Friday, April 30, 2021

Sir Rory Joins Camelot!

Rory is set to switch the Roman robes for the glistening armour of the Knights of the Round Table. 




The Lone Centurion is back in Volume Two: Camelot, set for release in July 2022.


This second volume of full-cast audio adventures finds Rory Williams in the court of King Arthur, where wizardry and quests await him, all whilst he protects the Pandorica. This box set also features Hugh Skinner (W1A, Mamma Mia 2: Here We Go Again) as Sir Lancelot, Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo (Devs, The War Master) as Queen Guinevere, Sam Stafford (The Box of Delights, Philip Hinchcliffe Presents) as King Arthur and Richard Clifford (It’s A Sin, The Crown) as Merlin. 


The cast are completed by Barnaby Edwards (Gallifrey, Sherlock Holmes), Rosie Baker (Torchwood, The Sixth Doctor Adventures), Harley Viveash (The Robots, Cicero), Maanuv Thiara (Line of Duty), Henry Nott (The War Master, Cicero) and Tom Alexander (UNIT, The Eighth Doctor Adventures). 


The Lone Centurion – Volume Two: Camelot is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition CD or digital download at www.bigfinish.com.


Rory Williams – the Lone Centurion. A man trapped in a body not his own and stranded in history. His one job is to guard the Pandorica, the tomb of his fiancée. But life gets in the way, even when you're immortal.


The Once and Future Nurse by Alfie Shaw


Camelot is in trouble. Lancelot is wounded and Merlin warns that dark times are ahead. The wizard’s convinced the solution lies in the mythical Pandorica. Meanwhile, Lancelot owes his life to a humble servant named Rory.


The Glowing Warrior by Tim Foley


Arise Sir Rory! Every new knight must embark upon a quest, and soon Sir Rory (and his noble squire Lancelot) head out to solve the mystery of the Glowing Knight and save a damsel in distress. But are they walking into a trap?


The Last King of Camelot by Kate Thorman


Camelot is under attack. Arthur and Guinevere have fled and Merlin's direst prophecies have come true. Can Rory prevail before the kingdom falls?


Director and producer Scott Handcock said: “It was lovely reintroducing Rory to the Doctor Who universe in the first volume of The Lone Centurion and now we follow the character a few centuries on to his adventures in Camelot. It’s a brilliant backdrop for an alternative-timeline universe. We get to play with the legend of King Arthur and have assembled a brilliant supporting cast alongside our other Arthur (Darvill) including Sam Stafford, Luyanda Unati Lewis-Nyawo, Richard Clifford and a scene-stealing performance from Hugh Skinner as Lancelot!”


The Lone Centurion – Volume Two: Camelot is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition CD or digital download), exclusively from the Big Finish website.


Big Finish listeners can save money by ordering both volumes of The Lone Centurion: Rome & Camelot together in a bundle.

Matthew Waterhouse Writes Adric Audiobook!

We’re time-travelling back to 1981 for the second audiobook in the Doctor Who – The Audio Novels range, set for release in January 2022.

Matthew Watterhouse (c) Tony Whitmore

Best known in the Doctor Who universe as Alzarian maths whizz Adric, Matthew Waterhouse narrates his own audiobook, Watchers, which finds the Fourth Doctor and his boy companion trapped in the Time Vortex. With time running out, they encounter one of the Doctor’s most terrifying foes – and in the shadows, someone is watching...


This enhanced audiobook of over seven hours takes place between two 1981 Doctor Who television stories, The Keeper of Traken and Logopolis. It also features specially composed music and sound effects, plus a guest appearance by Nicholas Briggs as the voice of the Daleks.


Doctor Who – The Audio Novels: Watchers is now available to pre-order as a digital download exclusively from www.bigfinish.com.


When the TARDIS is trapped in the Vortex, the Doctor and Adric realise that there is something immensely powerful that is draining time itself from the universe. 


The wrecks of other time ships – the products of countless experiments in time – exist in a fused cluster in the Vortex. None of them can escape and many of their crews are dead. As the Doctor tries to free the TARDIS, he and Adric encounter threats from other groups, desperate to escape, including a hostile reptile species, mechanically enhanced cyborgs – and Daleks! 


But there is someone from the Doctor's own world who is watching. 


Someone who will prove useful when this Doctor reaches the end of his life…


Producer David Richardson said: “I’m always excited by brilliant story ideas, and when Matthew delivered his pitch for Watchers I was hugely excited indeed. The script truly delivered on that – Matthew has created the most brilliant story world, with rich, interesting and bold characters and breathtaking visuals. We’ve all wanted to see where the Doctor and Adric headed after Traken – and now we can, as the TARDIS lands within the vortex itself and the preparations begin for the Doctor’s end.”


Writer and narrator Matthew Waterhouse added: “It’s been very exciting to do this project. When we decided we were going to do a novel set in the second half of Tom Baker’s last year, specifically between The Keeper of Traken and Logopolis, I wanted to write something that would fit with the tone of that season – that slightly minor-key, mournful quality – something that fits in to that spirit.”


Doctor Who – The Audio Novels: Watchers is now available to pre-order as a digital download exclusively from the Big Finish website.


Thursday, April 29, 2021

Linda Thorson is BACK in the World of The Avengers

 Tara-ra Boom-de-ay!


There’s espionage aplenty in the new series of The Avengers, as legendary actress Linda Thorson returns to the series in a brand-new role.


Linda Thorson (c) Tony Whitmore

Released today from Big Finish, Julian Wadham is back as spy-about-town John Steed alongside Emily Woodward as his trusty sidekick, Tara King, who was originally played in the 1960s TV series by Linda Thorson. These four brand new, full-cast audio adventures are adapted from The Avengers comic strips originally published in TV Comic.


