mike Yates. I found myself pretty gripped throughout these two enjoyable audio tales. 😀

I’m pleased that ‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ audio range by Big Finish has been pretty successful lately and I’m glad I’ve been able to check out the first CD volume to find out what they’re like. I look forward to when I get to hear some more Third Doctor audios, especially with Daleks and Cybermen.

‘The Havoc of Empires’ rating – 8/10

‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ CD box set – 8/10

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2 thoughts on “‘The Havoc of Empires’ (Audio)

  1. Timelord 007

    Great review Tim, both the Daleks & Cybermen stories are good while Primoid by John Dorney which is a sequel to Inferno oh Tim you’re in for a treat.

    Yeah i enjoyed this one, it reminded me of The Curse Of Peladon for some reason, dunno why it just captured the flavour of that story for me & this volume is a fitting tribute to Jon Pertwee’s era as the Third Doctor.

    Hope your safe & healthy my friend, i agree with what you said about Nyssa & Tegan, i think RTD lost the plot with their characters arc, Nyssa had a son Adric i thought he was a fan of BF he should’ve known that, i think he trying push a agenda that doesn’t need pushing, we’ve had openly gay characters in Doctor Who Nyssa & Tegan aren’t.

    I had a idea of a trilogy Fifth Doctor stories for BF to write where Adric (Nyssa’s son) plots revenge against the Doctor for his mother’s death, do you think it could work or am i wide of the mark.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tim Bradley Post author

      Hi Simon.

      Very pleased you enjoyed my review on ‘The Havoc of Empires’.

      Thanks for recommending the Dalek and Cybermen stories from ‘The Third Doctor Adventures’ as well as the ‘Primord’ sequel to ‘Inferno’. They do sound pretty exciting. I look forward to checking them out.

      Yeah ‘The Havoc of Empires’ did feel like ‘The Curse of Peladon’, didn’t it? I’m surprised I didn’t mention that in my review. I enjoyed the atmosphere of this story and I’m glad the Third Doctor, Jo and Mike worked well together as a TARDIS trio, which is something I suppose I would’ve liked to have seen and heard more of in ‘Doctor Who’.

      I’m still keeping safe and healthy at the moment, thanks. Hope you are too. Yeah, I don’t know why RTD had to make Nyssa and Tegan gay in that short story ‘Farewell Sarah Jane’. It doesn’t make sense and it doesn’t tie in to what’s been going on in the Big Finish audios with Nyssa and Tegan. RTD’s clearly trying to push his gay views onto people, but he doesn’t have to do it with Nyssa and Tegan. Glad you agree with me that you’ve found Nyssa and Tegan as just friends and good point you made about Nyssa having had a son, daughter and husband. Maybe RTD meant it as a joke, but people are going to take that seriously like we’ve done. I know he kept it vague, but I’m worried about how other people will interpret that. I hope to write a short story soon set in an alternative universe with Nyssa and Billy reflecting that.

      I actually think that’s a great trilogy idea you have in mind for Nyssa’s son Adric. Any reason to bring Alistair Mackenzie back to play Adric Traken would be welcome. I hope Big Finish takes your idea on board. It’d be nice to hear and I’m sure Sarah Sutton would enjoy it too. I have my own ideas about Nyssa’s future including some Tenth Doctor stories with Nyssa and Billy as well as some Thirteenth Doctor stories with Nyssa and Billy. Whether they’ll happen, I don’t know. I might reflect that in the short story I got in mind for Nyssa and Billy in an alternative universe.

      Anyway, thanks for your comments, Simon. Glad you enjoyed my Third Doctor Adventures reviews. Do keep safe and healthy.

      Tim. 🙂



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