STORY PLACEMENT

 THIS STORY TAKES

 PLACE PRIOR TO THE

 NOVEL "ILLEGAL ALIEN."

 

 PRODUCTION CODE

 7R

 

 WRITTEN BY

 JONATHAN BLUM

 

 DIRECTED BY

 GARY RUSSELL

 

 WORKING TITLES

 THE MONGER OF FEAR &

 FEAR OF THE MONGER

 

 RECOMMENDED 

 PURCHASE

 BIG FINISH CD#5

 (ISBN 1-84435-044-4)

 RELEASED IN FEBRUARY

 2000.

 

 BLURB  

 ONE WOULD-BE 

 ASSASSIN IS IN A

 MENTAL WARD.

 ANOTHER'S ON THE RUN.

 THEIR INTENDED VICTIM

 IS STIRRING UP THE

 MOBS. TERRORISTS ARE

 PLANNING A STRIKE OF

 THEIR OWN. A TALK-

 RADIO HOST IS LOVING

 EVERY MINUTE OF IT. A

 WHITEHALL INSIDER

 WHISPERS ABOUT A

 MYSTERIOUS UN

 OPERATIVE, WITH A

 HIDDEN AGENDA.

 EVERYONE'S GOT

 SOMEONE THEY WANT

 YOU TO BE AFRAID OF.

 IT'LL ONLY TAKE A

 LITTLE PUSH FOR THE

 SITUATION TO ERUPT -

 AND SOMETHING  IS

 DOING THE PUSHING. BUT

 YOU CAN TRUST THE

 DOCTOR TO PUT THINGS

 RIGHT. CAN'T YOU?

 

 PREVIOUS                                                                                  NEXT

 

The Fearmonger

february 2000

(4 EPISODES)

 

 

                                                       

 

 

By and large, I hated Doctor Whoís twenty-fourth season, but then I loved Seasons 25 and 26 in almost equal measure. The same applies to the vast majority of Virginís New Adventures novels. Indeed, despite his abysmal start, the seventh Doctor has always been a favourite incarnation of mine, and in my view the Sylvester McCoy / Sophie Aldred line-up is one of the strongest in the history of the series. It was with great expectation then that I picked up the first exclusive seventh Doctor audio adventure from Big Finish Productions Ė The Fearmonger, penned by New Adventuresí veteran Kate Ormanís other half in every sense, Jonathan Blum.

 

Much about this production has impressed me. I love the Virgin feel of the play, and Iím stupefied by just how well McCoy and Aldred have performed together, considering that it had been a whole decade since they strolled off together into the Perivale sunset by the time that this was recorded. I also feel that certain elements of the story have been extremely well executed Ė the Doctorís scenes on the radio opposite Vince Hendersonís loathsome Mick Thompson are particularly memorable.

 

Whatís more, Blum writes for the regulars masterfully. His Ace will no doubt have quite a broad appeal, as sheís clearly not the angst-addled teenager of the television series, but sheís not yet the grizzled warrior of the New Adventures. Blum even manages to capture the very quintessence of the seventh Doctor in his characterisation, painting him as the master manipulator, ďputting ingredients together and warming the potĒ, as the blurb for the fourth episodes claims.

 

That said, Blumís narrative is measured and meticulous, itís pace and atmosphere more commensurate with prose than audio drama. The first time that I listened to the play, I really had to force myself to listen at times - Big Finish have a very difficult task with these audio adventures, because unless they completely hold the listenerís attention for the duration of the play, then the listener can find himself out of the story pretty quickly.

 

All told, The Fearmonger is well worth its salt, and I would recommend it to anyone with a penchant for the television seriesí concluding duo. Whilst it didnít live up to my admittedly lofty expectations, I canít say that I didnít enjoy it.

 

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.

 

  

Authorial intent places this audio drama between the New Adventures novels Nightshade and Love and War. However, at that point the TARDIS would have still been infected with Tir na n-”g protoplasm, and whilst The Fearmonger doesnít totally exclude this possibility, it makes such a placement unlikely.

 

We have therefore placed it just prior to the novel Illegal Alien, which is as close to the authorís intention as we could get it to fit. This also places it before the rest of the Big Finish audio dramas featuring the seventh Doctor and Ace, which appear to follow its continuity (a key plot point in Colditz involves Aceís CD walkman that she obtains here).

 

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