After the previous two months special releases in the Short Trips range in the form of The Jago & Litefoot Revival Act One and Act Two, the Short Trips range is back to normal. I know I’ve not really reviewed many over the past few months, but after getting back into it, I thought I should continue. You can’t stop me anyway. Anywho, here’s my review of the latest Short Trip, Falling.
Long, long ago, Mrs Polly Jackson travelled in the TARDIS with her friends, the Doctor and Ben. Together, they saw many remarkable things – some magical, some terrifying, some filled with awe and wonder. Only one incident, however, was truly inexplicable, a single encounter which failed at the time wholly to make sense. At least, that is, until today…
Polly is moving house. It seems as if she’s been free of her travels in the TARDIS for a while now, and her age has made her more cautious about travels anew. Deep down Polly doesn’t want to move; she likes being in a place of familiar comfort, something a lot of people can relate to. Within the first four minutes, you’re already back with Polly Jackson and you understand her motivations. Jonathan Barnes has, within this tiny amount of time at the opening of the story, created a great piece on the human condition. Change is scary.
With present Polly’s anguish filling her, she’s suddenly whisked back to undoubtedly a simpler, and far more dangerous time. A time in the TARDIS. A time with the Doctor and Ben. It seems that both her and Ben have had a really bad dream, and neither of them can quite understand why, it had to be more than a coincidence.
Once Polly and Ben find the Doctor, it seems as if he too has had the same dream; and I must admit that my mind is cast back (or is it forward?) to the events of Amy’s Choice. If it is indeed the Dream Lord behind all of this, it would be a great nod to the modern era of the show, as long as they get rid of the psychic pollen nonsense.
There’s a great scene in which the TARDIS trio discovers a creature that resembles an angel, in which the Doctor has to try and convince both Polly and Ben that the creature may not be what it seems. The angel seems to know a lot about the Doctor, Ben and Polly’s futures, with allusions to the Doctor becoming the last of the Time Lords, and Ben and Polly’s marriage; and the prophecies seem to shake the Doctor and his companions.
Near the end of the story, we learn exactly when in the Doctor’s timeline that Falling takes place, and it makes the events somewhat bittersweet.
At its heart, Falling is a story about metamorphosis, change, death and renewal. The story itself focusses a lot on the future and the changes that are yet to come; and Jonathan Barnes does it brilliantly. If I had to pick one aspect of this Short Trip that I enjoyed the most; I would probably say it was just how eloquent Barnes has written this script, the words seem to dance off the page when read by the brilliant Anneke Wills, and every sentence is complex and beautiful.
Should you want to purchase Falling, it’s currently available as a download from Big Finish for £2.99 which you can purchase here.