The Avengers – The Comic Strip Adaptations Volume 5: Steed & Tara King is now available as a collector’s edition four-disc box set or digital download at www.bigfinish.com


The four fables in this fantastic volume are as follows: 


Whatever Next? By John Dorney


After an eccentric scientist correctly predicts an imminent asteroid collision, John Steed and Tara King are dispatched to uncover the basis of his precognitive powers. The answer is stranger than they could possibly have expected...


How Does Your Garden Grow? By Dan Starkey


When the plants around an Air Force base grow to prodigious proportions over-night, an explanation is required. The trail leads to an out of the way farm and a potential scientific break-through - but there might just be a snake in the grass...


A Very Civil War by Roland Moore


Steed and King are summoned to investigate a most unusual robbery - where the robbers don’t seem to have been interested in taking the money. How does the mystery tie in to a local Civil War reenactment society?


Mother’s Day by Sarah Grochala


Mother has been called back to his Alma mater to present the school prizes - but someone doesn’t want him to survive the ceremony. It’s down to Steed and King to go undercover and stop the assassins from spoiling the day...


Of working with Linda Thorson, actress Emily Woodward said: “She’s just the loveliest lady – so generous with her time, she’s interesting and very complimentary – any kind of fears I had were completely burst because she was just fab!”


“Recording these adventures is never a chore, always a joy, with the added fact of meeting the real Tara King which has been amazing!”


Actor Julian Wadham added: “I came in a bit later than the other actors, so the girls had already had a chance to establish their relationship, and I could hear immediately Linda’s special affection for Emily and how relaxed and easy it was between them, with such a sense of the fun!”


The Avengers is always a pleasure – it’s just one of those jobs which is relaxed, fun and playful, so I always look forward to it!”


Actress Linda Thorson added: “The back-and-forth between Tara and Steed is there wonderfully in these scripts. I’m thrilled to be a part of it. What a wonderful thing that this classic series has this new life with these wonderful actors, Julian Wadham and Emily Woodward.”


Producer David Richardson said: “Picture this: there I was booking Emily for the recording days, and her lovely agent Phil just happened to say, ‘I also represent Linda Thorson, I’m sure she’d love to do one of these.’ I could not reply fast enough! And so thanks to Phil, Linda is our guest star in the episode Mother’s Day, and what an utter joy she is to work with.


“She was so delighted to be acting with Julian and Emily (she’s been a friend of Emily’s mum Michelle Dotrice for many years), and she kept us laughing and shared many stories of her time on the TV series. What a legend – I’d love to work with her again.”


Joining the cast alongside Christopher Benjamin (Jago & Litefoot) as Mother are Mina Anwar (The Lone Centurion, The Sarah Jane Adventures), Timothy Bentinck (The Archers, The Box of Delights), Jacob Dudman (The Eleventh Doctor Chronicles, The Lives of Captain Jack), Dan Starkey (The Paternoster Gang, The Ninth Doctor Adventures) Samuel Clemens (Callan, Gallifrey: Time War), Louisa Clein (Emmerdale, Survivors), Nicholas Day (UNIT, Minder), Clive Hayward (The Diary of River Song, Timeslip), Glen McCready (Master!, The Robots), Greg Patmore (Coronation Street, Dark Shadows), John Scougall (Missy, Unforgotten) and Robert Whitelock (Marcella, Transference).


The Avengers – The Comic Strip Adaptations Volume 05: Steed & Tara King is now available as a collector’s edition four-disc box set or digital download, exclusively from the Big Finish website. Big Finish listeners can save money by purchasing volumes 3-5 together as a single bundle.


The Fifth Doctor Turns Forty!

We’re smelling a flower, watching a sunset, eating a well-prepared meal and releasing two brand-new volumes of full-cast audio adventures to celebrate forty years of Peter Davison’s Fifth Doctor.


Comprising two anniversary box sets released in April and September 2022 respectively, Doctor Who: The Fifth Doctor AdventuresForty celebrates four decades since the Fifth Doctor made his first regular appearance in Doctor Who. 


The dynamic dramas are plucked from various points in the Fifth Doctor’s timeline, as he adventures alongside beloved companions Tegan (Janet Fielding), Turlough (Mark Strickson), Nyssa (Sarah Sutton), Adric (Matthew Waterhouse) and Kamelion (Jon Culshaw) across the episodes. 


Doctor Who: The Fifth Doctor Adventures Forty Volume 1 and Doctor Who: The Fifth Doctor AdventuresForty Volume 2 are now available to pre-order individually as a collector’s edition CD or on download, exclusively at www.bigfinish.com.


Expect to hear fearsome adversaries, the Cybermen, Ice Warriors and Autons in the trio of TARDIS tales across the two volumes.


 Volume 1


Secrets of Telos by Matt Fitton


God of War by Sarah Grochala


Volume 2


The Auton Infinity by Tim Foley


Opening story, Secrets of Telos, is a direct sequel to the Doctor Who television episode Tomb of the Cybermen (1967).


Producer David Richardson said: “It’s always fascinated me that Tomb of the Cybermen isn’t a story that definitively ends. There’s a loose strand of story left floating at the end of episode four – and that strand of story launches us straight into Forty, a lavish celebration of forty years of the Fifth Doctor. What strange force is pulling the Doctor forwards through his incarnation? The mystery will be solved but along the way enjoy spending time with Tegan, Nyssa, Adric, Turlough and Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart. As birthday parties go, this is going to be a spectacular one!”


Doctor Who: The Fifth Doctor AdventuresForty Volume 1 and Doctor Who: The Fifth Doctor AdventuresForty Volume 2 are now available to pre-order individually as a collector’s edition CD or on download from the Big Finish website.

