Doctor Who Audio Review: Even A Time Lord Should Be Forgiven

Doctor Who: Thin Time / Madquake

Thin Time/Madquake is a Doctor Who double bill audio release from Big Finish Productions. This release is directed by Scott Handcock and features Peter Davison as the Doctor. Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton, and George Watkins return as Tegan, Nyssa, and Marc respectively. There are two stories in this release that continue from the release where the Doctor has left his companions on a planet as he flies off in the TARDIS racked with guilt over his tendency to place his companions in constant mortal peril. Marc is a Big Finish creation as a companion. He is a former Roman slave who was almost completely converted by the Cybermen in a recent release. Obviously, that was not something he could just shake off all that easily. The guest cast includes Dona Kroll, Kate Isitt, and Nicholas Khan.

It is Dan Abnett who presents the first story, Thin Time, where the Doctor turns up in London 1892 and finds certain inconsistencies in established history that may be the work of another alien presence. It turned out to be a pretty interesting piece. There is a nice unexpected encounter which is quite a treat for the fans. Davison is actually quite good here. It takes place in an isolated domicile with a small group of people, which in my opinion, provides the most interesting setting for the Doctor. Really, it’s the final scene that makes me smile the most, but the rest of the episode works pretty well too.

Madquake is written by Guy Adams and features the companions in their own little caper. Marc is not coping well with his recent encounter with the Cyberman which ended up with him still somewhat enhanced after their attempt to convert him. Tegan and Nyssa are at odds a bit over the Doctor’s abandonment of them. The serenity of the planet where they have been marooned is interrupted by the arrival of the Slitheen. So, the companions have their moment to shine without the Doctor coming to steal the victory. The Slitheen are not really my favorite of the Doctor’s adversaries, but it was kind of fun to have that connection to the revived television series of 2005. The performances from Fielding and Sutton were quite engaging, as expected. I am still getting used to Watkins as Marc.

I liked some of the ideas and dynamics explored in this release. There was an attempt to do something a little different yet still in keeping with the Fifth Doctor era. I am interested to see how the situation with Marc comes to a resolution. Yeah, this turned out to be a pretty enjoyable release from Big Finish.

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