Thank goodness for Big Finish! In these days of being locked in and quarantined it’s nice to have new Doctor Who stories. Fresh for our ears, this month’s adventure is titled ‘Cry Of The Vultriss‘ and is a Sixth Doctor story.
This is the first encounter with Flip and Constance for me. Though this story feels like it’s picking up from the end of another, it never hindered my enjoyment one bit. In fact it was fun to wonder about what came before. No doubt, as I catch up on my Sixth Doctor Adventures, I will learn more.
‘Cry of the Vultriss‘ begins with this TARDIS team crashing through the time vortex and landing on a planet inhabited by a bird-like people. The Vultriss are currently going through a rebellion and when the team splits up, both sides of the political spectrum are further explored. This doesn’t feel too far removed from the Peladon stories, both from the classic program and Big Finish’s own. Perhaps because we’re introduced to more Ice Warriors and the political nature of those stories is similar here. Regardless writer Darren Jones keeps us interested from start to finish.
Personally, I adored the last run of Seventh Doctor stories and the next adventure was bound to suffer by comparison. However, ‘Cry of the Vultriss‘ kept me fully engaged. It’s less about the Doctor and his companions and more about these new creatures, the Vultriss. This means anyone can follow along. It felt comfortable, like catching an old monster of the week episode you had missed way back when. There are threads that probably lead us to this point which fans will enjoy but for those of us just tuning in it’s a great one off.
Cast and Crew
There’s a lot of dialog here and because it’s political in nature with no visuals, it could’ve become dull. Thankfully director John Ainsworth keeps a steady hand through this production and the cast are all great and help move the plot along. I was particularly intrigued by companion Constance Clarke played by Miranda Raison. I look forward to one day learning more about her in previous adventures.
Composer Simon Power delivers music that compliments the plot very well. My current circumstances didn’t allow me headphones while listening but I normally always enjoy a balanced sound mix. I have no doubt Power delivered well in that regard too, as he normally does. Also noteworthy is the cover by Tom Webster. Webster somehow manages to continually deliver beautiful cover art but this is particularly lovely, including his take on The Vultris.
This is a very satisfactory story full of Doctor Who and Big Finish hallmarks. Colin Baker is always delightful and brings out the best in those who work with him. This felt like a classic serial and was very easy to visualise and almost felt like it could have been a lost episode.
You can purchase your copy of ‘Cry Of The Vultriss‘ from the Big Finish website.
Violently ejected from the Space-Time Vortex, the TARDIS crash lands on the remote planet of Cygia-Rema, a mountainous world ruled by the bird-like Vultriss. Their newly-crowned Queen Skye is expecting first contact with alien ambassadors – Ice Warriors – and the sudden arrival of the Doctor, Flip and Mrs Constance Clarke causes confusion.
However, Skye is no ordinary ruler, she is the Fabled One gifted with the deadly power of ‘The Cry’. The queen who will enable the Vultriss to fly once again – at any cost.
But as the Doctor investigates why the TARDIS crashed, he discovers that the Vultriss are hiding a deadly secret. An ancient legacy that if left unchecked will plunge half the galaxy into an eternal living end.
- Colin Baker (The Doctor)
- Lisa Greenwood (Flip Jackson)
- Miranda Raison (Constance Clarke)
- Nicholas Briggs (The Ice Warriors)
- Jo Burke (Helia / Chela)
- Natasha Cowley (Queen Skye)
- Caroline Lawrie (Jabule)
- Adele Lynch (Vextyr / Ospri)
- Vincenzo Nicoli (Pagus)
- Daniel Norford (Tyto / Vultriss Captain)
- Cover Artist: Tom Webster
- Director: John Ainsworth
- Executive Producers: Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs
- Music: Simon Power
- Producer: John Ainsworth
- Script Editor: John Ainsworth
- Sound Design: Simon Power
- Written by Darren Jones
- Senior Producer: David Richardson