Big Finish listeners can save money by ordering both volumes of Forty together in a bundle.

Jenna Stannis takes on The Paluma Project in Blake's 7

We’re down and safe with Sally Knyvette, as she reads a terrifying new tale from the Blake’s 7 audiobook range.


Due for release in July 2021, The Palluma Project is written by Tim Gambrell (Bernice Summerfield) and read by Sally Knyvette, who has played smuggler-turned-freedom fighter Jenna Stannis in Blake’s 7 on television and audio since 1978. This audio adventure takes the crew of the Liberator to a mysterious outpost in the far-flung reaches of the galaxy, where the Federation seem to be torturing mysterious aliens to find the secret of their powers.


Blake's 7: The Palluma Project is now available to pre-order as a digital download exclusively from www.bigfinish.com.


When the Liberator discovers a mysterious penal outpost in an obscure part of the galaxy, the crew soon find themselves fighting for their lives - not only against the convicted criminals the Federation are using as scientists, but against the horrifying results of their experiments. 


What is the deadly secret of the people of Palluma 25 and why is it so valuable to the Federation? Only Gan holds the key to unlock what is really going on...


Writer Tim Gambrell said: “For someone who played Blake’s 7 with his Star Wars figures as a child, imagine the thrill of being asked to write an actual Blake’s 7 story. Then, imagine the thrill of knowing that Sally Knyvette – the amazing Jenna herself – is going to narrate that story. It’s one of those mad situations where you can’t quite believe things are true. 


“With The Palluma Project, I wanted to write a story that gave Gan a chance to shine, and where his having a limiter was a positive for a change. But most of all, I set out to write a story that I thought would work well as part of the TV series, and wouldn’t seem out of place during the first half of the second series.”


Producer Xanna Eve Chown added: “The Palluma Project is a great story - there's lots going on, and some very challenging situations facing the Liberator crew at a spooky Federation laboratory with more than one dark secret. And it's a real treat to hear Sally Knyvette's familiar voice reading it to us.”


Blake’s 7: The Palluma Project is now available to pre-order as a digital download exclusively from the Big Finish website.

55. JOE SIMS - Seven of Mark

It is our privilege to welcome Joe Sims as our guest, who stars alongside David Tennant and Tom Baker in Doctor Who: Dalek Universe, a 10-part epic audio adventure that premiered in April 2021 with prequel Fourth Doctor story "The Dalek Protocol" and the first part of a 3-part box set series featuring the Tenth Doctor, all under the banner "Dalek Universe".  

Joe speaks passionately about his acting career including his breakthrough television part in Broadchurch, and he speaks in depth about working in the audio medium.   


Philip recommends Doctor Who: Planet of the Spiders (audiobook read by Elisabeth Sladen)    

Dwayne recommends Daleks: The Destroyers (audio adaptation by Big Finish)


Listen to Dwayne's guest appearance on The Doctor Who Show - Primary Sources.


Dwayne appeared on the All of Time and Space podcast this week, talking about classic series 2 episode, The Rescue.


Mark Seven image by Simon Holub



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Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Volume 5 of The First Doctor Adventures is OUT NOW

All the world’s a stage in the fifth volume of Doctor Who – The First Doctor Adventures, two brand new full-cast audio dramas released today from Big Finish Productions.


David Bradley returns as the first incarnation of the Doctor, along with companions Susan (Claudia Grant), Barbara Wright (Jemma Powell) and Ian Chesterton (Jamie Glover) in a pair of stories that take them from the sewers of a desperate planet to the great Globe itself, where rebellion is in the air!



Alongside the previously announced Wendy Craig and Lauren Cornelius, the cast is completed by Nicholas Asbury (Space: 1999, The Paternoster Gang), Ian Conningham (The Robots, The Diary of River Song), Susie Emmett (Gallifrey: Time War, Doctor Who: Ravenous), Amanda Hurwitz (Derry Girls, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang), Phil Mulryne (The Avengers, The Omega Factor), Phyllida Nash (Doctor Who: The Monthly Adventures), Clive Wood (Doctor Who: Stranded, The Human Frontier) and Big Finish newcomer Liane-Rose Bunce.


Doctor Who: The First Doctor Adventures – Volume 5 is now available as a collector's edition box set (on CD at £24.99) and as a digital download (at £19.99), exclusively from www.bigfinish.com.


The two TARDIS tales are as follows:


For the Glory of Urth by Guy Adams


The TARDIS has barely landed in an alien sewer when a distant scream sends Susan racing to give aid, and the crew split up. 


Trying to reunite, the travellers find themselves in something resembling a monastery led by a man half-way between an Abbot and a warlord. They discover that they are in Urth, a barbaric place clinging on to its former glory. 


It's somewhere its populace are never allowed to leave, somewhere keeping many secrets from its people. 


And today those secrets will be revealed...


The Hollow Crown by Sarah Grochala


When the TARDIS lands in Shoreditch, 1601, the Doctor suggests going to see a play at the Globe Theatre and his friends readily agree. 


But this is a turbulent time. There is violence in the street, plots against the Queen, and rebellion is in the air. At the centre of it all stands the most famous playwright in British history - William Shakespeare - who is having troubles of his own. 


As tensions mount and wheels turn within wheels, the travellers are about to discover if the play really is the thing...


Of writing The Hollow Crown, Sarah Grochala said: “I loved writing for [Shakespeare and Queen Elizabeth I], they’re two characters that I’m fascinated with! It was also interesting writing for them within the context of what other writers have done for Doctor Who. There is a nod to Elizabeth’s previous relationship with the Doctor and to the fact that Shakespeare has met the Doctor before. The First Doctor, however, looks very different to the Tenth Doctor so neither of them recognise this incarnation.”


Writer of For the Glory of Urth Guy Adams added: “When I’m writing for the First Doctor, the voice in my head is somewhere between William Hartnell and David Bradley. I find it very hard not to let my ears get a little bit infected by the performance, and David’s is brilliant – it’s his performance of the First Doctor as well as a beautiful channelling of William Hartnell. 


“David’s a great actor, and great actors don’t just do impressions. They can’t – the quality will always shine through and it will become something more multi-layered and textured. Listen carefully and you will hear the delightful elements that are more Bradley than Hartnell.”


Doctor Who: The First Doctor Adventures – Volume 5 is now available exclusively from the Big Finish website.

Thursday, April 22, 2021

54. Turlough & Torchwood // Randomoids 2 - The Selectortron Strikes Back

In our second episode of stories picked by the Big Finish Randomoid Selectortron, we review Doctor Who Short Trips: Gardens of the Dead featuring Mark Strickson as Turlough and Torchwood: One Rule featuring Tracy-Ann Oberman as Yvonne Hartman. 

Plus, Dwayne's heart is broken as he shares an email from a listener who doesn't appreciate his humour. 

Of course, the burning question on everyone's lips is.... which stories will the Randomoid Selectortron throw up next? 


Recommendations

Philip recommends Torchwood: Lease of Life (Big Finish Audio)

Dwayne recommends Doctor Who: The Paradise of Death (3rd Doctor, Sarah Jane and Brigadier story, BBC)



Philip Edney on Twitter

Dwayne Bunney on Twitter

The Sirens of Audio on YouTube

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Email: sirensofaudio@gmail.com

Website: sirensofaudio.com

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Clips and music are copyright BBC and Big Finish. No infringement is intended.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Torchwood: Gooseberry OUT NOW

Three’s a crowd in April’s monthly full-cast Torchwood audio adventure from Big Finish Productions. 

 Released today, Gooseberry sees Burn Gorman and Tom Price reprising their roles as dynamic duo Dr Owen Harper and PC Andy Davidson in a thrilling tale of love, deception and, of course, aliens. 


The cast is completed by Lois Chimimba (The One, Trust Me), Daniel Llewellyn-Williams (EastEnders, Torchwood), Betsan Llwyd (Keeping Faith, Young Dracula), Joanna Van Kampen (The Lone Centurion, Casualty) and Big Finish newcomer Lowri Gwynne. 

 Torchwood: Gooseberry is now available as a collector’s edition CD at £10.99 or on download at £8.99, exclusively at www.bigfinish.com

 Andy has a girlfriend. She's called Caite and she's utterly lovely. And then she meets Owen. 

 Owen finds out that Caite has a secret. One that he's desperate to understand. But, the more he discovers, the more dangerously close to Caite he becomes.  

 What's going to happen when Andy finds out? 

 Writer and producer James Goss said: “One of the benefits of lockdown has been getting to record more with Burn and Tom Price. Burn himself suggested this story - what if PC Andy gets a girlfriend and Owen has issues with the situation? Lois Chimimba puts in a great performance as Andy's sweetheart. Not everything is what it seems, obviously, but it's a privilege working with them on this during the recording.” 

 Torchwood: Gooseberry is now available as a collector’s edition CD at £10.99 or on download from the Big Finish website at £8.99. 

 Please note that Torchwood contains adult material and may not be suitable for younger listeners. 

Friday, April 16, 2021

Time Lord Victorious Finale OUT NOW

Big Finish, in association with Demon Records and BBC Studios, today releases the long-awaited conclusion of the Time Lord Victorious multi-platform event, starring David Tennant and Paul McGann. 


Echoes of Extinction comprises two separate adventures that listeners can play in any order and each features a different incarnation of the Doctor as they battle the dastardly Network (Torchwood’s Burn Gorman). 

The star-studded cast includes Kathryn Drysdale (Bridgerton, Doctor Who), Arthur Darvill (The Lone Centurion, Legends of Tomorrow), Mina Anwar (The Sarah Jane Adventures, The War Master), Paul Clayton (Torchwood, Cicero), Jack DeVos (The Outpost), Melanie Stevens (Torchwood: God Amoung Us), Jacob Dudman (The Eleventh Doctor Chronicles, The Lives of Captain Jack), Stephen Critchlow (Torchwood, Gallifrey: Time War) and Inès de Clercq (The Lone Centurion, Broadchurch).

Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious – Echoes of Extinction is now available as a digital download (at £8.99) at www.bigfinish.com

Trapped, a haunted monster waits to consume new victims. It needs help. It needs a doctor. Unfortunately, it also needs to kill whoever it meets. Thrust into immediate danger, and on the back-foot, it will take all of the Doctor’s ingenuity to triumph. 

Two interlinked adventures. Two Doctors. One foe.

Director Scott Handcock said: “Alfie Shaw’s done a brilliant job producing the audio adventures for Time Lord Victorious and his script for Echoes of Extinction is no exception. It’s a single story told from two perspectives, balancing two different Doctors, and introducing a host of fantastic guest stars. It’s great to hear David Tennant and Paul McGann tackle opposite aspects of one adventure, with Burn Gorman unifying the two strands as the menacing Network.”

Writer Alfie Shaw added: “I mean, getting to write for Paul McGann and David Tennant is a highlight in and of itself! It was a really interesting challenge to create two stories that had to be both self-contained and also add-up to a whole, and that was something that we worked hard to achieve. Plus, when you’re writing for two Doctors, there’s the opportunity to do a bit of a back and forth between them. I’ve previously written a story which was basically two Doctors proactively bickering, so I wanted to go with a different direction for this one.”

Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious – Echoes of Extinction is now available as a digital download (at £8.99), exclusively from the Big Finish website

Thursday, April 15, 2021

REVIEW | Doctor Who: Dalek Universe 1 starring David Tennant

In a world still reeling from the effects of the pandemic, television Doctor Who has been cut back and fans who rely on the Beeb for their fix won't be getting a full season this year. 

Big Finish, on the other hand, seem to have gone from strength to strength. Far from reducing their output due to the pandemic, remote home recording has kept actors and production teams running at maximum output. 

Even with their Monthly Range of adventures coming to an end in March, it still feels like Big Finish are focusing yet still increasing their output to hungry fans.

But will the stories meet fan expectations?


If Dalek Universe 1, a new boxset, the first of three, starring the ever popular David Tennant as the Tenth Doctor is anything to go by, your hunger for new Doctor Who is going to be regularly satisfied!

With companions Anya Kingdom, played by Jane Slavin, and Mark Seven played by Tennant's fellow Broadchurch star Joe Sims, the stage is set for an epic adventure for the ages. With nods to the past Tenth Doctor era and the ancient past with many elements from Terry Nations Dalek universe canvas, fans will be salivating for more. 

But what of the casual listener who rarely, if ever, dips into audio?

Although a 3-part set, it would be handy to hear the prequel story, The Dalek Protocol starring Tom Baker as the fourth Doctor with Slavin and Sims. But it's not vital to the enjoyment of Dalek Universe 1. 

Tennant feels as though he has never left the role and writer of the first two episodes, John Dorney, has captured his era perfectly. It's a sentimental banquet for anyone who was watching the show in the mid-noughties. The dialogue is delivered to perfection and it's difficult to believe that this cast was recording remotely from their laundry or clothes cupboards. 

As the mystery unfolds in the first episode, "Buying Time", we are submersed into the mystery of a tenth Doctor thrown into an adventure without his TARDIS, and meeting characters he knows from a much earlier incarnation. We're also introduced to a character played by Mark Gatiss, who has appeared several times in different roles in TV Doctor Who and on audio.

But hold your horses folks. Any belief that you're in for a typical run of the mill story will be dashed as we are treated to a cliff-hanger for the ages that will blow your mind and force you to listen to the second episode immediately. 

"The Wrong Woman" continues on from the previous story, but not in the way you were expecting. If you've had time to recover your wits from the insane cliffhanger, the ride is far from over as you take a timey-wimey roller-coaster ride that doesn't let up until the end. 

Andrew Smith takes writing duties for the third episode, "The House of Kingdom", a fascinating look into some more of Anya's backstory and a return for more of the creations of Terry Nation's universe from the 60's, including the Mechanoids, which always had the potential to be much more than that single episode in 1965. 

Despite the stress of lockdown, Ken Bentley has done a superb job directing this set. I suspect, however, that Ken would say his job was made easy by the extraordinary cast led by Tennant. 

If all the above ingredients were enough to set my imagination ablaze, it was Howard Carter's incredible score and sound design that officially blew my mind! Howard's work was a standout for me in last year's "Return To Skaro", and this set proves his versatility and adaptability when it comes to different ranges and settings. Incredible stuff! 

The main question on my mind after hearing this set? 

How am I going to bear the 3 month wait until the next set is released in July? 

Get Dalek Universe 1 today from bigfinish.com.

Dwayne Bunney

53. ANNETTE BADLAND - Behind The Mask

We are delighted to be joined by the multi-talented Annette Badland, who first appeared on the Doctor Who radar in 2005 as Margaret Blaine in season one of the revived series of Doctor Who. She was the first person to be asked back to play a recurring villain and appeared again in Boom Town with Christopher Eccleston, Billie Piper and John Barrowman. 

Since then she has appeared in numerous roles for Big Finish productions including the character of Margaret in an audio version of Torchwood. 

Annette speaks about her ongoing career which began in the 1970's, her love of theatre, Outlander and much, much more. 

Thank you Annette for being our guest.


Recommendations

Philip recommends Doctor Who: Suburban Hell (4th Doctor and Leela Big Finish Audio)

Dwayne recommends Torchwood: Sync (Big Finish Audio)



Philip Edney on Twitter

Dwayne Bunney on Twitter

The Sirens of Audio on YouTube

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Email: sirensofaudio@gmail.com

Website: sirensofaudio.com

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Clips and music are copyright BBC and Big Finish. No infringement is intended.

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

Doctor Who - Dalek Universe 1 OUT NOW starring David Tennant, Joe Sims, Jane Slavin and Mark Gatiss

David Tennant is back as the Tenth Doctor in the first volume of the epic saga Dalek Universe, released today from Big Finish.


This first volume of full-cast audio adventures features a trio of thrilling tales, as the Tenth Doctor finds himself up against a malevolent businessman without his trusty TARDIS – but with the help of Mark Seven (Joe Sims) and Anya Kingdom (Jane Slavin), the day may just be saved once again.



The cast is completed by Juliet Aubrey (Middlemarch, Primeval), Mark Gatiss (Masterful, Dracula), Kevin McNally (Pirates of the Carribbean, The End of the Beginning) Gemma Whelan (Game of Thrones, Vienna) Maria Teresa Creasey (Space: 1999, The Alienist), Chris Jarman (UNIT: Incursions, The Eighth Doctor Adventures) and Nicholas Briggs as the Mechonoids.



Doctor Who – Dalek Universe 1 is now available as a collector's edition box set (on CD at £24.99) and as a digital download (at £19.99), exclusively from www.bigfinish.com.

Time has gone awry. The Doctor is lost, without his TARDIS. But he’s not alone. The Space Security Service agents Anya Kingdom and Mark Seven haven’t always been on his side in the past, but now they are here to help him. 

And he’s going to need them - because the oldest foes of all are waiting to strike. Ready to take down their greatest enemy... 


Writer John Dorney said: “Buying Time and The Wrong Woman form a two-part story, a Russell T Davies-style Tenth Doctor adventure with a cliffhanger in the middle. I can’t really say too much about The Wrong Woman but one of the things I was keen to do was to make it feel like you’re starting with a finale. The size and scale then just gets bigger and bigger as you figure out what’s going on. There are lots of twists and surprises going on. 

“I also wanted it to be fast and funny. I remember reading something where either Russell T Davies or Steven Moffat talked about how they would do a finale: they would create big moments and set pieces, and work out how to connect them. I realised I’d got a few big moments I could hang the story off, and work a path between them, which gives a crazy journey on a large scale and hopefully a great sense of fun.”



Writer of The House of Kingdom Andrew Smith added: “I was really excited to have the chance to write for another Doctor, actually. The thing with the Tenth Doctor is that he says things before he’s fully formed a thought, and it tumbles out. Right from the TV special The Christmas Invasion he does that, and it’s all down to David Tennant’s delivery.

“The energy of this Doctor is something else, and it affects the pace of the story – boom, boom, boom! They don’t stand around for long, they get on with it. He’s a Doctor who doesn’t wait for things to happen, he gets things done and is in people’s faces. That energy is all over the play.”



Doctor Who – Dalek Universe 1 is now available as a collector's edition box set (on CD at £24.99) and as a digital download (at £19.99), exclusively from the Big Finish website.

Each of the three volumes in Dalek Universe will be released as a four-disc collector’s edition box set or download containing three brand-new full cast audio adventures, plus a selection of behind-the-scenes extras.  
 
Doctor Who fans worldwide can now pre-order all three volumes of Dalek Universe, which are available in three formats – collector’s edition CD, digital download or limited edition gatefold triple LP vinyl – exclusively from the Big Finish website (www.bigfinish.com), from just £19.99.  
 
Big Finish listeners can save by pre-ordering a bundle of the entire series for just £66 (as a collector’s edition box set) or £58 (as a download).  
 
The Dalek Universe triple LP vinyls are strictly limited to a pressing of 1,000 per volume, and can be pre-ordered at £35.99 each, or £99 for the bundle of all three albums, again exclusively at the Big Finish website (www.bigfinish.com). 

Please note: the vinyl editions do not include any behind-the-scenes extras. However, listeners purchasing vinyl LP editions will receive a download of the story automatically and be given access to the CD edits as a bonus download. Episodes will be edited specifically for the vinyl format, presented as two parts, one on each side, each with opening and closing music.  In addition, all pre-orders of the vinyls will also receive the behind the extras as a bonus download.

Adric to Return Post Earthshock?

Peter Davison set to return as the Fifth Doctor in a brand new box set of audio adventures due for release later this year. 

Doctor Who – The Fifth Doctor Adventures: The Lost Resort and Other Stories reunites the Doctor with his companions (last heard in the 2020 Monthly Adventure release, Madquake), Tegan, Nyssa, Marc, and...

Adric? 


Peter Davison stars alongside Janet Fielding, Sarah Sutton and George Watkins, with a special appearance by Matthew Waterhouse in the first of three full-cast audio dramas which make up the box set. 

Doctor Who – The Fifth Doctor Adventures: The Lost Resort and Other Stories is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition 4-CD box set (at £22.99) or digital download (at £19.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

The three thrilling adventures are as follows: 

The Lost Resort by AK Benedict 

Reunited with his companions, the Doctor’s plans to travel home to Gallifrey are cast aside when the TARDIS materialises on the Soresia: a planetoid with an unusual temporal atmosphere, home to the Welkin Sanatorium; seemingly an ideal place to recuperate. But the patients – like the Sanatorium – are mere shadows of their former selves. Decay has taken hold... yet their secrets remain as strong and healthy as ever. 

The Perils of Nellie Bly by Sarah Ward 

When the TARDIS crew arrive on the RMS Oceanic, they meet notorious journalist Nellie Bly on the final leg of her voyage to travel the world in less than eighty days. But with a saboteur on board, the Doctor and his friends must race to help Nellie reach her destination – and save her future. 

Nightmare of the Daleks by Martyn Waites 

Deep within a drilling rig on planet XB93, its crew has been suffering nightmares: dreams of cold, metallic creatures, stalking them through the base, killing them as they sleep. Fortunately for the crew, the Daleks’ own worst nightmare has just arrived – and he goes by the name of the Doctor.

Producer and Director Scott Handcock said: “It’s been lovely having an opportunity to introduce a new companion to the Fifth Doctor’s era. George Watkins instantly slipped into the dynamic between Peter, Sarah and Janet and it gave us the chance to explore some new sides to the characters. 

“Part of their storyline was dealing with the introduction of a new crew member so soon after the death of Adric – and now they’re coming face to face with him on the planet Soresia, a planet where ghosts aren’t exactly laid to rest. It’s a lovely four-part story from AK Benedict, paired with a double-bill of two-parters from Sarah Ward and Martyn Waites as we meet journalist Nellie Bly on her around-the-world voyage, then travel to an industrial future where the Doctor’s most deadly enemies are invading people’s nightmares.”

Doctor Who – The Fifth Doctor Adventures: The Lost Resort and Other Stories is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition 4-CD box set (at £22.99) or digital download (at £19.99), exclusively from the Big Finish website.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Dalek Universe Prologue Released Today

The power is on and the Daleks are coming for the Fourth Doctor in Doctor Who – The Dalek Protocol, which sets the scene for this month’s epic Dalek Universe adventures. 


