…with a quick Docback. Didn’t get to watch / review a classic episode this week - getting ready for an exciting, evolutionary move which sprang up somewhat unexpectedly - so it’s an uphill push and more than a bit of a hustle.
The next few weeks may bring us interesting variations of Docbacks, or Docbacks occurring on odd days (I’ll be out of pocket and away from Internet on Friday March 28, for example, so will likely post a Docback the following Monday or Tuesday instead).
In the meantime, we have the wonderful HornOrSilk with a review of the Dark Eyes 2.3 / 2.4 Big Finish Audio (you can find his first installment HERE).
If anyone out there wants to take a stab at authoring a guest post to appear here on the Docbacks over the next few weeks? Drop me a line! The offer always stands, but this might be the perfect moment!
ONLY $7,000 LEFT TO FUND THE NEW INSPECTOR SPACETIME MOVIE!! THE CLOCK IS TICKING!!
Check out the campaign and media HERE!
Here's a look at previous adventures - perhaps the best DW homages / fan undertakings out there in terms of slickness, tone, and production value. Although, there was that amazing Dalek CGI film released a year or two ago - which I can’t seem to find on YouTube now?
A NEW DOCTOR WHO S8 CHARACTER / ACTOR ANNOUNCED
And she’s hot...in a come here, you naughty, naughty boy sorta way...and that's fine with me!
A press release on the matter specifies…
Keeley Hawes (Line of Duty, Upstairs Downstairs) will join the cast of Doctor Who, starring opposite the Doctor. Set to return to BBC AMERICA this year, Hawes will play Ms. Delphox, a powerful out of this world character with a dark secret. Travelling across space and time, the Twelfth Doctor (Peter Capaldi) and his companion, Clara Oswald (Jenna Coleman), will come face to face with the mysterious Ms. Delphox when they arrive on a strange and puzzling planet.
Written by Steve Thompson (Sherlock) the episode will be directed by Douglas Mackinnon (Line of Duty, Doctor Who)
Commenting on her role, Hawes, said: “I am delighted to join Doctor Who and to be working with this incredible team. Ms Delphox is a great character and someone I've had a lot of fun playing.”
While lead writer and executive producer, Steven Moffat, added: "Anyone watching Jed Mercurio's amazing Line of Duty will know that Keeley Hawes is having one hell of year. And now it's about to get even better as she achieves the greatest villainy yet attempted on Doctor Who: she plays a banker."
Still no official word on when DOCTOR WHO S8 will premiere.
HORNORSILK REVIEWS THE DARK EYES 2.3 / 2.4 BIG FINISH AUDIO
Big Finish Dark Eyes 2.3 – Time’s Horizon
By: Matt Fitton
This story explains the relationship of the first two audio stories of Dark Eyes 2 with each other and, in doing so, helps set up the “arc” which connects the box set together.
We find out what happened to Liv Chenka after the end of the first audio. She continues to be seen as “the traitor,” but she feels the real traitor was the Doctor; she finds herself more than a little bitter at her experience with the Daleks. She has been taken in by the crew of the “cryo-Ship” Orpheus; they know of her reputation, and are not entirely certain about her, yet, when the Doctor’s TARDIS lands aboard the Orpheus and she starts making charges against the Doctor, everyone, including the Doctor, has to deal with the ramifications of her anger.
The Doctor, having seen and experienced a dangerous threat coming from the end of time, has come aboard the Orpheus to warn them and to deal with that threat. Molly is with him. The Doctor has yet to meet Liv Chenka again, and so he is more than a little confused: how does she recognize his eighth incarnation, and why exactly does she seem to hate him so? He figures out it must be from some adventure in his future, and he tries to avoid all knowledge of it, but how can he do so, while engaging the deadly threat from the future and trying to keep everyone, including Liv Chenka, safe?
Thus, we see, there is a play with time going on with this arc. The Doctor and those he meets with are encountering each other in different order. It should not be surprising that Liv has to find a way to deal with the Doctor, to accept him, to consider that perhaps he was doing something she did not realize he was doing when he met her in her timeline, though, it is also not surprising, she can’t entirely work it out by the end of this adventure while she finds herself becoming a companion of the Doctor (more out of necessity than out of desire).
Molly serves as the buffer between the Doctor and Liv Chenka, as the one who Liv befriends and helps her see a new side to the Doctor. Molly and Liv find themselves cut off from the Doctor, having to deal with the threat from the future together in their own way, even as other threats emerge, coming from the crew of the cyro-ship.
The main threat, which is labeled on the cd itself so not much of a spoiler, is the Eminence. It is, however, the Eminence early on in its own history. This is not to say the entity is young: it is quite, quite old. But it is only beginning to figure out its desires, what it plans to do with creation. It has seen the end of time, and now wants to journey through it to control the universe, to make the universe in its own image. The Doctor’s previous encounter with the future Eminence gives him strength and abilities that ultimately serve as the foundation for his victory. This part of the story is done better than the previous Eminence story (in my opinion), but I am still not a fan of the Eminence.
The best part of this adventure is not the story, but the character development, the interaction between the Doctor, Liv, and Molly. Without it, I don’t think I would have enjoyed the story as much as I did. Nonetheless it is not a classic story and I would rate it a 7/10.
Big Finish Dark Eyes 2.4 – Eyes of the Master
By: Matt Fitton
We come to the end of Dark Eyes 2, and with it, I feel a bit let down. Though there are interesting ideas going on, the set feels more like individual stories with a loose arc bringing them together than the single storyline behind the original Dark Eyes.
Of course, as the finale, this story had to make itself feel as if it tied everything together. And, for what it is worth, it did so.
The out of sequence story telling of the relationship between the Doctor and Liv comes to a conclusion at the end of the audio, where the Doctor makes a journey on his own, to have the adventure which Liv has already experienced. So, there is a kind of “time loop” you can have with this set, if you want, where the first story can fit also as the last. At least, this is true for the most part, because we hear the aftermath of the first story at the end of this cd as well, something which I think would have been better left off and used at the beginning of Dark Eyes 3, which will be coming out in the fall.
The story itself is rather straightforward: the Doctor, Liv, and Molly land in 1970s, and have to deal with the newest plan of the Master. Liv, moreover, has to deal with her conflicted thoughts on the Doctor, while Molly has to help a friend from her past.
What exactly is the Master up to? He is trying to find eyes of a particular quality, eyes which reflect the energy contained within Molly. And he is doing so, this time, at the direction of the Time Lords. For now the Time Lords view the Eminence as a major threat, replacing the Daleks as their greatest concern, and the energy in Molly’s eyes will be used to take care of that threat instead of the Daleks.
This, of course, brings us to what is interesting in this set as a whole. Once again, we see elements of the Time Lords and their manipulations with time, and their willingness to do whatever it takes to come out victorious. The Time War, though not officially referenced, feels like it has begun. Time has changed once, because of the end of Dark Eyes, and this has led the Time Lords to have to change their focus upon the Eminence. And, as was hinted in New Who, the Master has been given a great deal of authority and flexibility by the Time Lords because they know he is more than capable of doing their dirty work. We see the elements of the Time War coming together and we see the Doctor, slowly, realizing what is going on, but he has yet to take up the notion that he needs to distance himself from it as we know he eventually will.
Nonetheless, I’m not exactly sure what I think of this current take on the Master. He’s the newest version, created by Big Finish (in UNIT: Dominion). I’ve not heard his first story, so I’m not sure how that would change my impression of him here. Yet, all in all, there seems to be something off about him and his version of the Master. I’m not entirely sure what it is. His personality is more jovial, more annoying, than any others I’ve encountered. At times, he even seems to be a do-gooder version of the Master: not that he is good, but rather, he still seems to appreciate helping others as long as it also benefits himself. Finally, the work he does here is more what I would expect from the Rani than the Master. But I will say this: the actor does a good job portraying this persona, whether or not it is one I like, I can’t blame Alex MacQueen.
After the adventure ends, we are given a cliffhanger, which is not unexpected because two more Dark Eyes box sets are in the works. I won’t give it away but it felt a bit underwhelming to me – it was nothing like the end of the EDA. Of course, that is probably a good thing, so as to keep expectations lower and work to build a longer, more subtle story in the process.
I give this 7/10, maybe a 7.5, for I felt it better than the third story, but not exceptional.