Part One: The Lamentation Cipher
I was not really knowing what to expect, I didn’t know if this was going to be a car crash or not. But within the first 10 minutes of the opening episode of this I was rather taken with the wonderful way that the character as been given a life outside of the Who universe and quite rightly a well deserved one too. To begin with this sort of picks up from where we left our Victorian Adventurer, Charlotte is helping the Viyans in there crusade to prevent any issues occurring from people having, witnessing or doing anything that could in it’s effect cause counter issue. Her relationship however, appears to be rather like a rock band and their record label. It is strained and coming to the point where one party does not want to be party to the other party any more. Charlotte is missing home, missing Earth, and wants to get back, however the Viyans are intent, in fact almost hell bent on her not leaving them her importance is paramount. This is non more so than when a renegade Viyan who seems to appear and disappear warns, and even assists Charlotte in leaving their employee, however, the first episode is concerned overly with Charlotte not getting home but piloting her space escape pod away from the Viyans and straight into the ever changing and prolixity, a natural phenomena, the very edge of the universe, that, for some unexplained reasons is changing shape, colour and intensity. We leave this episode with Charlotte diving head first into the anomaly. What a cracking start, and certainly wanting me to listen to more. What a wonderful start to this release.
Part Two: The Shadow at the Edge of the World
Charlotte wakes up in a forest, with a gun pointing at her, but where in the hell is she, the last time we left her, she was heading into the abyss. But who is this strange, yet vaguely familiar individual, well for one thing she is human, and she is also back on planet Earth. We do not have to wait long, before she, and a collection of women are hiding out, from the world are being chased by some inexplicable in-holy beasts. The women are from a expedition that set out from a university that have discovered a ancient temple, a temple that might give insight that life to Earth many more centuries than we thought. The story to discover this temple, is that everyone has either died, or have gone mad who have sought this elusive temple from the past. What makes matters worse is that there are creatures that are intent on killing them as well, Slavering’s as they are affectionately called. But when one of them, approaches Charlotte and Charity, Charity shows the creature some kindness, something very strange happens. But the animal is shot, and the whole party now starts to implode, and the group become more and more like a group from Lord of the Flies.
Part Three: The Fall of the House of Pollard
The more I explore the release, the more I am starting to admire, the wonderful way it is acted and also written, the whole thing is dark, mysterious and actually a lot more a standalone drama series, that, takes it far beyond the Doctor universe. The last but one episode takes the form of Charlotte travelling through time and space, to, move herself back to her family, Earth and the 30’s. The prolixity is the conduit the means of travel for her. However, her family have fell on hard times, and they are facing ruin financially, and in part to the melancholy that has dogged her father and mother on her loss. Charlotte, is able however to get back to her family via a medium whom brings her through the veil. She laments and tries to help her family, however the Viryans are hot on her trail, and it will not be long before she is back in the keep of her mechanical, Teutonic, and ultimately focused masters. The third party is building, the story, the story is dark, and very uncomfortable in places, listening to her father, falling apart, with loss and grief, and then when Charlotte is called upon to make her family safe from attack and further suffering with Viryans being present she reneges and goes back with them, what is left for our adventuress in the next phase of her story, this has got to be one of the best no Who stories that they have put out for some time.
Part Four: The Viyran Solution
The whole craziness comes to head, Robert’s father (reminds me of Murdoch as a business man) steps in to ultimately take the prize that if offered with the prolixity as the prize. However, the Viryans have over analysed and found that what the prolixity is, is a virus, and the virus is nothing more than life, life itself. The Viryans want nothing more than to stop virus, and therefore they will rid the universe of life. Charlotte and Robert however manage to escape from the Viryan’s control. I am not going to recount any more of this story, it simply deserves to be listened to as it just so good. I have been massively impressed with the writing, performance and the whole production of Charlotte Pollard Season 1. It is a lot darker and more expansive and in some respects quite a lot more scary than the normal run of the mill stuff that we are faced with. It is truly one of the best audio drama I have had the pleasure to listen to from the Big Finish stable in a good day. Well done for creating the character, well done for India Fisher in bringing her to life, and a massive well done for having the forethought to bring her into her own with a series around her continuing adventures away from being just the companion of the Doctor.