Released today from Big Finish, this four-part adventure features the Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker), Leela (Louise Jameson) and K9 (John Leeson) as they are stranded on the parrinium planet, Exxilon – which also happens to be where the Daleks are headed...

The tale also features Anya Kingdom (Jane Slavin) and Mark Seven (Joe Sims), as we meet them before the events of Dalek Universe.



Doctor Who – The Fourth Doctor Adventures: The Dalek Protocol is now available as a collector's edition box set (on CD at £14.99) and as a digital download (at £12.99), exclusively from www.bigfinish.com.

The Earth mission to Exxilon is nearing completion after many long years. Enough parrinium has been mined to stop the spread of the deadly space plague. But suddenly, the power-draining beacon from the Exxilon city is inexplicably reactivated, stranding the humans. 

The Doctor, Leela and K9 are stuck too, right on top of the remains of the city – under attack! 

Somewhere nearby, the android agent Mark Seven is enacting his secret orders while the Doctor’s estranged future companion, Anya Kingdom, is hoping for redemption. 

And heading inexorably towards them all… the Daleks!

The cast is completed by Jez Fielder (Dalek Empire, The Prisoner) Anna Mitcham (Doctor Who: The Monthly Adventures) and Nicholas Briggs as the Daleks.



Producer David Richardson said: “The Dalek Protocol is an exciting sequel to Death to the Daleks. It’s also a launching pad for our Dalek Universe series – presenting Terry Nation’s thrilling world of the battle between the Space Security Service and the Daleks. One that the Tenth Doctor will soon find himself mysteriously thrown into… But, for now, it’s his fourth incarnation facing up to his oldest foes, accompanied by Leela and K9, and watched from afar by Anya, a companion who left him long ago – and, for him, yet to arrive in his life...”

Writer and director Nicholas Briggs added: “The Dalek Protocol sets up the relationship between Anya Kingdom and Mark Seven, essentially. And they work really well together. It’s a nice vibe.”

“It’s a story that’s very much in two parts (even though it’s a four-parter). Some of the story is on a spaceship, heading into danger. The other part is on Exxilon with an old friend of the Doctor’s and a new enemy for him too. But there are plenty of Daleks as well!”

Doctor Who – The Fourth Doctor Adventures: The Dalek Protocol is now available as a collector's edition box set (on CD at £14.99) and as a digital download (at £12.99), exclusively from the Big Finish website.


Thursday, April 8, 2021

Arthur Darvill Finds "Emotional Truth" in the Ridiculous - The Lone Centurion - Volume One: Rome is OUT NOW

All roads lead to Rome for Rory Williams in The Lone Centurion – Volume One: Rome, released today from Big Finish Productions.



Companion to the Eleventh Doctor. Father of River Song. And, for 2000 years or thereabouts, an immortal Auton replicant watching over his beloved Amelia Pond. Arthur Darvill stars in a brand-new Doctor Who spin-off series of full-cast audio dramas. 

This first volume features three thrilling tales of the time-travelling centurion, taking him from the gladiatorial ring to the heart of conspiracies and plots – all while trying to find the Pandorica, which he happens to have lost...

The Lone Centurion – Volume One: Rome is now available as a collector's edition CD (at £19.99) or digital download (at £16.99), at www.bigfinish.com.


        Legend tells of the Lone Centurion - a mysterious figure dressed as a Roman soldier who stood guard over the Pandorica, warning off those who would attempt to open it; a constant warrior whose story appeared in the folk history of a dozen civilisations. 

        Only... he seems to have misplaced it. 

        Travelling to Rome in search of the Pandorica, Rory finds himself forced to perform as a gladiator in the Colosseum... where he attracts the attention of the Imperial household.




Director and producer Scott Handcock said: “The episodes are fantastically silly. They’ve been a joy to record, and an even greater joy to listen to in the edits. That’s the wonderful thing about working with someone like Arthur – even in the most ridiculous of situations, he finds the emotional truth. 

“Our first volume opens with Rory in the gladiatorial ring, and events spiral out from there. It’s actually a perfect place to set a series like this. It’s a world populated with so many larger-than-life characters – emperors and assassins and soothsayers – that plunging Rory (with all his memories of the 21st century) into the thick of it proves a really enjoyable clash.”

Arthur Darvill added: “On audio, it’s so much fun to be able to play things with such variety, and just go for something – it feels like playing because there’s no pressure. You get to do the spectrum, from hammed-up, silly things to really heartfelt, tender stuff, and it’s always working with really nice people.

“And Rory’s such a fun character to play in the way he questions the world, and I think that works really well with these stories.”

The Lone Centurion – Volume One: Rome is now available as a collector's edition CD (at £19.99) or digital download (at £16.99), exclusively from the Big Finish website.

Plus, The Lone Centurion – Volume Two is due for release in July 2022 and is currently available to pre-order as a collector’s edition box set (on CD at £19.99) and as a digital download (at £16.99). Big Finish listeners can save money by ordering both volumes together in a bundle for £38 on CD or £33 on download.

Blake's 7 News - Travis and Bayban the Butcher Return!

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 are set to expand more than ever before, as some familiar faces take centre stage in a range of full-cast audio adventures from Big Finish Productions. 

Three brand-new box sets and three tie-in audio novels are due to be released over 2021 and 2022, featuring beloved cast members reprising their original television roles, including Michael Keating, Sally Knyvette, Jan Chappell, Stephen Greif, Brian Croucher and... Colin Baker. 




Producer David Richardson said: “I’ve had this in my mind for nine years. When we first started making Blake’s 7 at Big Finish, I had vague plans to do a series of box sets that centred on characters originally created for the series by Chris Boucher. At the time, it never came to pass… but now, here we are! 

The Clone Masters explores that enigmatic race which was introduced in the brilliant Season B episode, Weapon. We have Jenna and Cally on a mission together. We have the return of Travis, in which he comes face to face with… another Travis. (Fear not, it’s not down to time travel and it all makes sense within the series story world). And we have Hinton, a psychostrategist who… ah, but that’s for later. 

“It’s taken nine years, but it’s been worth the wait!”

Script editor Peter Anghelides added: “It's such a treat to delve into previously unexplored parts of Blake’s 7. What are the unrevealed secrets and motivations of the Clone Masters, who on TV we met briefly before later hearing of their untimely demise? What further influence across the galaxy do the Terra Nostra have, when we know that they are involved in whatever is dirty, degrading, and cruel on every civilised world? 

“And how did Bayban become the Butcher that the Liberator crew encountered in his startling original appearance… and how could he possibly have survived that?

 “Our new full-cast audios offer nine thrilling and stylistically different adventures, featuring aspects based on those tantalising first experiences in the TV show. It’s brilliant to hear the original cast members facing these brand-new challenges. And the novels broaden that even more in three exciting, wide-ranging journeys in the Blake’s 7 universe.”

Each new box set is paired with a related tie-in audiobook, as follows: 

Due for release in September 2021, The Clone Masters revisits original script editor Chris Boucher’s enigmatic race from the second television season’s episode Weapon. This box set is released alongside The Rule of Death, a full-length audiobook written by Trevor Baxendale. 

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – The Clone Masters is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition CD box set (at £19.99) or digital download (at £16.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

Blake’s 7 – The Rule of Death is now available to pre-order as a digital download (at £9.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – The Clone Masters & The Rule of Death are now available to pre-order as a bundle on collector's edition CD (at £28) or digital download (at £25) at www.bigfinish.com.

Then in December 2021, Colin Baker returns as the eponymous career criminal Bayban the Butcher, first seen in 1980’s City at the Edge of the World. Accompanying this release is Bayban Ascending, a full-length audiobook written by Nigel Fairs. 

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – Bayban the Butcher is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition CD box set (at £19.99) or digital download (at £16.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

Blake’s 7 – Bayban Ascending is now available to pre-order as a digital download (at £9.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – Bayban the Butcher & Bayban Ascending are now available to pre-order as a bundle on collector's edition CD (at £28) or digital download (at £25) at www.bigfinish.com.

And there’s more – in January 2022, three new full-cast audio dramas dive deep into the murky underworld of the Terra Nostra, the dangerous organisation first encountered in the TV story, Shadow. The tie-in audiobook, entitled Zero Point, is written by Scott Harrison. 

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – The Terra Nostra is now available to pre-order as a collector's edition CD box set (at £19.99) or digital download (at £16.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

Blake’s 7 – Zero Point is now available to pre-order as a digital download (at £9.99) at www.bigfinish.com.

The Worlds of Blake’s 7 – The Terra Nostra & Zero Point is now available to pre-order as a bundle on collector's edition CD (at £28) or digital download (at £25) at www.bigfinish.com.

Big Finish listeners can save more by pre-ordering all three box sets – The Clone Masters, Bayban the Butcher & The Terra Nostra – for £80 on collector’s edition CD and £70 on download, exclusively from the Big Finish website.


52. GARY RUSSELL Part 2 - Being the B.O.S.S. at Big Finish

We continue our discussion with founding Big Finish producer and director Gary Russell on the early years of Big Finish, talking about projects such as the Gallifrey and Sarah Jane Smith series, as well as the creation of Evelyn Smythe, played by the lovely and sorely missed Maggie Stables. 

Part 3 coming soon. 

Next time on The Sirens of Audio... Annette Badland discusses her career, and her work with Big Finish, 16 years after her debut TV appearance in the Doctor Who universe in 2005's Aliens of London.  (I know we said 21 years during the show, that was Philip's fault for not doing his maths properly and Dwayne's fault for believing everything that comes out of Philip's mouth.)



Philip Edney on Twitter

Dwayne Bunney on Twitter

The Sirens of Audio on YouTube

Theme music by Husky by the Geek

Email: sirensofaudio@gmail.com

Website: sirensofaudio.com

Twitter: @AudioSirens

Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/sirensofaudio/

Clips and music are copyright BBC and Big Finish. No infringement is intended.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

51. ROBERT VALENTINE on Doctor Who: The End of the Beginning and Master! starring Eric Roberts

It's the end... of the monthly range at Big Finish and our special guest is writer of the final story in the range, Rob Valentine. The finale is called "The End of the Beginning" and features the 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th Doctors. 

Rob gives us some insight into writing for multiple Doctors, the inspiration for some of his settings, and how the pandemic affected the story. 

Master! starring Eric Roberts as the Doctor's arch nemesis is also released this month from Big Finish, and Rob speaks about his episode in the set entitled "Faustian". 




Recommendations

Philip recommends Survivors (Big Finish Productions)

Dwayne recommends Space 1999 Volume One (Big Finish Productions) & Red Moon by Robert Valentine (Wireless Theatre Company)



Philip Edney on Twitter

Dwayne Bunney on Twitter

The Sirens of Audio on YouTube

Theme music by Husky by the Geek

Email: sirensofaudio@gmail.com

Website: sirensofaudio.com

Twitter: @AudioSirens

Facebook: www.facebook.com/groups/sirensofaudio/

Clips and music are copyright BBC and Big Finish. No infringement is intended.