Review: Doctor Who: Big Finish Audio 182: Antidote to Oblivion

Antidote to Oblivion coverFlip encourages the Doctor to answer a distress call, and encounters one of his worst enemies – the rapacious Sil.

Colin Baker’s latest trilogy reunites him with Lisa Greenwood as young Londoner Flip, whose wide-eyed attitude to travelling in the TARDIS means she doesn’t just want to sit around all day relaxing. She’s a nice contrast to both Peri and Evelyn, and brings out sides of the character in Baker’s performance that we’ve not heard much of in this incarnation.

The CD extras sadly don’t include any feedback from Philip Martin about the challenges of bringing Sil back for a fourth appearance – including Mission to Magnus, the Lost Story from Season 23 which forms an important (if somewhat annoying) part of the back story to Antidote to Oblivion. There are quite a few echoes of all three previous tales in this, and, possibly controversially, some explanations regarding Sil’s last on-screen story, the often-confusing Mindwarp section of The Trial of a Time Lord.

Those who liked the byplay between the two screen-watchers in Vengeance on Varos will find much to enjoy in the characters of Pan and Cerise, although unlike their predecessors, they are caught up in the action. There are also some other neat touches – a guard who’s afraid of rats (and gets the best joke in the script), or a technician named Bob.

Nabil Shaban is obviously thoroughly enjoying playing Sil once more and his scheme is suitably devious – even if the political “subtext” to it is as subtle as a brick. With a chilling third episode cliffhanger, this is an appropriately unpleasant return for the Thoros-Betan.

Verdict: Some good use of the audio medium by director Nicholas Briggs in a sometimes surprisingly chilling tale. 7/10

Paul Simpson

Click here to order Antidote to Oblivion from Big Finish

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