With this release, Big Finish brings us the eleventh boxset for the ever-popular Victorian investigators Jago & Litefoot, as played so wonderfully by Trevor Baxter and Christopher Benjamin. This set sees our heroes firmly fixed in London; little do they know the Master is in town and intends to use them to get to the Doctor. Yet again Big Finish hits the spot with this exquisite collection.
Nigel Fair kicks us off with Jago & Son, a delightful tale centring in no small part on a man (Joyce) who believes he is Jago’s son. If that weren’t enough, we have a satanic cult and a woman from Litefoot’s past – Jean Bazemore (Cooper). All these threads come to a head as an alien menace is found underground.
Second is a strange story from Matthew Sweet, in which composer Maurice Ravel is the herald for a trip to a fantastical world of doppelgängers and crazy clockwork creations.
Writers Simon Barnard and Paul Morris continue a rich vein of recent form in The Woman in White, an escapade combining Henry Irving (de Souza) and Bram Stoker (Forbes) along with another cult, more mysterious deaths and the sinister (and brilliantly conceived) Mr Manners (Stevens). This balances theatre with mystery, murder with wit and a ghostly woman to create an unforgettable whole.
Justin Richards wraps up with Masterpiece and we learn just how the Master intends to trap the Doctor (Baker) as Jago and Litefoot enlist the help of hypnotists Madame Sosostris (Atkins) and her assistant Mr Nocturne. Where this story works well is in keeping Jago and Litefoot at its core. Yes the Master and the Doctor are vitally important, but never take over the story. Everything ends as it should, and there is even a little twist setting up (we hope) the next boxset.
All the way through, barmaid Ellie Higson (director Lisa Bowerman) and Inspector Quick (Asquith) provide assistance and have important parts to play, as they do in every set of stories. The direction, casting, acting and music are top-notch as ever, and the standard, if anything, is better than ever.
Big Finish released Jago & Litefoot Series 11 on April 28, and it is exclusively available until the end of May; full details are available on their website for this and other releases in this range.
Jago & Litefoot emerge once again largely unscathed, we have a possible twist for the next release, but we have yet to address the greatest mystery of all – why has this series not been picked up by the BBC for Radio 4 Extra?
JAGO & LITEFOOT SERIES 11 / AUTHOR: NIGEL FAIRS, MATTHEW SWEET, SIMON BARNARD, PAUL MORRIS, JUSTIN RICHARDS / PUBLISHER: BIG FINISH / STARRING: TREVOR BAXTER, CHRISTOPHER BENJAMIN, LISA BOWERMAN, CONRAD ASQUITH, GEOFFREY BEEVERS, JAMES JOYCE, ROWENA COOPER, JONATHAN FORBES, EDWARD DE SOUZA, ROBBIE STEVENS, RACHEL ATKINS, COLIN BAKER / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW