There are four episodes in this new series of ‘Counter Measures’ and the worse thing is, that like many a box set, it’s all over far too soon. For those arriving in the 60s, in a slightly slow union jacked mini, this team were originally part of the Sylvester McCoy story ‘Remembrance Of The Daleks’. Those sneaky people at Big Finish who constantly look for a new twist on your dry martini thought they were an ideal bunch to round up and place in danger. The team of Group Captain ‘Chunky’ Gilmore (Simon Williams), Rachel Jensen (Pamela Salem) and Allison Williams (Karen Gledhill) are joined by the morally dubious Sir Toby Kinsella (Hugh Ross). Even his name sounds slippery and we are ever on uneven territory. The height of the Cold War is an excellent place to start and this time this place is often a cold and unlovely location as sometimes our team don’t know who to trust even themselves.
- 1. Manhunt by Matt Fitton
In the opening episode, everything is topsy-turvy. Chunky is on the run and accused of cold-blooded murder. Alison is grimly remembering her bad luck with her choice of boyfriend. Sir Toby is being elusive and oily and he has a new assistant called Templeton (Phillip Pope), so there is double trouble for all. But apart from the personal issues there is a real monster on the loose and Counter Measures must get back on track.
- 2. The Fifth Citadel by James Goss
With people falling ill in the vicinity of the underground in London, the team are sent to investigate. They uncover a grim truth about radiation sickness and find themselves in desperate straits. An old friend of Sir Toby wants to see him again, but he’s not going to like what she has to say.
- 3. Peshka by Cavan Scott and Mark Wright
Watching chess can be so soothing but this match turns into life and death when the Russian champion unleashes unwanted mind control. As things turn nasty and the chip on Alison’s shoulder hits the fat fryer, the team must calm their own minds to reach a solution and win the game.
4.Sins Of The Fathers by John Dorney
There are some chickens you would rather didn’t come home to roost as this chapter closes down, we are given some information that might make us think a bit differently about one of our main characters. This episode opens in a churchyard and features some high octane adventure and gruesome special effects and you might never eat chicken again. I defy you not to have your heart somewhere in your mouth when listening. ‘Sins Of The Fathers’ certainly ratchets up the tension and all in your ears. ‘Pretty damn good’ as Chunky might say.
Ooh, delicious and so atmospheric with the music, the effects, and the actors they all sound so right. The plots echo the very best of the 60s with a knowing nod towards the current day. I can’t believe how good this is and I wish the TV could come up with something half as good. All the ensemble are in top form with some great guest voices including Celia Imrie, Lucy Fleming and Tom (Torchwood) Price and every time Sir Toby opens his mouth I just shiver. More please Big Finish. I think I’m in love.
(pub: Big Finish. 5 CDs 300 minute story. Price: CD: £35.00 (UK), Download: £30.00 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-78178-082-4)
cast: Simon Williams, Pamela Salem, Karen Gledhill, Hugh Ross, Lucy Fleming, Blake Ritson, Gemma Whelan, Celia Imrie, Tom Price and Philip Pope
check out website: www.bigfinish.com