(ISBN 1-84435-166-1)





 'Ere, listen listen, I've

 got one for you. There

 once was this bloke,

 you see. Good-looking

 sort of chap. Lovely,

 brightly coloured

 coat. No rubbish.

 Quality gear. Never

 bought a drink

 neither... or so they

 say. this bloke called

 himself the Doctor.

 He was a real

 strange one. Odd

 things happened when

 he arrived. Mind you,

 them were  dark

 days. No one

 was laughing. the

 entire town was

 cursed, it was.

 Cursed by something

 not of this world...'


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Pier Pressure








When I first listened to “Pier Pressure” I labelled it 'the worst sixth Doctor and Evelyn audio since… well, probably ever'. I found it doubly disappointing because I felt that it had the potential to be so much more; a fantastic and evocative setting, a five star cast, and a writer who has proven that he can write much more compelling Doctor Who.


The second time around, I must admit that I was much more engrossed by the first two episodes, but from the third episode onwards once again things went south. Consequently it will be quite some time before I give "Pier Pressure" a third chance...


This story really is a strange animal. Ross’ characterisation is excellent – Roy Hudd’s Max Miller is consistently entertaining; the Doctor and Evelyn are both portrayed well (though the Doctor's “technicolour dreamcoat” appears to have made a comeback, not by popular demand); and even the young, heavily stereotyped, lovers Emily and Hollywood-wannabe Albert even have their charm. Regrettably though, the plot is dull, predictable and has been done a thousand times before. The young beautiful woman taken over by an alien entity. The alien using mind control to turn the Doctor’s companions against him…


Fortunately, the superb performances and exquisite production do make “Pier Pressure” a passable effort; whilst it is not quite down there with the likes of “…ish” and “Whispers of Terror", it does have to be said that it is not even in the same league as Ross' last script for Big Finish, "Medicinal Purposes".


On a side note, although “Pier Pressure” continues last month’s horrendous tradition of beginning CD1 with a trailer for the next story, Big Finish have re-vamped the layout of the CD booklets for 2006, making them a little bit more modern and a bit more like a programme that you might get at the theatre which I think is nice touch. No matter how nice the wrapping is though, it is what is inside that counts.


A wasted opportunity.


Copyright © E.G. Wolverson 2006


E.G. Wolverson has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988 to be identified as the author of this work.

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