Audio - Doctor Who:Dark Journey Series 2, Episodes 3 & 4

Doctor Who: Dark Journey ep 3

Steve Taylor-Bryant takes another trip in the TARDIS to Baker Street and listens to two more episodes of fan fic audio Doctor Who: Dark Journey (with spoilers)...

Following on from the end of episode 2, Age of Banishment kicks straight in with the balloon carrying Holmes and The Doctor crashing into Big Ben, much to Holmes' disappointment. They travel down a dark staircase talking about the time of banishment where the Doctor created regeneration to try and keep the good Time Lords happy but failed, killing thousands, which left a race of time lords bent on destruction and corruption. Faces start to form on the walls around them and the chants begin again, "It ends as it begins." Emily is still screaming for her baby and Holmes disappears, leaving the Doctor alone. Holmes finds himself in some catacombs whilst the whispering spirits are telling the Doctor that they know his secrets as they surround him. Holmes can hear Emily and enters the sacrificial chamber looking for her. The Illuminatus are about to strike the blade down as the baby cries, followed by the murder but it's only an illusion and the Doctor has the baby, as he freezes the bad guys in time. The Doctor burns an occult circle around himself and sends Holmes to find Emily. The spirits become Holmes' father as the Doctor announces he has a bomb but he's just trying to fool Cassandra and the others. The Doctor and his nemesis face off meanwhile Holmes is wrapped up in his family illusion...

Doctor Who: Dark Journey

...which is where episode 4, Passing of Light, begins. The spirits are whispering to Holmes about his mother and trying to convince him to take some opium. Cassandra is still talking about killing the Daleks for the Doctor which he sees in a vision. Cassandra tries to tell the Doctor they are same and wants Cassandra to tell her how she got to where she is. She explains how the Illuminatus are pure, preying on the superstition of mankind. Cassandra releases Emily at the Doctor's asking and explains they wanted the Doctor to join them, as they are the same, and she wants the Doctor to surrender humans to her, his goddess. Holmes is trying to fend off skeletons when Emily joins him to help in the fight. Cassandra is playing on the Doctor's emotions and memories and explaining how they came to be, these children of the Doctor, because the coordinates of Gallifrey at the this time align it with Earth. The Doctor tries talking to a vision of Susan whilst still facing off with Cassandra. He explains how his human feelings make him better than her and tells her he is coming for her and he has her sword which which he will end her. Holmes and Emily rejoin the Doctor as the stars align only to see Emily killed as Cassandra turns on them, and tries to put the Doctor against Holmes...

A jovial Doctor cracking some jokes this week, which lifts the doom they surround themselves in, but it's good comedy that suits the story and not added in "just because". Telemarketers as demons raised an audible chuckle from me. Again some cracking storytelling and solid performances with a really strong effort on sound effects and evil voices. The editing in of previous Doctor Who snippets really pleases and, with some of their own origin story playing out, hearing Hartnell's voice adds some genuine feel to what they are doing. I'm really liking this series and have actually stopped thinking of it as fan made because quality wise it is up there with licensed products.

We also got a chance last week to have a word with the episode 3 and 4 Sound Designer Kevin Gray from Big Sound Guy about some of the effects he used in the episodes.

"Some of the voices and effects are rather scary in episodes 3 and 4. How did you accomplish it and where did you draw sound inspiration from?

I love sci-fi and horror films. And all the good vocal effects come from those genres. One of the best effects I’ve heard was a demon in the film Solomon Kane. The demon voice just filled the room. I loved it. I wanted to make Gull sound like that but it was way too much for his character so I reluctantly had to dial it down.

Making the voices sound scary is a combination of layering the original vocal with different effects and mixing the levels of each to just the right volume. I also tested the vocals by playing them to the missus before she went to bed…

The acting really seems to fit well with the mix. How is this achieved?

It’s mostly accomplished with MA Tamburro’s directing and Andrew Chalmers clear idea of what he’s looking for with regards to his script. When it was given to me to produce, we discovered that we were usually on the same wavelength when describing the scenes. Things like “ya know that scene in Temple of Doom?...like that!” or “like Murder By Decree meets The Dæmons”. "

You can find out more about Big Sound Guy here and hear all the episodes so far on SoundCloud.

Images - AM Audio Media.