Big Finish have just released their second wave of Short Trip Rarities to the public!
Every month Big Finish release a ‘Short Trip’. A Short Trip, in case you are unfamiliar with them, are short stories narrated and accompanied by music and some sound effects. It’s not an audio book, like the recent Bernice Summerfield’s True Stories, where it’s only narration, nor is it a traditional Big Finish audio drama with a full cast. They’re more like the Companion Chronicles where you’ll have limited sound design, music and cast but some.
The Short Trip Rarities are exactly that. Rare. They come less frequently and start out as free Big Finish bonus features for subscribers to the Monthly Range. Then, after 2 years or so, they become something that can be purchased by the public.
This is the second year of rarity releases and this batch of stories has a variety of stories, writers, narrators and of course Doctors.
The first entry is written by none other than Simon Guerrier and narrated by Duncan Wisbey. Wisbey is no stranger to Big Finish with an impressive list of credits to his name. Here, Wisbey is outstanding and does a great job of channelling the Third Doctor, The Master and Jo Grant.
In a reversal of roles we’re given fun insight into the minds of The Doctor and The Master in what is a very well written and fun Script. There’s a great feel for the Pertwee era in this audio which is directed by Nicholas Briggs.
Waiting for Gadot
This is a good little story that is sure to get attention because it’s a Fourth Doctor story from John Dorney. Dorney writes a compelling story of a man looking to capture the image of a creature for the publication he works for and, with the aid of the Fourth Doctor, what’s certain victory may result in failure.
This is another example of why Short Trips work. A good script with a narrator who can do voices (in this case it’s none other than Hugh Ross providing all voices!) and just enough sound design and music to make it more than an audio book and you’re set!
This story may not take the world by storm, but it’s not intending to. It’s a quite sort of story that is well made and well told. The kind of story that wouldn’t be told on screen but works nicely here in the short story format.
Rob Nisbet writes this standout story. Intuition is one of the longer rarities released this time, but it doesn’t feel it. Director Neil Gardner must have known exactly what he wanted from Nisbet’s script as he’s also the sound designer and does the music and really takes us for a ride in the most wonderful way.
Intuition starts of light, fun and rather comical but brings us through an arc which, funnily enough, you don’t see coming. It’s compelling and, for a short story, just so full. From the outstanding sound design and incredibly scored music, to Stephen Critchlow’s incredible performance, this one is just spot on. Critchlow captures the Sixth Doctor perfectly and his take on Mel is also exceptionally delivered.
This one does everything right and makes the most of its short time.
Twilight’s End is a different sort of beast, which also makes great use of the short story/short trip format. Its skill comes from being a partial bookend to a series of Big Finish stories that featured the Sixth and Seventh Doctor, in different occasions. These moments are referenced but the story doesn’t hinge on your having heard past events. If you know those stories, than this will be great. If you don’t know them it’s still a fine short story that’s entertaining and well produced.
Beth Chalmers has such a wonderful voice that it’s a pleasure to listen to even if you happen to tune out and just relax. However you won’t do that because Mark Wright and Cavan Scott are terrific writers who deliver an interesting story to explore.
The Young Lions
Stephen Critchlow narrates another of these rarities and that’s wonderful! Neil Gardner directs another and that is also wonderful! Gardner also does his own sound design and music and can he ever make sound a pleasure. From rustling leaves which sound very real, to an exciting score, Gardner immerses his listeners as fully as possible.
Alice Cavender is our writer and she does an outstanding job of capturing the voice of Lucie Miller and the Eighth Doctor. Speaking of capturing voices, Critchlow brings his A-game and effortlessly jumps from narrator, to Doctor to Lucie Miller, and when he speaks, I hear Sheridan Smith.
An interesting story told exceptionally well and sure to capture the listener from start to finish!
These are all very good stories that make the most of their format and are sure to please listeners. There’s no over all rating as these really are individual stories that happen to be released at the same time. They are all recommended as each one offers something different and takes care of the listener the way a short story should.
Big Finish have a sale this weekend on their Short Trips range to celebrate the release of these rarities. This sale is going on until noon (UK Time) October 2nd. This is an ideal opportunity to discover some great stories or pick up any Short Trips you may be missing. These specific rarities are not on sale as they’re just being released to the general public for the first time but it’s worth picking up some of these stories for only £2.25 if not the whole bundle for £10.00. Other stories are offered at reduced prices which can be found on this Big Finish sales page.