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Reviews for Doctor Who Unbound: Masters of War

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A masterly sequel

By:Tony Bellows, Jersey CI
Date:Friday 9 January 2009
Rating:   10

This sequel brings back the wonderful David Warner Doctor, still re-united with the Brigadier in a story about Thals, Daleks, Davros and the manipulative other dimensional Quotch.

Almost two stories in one, one the dark concentration camp world of the Thals under Dalek control, the other the invasion of an enemy to Thal and Dalek, it is certainly packed enough to warrant the extended running time of two CDs.

There is a sly back-reference to an alternative Day of the Daleks, and different Dalek factions - very Syvester McCoy ("the renegades") - but what makes this story special is the Warner Doctor, very similar to the Pertwee one in his ability to improvise at a moments notice, and aware of his own failings when he cannot deprogram a Dalek.

Mention must be made of the perfect foil, the Brigadier, whose ability as a military stategist comes very strongly here (much more so than in some of the TV UNIT stories), and is prepared to make sacrifices of Thals and Daleks and himself if needs be, for the grater good - much to the dismay of the Thals, who are not used to that kind of thinking.

Terry Molloy also does sterling service as two Davros, one the virtual reconstruction of the Daleks, and one the real McCoy in a wonderful homage to the Colin Baker era, returning as the "Great Technician".

This is a rollercoaster that never flags, although the Quotch are more of a comic strip monster at times - and what a silly name - this is a worthy sequel to an excellent starter, but stands alone in its own right as a good Who story.

Could there be more Warner stories? It would be interesting if he could perhaps return to earth once more, and be pared with another Pertwee companion, such as an older (and alternative)Sarah Jane whom he would be meeting for the first time.

The End of the "Series"

By:David Layton, Los Angeles, United States
Date:Thursday 12 May 2016
Rating:   7

The second of the Warner-Doctor and Brigadier stories is written as if it is the end of a full season's worth of stories. We get the sense that the Doctor and the Brigadier have had several adventures since they met in Hong Kong. The pairing works very well, with the Brigadier as the perfect practical and reality-minded foil to a very idealistic Doctor. David Warner makes an excellent Doctor, something like a mix between Doctor 3 and Doctor 5 in his confident bravado tempered by self-reflective doubt. The story itself sees Nick Briggs rewrite Dalek history, perhaps as in a way closer to what he would like the Daleks to be. Thus, we have two Dalek factions, one loyal to a memory of Davros, the other disavowing Davros. We get an entirely new rationale for the Kaled-Thal war. And, we get a third term, so to speak, in the new alien species, the Quatch. I wonder whether Briggs knew that Quatch is German slang for nonsense. Be that as it may, these aliens are not all that convincing, and the notion of a passage to another dimension sitting in the center of Skaro steps a little beyond credulity.

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