Persuasion (2013)

Persuasion is the first story in the Seventh Doctor series. It’s also the first time that we have a Klein story in the main range since 2010 and its been just under a year since UNIT: Dominion. There was always going to be a question as to whether you needed to have listened to UNIT: Dominion before listening to this adventure and to be honest I’m not sure that you really do. At the end of ‘The Architects of History’, Klein was left at UNIT as a scientific advisor and she has no memory of her past.

The story starts off with an interesting pre-title scene where we are about to encounter the end of the world. I always think that pre-title scenes should always have something to do with that episode and the problem (and the only real problem I can see) is that it doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the episode. Each time I was curious to know how it fitted in to the main story as it didn’t seem to have any relation to the main plot. It seems like it was being saved until the second half of the story and it was a great idea because I personally wanted to hear more of the Doctor and Klein before the rest of the story and Jonathan Barnes pitched it perfectly.

The story also introduces Christian Edwards as Will Arrowsmith. I instantly liked the character as the character seems to have stumbled out of a 1920’s BBC period drama. The fact that he wants to record everything on a Dictaphone is something that I thought was a nice character trait and his involvement in the story was one of the high points. It’s always good to have Tracey Childs in a Big Finish play. The character of Klein is a great one and Childs plays its superbly. She isn’t your typical Doctor Who companion in that she demands to know things and doesn’t like being left in the dark.

Sylvester McCoy puts in a superb performance in this adventure. I would say over the last couple of years McCoy’s Doctor has been getting better and better with the last series being a particular highlight.  Whether it is The Magic Mousetrap, Enemy of the Daleks, Protect and Survive, UNIT: Dominion or Robophobia, it’s clear that McCoy is enjoying the sort of good form that Colin Baker’s Doctor was going through a couple of years ago.

Miranda Raison returns to the Doctor Who world after appearing in Toms Tardis Award winning ‘The Wreck of the Titan’. I thought that she was better cast in this adventure than in Titan. One of the best things about those pre-title scenes is that Raison delivered the dialogue brilliantly.

I really enjoyed this adventure. I thought that the characters were spot on and they weren’t wasted or asked to do stupid thing. There was a nice plot between the Doctor and Klein and also the second plot was a nice  supporting plot which was resolved in a great final episode. I am looking forward to the two remaining stories of the series. Possibly early contender for story of the year.

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