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9/10 REVIEW: Big Finish – Doctor Who Short Trips – Lepidoptery for Beginners

BIG FINISH - Short Trips - Lepidoptery for Beginners
BIG FINISH - Short Trips - Lepidoptery for Beginners

Big Finish unveil another stunning Short Trip Rarity in the form of ‘Lepidoptery for Beginners’.

Despite being set in a single location the story feels much larger simply due to the incredibly cunning plan of the brilliant, and oddly polite, Iolas Blue.

Everything is Ready

Iolas, our antagonist, is eagerly anticipating the arrival of The Second Doctor, Jamie and Zoe right down to the second. He’s prepared everything and simply needs to meet the TARDIS crew to inform them of what’s to come.

‘Lepidoptery for Beginners’ is the kind of story that could easily be expanded upon, be it audio play or television. The stakes are high. The villain is incredibly clever, our heroes are pressed to the wall, leaving us to wonder how they could possibly escape. And despite a truly challenging obstacle, the humour remains, making this exciting and fun.

Iolas Blue Steals The Show

Narrated and performed by Duncan Wisbey, you could almost believe at times that the Second Doctor were there. Wisbey does a truly exceptional job of differentiating each character and even manages to soften his voice, somehow, to make Zoe work. However, it’s his turn as Iolas Blue that steals the show as Wisbey captures the essence of what makes writer John Dorney’s villainous character so human.

Claustrophobic and Defeated

Dorney is no stranger to writing Big Finish and this Short Trip was expertly crafted leaving us wanting more, despite a most satisfactory conclusion. This is no doubt in part due to the excellent direction of Nicholas Briggs and the sound design and music of Ronnie Dunlop. The sound effects feel of the time and are used sparingly, if not repetitively, as to let the story do most of the talking all the while leaving us to feel claustrophobic and close to defeat.

The twists, the humour and character development should keep any listener happy as this is yet another exceptionally well told Short Trip Rarity that really ought not be missed.

Blogtor Rating – 9/10

LEPIDOPTERY FOR BEGINNERS is available to download now direct from Big Finish.


“It’s already done. You are dead. You just don’t know it yet.”

Iolas is a man with a plan. It has 1009 Easy Steps, all of them now happening successfully. One. By. One.

The very last step? The death of the Doctor…

Producer Nicholas Briggs
Script Editor Nicholas Briggs
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs

Written By: John Dorney
Directed By: Nicholas Briggs


Duncan Wisbey (Narrator)



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