This review may contain spoilers if you have not yet listened to act one.
A couple of days ago plus about 40 years ago, marked the end of one of the most celebrated and praised Doctor Who stories in the show’s history. Viewers were left with a fantastical shootout and a climactic ending, with which some hoped they would be seeing more of the magnificent investigative duo of Jago and Litefoot.
Now, forty years later, after nearly 60 hours of exciting episodes and stellar stories, the investigators of infernal incidents are as popular as ever. With the thirteenth series of tales arriving within the coming weeks, the matter of the tales on Minos and those of the New Regency’s basement must first be concluded, and it is here that they do so…..
Thank you, gentlemen, for joining us once more. We trust that the interval has given you sufficient time to recuperate from the inaugural act. Act two will begin very shortly, where Professor Litefoot and Mr Jago will be concluding the events that happened in their respective areas and how, by incredible happenstance, they found their way into a truly bizarre and dangerous dimension, the true nature of their assailants and their enigmatic escape from the clutches of doom! We cannot yet confirm, however, if there will be any more unexpected ‘surprises’ or ‘appearances’, but, as it is these two distinguished gentlemen, one can only guess.
After which, the professor and Mr Jago will very happily take questions, should anyone be able to conjure up some.
Within the first hour of the release of the previous act, many listeners had made it clear that if they had listened into the Short Trip correctly, that there was more to this anniversary tale that met the eye and an unexpected familiar face made an impromptu return. This review will not divulge who said familiar face is, but suffice to say, many listeners’ theories have been proven correct by this second act.
Jonathan Barnes has not only concocted a tantalisingly tense second part but has also proven why a ‘narrated’ narrative is able to pull off a big reveal. And as for his tale, it takes what has been built up in the last half hour and builds it up more to a thrilling climax with a few more personal revelations about our characters, especially where this story fits for the Tenth Doctor.
As this is part two, the cast and crew from part one return to work their magic once more. Benjamin and Baxter are as delightfully diligent as always and their voice work on not just Jago and Litefoot, but performing the Doctors they are accompanied. Lisa Bowerman directorial skills show no signs of degradation in the slightest and work towards making the duo’s performance all the more grounded and realistic. Or as realistic as it can be, given the fantastical narrative. And the highly appreciated work of Steve Foxon’s sound design and music once again help to elevate this from a simple reading to a narrated audio drama.
For this release, it is hard to think of a point to make about it that hasn’t already been made for its predecessor. Other than the story which is a brilliant continuation and a satisfying conclusion to not only a fantastic tale, featuring familiar faces and tantalising twists, but to a month of celebration of one of Doctor Who’s most beloved set of characters.
It can be safely said that these two Short Trips are required listening for any Doctor Who fan, regardless of age or era preference. There is something for everyone in this hour of perfection.
BLOGTOR RATING: 10/10 A perfect payoff for a captivating crossover of epic extravagantness.
Fresh from another superlative season on the boards at the New Regency, we are this evening elated to welcome that master of melodrama, that sultan of story, that king of the cliffhanger Mr Henry Gordon Jago. Tonight, in his usual matchless and majestic manner, he will continue and conclude our captivating chronicle of fortune, change and revivification, with the indispensable assistance of that peerless pathologist, Professor George Litefoot.
Producer Ian Atkins
Script Editor Ian Atkins
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs
Written By: Jonathan Barnes
Directed By: Lisa Bowerman
Trevor Baxter (Narrator), Christopher Benjamin (Narrator)