There’s an old saying that does the rounds every now and then. It goes something like this…
“Once is a fluke, twice is a habit, and three times is a pattern…”
Simply, the third time you do something major is the most important attempt you make at it. It’s to prove that not only are you able to tackle the item in question, but that you have an understanding of it, and that no one will ever hold any doubts as to your abilities…
Hopefully, you can see where this is going.
STAY ON THIS CHANNEL
Terrahawks has proven itself to be one of the most successful gambles Big Finish have taken with a licenced IP. As said before, how does someone turn a visual puppet based series into an audio show? Well, you give it to Big Finish, and they can. In fact, they’ve done two whole volumes of them, and they have been critically lauded with praise (not least by us), not to mention two free specials (which are brilliant), and now, after a long 15-month wait, Terrahawks has returned. And this time, they’re not holding back any punches!
TERRAHAWKS STATUS: TERMINATED
The Terrahawks are gone. The international defence force for the Planet Earth has been all but destroyed in the battle against Prince Zegar, with both humans and androids among the casualties. But then, a signal emerges from deepest space. A signal that means only one thing: Zelda is alive. And if Zelda is alive, then the Terrahawks are not too far behind. With both sides ready to resume the war, the Terrahawks will have to face some of Zelda’s most maniacal schemes, from invading Buckingham Palace, to manipulation of one of Tiger’s heroes, and his heart, to infiltrating the team, and making the decision whether or not to end the entire charade of war. But before all that, The Terrahawks must escape the clutches of Zelda’s ship… and not all will survive…
“THIS IS MY FINAL BROADCAST…”
The last two volumes of Terrahawks have been a brilliant reintroduction of the classic series, showcasing why its action and humour made it a beloved children’s programme in the 1980’s, with Volume 2 giving us a feature length climatic finale that seemed to change everything about the series. This volume, however, not only gives us the resolution to that cliffhanger but from the word go, there are no holds barred with anything happening in the series. Anything you thought couldn’t happen, now can. Androids invading Buckingham Palace? Yep. Zelda both succeeding and failing at getting the Stein clones on her side? Fair game. Tiger and Lois Price being trapped in Zelda’s own version of Portmeirion? Briggs says ‘Let’s do it!’ The Terrahawks and the Martians attempting to end the war, by peaceful means? Why not? Writer and Director Jamie Anderson, along with Messrs Terry Adlam, David Hirsch, Chris Dale and Mark Wollard all do a damn fine job at not only keeping the show faithful to its roots but also for taking it in a new direction, and helping to show further layers to these characters that we know and love.
Alongside our returning writers, we also have our returning minimalist cast of Jeremy Hitchen, Denise Bryer, Robbie Stevens and Beth Chalmers, all of whom, despite being immensely brilliant in portraying all of their characters, have knocked it completely out of the ball park with this one. With Hitchen in particular due to the scripts requiring multiple and unique variations of the Stein Clones, and especially as the end of the set is reached and the emotional side of the Dr is shown. As well as our regulars, we are joined by the absolute living legend that is David “Parker” Graham, and to say he is phenomenal is an understatement. He doesn’t go full on Parker, but it’s easy to know that it is him and he plays his roles brilliantly. Alongside some brilliant and hilarious “Welkerisms” from writer Chris Dale, the cast has gone beyond top form with this release.
SOUNDS LIKE A PLAN
As for music and sound design, like everything else with this set, they have exceeded expectations. Richard Fox and Lauren Yason’s stellar sound work continues to be pinpoint accurate to the style and feel of the original series. And as for the latest score from original composer Richard Harvey… epic is one of the many words to describe it, and amazingly epic would be others! Plus, when needed, Harvey is very capable of doing the emotional score when he needs to, and helps the moments in question to really pack a punch…
Volume 1 showed that the series could be done by Big Finish and that it was safe in their hands. Volume 2 showed that not only was the series a brilliant continuation, but a force to be reckoned with in its own right. This volume has conclusively proven that this range has now become one of Big Finish’s best and greatest, with this volume in particular now being the series’ highpoint. It’s not certain how and when the series will continue, but after a set of stellar tales like that, it would be a crime against science fiction itself to not let it continue. Let’s hope that Terrahawks will, as Dr Ninestein says, “stay on this channel”…
BLOGTOR RATING 10/10
As was said before, third time’s the charm for Terrahawks. Long may this series continue.
Terrahawks: Volume Three is available to purchase on CD and Download from the Big Finish Website, and from all good stockists from September onwards.
“Terrahawks, stay on this channel…”
The third release for Big Finish’s audio continuation of Terrahawks, the fondly remembered action adventure comedy originally brought to you by the men who created Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet and Dick Spanner.
1: No Second Chances by Jamie Anderson
Zelda has pulled off the ultimate heist, and now her victory seems inevitable. To stop her, and against all the odds, at least one of the Terrahawks will have to make the ultimate sacrifice.
2: The Wrong Clone Number by Terry Adlam
Leaderless and desperate, the Terrahawks turn to pun-meister Twostein. After his victory against Cy Splitter, the comedy clone’s arrogance could prove royally problematic for Earth’s defenders.
3: Set Sail for Mis-Adventure by David Hirsch
Another mission – another clone. Sixstein is drafted into service for an escort mission. Professor Otto Maddox’s new weapon is travelling via the Atlantic ocean, and Zelda is poised and ready to take piracy to new extremes.
4: You Foe by David Hirsch
It’s the last chance for the Terrahawks to replace their lost leader. But it becomes a race against time as Zelda and her family try to take advantage of the final clone, Threestein’s, good nature.
5: Living Legend by Chris Dale
It’s time for Threestein’s first major mission, and he’s in for a treat – meeting one of his idols. But soon his encounter with galactic explorer Elias Crick proves that you should never meet your heroes.
6: The Prisoner of Zelda by Chris Dale
Threestein and Lois Price are kidnapped and taken to an unknown coastal location – where a bizarre village – The Community – becomes their prison. Where are they? Why are they here? Why are they all now addressed by letters rather than their names? And just who is the mysterious ‘Z’?
7: Star Crossed by Mark Woollard
It’s a case of Cloneo and Juliet – and Threestein’s final chance to prove himself as a capable leader. But when it comes to matters of the heart can a Stein clone overcome his genetic shortcomings?
8: Enemies, Negotiation and Deceit by Jamie Anderson
With both the androids and Terrahawks weary of the constant conflict and seemingly unending stalemate, a new approach is tabled. But will human (and android) nature allow the long-time enemies to settle their differences?
Written By: Jamie Anderson, Terry Adlam, David Hirsch, Chris Dale, Mark Woollard
Directed By: Jamie Anderson
Jeremy Hitchen (Ninestein, Hiro), Robbie Stevens (101, Hudson), Denise Bryer (Zelda, Mary Falconer), Beth Chalmers (Kate Kestrel), David Graham (Professor Otto Maddox / Elias Crick), Chris Dale (Yuri/Space Bears/Additional voices)
Director and Producer Jamie Anderson
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs