Nick Briggs followed his July story, Fate of Krelos, with a sinister conclusion in the form of Return to Telos. Set during events of the Second Doctor story Tomb of the Cybermen it gives us the possibility of both old-school Cybermen and a meeting of Doctors!
Last month we heard a rogue K9 (John Leeson) change the TARDIS and spoil a fishing trip. Where most of the drama was in the interaction of the Doctor (Tom Baker) and Leela (Louise Jameson) and other characters were all but incidental, this is a fully rounded out tale that delivers on the promise of July’s introduction.
Things are sounding bad for Krelos as its inhabitants are being used as spare parts (a nod to the Big Finish release of the same name) to build a cyber-army. The Doctor has a part to play, but thanks to the presence of two incarnations on Telos, which one? Frazer Hines recreates both the Second Doctor and Jamie as the plot of this story weaves its way around the original TV story without breaking continuity. Will the two warriors Jamie and Leela meet? Will they be friends or rivals? Listen and find out! More important, when Cybermen from the future appear, which Doctor will fall foul to their fiendish machinations? How will K9 be rid of the cyber technology he has absorbed? All good questions and all answered.
The story also used the character of Peter Haydon from the original TV series; played by Bernard Holley, this helps spread the load and it isn’t just Frazer recreating the 1960s series on his own.
This really feels like a Second Doctor story in many places - Jamie Robertson’s sound and music, the cyber-voices, and the inspiration of Bernard Holley’s return as Peter Haydon make this an absorbing hour of entertainment. Congratulations to all and hats off to Nick who managed to write, direct and play the parts of the Cybermen.
With Return to Telos fans have been treated to a story that comes close to a two Doctors story the TV series never considered. Nick Briggs has produced a classy ending to this year’s run of Fourth Doctor stories. January can’t come too soon!
RETURN TO TELOS (DOCTOR WHO) / AUTHOR: NICK BRIGGS / PUBLISHERL BIG FINISH / STARRING: TOM BAKER, LOUISE JAMESON, JOHN LEESON, FRAZER HINES, MICHAEL COCHRANE / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW