Episode 211: The talons of Weng-Chiang/ El Camino

Martyn and Chris discuss the Doctor Who episode, The talons of Weng-Chiang. They also discuss the recent recreation of Mission to the unknown, by Lancashire University.

After that, Gerrod and Martyn then discuss El-Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie.

The Talons of Weng-Chiang is the sixth and final serial of the 14th season of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in six weekly parts on BBC One from 26 February to 2 April 1977. In the serial, which is set in 19th century London, the 51st century criminal Magnus (Michael Spice) travels to the city and poses as an ancient Chinese god to find his missing time machine.

El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie (or simply El Camino) is a 2019 American neo-westerncrime thriller film that serves as an epilogue to the television series Breaking Bad. Series creator Vince Gilligan wrote, directed, and produced the film, while Aaron Paul reprised his role as Jesse Pinkman. The plot follows what happens to Pinkman following the events of the series finale. Several actors, including Jesse Plemons, Krysten Ritter, Jonathan Banks, and Bryan Cranston, reprise their original roles from the series, all of them appearing in flashback sequences. El Camino was also the final film to feature Robert Forster, who died on the day of its release.

El-Camino 27:21:00

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Episode 210:Pulp Fiction

Gerrod gives up 20 minutes of his lunch time, to discuss Pulp Fiction with Martyn.

Pulp Fiction is a 1994 crime drama, written and directed by Quentin Tarantino, who conceived it with Roger Avary. Starring John Travolta, Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Ving Rhames, and Uma Thurman, it tells several stories of criminal Los Angeles. The title refers to the pulp magazines and hardboiled crime novels popular during the mid-20th century, known for their graphic violence and punchy dialogue.

The lives of two mob hitmen, a boxer, a gangster and his wife, and a pair of diner bandits intertwine in four tales of violence and redemption.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as-but not limited to;

Audioboom, Player fm and iTunes.

If you’d like to support the show, then please check out our Ko-Fi, or shop via our Amazon link. A small percentage goes our way, at no extra cost to you.

Become a Patron!

Check out our Youtube.

Subscibe to We Sound Familiar.

Follow the Bad Wilf team on Twitter:

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete

Sam-@Sammichaelcomic

Chris-@ChrisWalkerT

Episode 209-Doctor Who: The Three Doctors

Martyn is joined by Sam Michael and Chris Walker-Thomson, as the trio discuss the 1973 Doctor Who anniversary special ‘The Three Doctors’.

The serial opened the tenth anniversary year of the series, and features the first three Doctors all appearing in the same serial. This makes it the first Doctor Who story in which an earlier incarnation of the Doctor returns to the show.

The solar engineer Omega (Stephen Thorne), the creator of the experiments that allowed the Time Lords to travel in time, seeks revenge on the Time Lords after he was left for dead in a universe made of antimatter. The Time Lords recruit the time travellers the First Doctor (William Hartnell), the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton), and the Third Doctor (Jon Pertwee) for help when Omega drains their civilisation’s power.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as-but not limited to;

Audioboom, Player fm and iTunes.

If you’d like to support the show, then please check out our Ko-Fi. Or shop via our Amazon link. A small percentage goes our way, at no extra cost to you.

Subscibe to We Sound Familiar.

Follow the Bad Wilf team on Twitter:

Follow the Bad Wilf team on Twitter:

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete

Sam-@Sammichaelcomic

Chris-@ChrisWalkerT

Episode 208: The Curse of fatal death

We’re back after our summer break, Martyn is joined once again by Sam Michael and Chris Walker-Thomson, as the trio discuss the 1999 Doctor Who parody ‘The Curse of Fatal Death’.

Obvisouly, with this being the podcast it is. They don’t stick to the subject for long.

Doctor Who: The Curse of Fatal Death is a Doctor Who special made for the Red Nose Day charity telethon in the United Kingdom, and was originally broadcast in four parts on BBC One on 12 March 1999 under the title Doctor Who and the Curse of Fatal Death. Later home video releases are formatted as two parts and drop the “and” in the title. It follows in a long tradition of popular British television programmes producing short, light-hearted specials for such telethon events.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as-but not limited to;

Audioboom, Player fm and iTunes.

If you’d like to support the show, then please check out our Ko-Fi, or shop via our Amazon link. A small percentage goes our way, at no extra cost to you.

Subscibe to We Sound Familiar.

Follow the Bad Wilf team on Twitter:

Martyn – @BadWilf

Pete – @BeeblePete

Gerrod – @BW_Gerrod

 

Review – Space: 1999 – Breakout

This is Wilf Base Alpha.

I cannot know if you will receive this message but I’ve just heard ‘Breakaway,’ the new Space: 1999 audio drama from Big Finish.

Why would they do this? This ‘reimagining’ of the TV programme from Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, who brought us the likes of Thunderbirds, Captain Scarlet and UFO. Twenty years to the day after the 13th of September 1999, when the events of the original 1975 series began.

The Andersons and producer Reg Hill were known for intricately beautiful miniature effects and stylish designs in futuristic adventures on the small screen, the sort of thing parents show their kids when when they want them to grow up to be engineers.

By the time Space: 1999 was broadcast they’d made some progress toward widening their audience, mixing their love of technology and thrills with some nice moments of humanity. But the programme remained primarily a visual spectacle.

Big Finish love stories, however, and this one’s worth bringing into the future. A cataclysm with dire consequences for all Humanity is played out on the eve of its first foray to a distant planet.

A mysterious and deadly illness strikes the pilots of Eagle transporters, spacecraft servicing space voyage preparations at Moonbase Alpha. The base’s chief medical officer Helena Russell is aided in her search for a cure by John Koenig, who flies out from Earth to take command of the lunar city. As the nature of the disease becomes apparent, the scope of their crisis expands to disastrous proportions.

Big Finish have invigorated the adventure with a better sense of pace (that’s not to say they don’t let moments hang where they should) and a refreshing emphasis on character drama. The delightful gadgets of the original ‘1999’ can still be heard in use – Eagles, Moonbase travel tubes and hand-held Commlocks – it’s just that a model-maker’s sort of skill is instead applied to the intricacy of the soundscape.

There’s an interesting use of music in this story. Beyond simply hinting and sweetening action in progress, composer Benji Clifford inserts brief musical interludes to excite us in tantalising moments, such as the retrieval of an escape pod containing an unidentified passenger. Fans of the original series will appreciate familiar melodies amid the score, in addition to a familiar but fresh version of the original theme tune.

The unique selling point of this audio drama is no gimmick: it’s obeisance to the fact that what happens with the characters is everything. It makes this speculative exercise of the imagination into something we respond to as if it were really happening. Eagle transporters are cool but the challenge of surviving one crashing is really where it’s at.

Commander Koenig is played by Mark Bonnar, an actor familiar to Doctor Who viewers as the working father Jimmy in The Matt Smith story Rebel Flesh and as the supervillian known as The Eleven, who besets Paul McGann’s Doctor in audio. Mark hails from Edinburgh and follows the likes of Hugh Laurie in delivering an American accent good enough to live in. His Koenig is very relatable; the pain of each challenge glows darkly over him but his endurance shines brightly.

Maria Teresa Creasey is a new name to many of us – California born and New York educated, she’s nonetheless been rolled into a variety of UK productions. The Dr Russell she plays here is refreshingly active in the way she squares off against the impossible situation presented. It allows us to get get a good sense of her character early on. Big Finish have assembled a good pair of leaders in Creasey and Bonnar.

This 2019 view of an imagined, futuristic past makes an interesting novelty. A particular ‘minced oath’ dropped by Helene is a few years out of date by our standards but it comes from a time far beyond 1975. It’s not too far off from 1999, though. It kept me on my toes as I speculated on what might and might not be possible for the inhabitants of this story’s world.

A contemporary zeitgeist captured here (and one of my favourite Anglicisms) is brinkmanship. Both versions of ‘Breakaway’ begin by hiding Moonbase’s dire situation from Koenig but here, the stakes are higher: crowds of the general public are on Alpha, unaware of the expanding epidemic of pilot illness. The administration on Earth responds to this by redoubling its efforts to cover it all up.

Writer/director Nicholas Briggs has sanded smooth a number of rough edges that marred the uneven TV pilot. Sci-fi’s best known writer Isaac Asimov famously had a go at the old series’ scientific implausibility. The fantastic catastrophe played out in audio presents us with a nice combination of nods to real science and plausible fantasy. This puts our focus back on the drama and adds weight to its consequences.

Flawed as it was, the old Space: 1999 sometimes captured the awe felt by those of us who remember the Apollo space programme. I can barely wait to hear how this new crew face the unknown because what we can count on is that the characters and situations here are in good hands.

Space: 1999 – ‘Breakaway’ is available now from Big Finish.

Beeblepete out.

Deleted scene from Iron Man

Recently, it was announced that Marvel Studios were planning to release never before scene footage, as part of The Infinity Saga boxset. The box set will consist of every MCU film up to Avengers: End Game.

Marvel Studios Big Boss, Kevin Feige has shared one such scene. It’s an unused post-credits scene from 2008’s Iron Man. Nick Fury mentions “Mutants” and radioactive bug bites”.

I imagine this was dropped due to rights issues, at the time 20th century Fox owned X-Men, Daredevil and Fantastic Four. Whilst Sony owned Spider-Man, this was years before the now defunct rights sharing deal. A similar thing happened with Blade, the original last shot saw Michael Morbius standing on top of a building staring down at Blade. This scene was dropped when Sony’s lawyers reminded New Line, that Sony own the character.

Review – Rose Tyler: The Dimension Cannon

The Dimension Cannon gives the character Rose Tyler her own series, in four audio dramas by Big Finish Productions. Billie Piper reprises her role as the first of The Doctor’s travelling companions in 21st century Doctor Who.

Shop girl turned sci-fi action hero Rose Tyler is consigned to a parallel universe with her mum, Jackie (Camille Coduri) and a parallel version of her dear departed dad, Pete (Shaun Dingwall). They’ve turned their attention to helping protect not only their world from extraordinary threats but also many other Earths. They’re following in the footsteps of Rose’s beloved Doctor: the charismatic, time-travelling space alien whose defence of Rose’s Earth left her separated from it – and him.

The Dimension Cannon offers Rose a chance to bring The Doctor back into the fight – and into her life again. For short periods of time the cannon allows her to visit other parallel universes that offer clues to the whereabouts of The Doctor. On her first trip she’s reunited with a parallel version of Clive, a conspiracy theorist who was murdered in Rose’s universe. Bark Benton reprises the role of Clive throughout the set and it’s good fun to have him back.

The four stories take us to four new parallel versions of London, where we’re introduced to startling alternate versions of the well-loved characters that head up this series. This collection of audios is not so much a spin-off from Doctor Who as it’s a spiritual follow-on from ‘Father’s Day,’ the episode that introduced us to the ‘original’ Pete Tyler and led us through dark times leading up to his death.

Chasing The Doctor inevitably means getting to know the locals in each different London and Rose finds she already knows many of them all too well. She gets personally involved in the lives of the people she meets, encountering Jackie, Pete and others in slightly different forms. It makes arriving in each universe a treat for the listener – and leaving each of them is tough all round.

Big Finish tie-in plays lure us into the audio realm by offering us characters and situations that are proven successes on television. They honour these successes with intriguing stories that at least equal their predecessors in quality. Rose’s story in Doctor Who has a lot of heart – and heartbreak. These new tales are equally engaging character pieces.

By presenting so many alternate versions of the original roles played by the cast, the normally-invisible work of the actors gets a bit of a peek into the limelight. I was properly immersed in and moved by the drama here but I also enjoyed listening for the subtle differences between the characters parallel to each other.

I’m very much opposed to more for more’s sake; I hate seeing delightful series run down by commercial supplements. You’ll find none of that here in Rose Tyler: The Dimension Cannon. This box set revisits the Tylers in a clever way that gives us more of what we’re counting on in ways that constantly surprise.

Rose Tyler: The Dimension Cannon is available now from Big Finish.

Review-Torchwood: The Hope

The Big Finish Torchwood range is always advertised with “This release contains adult material and may not be suitable for younger listeners” never has that statement been truer, than with this release. One of the many things James Goss excels at, is bleak. After giving us all nightmares with Corpse Day. He’s back with The Hope.

Megwyn Jones is one of the most hated women in Britain. She used to run a home for troubled children in an isolated part of Snowdonia called The Hope. For a long time there were rumours about what was happening there, and then one day it was realised that the children had gone missing.

Ever since, Megwyn’s kept her peace. Is she innocent? Is she guilty? Where are the bodies?

An audio play about a convicted child-murderer is never going to be an easy listen. However, James Goss has carved something of a masterpiece here. This is an audio that definitely rewards repeat listening.

Burn Gorman and Tom Price had such brilliant chemistry, in Corpse Day that I’ve been waiting impatiently for a follow up, ever since. Their chemistry is still present and their scenes together are pure gold. Andy’s eternal optimism is a perfect foil for Owen’s eternal pessimism. They also get a chance to shine separately, in scenes that are up there with the most horrific in Torchwood’s history. Siân Phillips is mesmerising as Megwyn Jones, you instantly dislike Megwyn-but you’re also fascinated by her.

The Hope couldn’t be any further away in tone, than last month’s ‘Serenity’. But that’s what makes this series so great. I enjoyed Torchwood on TV. But Big Finish Torchwood, is Torchwood at its absolute best.

Review-Torchwood:Serenity

Serenity Plaza is the most exclusive gated community in South Wales.

Jack and Ianto have gone undercover as a happily married couple. There are rumours that something’s wrong at Serenity Plaza and they’re determined to investigate. But the problem is that Serenity Plaza is just so rigidly normal.

Suddenly, Jack and Ianto have to confront the problems that normal couples face. Sharing a house together, doing the washing up, entering the residents’ baking contest, and hoping to win the Best Kept Lawn.

Competition is fierce. Because this is Serenity Plaza. And you’d kill to live there.

Torchwood: Serenity is James Moran’s first Big Finish audio, so it’s fitting that it’s a sequel to his series 2 episode ‘Sleeper’ and this does what any good sequel should, it develops the threat originally presented and adds layers and complexities-all whilst playing to the strengths the medium of audio allows. Moran has crafted a continuation, that logically feels like the next step in the story.

Jack and Ianto’s relationship has always been popular with fans, so it’s great to have an outing featuring the pair. John Barrowman and Gareth David-Lloyd are clearly having a lot of fun here. The script is full of innuendo, with GDL playing Ianto as a Stepford Wife-type. He even gets to turn his Welshness up to 11.

I laughed a lot and I laughed hard with this audio, this is one Torchwood fans won’t want to miss.

Thoughts on Spider-Man leaving the MCU

Normally, I’d record this as a quick podcast. But I’m away at the moment and don’t have access to any of my equipment.

News broke recently, that the current deal between Sony and Disney/Marvel has broken down. There seems to be a lot of misinformation/misunderstanding of why the Sony/Disney deal happened in the first place.

A surprising amount of people think it’s because The Amazing Spider-Man films were financial flops. They weren’t. Far from it. They received a critical panning. But they were financially successful. The first one was the seventh highest grossing film of 2012, the second was the ninth highest grossing film of 2014. These are far from the duds so many Marvel fans are claiming.

The original deal happened because the head of Sony (Kenichiro Yoshida) felt dishonoured by Andrew Garfield. In Japanese culture, being dishonoured is a pretty serious thing. Garfield didn’t show up to the event in Rio, that was announcing The Amazing Spider-Man 3 and 4, The Sinister Six and, the wider Spider-Man universe. He’d also turned up to meetings unkempt and seemed entirely disinterested-making the Yoshida feel dishonoured. He wanted Garfield gone.

The company then found themselves in the position where they would either have to recast and make The Amazing Spider-Man 3, or reboot it again. For the third time in 15 years. Understandably Sony Pictures didn’t want to reboot. Which is why they initially turned the deal down. It was only when Kenichiro Yoshida wanted the deal, that it was accepted. Yoshida felt that rebooting the character for a third time, but into the MCU would limit damage control and garner good will with the audience. For both companies, which it did.

The deal was Disney would get to use him for 5 films. Starting with Captain America: Civil War, ending with Avengers: End Game. In exchange for this use, Disney would produce 2 films for Sony-with Sony maintaining distribution rights. In exchange for these films, Disney would get 5% the box office takings and all the money from Spider-Man merchandise.

Essentially, the MCU deal happened because the owner of Sony got offended. Not because Sony needed Disney-the deal was mutually beneficial for both parties, but either would’ve still been okay without the other.