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Reviews for Forty-Five

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Welcome back Ace & Hex

By:writingbluebear, jersey
Date:Friday 19 December 2008
Rating:   10

How I've missed Ace & Hex, they really add something special to the Doctor. Four short interlinking stories, with a good subplot and as ever in the new style, twists and turns and a surprise ending. Great listening.

Return of Ace and Hex at last

By:Matthew David Rabjohns, Bridgend, United Kingdom
Date:Thursday 22 January 2009
Rating:   9

As Sophie always has been one of my fav actresses and fav companions as Ace, its good to see her back after a too long gap. And Phil Olivier returns in fine form too in this great celebration of forty five years of the best programme on the tv. And on audio too!

Forty Five is four single episode stories here are my reviews for each one:


Sort of a weak start to the disc, not saying the acting isnt good, Sylv is excellent in this instalment, just the whole thing is a tiny bit lacklustre even for just a one episode story. Bit of a shame as mark is one of the best dr who novelists around.


Man now we get onto the rest of the brilliant stories. This story has good originality and makes good use of the five characters present. An eerie tale with a lot going for it actually. A bit of difference again, the big finish team overall pick their scriptwriters well.


So Ace is back home when her mum is just a girl this time. This is a touching little story with a few good twists and turns along the way. SOphie shines in this episode, bringing real emotion into play. The whole thing works very well indeed and is believable. The truth teller device is a neat little plot line too. Makes for some good acting too from all involved.


You once in a while get a brain twister that comes along and you really have to pay attention to it to get the full gist of it, but that is by no means a bad thing in the slightest. This is another good and orginal ending to an overall very good set of stories. The Word Lord is a good new enemy for the doctor, especailly working well with the seventh doctor. So overall this package is highly entertaining and original and full of surprises.

An enjoyable set of four stories.

By:Doug, Pocono Summit, PA, USA
Date:Friday 17 July 2009
Rating:   7

The four short stories that comprise "45" are a bit lightweight to be sure, as would be expected, but this time they work pretty well, providing enough substance for an enjoyable listen, and a fast enough pace to get each single story finished. I thought False Gods and Casualties of War were the best of the four. Order of Simplicity is a neat story about the extreme actions of what you might think of as a futuristic hippy or environmentalist gone totally berzerk. The basis of the story and its resolution are completely absurd, but it's still a fun ride. And then we have The Word Lord. This final episode of the collection really doesn't make any sense either, but it's another fun story anyway, that makes a momentarily interesting attempt at a sort of twisted, shocker ending to and link of the four stories. In this listener's opinion, it ultimately fails, due to the weakness and again, total absurdity of the concept of what the Word Lord actually is. And when a deadly enemy is foiled by flipping a switch, it makes me go, "Hmmm..."

Suffers from the Format

By:David Layton, Los Angeles, United States
Date:Thursday 8 November 2018
Rating:   7

Forty-Five is one of the series of 4 individual stories, loosely linked. Each story is 1 "part." Each story has a different writer and cast. Here, we have The Doctor, Ace, and Hex encountering the number 45 all over the place. First stop is Egypt, Valley of the Kings, 1902, and a meeting with Howard Carter. Most of the story involves avoiding too many references to "The Mummy." Next, we head to the far future, where, apparently, there are still mad scientists in creepy, old castles. The third part takes us to 1945 and another encounter between Ace and her mother, this time, mom aged three and not very convincingly voiced. We also get another encounter with The Forge, and The Doctor's first hint to Hex that he may know something about Hex's mother. Last is the story that ties it together and is probably the best of the bunch. Here, in the near future, The Doctor is called in to solve a murder in an international base in Antarctica. There, he meets a truly interesting and powerful enemy - The Word Lord, a being from a universe 45 dimensions to the left (or something like that), a trans-universal bounty hunter. The problem here is that each story is potentially quite interesting, but all are too swift and underdeveloped, given the 25-minute limitation for each one.

A Strong Set of 4 Stories

By:Jared Harr, St. Marys, United States
Date:Saturday 16 May 2020
Rating:   8

False Gods - 8/10 Had an interesting plot once I figured out what it was trying to do and the ending was pretty powerful. However, Sophie didn’t seem to put in her best and I feel Benedict Cumberbach was given too small a part to play. Essentially, you have one of Britain’s finest actors (next to Derek Jacobi and John Hurt), but you use him in 1/4 of a monthly episode and that’s it? I was super excited to hear him in this story, but he did come off as a bit dull thanks to the dull character he played.

Order of Simplicity - 7/10 It’s an interesting mesh of futuristic concepts and an archaic setting tied together in a neat little plot. It reminds me of the old intellectual episodes in Colin Baker’s early Big Finish works. Nothing too special though, just a nice bit of light entertainment. Also, Benedict played a neanderthal for 2 minutes in this one too... Really??

Casualties of War - 8.5/10 Cool emotional narrative that hits so many places so well. The family itself is neat and it doesn’t try to overdo anything. It’s mostly about the characters. I don’t know what else to say except that it’s good.

The Word Lord - 9/10 Started off very strongly with a twist on the structure of a classic story (and a neat locked room mystery where every suspect is locked in one room together). Then things ramped up towards the end. I’m not sure how to feel about it, as it takes an incredibly corny concept similar to the Carrionites from “The Shakespeare Code,” but is very clever with it and just about gets away with it. I had fun with this one and the acting was stellar from the entire cast. Overall, great production!

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