Big Finish Audio “Quick Review”
Summary: “When a teleportation accident goes badly wrong, Nyssa finds herself stranded on the freezing slopes of the Swiss Alps in 1963. But is it mere coincidence that she finds shelter in a snowbound school haunted by a malevolent poltergeist? When the Doctor arrives, Nyssa and the other inhabitants of the school soon discover that the ghost is merely part of a darker, deeper and more deadly game involving rogue psi talents and something else… Something not of this Earth.”
When we last left the Doctor (as played by Peter Davison) and Nyssa, they were leaving frigid Alaska bound for some place hopefully warmer. Not only does that not happen, but they end up in a house with a religious zealot that believes that cold air is the path to salvation and warmth is a sin. Nyssa gets stranded in this place long before the Doctor arrives, and is taken in by a group of Swiss School girls living on the mountainside. This story contains a few weird motifs that are out of the ordinary for Doctor Who, but serve well in this story….for the most part. The first of which is that the story itself is bookended by a narration from one of the Swiss school girls. The cheesy overly flowery diary entry harkens back to such writers as Jane Austen, but only in a superficial way. The girl basically says very little with as many adjectives as possible to make it sound classy. This sloppy writing should have been the first red flag for what I was getting into.
Winter for the Adept is one of those audio dramas that I really wanted to like, but sadly did not whatsoever. The story begins as a ghost story intertwined in a Stanley Kubrick’s Shining-esque wrapper, but completely falls apart 3/4ths of the way in and becomes a Michael Bay film. It’s like Andrew Cartmel (the writer) was so set on adding aliens into the mix that he forgot he was writing a ghost story.
The choppy writing doesn’t end there, as there is a lot of dialogue talking about “Spillagers” at the beginning, a term that is never explained until towards the end of the play. When it is revealed what a “Spillager” is, I was rolling my eyes due to how convenient it was within the plot. The Doctor constantly talks about “spillages” and his “spillage detector” in such a way that it leads you to believe that he is talking about some sort of energy release or some such. Not the alien that magically happens to be there in the Alps at the very same time. I also found myself having a lot of trouble imagining what was going on especially in episode four. There are many instances where random yelling, noises, and explosions can be heard with little explanation as to what is actually going on. Sadly this play is a frightful miss for me.
My rating 1 out of 5