Alright, it’s February and Big Finish have released their first Classic Doctor set of the new year after January’s pre-1989 Doctor Who releases were limited to the Audio Novel and the Short Trips release earlier this month.Okay so The First Doctor Adventures: The Demon Song was initially solicited for release in January, but it was pushed back to February probably due to production delays or time for editing.If you can’t help, I’m stalling.The Demon Song and The Incherton Incident make up this set are sadly stories that don’t actually have much connection, just being a two-part story and four-part story that have the same TARDIS team which is thee First Doctor and Dodo, played by Stephen Noonan and Lauren Cornelius, so as such it’s going to be a bit difficult to give the set an overall score, especially since both stories are vastly in terms of what they are attempting to do.The first feels very modern while the second is one that takes more lengths to imitate the style of a story you would have seen in the 1960s, which makes the lack of connection between the stories feel even more stark as each story serves a very different purpose.
There is something odd about the First Doctor Adventures Big Finish range. As it features the cast from An Adventure in Space and Time in the roles of the Doctor, Susan, Ian, and Barbara it is classified as a range for the New Series, however, each set has been in some way or another a fitting tribute for the television show’s first few years, especially Season 1, where each story essentially alternates science fiction and pure historical with the occasional a la The Space Museum or The Edge of Destruction thrown in for good measure. Each episode even is given its own individual title as the first three seasons would often do, and they move directly one into the next, with The First Doctor Adventures: Volume Five even ending implying that there will be a volume six. This is also a range which has lost the novelty of having full cast First Doctor stories, which isn’t a bad thing, and was indicated by the previous volume including the Daleks in a sequel to the very first Dalek story. Volume Five goes back away from bringing back any returning elements, though the second story does take some cheeky nudges to future stories and events for the Doctor in particular, selling itself on two very interesting titles and the promise of a story with William Shakespeare and pairing a veteran writer with a new writer.
David Bradley and John Barrowman are reprising their roles as the First Doctor (first played by William Hartnell) and Captain Jack Harkness, in pre-recorded cameo appearances for the immersive show Time Fracture!