CWT releases A Christmas Carol adaptation.

Our very own Mr Chris has released a unique adaptation of Charles Dickens’ renowned festive classic, ‘A Christmas Carol’, featuring a what-if cast of well-known voices from BBC’s Doctor Who.

The adaption is written by Ashley Gregory and directed by Chris Walker-Thomson, who also stars in the play.

You know the drill, Ebeneezer Scrooge is a terrible man, whose life is transformed by visiting ghosts. It is a haunting tale of redemption, that continues to resonate throughout the ages. In this version, Ashley and Chris have imagined what the tale would sound like if it were voiced by the cast of Doctor Who.

The audio also stars Jon Culshaw, Katy Manning, Pete Walsh, Elliot Crossley and, Jonathon Carley.

it’s avalible on YouTube and to download as an MP3.

David Tennant to guest on Torchwood audio

Following on from his return in the Doctor Who episode ‘Revolution of the Daleks’  John Barrowman’s Captain Jack will be returning to the Big Finish Torchwood range, to celebrate its fiftieth episode. It will also mark the first time a Doctor has appeared in the spin-off, as David Tennant will be guesting as The Tenth Doctor.  The audio will also feature fan-favourite, Gareth David-Lloyd as Ianto Jones.

Anyone who has read my reviews will know that I think Torchwood on Big Finish is Torchwood at its very best, so I’m ridiculously excited by this news.

John Barrowman said: “Fans have been asking for this for a long time. Now that it’s okay and it’s been cleared, it’s great to have him on board. There’s an interesting dynamic going on here because Jack still wants to follow him but yet wants to impress on him that he’s still the leader.”

David Tennant added: “Because this isn’t a Doctor Who story, the Doctor doesn’t have to be ahead of everything and saving the day. What’s interesting about this story – from the Doctor’s point of view – is he sort of messes up. It’s a story about the Doctor being a bit imperfect which is nice to see now and again actually.”

Torchwood: Absent Friends is now available to pre-order as a collector’s edition CD at £10.99 or on download from the Big Finish website at £8.99.

Review-Worzel Gummidge: Saucy Nancy

Following last year’s festive specials, we’re back in Scatterbrook accompanying Worzel Gummidge on another madcap adventure. As with the last two, ‘Saucy Nancy’ is written and directed by Executive Producer Mackenzie Crook.

Worzel is rich, for a scarecrow. He’s found £20 and the money is burning a hole in his pocket, he wants to buy a door. So he enlists ‘the chillun’ Susan (India Brown) and John (Thierry Wickens) to help him find one. Whilst at a salvage yard, he stumbles across his old foul-mouthed friend, Saucy Nancy (Shirley Henderson). The sea is calling Nancy and she wants to get back to it, our trio of heroes vow to help her.

The two specials last year were undoubtedly the highlight of the festive period. This year is no different. This is a well-written and well-directed family adventure, bursting with heart and humour. Once again, Brown and Wickens feel like brother and sister and the entire cast have such natural chemistry, that a walking talking scarecrow seems like the most normal thing in the world. Shirley Henderson is an absolutely wonderful addition, in all her (scarecrow) sweary ways. There’s also a great turn from Venessa Redgrave as “Peg”.

Steve Pemberton and Rosie Cavaliero take more of a back seat in this, as Mr and Mrs Braithwaite, but they’re both still excellent in their respective roles. Mr Braithwaite has even softened to the kids “these two are different, they’re keepers” he tells his wife.

After the year we’ve had, it was extremely comforting slipping back into the innocent world of Worzel Gummidge. This show is about love, hope and trust, which is what we could all do with right now.

Mackenzie Crook has once again proved, that he is more than a worthy successor to Jon Pertwee. Ten Acre Field is in very safe hands.

Worzel Gummidge: Saucy Nancy – airs tonight at 5:55pm on BBC One. 

Trailer-Coming 2 America

Amazon Studios has released the teaser trailer and poster for next year’s ‘Coming 2 America’.

It sees Eddie Murphy reprise his role as King Akeem, it looks just as much fun as the original.

Arsenio Hall is also returning as Akeem’s best friend, Semmi. Once again, Murphy and Hall play multiple roles in the film. They’re joined by James Earl Jones as King Jaffe Joffer, Shari Headley as Queen Lisa, John Amos as Cleo McDowell and Louie Anderson as Maurice.

New cast members include Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan, Jermaine Fowler, Bella Murphy (Eddie’s daughter), Rotimi, KiKi Layne, Nomzamo Mbatha, and Teyana Taylor.

Coming 2 America is directed by Craig Brewer.

It will be released exclusively on Prime Video on March 5, 2021.

Review-The Ghost of Christmas (Ghosts Christmas special)

Alison and Mike are hosting Christmas at Button House, with his family joining them. Mike has taken control and is determined everything run as smoothly as possible. However, with a house full of ghosts and interfering parents, it’s not long before “the incredible sulk” has one of his annual meltdowns. As for the ghosts, they’re not big fans of Christmas.

It turns out the festive season isn’t much fun if you’re dead, Julian says “it’s just not the same when you’re dead. Can’t drink booze, can’t flirt with the filly’s at the Christmas Party if you can’t do that. What’s the point?”.



It’s Julian that takes most the focus of the special when a new arrival forces him to confront his old behaviour. Throughout the episode, he has a series of revelations that help all the ghosts rediscover the joy of Christmas.

The other ghosts mostly take a supporting role, with The Captain (Ben Willbond) taking offence to the Queen’s speech being televised “an officer and a gentleman should not be privy to the colour and thickness of the Queen’s curtain’s”. Robin (Laurence Rickard) believes Christmas is “just a fad”.

The special is full of everything you’d expect from this show. As always, the cast is uniformly great, Charlotte Ritchie and Kiell Smith-Bynoe feel like an authentic couple. Mike’s family feel like a real family, his sisters irritate him in the way only siblings can. The jokes vary from clever to crude, with strong performances all round.

The Ghosts Christmas special is the perfect way to tide us over until series 3.

The Ghost of Christmas airs on BBC One, at 20:30 on December 23rd.

Review-Torchwood: The Crown

The Ferryman stands in shadow and waits. The Ferryman giggles, hungers and hates. The Ferryman comes to carry away all who behold the crown and disobey.
Christmas Eve. Dr Gideon Parr is summoned to an asylum to check on a patient. A patient who claims to be haunted by a terrible curse. A patient who claims to be Queen Victoria.




The 45th release in the range also happens to be the final Torchwood release of 2020. Following on from “Fortitude” and “Save our souls” we once again follow the adventures of Rowena Cooper’s Queen Victoria.

It’s Christmas Eve and a young doctor (Derek Riddell) has been called away from his alleging wife to diagnose a new arrival at the local asylum, who claims to be the Queen herself.

With The Crown, Johnathan Barnes has crafted another incredibly atmospheric and immersive audio, that makes good use of its Victorian setting. This combined with Rowena Cooper’s outstanding performance as Queen Victoria levitate this above a standard ghost story. The supporting cast is amazing in their respective roles and, used expertly, which allows the story to breathe. This is all backed wonderfully by Joe Meiners flawless sound design and Blair Mowat’s musical score, which all makes for a claustrophobic soundscape. I felt cold and confined whilst listening.

This is a strong character piece that allows the listener to explore the early and darker days of Torchwood and its founder. I don’t know if it’s intentional or not, but this release feels very at home over the festive period. Maybe it’s because Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” has become so entrenched in our DNA, that the Victorian era, spooky stories and Christmas just go hand-in-hand together.

I say this on every review, but Torchwood on Big Finish is Torchwood at its best. The Crown is no different, this is a highly recommended morality tale, that would be the perfect stocking filler this Christmas.

Check out our other Big Finish reviews.

Torchwood contains adult material and may not be suitable for younger listeners.

Torchwood: The Crown is avalible to purchase directly from Big Finish.



Review-Doctor Who: Grey man of the mountain

Something haunts the peak of Ben MacDui.
Something with heavy footsteps, striking terror in the hearts of those who sense it. With climbers going missing, retired Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart visits Scotland to investigate.
But when some old friends join his ascent, he worries that they will make things even more dangerous. As the snows blow in, and mists surround them, the Doctor, Ace and the Brigadier will face the Grey Man of the Mountain…


This year’s Christmas offer from Big Finish is a pretty strong release, it’s more subtle than last year’s ‘Blood on Santa’s Claw and Other Stories’. Written by Verity’s Lizabeth Myles, it teams The Brigadier up with The Seventh Doctor and Ace. Jon Culshaw plays the role exceptionally well. He’s so pitch-perfect that, if you didn’t know this wasn’t Nicholas Courtney, you wouldn’t know this wasn’t Nicholas Courtney.




McCoy and Aldred are on top form as always. The setting and environment make for a tense and unnerving experience. The audio is so vivid, I could see the action playing out in my mind’s eye. This felt like a Seventh Doctor/Ace era storyline. The audio even plays around with Ace’s sexuality, by maybe possibly giving her a love interest with Lucy Goldie’s vlogger character. The pair of have such natural chemistry.
There are a few niggles though. Vivien Read slightly overplays the landlady. It’s like she’s in completely different story-at times she reminded me of David Walliams’ Scottish riddler from Little Britain.
The audio also overruns by about 30 minutes. This, plus a sizeable guest cast makes material thin on the ground, I found myself starting to drift a bit towards the end.


Those nitpick’s aside, Grey man of the mountain is an immersive, atmospheric and underplayed Christmas special. Which takes full advantage of its setting, cast and the medium of telling a story for audio.

Doctor Who: Grey man of the mountain is available to purchase directly from Big Finish



Episode 243: Love Actually

In what is probably the last episode of 2020, Martyn and Gerrod travel back to 2003, to reminisce about Love Actually.

They also discuss some Spider-Man casting, the Kingsman franchise news, Cyberpunk 2077, Christmas and, whether cinema is about to die.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as but not limited to Spotify, Amazon Music, PodchaserPlayer FM, Stitcher, and Apple Podcasts.

We also have a Smartlink.

Check out our Youtube.

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

Socials:

Twitter:

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete

Sam-@Sammichaelcomic

Instagram:

Martyn-@BadWilf

Chris-@ChrisWalkerThomsonofficial

Sam-@Sammichaelol

TikTok

Martyn-@BadWilf

Sam-@SamMichaelol



Episode 242: Kitchen Chat

Martyn is joined by writer/director Dan Summers and Actor/presenter Tom Selway, to talk about their excellent new series Tuesday Afternoon Kitchen.

Tuesday Afternoon Kitchen is available to watch on Amazon Prime



The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as but not limited to Spotify, Amazon Music, PodchaserPlayer FM, Stitcher, and Apple Podcasts.

We also have a Smartlink.

Check out our Youtube.

Equipment used in the creation of this feature was purchased through a grant from Graeae and The Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

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

Socials:

Twitter:

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete

Sam-@Sammichaelcomic

Instagram:

Craig Kelly-@MrCraigKelly

Martyn-@BadWilf

Chris-@ChrisWalkerThomsonofficial

Sam-@Sammichaelol

TikTok

Martyn-@BadWilf

Sam-@SamMichaelol

Episode 241: Katy Manning Interview

Martyn and Chris are joined by the legendary Katy Manning. She tells them about working with Big Finish, her time on The Sarah Jane Adventures, voice acting and, how lucky Doctor Who fans are to have had Russell T Davies bring back the show.



Equipment used in the creation of this feature was purchased through a grant from Graeae and The Paul Hamlyn Foundation.

The podcast is available from all good podcast services, such as but not limited to Spotify, Amazon Music, PodchaserPlayer FM, Stitcher, and Apple Podcasts.

We also have a Smartlink.

Check out our Youtube.

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

Socials:

Twitter:

Katy Manning-@ManningOfficial

Martyn – @BadWilf

Gerrod –@InGerrodsMind

Pete – @BeeblePete

Sam-@Sammichaelcomic

Instagram:

Katy Manning-@ManningOfficial

Martyn-@BadWilf

Chris-@ChrisWalkerThomsonofficial

Sam-@Sammichaelol

TikTok

Martyn-@BadWilf

Sam-@SamMichaelol