The Warehouse is the middle story of this series and after being impressed with We Are The Daleks, I had high hopes for this story. This story has been penned by Mike Tucker who is writing his first story for Big Finish since 2003’s The Draconian Rage for the Benny range and its been 14 years since he wrote a story for the main range when he wrote the superb Dust Breeding back in 2001. The set up is that the Doctor and Mel arrive in the for mentioned Warehouse which at first seems to be a parody of the sort of Warehouses used by Amazon or other big companies with stocktakes being done repeatedly. There is a line in this story which hit home with me when the Doctor says “What about the shops on the high street?, they’ll become something of a novelty” For someone like me who works in retail this is a slice of reality in Doctor Who.
For the second story running, Mel’s computer abilities are used in a story. I recently re-listened to The Juggernauts which is 10 years old and that is another example of Mel being used much better than she was ever used during her time on TV. Bonnie Langford seems to be happy playing Mel which isn’t something that could have been said in the late 1980’s but with the quality of writing that Big Finish has come up with in recent years it means that she can show what the character can do. Sylvester McCoy is also having fun with the story and now that he hasn’t got to deal with dark matters like he did when he was co-starrting with Philip Olivier and Sophie Aldred.
At the end of the day the thing about this story is that it is neither terrible nor great. I don’t think that this story is Tucker’s best because I think Dust Breeding gets that honour. The main cast were fun to listen to and I think that the supporting cast all did their best. However despite the great performances and the good central idea I cant say that I understood this story. It started off well enough and I thought the idea of the warehouse being some sort of source of food/help to people on the planet below was quite good but I just couldn’t get into despite the very good performances. It’s still the case that the middle story in a trilogy series is the weakest but compared to the middle story of the previous trilogy (Equilibrium), this is a slightly better story. I am still impressed with how good Mel has been used in this series and look forward to the Sontarans returning.