The Doctor Who Short Trips range from Big Finish continues with Battle Scars. This new release sees a brand new story for the Ninth Doctor.
Writer Selim Ulug submits a second Big Finish short trip having been successful in the 2017 Paul Spragg Memorial Opportunity. Landbound was set in the era of the Third Doctor with this new adventure a rare outing for the Ninth Doctor. This is in fact the first appearance of the Ninth Doctor in the Short Trips range. As the tale is told there is no doubt that the Ninth incarnation of the Doctor, so broken by the events of the Time War, is the perfect selection. He is wounded in more ways than one. Therefore, few could relate to someone also dealing with the horrors encountered during a war like the Ninth Doctor.
April 1912. This a photograph of the Daniels family of Southampton and friend. This was taken the day before they were due to sail to the new world. On the Titanic. For some unknown reason, they cancelled the trip and survived. – Clive, Rose (2005)
Whilst the opening of the story is akin to that of The Eleventh Hour the remainder is entirely original. You could easily see this occurring prior to the Ninth Doctor’s television debut in Rose. Although this is only Ulug’s second contribution to the world of Big Finish, there is a total understanding of their modus operandi. Take a seemingly innocuous and minor reference in a television episode and create a story out of it. If you’ve ever wondered why the Daniels family cancelled their trip on board the Titanic this is the story for you. However, it is possibly not the revelation one might’ve expected.
Nicholas Briggs is on performance duties and does an excellent job. Thrillingly, Briggs’ Ninth Doctor performance demonstrates that he is not just a monster voice artist but a skilled actor capable of creating enough variation to his vocal range to tell a riveting story. Further supplementing the words of Ulug and the voice of Briggs is some excellent accompanying music by Richard Fox. The final result is a terrific Short Trip.
Nightmarish memories of the Boer War. Crippling debts. An unconscious stranger in the garden. Arthur Daniels is beset with problems. Little does he know that his proposed solution could be the biggest problem of them all: a voyage to America aboard the RMS Titanic.