Review: The Ninth Doctor Adventures – Hidden Depths

Review by Jacob Licklider


If you were to have come to me at the beginning of 2021 and told me that within the next two years Big Finish Productions would have released not one, but seven total box sets with Christopher Eccleston as the Doctor, I would never have believed you. Yet here we are, over halfway through the second series of Ninth Doctor Adventures from Big Finish Productions and with each passing day I am surprised they keep coming. Hidden Depths is the third set of the second series and like the first two of this series the title is a reference to the major theme of things under the surface both literal and metaphorical that each episode explores in some way. While Back to Earth and Into the Stars were more geographic in their themes, Hidden Depths outside of the first story leans into the lives of their characters which kind of leads to the overarching theme of the set ironically more surface level and not as the previous five sets have felt as sequential adventures under a theme.

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Review: The Ninth Doctor Adventures – Into The Stars

Written by Cavan Gilbey


It’s that time of the year again where Eccleston and Big Finish bring us a fresh batch of adventures with the Ninth Doctor, a fact which still feels miraculous to this day. In previous sets we’ve had the Ninth Doctor face off against familiar foes, namely the Cybermen in a Dalek to Parting of the Ways style of progression, so here we have the Sontarans who feel like a natural fit for this Doctor given his Time War guilt. However where we deviate from those previous sets is in theming; in the first series of four sets in this range we saw thematic boxsets with three stories that represented the primary settings for RTD era narratives. But with series two we get boxsets, that while still thematically linked in their stories, focus on just story setting and explore as many avenues with it as possible. Back To Earth gave us three story set across Earth’s history so to contrast that Into The Stars sends beyond Earth to see life beyond the stars.

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Review: The Ninth Doctor Adventures – Lost Warriors

Review by Jacob Licklider


Ravagers introduced Christopher Eccleston to the world of Big Finish as the Ninth Doctor through a miniseries.  Respond to All Calls switched gears towards three thematically similar stories with the idea being the Doctor, battle scarred and hardened, is always there to help.  The third set follows the format of Respond to All Calls, three stories tied around a theme, but that theme is a little subtler and is perhaps why some people haven’t gelled as much with this set as a whole.  Lost Warriors is a title which sets up the set with a subconscious exploration of the remnants of the Time War, and that’s there, but only in the last story and in the way the Ninth Doctor is characterised.  Each story has a warrior at its centre and each is an exploration of a different reaction to a war, one from a modern human war, one from a human war in the past, and one from an alien war, while the Doctor representing the Time War in all three of the stories.  It’s interesting as the Time War isn’t really directly mentioned in any notable capacity throughout the set, it’s in the background and simmering, but not actually being the driving force of the stories.  It’s a set about other warriors and other people as a reflection of the Doctor and not a direct parallel.  Eccleston’s portrayal of the Doctor is incredibly subtle here with the trauma and in each of the three stories he is absolutely brilliant in the role.  Some have complained he is too close to Tennant, but this is an odd set where the Doctor is actually the connection to the audience which usually is the companion’s job.

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Christopher Eccleston returns to Big Finish for second series of Doctor Who – The Ninth Doctor Adventures

Big Finish Productions today announces a second series of Doctor Who – The Ninth Doctor Adventures starring Christopher Eccleston, due to be released throughout 2022 and into 2023.


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Review: Doctor Who – Respond To All Calls

Review by Jacob Licklider


“The big drawback here is that there is a lot more they could do as playing it safe on a release which was sure to sell left the listeners wanting more. Still, go and give this a listen just to hear a Doctor we haven’t heard from in over 15 years as there’s still the standard Big Finish charm.”

This is how I closed my review for Ravagers, the first volume of Ninth Doctor Adventures from Big Finish productions which was enjoyable, but had the problem of playing it far too safe, a trend Big Finish continued when David Tennant began recording audio dramas. This second volume, Respond to All Calls, is immediately in stark contrast as it does anything else but be safe, telling three tales unconnected by plot, but deeply connected by the theme. The title of the set is important here: ‘Respond to All Calls’. The Ninth Doctor is fresh from the Time War and in each of the three stories the TARDIS essentially drags the Doctor into the situation, further expanded upon by the video trailer showing the TARDIS broken, but coming back to life. This does not occur literally in the set and is used as a metaphor for the Doctor becoming the Doctor again, which was the essential drive of Eccleston’s series on television. The set is three episodes from three vastly different writers all doing something to bring the Doctor back to being the Doctor before he meets Rose and can actually begin the full process of healing from the Time War.

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