Well, back to some Big Finish for a bit, including the first of a three part trilogy of stories (I think) under the “Time Lord Victorious” title, this one featuring Paul McGann’s Eighth Doctor.
As explained by the CD case, “Time Lord Victorious” is a big storyarc being told over multiple mediums. I know about the comics since I read one, and now the Big Finish audioplays because, like I said, I have three of them. But there are also apparently some video stuff, novels, and even games.
I’m probably not going to go looking for all of this stuff. My funds aren’t unlimited, and I read enough books without tossing some Doctor Who novels into the mix. However, it is worth noting that from what little I have gotten to so far, it does appear that many of these stories are perhaps more or less self-contained. This comic I read ended with the Daleks’ deciding to go looking for the Eighth Doctor. The Daleks in this story don’t appear until the end to capture him.
My guess is they have more to do in the second one. I mean, they appear on the cover of the CD case and everything.
But as to what this has to do with Time Lord Victorious stuff, it does appear that the setting at least is something new in the form of an alternate timeline where things were different. In the comic trade, that seemed to be limited to the fact the Daleks didn’t start the Time War. Here, it seems as if there’s a lot more going on as the Doctor, in his TARDIS, goes looking for a water world to see a statue that is considered one of the great wonders of the universe.
Instead, the planet is a desert under two suns. That also means about half the people the Doctor meets are some kind of Old West stereotype, but at least the sheriff in the nearby town is a woman if I want to see some stereotype get shattered.
So, no Daleks here until the end? Who does the Doctor match wits with? Well, it’s a deadly assassin, one of the most dangerous beings in the universe apparently. He’s been sent to take down one woman and bring back another. He’s found the woman he needs to kill, but he’s keeping her close-at-hand in order to find the other. See, the two women got married, and the one came from a powerful family and her father disapproves. Said father wants his daughter back and the wife dead. Hence the reason the assassin hasn’t killed his target yet: he knows holding one will lead him to the other.
And then the Doctor shows up, asking questions about planets he’s been to that apparently don’t exist according to the people he meets.
But there is another twist to this alternate timeline if that is indeed what this is. First, the assassin’s name…is Brian!
Probably shouldn’t take that seriously, though Brian is legit dangerous.
Oh, and more shocking…Brian is an Ood.
The Ood, a fairly harmless and harmonious race that are only ever dangerous when they’re possessed or mind controlled or something. A race that literally carries their brains in their hands. A spiritual people when treated well, the worst thing I think I’ve seen an Ood do on their own is turn a human into an Ood. They’re more the target of abuse than the other way around. That’s actually rather clever, making an Ood a master assassin.
Granted, he doesn’t get too much of a chance to show his stuff here as he is mostly in a more humorous story that involves the Doctor helping two women get away, and Brian ends up falling out of the TARDIS and into the void that the TARDIS flies through.
But yeah, an Ood assassin in an outer space version of the Old West. I think I can get behind that.