Big Finish Review: The Eighth Doctor in Sword of Orion

The Eighth Doctor Whips One Out Proper

cover of Big Finish's Sword of Orion

Big Finish Main Range #17

Sword of Orion

Marvelous! It’s only my second dip into Big Finish‘s Doctor Who audio dramas, and I am in love.

Not only is the story gripping and easy to follow, the supporting characters identifiable and memorable, but there are Cybermen! Hurrah! I figure that’s not quite a spoiler 14+ years after its release, right?


I don’t know if I’ve ever been so happy to stumble upon a Cyberman in a story, as I’m usually Team Dalek. ­­­Sometimes I just don’t feel the threat of Cybermen, as horrific as the conversion process is. (And yes, Daleks can be overused as well, but they’re just so cute and sassy that I still enjoy them.)

But this time, under the fierce direction (and acting) of Nicholas Briggs, the Cybermen bring genuine tension to the trapped-on-a-broken-spaceship setup.

Along with our metal villains is an interesting look at an android vs. human war going on in the area of space Charley and the Doctor are visiting. Humans –> androids –> Cybermen? Precisely why I am skeptical of biohacking.

Fill in the Blank

Speaking of Charlotte “Charley” Pollard—the Eighth Doctor’s early 20th century human Companion—how doth she fare in this second adventure, you might ask?

Relatively well. She made one particularly snarky comment that endeared her more to me.

Her background still isn’t discussed, which, in fact, bothers me—but it must come up eventually. There’s a whole arc about her disruptive place in space-time from what I’ve read, and maybe something about her parents?

Hopefully then, tidbits about her life before the Doctor will begin to be sprinkled throughout the next few adventures so it doesn’t feel abrupt or forced when we get to her big character moments.

One thing that distressed me was that the Doctor doesn’t hunt down Deeva but leaves her to be only possibly discovered—by others who may or may not have good intentions towards her.

I do understand these audio dramas are jampacked into a two hour length, sometimes less, working with only dialogue and sound effects. Which is a pretty impressive and daunting thing to think about, as a writer.

I just felt the Doctor wouldn’t have given up so easily.


Sword of Orion is an exciting listen, which fans the flame of my hope for the rest of the Eighth Doctor’s adventures. I just heard somewhere that he takes Mary Shelley for a whirl in future stories??

I must try to listen to at least one or two a month from now on.


2 thoughts on “Big Finish Review: The Eighth Doctor in Sword of Orion

  1. I’m glad you liked it too, it’s been one of my favourites for ages, and the Eight Doctor adventures just get better and better :)

    Thankfully the first eleven 8th Doctor stories are now just £2,99/$4.75 per title for download from Big Finish, a real bargain :)

    If your readers are interested the list is here

    In fact the first 51 titles featuring Doctors 5,6,7 and 8 are the same price, list here

    I look forward to reading your further reviews,

    • Glad to hear confirmation of my hunch that the Eighth Doctor’s audios get better and better as they go!

      I have bought the first nine so far. You are right–they are absolutely at an incredible price point! So worth it.

      I would probably go all out on cd purchases if I lived in the U.K. As it is, I can’t wait that long (for shipping to the U.S.)! Lol

      Thanks so much for the handy lists, Simon, and for reading! Stones of Venice up next, of course.

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