Sergeant Andy Davidson (Tom Price) is back in Torchwood: Goodbye Piccadilly. Back in time, that is, as the Cardiff copper wakes up one morning to find himself in the 1950s - and naked in bed with Norton Folgate (Samuel Barnett) while trapped in a burning hotel room! It looks like it’s just going to be one of those days…
Regular listeners to Big Finish’s Torchwood range might remember 2016’s Ghost Mission, which previously saw Andy and Folgate team up for the first time. The highlight of that story was the humour that came from the two character’s odd couple double act, and in this semi-sequel writer James Goss has doubled down on that as the plot is very much an excuse to get the pair into as many hilarious situations as possible.
Goodbye Piccadilly is almost like a time-travelling version of The Hangover, a breathless romp that’s full of double entendres, colourful characters and Andy and Norton running around Soho in the buff. If you like Torchwood because it gets to be naughtier and more tongue-in-cheek than Doctor Who, then this is the audio drama for you. That’s not to say there’s no depth to the story, though, as Goss weaves in an interesting exploration of being gay in the 1950s and can’t resist a weird crossover with H.G. Wells’ War of the Worlds.
Price’s every-Welshman charms as Andy have rarely worked better than when paired with Samuel Barnett’s flamboyant, cheeky time-travelling Torchwood One agent. The Dirk Gently star has a few appearances under his belt as the character now and what’s great about Norton is that there’s still a lot of mystery surrounding him that has yet to be resolved. It should be fun to see where he turns up next. Hopefully it will include more of his unlikely partnership with Andy.
Something Big Finish’s offerings have over the TV series is that they allow the supporting characters of Torchwood to shine, and Goodbye Piccadilly is another great example of this. In the special features of the release, director Scott Handcock suggests an Avengers-type spin-off starring Andy and Norton. If that’s on the cards, sign us up!
REVIEW: TORCHWOOD - GOODBYE PICCADILLY / WRITER: JAMES GOSS / PUBLISHER: BIG FINISH PRODUCTIONS LTD / RELEASE DATE: AUG 31ST