Doctor Who - Big Finish 8th Doctor Adventures Series 1
As Russel T. Davies brought Doctor Who back to our TVs in 2005, Big Finish created a new range specifically for the 8th Doctor, a place to start with audio dramas for fans of the new Doctor Who series. These stories were even played on BBC radio! So let's see how Big Finish did with adapting this new style of Doctor Who.
1.1 Blood of the Daleks Part 1 by Steve Lyons
Blood of the Daleks is advertised by fans as a new who-style introduction to Big Finish, and it certainly starts out like that, with a cold open and incredibly speedy introduction to McGann's Doctor and Lucie Miller. This bit is actually my favourite part of the story, it's efficient, witty and gives us a lot of insight into both of our leads' characters. Blood of the Daleks then introduces us to the planet RedRocketRising (uh, sure) quickly and effectively too. Then it slows down a bit. Not to a crawl, but enough to be noticeable and make the story rather dull. Lucie Miller is...entertaining so far, I don't particularly like her as of yet but she's certainly fun to listen to. So a very strong opening with a decent middle and end leads to a solid opening to the Eighth Doctor Adventures.
1.2 Blood of the Daleks Part 2 by Steve Lyons
Blood of the Daleks Part 2 is more of the same really, but with more of a plot focus. This is unfortunate because the plot is boring. It's just a bit dull and very stretched out, this could have easily been a one episode story. The side characters are decent and Sheridan Smith plays Lucie Miller well, she's still entertaining. Blood of the Daleks is a passable starting story, but not really the explosive opening I was expecting.
1.3 Horror of Glam Rock by Paul Magrs
Horror of Glam Rock is a solid base-under-siege story with a really fun location and a colourful cast of characters (two played by Bernard Cribbins and Una Stubbs)! It's not a particularly amazing story but it does its job and is just fun to listen to. It also introduces key character Auntie Pat! The soundtrack is ridiculous but so much fun as well.
1.4 Immortal Beloved by Jonathan Clements
I was really surprised by this one, I thought it was great! An intriguing concept and world with reasonably well-rounded villains. The setting is the real highlight here, it's very cool, with the balance between futuristic and ancient. I think the plot itself is what's weak here. Despite the interesting settings, themes and characters, the plot is really nothing special and honestly does the idea a bit of a disservice. Even then, this is definitely the best one so far.
1.5 Phobos by Eddie Robson
Phobos starts out absolutely horrendously with awful accents and annoying performances (the first thing you hear when starting this up is literally painful to listen to), and never recovers. The whole thing's not terrible but it all feels a bit amateurish, similar to really early Big Finish (Minuet in Hell comes to mind). The plot is incredibly dull and I dislike the vast majority of the characters in this. McGann gets a cool moment and that's probably the best part of this thing. The rest is dull and forgettable.
1.6 No More Lies by Paul S. Sutton
No More Lies is also a pretty solid story with a unique start and brisk pacing. The characters aren't particularly great but they're decent enough. It's just a decent story that doesn't do anything amazingly well, but is pleasant to listen to. It starts strong but the final act of the story is probably the weakest (also starring early Big Finish monster voices), with a very rushed feeling resolution. No More Lies also features the return of the Vortisaurs which is fun.
Human Resources Part 1 by Eddie Robson
Well this is a very cool story with an incredibly fun setting, great humour and pretty solid pacing. The setting of this story in an office is just wonderful, and Eddie Robson pokes fun at office culture in a very funny way, while still keeping the mystery intriguing. The Headhunter finally gets something to do here, and Katarina Olsson is great in the role. A very strong first part to the finale!
1.8 Human Resources Part 2 by Eddie Robson
Part 2 is not quite as good as the first, but is still very strong, and actually uses the Cybermen in a unique way (hooray)! There's some really great scenes with Lucie and Karen as well as the interesting sci-fi idea at the center of it all. This is just a really great story and easily the best of series 1.
Overall series 1 was actually a bit better than I was expecting, and I enjoyed all the stories except for Phobos!