THIS STORY TAKES
PLACE BETWEEN THE BIG
FINISH AUDIO DRAMAS
"THE JUGGERNAUTS" AND
"THICKER THAN WATER."
BIG FINISH CD#68
RELEASED IN APRIL
When the Doctor and
Mel visit the National
Scientific Research as
it celebrates its
expects only to be
able to catch up with
her uncle. She doesn’t
expect to meet her
sometimes be trying,
but surely it should
never be this
“Catch-1782” is one of those stories that I half-dreaded prior to its release, but after listening to it I could not believe just how good it actually was. Released not long after the triumphant return of Doctor Who to our television screens, this story is one that has sadly been overlooked by many fans. Rather than compete with the fast and bold Saturday night drama of the 2005 series, “Catch-1782” is in contrast a quiet, personal story; a wonderful exploration of the perils of time travel.
I have to admit it, Mel and the sixth Doctor make for a good team on audio. Both “The One Doctor” and “The Juggernauts” were excellent stories, and “Catch-1782” continues the trend. I have never liked the character of Mel and I doubt that I ever will, but credit has to be given to both Big Finish and Bonnie Langford for their rejuvenation of the character. On television, Mel was nothing more than a blank slate. A character with no introduction; no past; and quite frankly no personality. On audio, however, Mel has been given a home, a time, a place – and now a family.
Alison Lawson’s story is based entirely around the idea of Mel being thrown back into her own family history and unwittingly becoming a part of it. It works brilliantly, firstly because the paradox itself is fascinating and secondly - more importantly - because Lawson’s characters are great – every last one of them. From makeshift companion Professor Munro (Iain Fairbairn); to Mel’s troubled ancestor, Henry Hallam (Keith Drinkel); to his besotted housekeeper, Mrs McGregor (Jillie Meers); every fascinating character is credibly
portrayed, really helping to bring the eighteenth century alive. These historical audio adventures keep getting better and better.
Why I liked “Catch-1782” so much though is because it is not a huge, bold historical adventure the likes of “The Highlanders” or “The Aztecs.” Instead, the period visit is of no
real historical importance, the story revolving around character rather than incident which I personally found far more interesting.
I cannot think of a better compliment to pay this new Big Finish writer than to say that she had me hooked for nearly two hours on a story revolving around a character that I have always hated! A real gem, this one.
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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