In a treat for Valentine’s Day Big Finish released their latest Doctor Who Short Trip; Deleted Scenes. Read by Frazer Hines, the Second Doctor and Jamie venture to France in the early 20th Century. They are immersed in a particularly unfamiliar world, that of the film industry.
Credit must first go to Angus Dunican for creating such a smart short story. Aside from the peculiar and brief sojourn to Hollywood of the 1920’s during ‘The Feast of Steven‘, the world of the silver screen has rarely been explored in Doctor Who. This setting and the French characters helps make Deleted Scenes feel like something unique and original.
In the modern film world of computer generated imagery we expect realistic creatures onscreen. But imagine how horrifying that current product might be to those only just becoming familiar with projected pictures to give the illusion of movement. Dunican doesn’t just ponder this thought but crafts an excellent story around it. The writer also manages to do the very Doctor Who-esque thing of telling you what happened before then telling you the story. It is a brilliant technique that works to absolute perfection here.
Frazer Hines is a superb narrator, who manages to capture the essence of his younger self as Jamie but also the character of the Second Doctor. I have always maintained that Jamie McCrimmon is the perfect Doctor Who companion. As an individual from the 18th Century, he provides the perfect conduit to ask the questions needed to inform the viewer or listener. An intelligent man, it is simply that much of what he encountered was outside the realms of his experience. This role is however more limited in Deleted Scenes as Jamie becomes the driving force, falling romantically for a French filmmaker. His innocence and sweet nature are encapsulated in Dunican’s story but also in Hines’ performance.
Although not an obvious romance story for Valentine’s Day, there is an intimate feeling. The relationships between characters helps make this story such a success with the skilful narration elevating it even further. Deleted Scenes is a great short trip and comes highly recommended.
There is also has a neat twist at the end, which I won’t spoil here, that will surely given fans a thrill. Check it out before you read any spoilers!
For all that Jamie has seen and done in his travels, nothing quite prepared him for the magic of being a film star.
During a Parisian holiday in 1908, he and the Doctor are taken in by film director Céline Tessier and soon find themselves immersed in the world of the silver screen.
However, Jamie will discover that – in show business – where there is delight, one must also expect one’s share of tragedy.