Episode reviews of series eight of Survivors audio adventures

INDIVIDUAL EPISODE REVIEWS of each of the four episodes of series eight of Big Finish’s Survivors audio adventures have been published on this site.

Big Finish - Survivors - series eight - cover art

Big Finish release Survivors audios series eight trailer

BIG FINISH HAVE released the trailer for the upcoming eighth series of Survivors audio adventures.

It had previously been revealed that this latest series of audio dramas will feature the resolution of Abby Grant long search for her missing son Peter, although there’s no guarantee that this long-anticipated meeting will be a joyous one.

The new 1m 6s trailer focuses on the characters of Abby and Jenny (Greg does not appear to feature in series eight) and suggests that Abby’s and Peter’s reunion will occur in the context of an armed conflict between different groups over scarce resources.

Details of the episode titles, scriptwriters and key cast members were announced by Big Finishback in September.

Now scheduled for release in December 2018 (a month later than the previously rescheduled November date) series eight of Survivors is available to pre-order at £25 on CD or £20 on download. Also available is a bundle, which combines a pre-order of series eight and nine for £50 on CD or £40 on download.

If you’re new to the world of Survivors you can listen to Survivors: Revelation by Matt Fitton, the first episode from Survivors series one, on a free download from Big Finish.

Big Finish - Survivors - series eight - cover art

Abby and Jenny reunited in new Big Finish Survivors audios

Carolyn Seymour - Ian McCulloch - Lucy Fleming

In an exclusive interview, Carolyn Seymour (Abby Grant) and Lucy Fleming (Jenny Richards) discuss their characters’ fraught and emotional reunion in the closing episode of the new series of Big Finish’s Survivors audio adventures.

FOLLOWING ON FROM the finale of series six “Lockdown”, which saw Abby Grant track down Greg Preston, series seven of Big Finish’s new Survivors audio dramas delivers the no-less-anticipated reunion of Abby Grant and Jenny Richards. The two leading female characters from the original TV series meet up in the episode “Reconnection”, written by Christopher Hatherall, which unfolds some months after the closing canonical instalment of the TV series “Power”.

In a break in recording, Lucy Fleming (Jenny) is quick to praise Hatherall and his fellow scriptwriters working on this latest series. “Big Finish are a very special lot of people, and they work so hard,” she says. “The quality of the writing, and the thought that goes into which way to take the story forward, is incredible.”

Carolyn Seymour (Abby) readily concurs. “The people who write this stuff are just amazing,” she enthuses. That writing team has “got to know the characters,” says Fleming “and know how to write to their individual strengths and weaknesses.” On a series with such “dark” subject matter, the writers understand the importance of lighter moments too. “Finding humour in very tough situations – because we do have, in these scripts, very tough situations – really helps, I think,” she adds.

The reunion of these characters, both emotionally scarred by the experience of loss, is not an immediately happy one, as the pair fling accusations at each other and Abby (temporarily) retreats into drunken self-recrimination. “What I like, in these very action-packed stories, are the quieter and more intimate scenes, like the very challenging one we’re about to record,” Fleming explains. It’s in those reflective moments that the stories “explore the real problems that people are having to confront in this new world,” she says.

Big Finish have responded to Lucy Fleming’s request to have Jenny’s more pro-active, independent side highlighted

Seymour agrees. “I think what’s really interesting about this episode is how it unfolds on a very truthful level,” she says. “It’s not abstract, it really gets to the nitty-gritty.” As the two survivors seek to reconcile their differences, Seymour says that scriptwriter Hatherall “has decided that we’re not going to be able to skirt over important issues that we have to deal with.” It’s an approach that makes for some intentionally disquieting and some “quite uncomfortable” listening, she says. In the end, each character understands that “one of them will always end up supporting the other,” a recognition that rekindles their close connection and mutual dependence.

Fleming is pleased that Big Finish have responded to her request to have Jenny’s more pro-active, independent side highlighted and her domestic responsibilities downplayed. “It’s very gratifying,” she says. “And I think it’s the right call. In those sort of situations, you would become more resourceful and want to get out and do more demanding things, rather than stay at home and do the boring stuff.” Seymour is not immediately convinced. “Well, Lucy might,” she suggests. “I’d be quite happy to have Abby stay at home by the fire,” she jokes. “Jenny could be out there chopping wood and ploughing the fields!”

The pair are just as impressed with the calibre of the guest actors brought in to work on the show. “They’re so clever at getting fantastic supporting cast in,” Seymour says. “I’m just stunned at the level of talent.” With recording on series seven largely completed back-to-back with series six, it proved to be a lengthier studio commitment than normal. “I had one episode a couple of weeks ago, and then this one, and then one ages ago. So, it’s nicely spread out for me, which I prefer actually,” says Fleming. Seymour, in contrast, had recorded three episodes in as many intensive days. “That doesn’t matter to me,” she says. “It’s great. I love it.” Fleming is unsurprised. “Nothing phases Carolyn,” she suggests.

As the events of “Reconnection” conclude, the framework of the TV series has well and truly been left behind. Had either of them ever wondered what had become of their characters after the end of the television timeline? “We did talk about that a lot, at the time, when we were making the TV series,” Seymour recalls. “We wondered what our trio might go on to do next. But once I left, I stopped.” Fleming suggests that the focus was much more short-term than that. “It was really all about surviving,” she says. “There wasn’t really much thinking about ‘OK, in an ideal world, what would you do next?’ It remained a question of how – and if – you would survive.”

If Abby and Jenny are going to be together, and running a commune, then it means that things need to move ahead,” Seymour affirms

With the story arcs for series eight and nine still under wraps, neither know for certain if the following two Survivors box-sets will push the timeline on into the future. “I think they’re planning to keep things going forward,” Fleming suggests. “If Abby and Jenny are going to be together, and running a commune, then it means that things need to move ahead,” Seymour affirms. “That way we could get to deal with more of what the end part of the first TV series was all about.”

What would that mean for the character of Greg Preston (played by Ian McCulloch), who features in series seven in flashback, and via tape recordings, in Simon Clark’s “Legacy”? Greg is reported to have died by the time of the penultimate television episode “Long Live the King”. “I don’t know, actually,” Fleming admits. “We’ll just have to wait and see.”

* The seventh series of Big Finish’s Survivors audio adventures is out now, and available to buy in both CD and digital download formats.

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - cover

Reviewed: Big Finish Survivors audios series seven

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - available to buy

MY 10/10 REVIEW of the seventh series of Big Finish’s Survivors audios has today been published in the online edition of Starburst magazine.

The review concludes:

At times harrowing, at other moments uplifting, and never anything other than completely riveting listening, this latest series of Survivors audios delivers drama that is simply unmissable. As the series leaves behind the timeline of the TV incarnation of the show, Big Finish’s writers, cast and crew are all clearly brimming with fully deserved confidence. “This is truly uncharted territory,” says [scriptwriter Christopher] Hatherall. “There are no reference points now.” The two series of new Survivors audios coming in 2018 could scarcely be a more exciting or (in the best sense of the word) a more unpredictable prospect.

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - to buy

Big Finish release series seven of Survivors audio adventures

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - cover

BIG FINISH HAVE released the seventh series of Survivors audio dramas, a boxset that features for standalone stories which (at different times) feature original series TV characters Abby Grant, Jenny Richards, Ian McCulloch, Ruth Anderson and returning new characters Jackie Burchall and Evelyn Piper.

Series seven is available to buy (in both digital download and CD formats) on the Big Finish web site. Series eight (June 2018) and series nine (December 2018) are both available for pre-order.

Synopsis

The world has ended. ‘The Death’ pandemic crossed continents, sparing only a fraction of the global population.

The survivors are now trying to pick up the pieces and rebuild society – to create a new future.

But with no cities, no laws, no technology, everyone must start over. And the worst of human nature has survived along with the best…

Four new battles for survival, from the world of Terry Nation‘s cult-classic series.

7.1 Journey’s End by Roland Moore

Alone and resolute, a mother has spent the years since the Death searching for her son. She is closing in on her final lead. One last hope to find Peter.

But for Abby Grant, the worst possible thing might be to find what she is looking for…

7.2 Legacy by Simon Clark

Greg Preston is dead. But the work he did in forging his foundation, in bringing communities together, lives on.

When she and Ruth encounter those whose lives he touched, Jenny Richards is forced to remember how the man she loved abandoned her. But when she meets a common enemy, can she find the strength to make a stand?

7.3 Old Friends by Matt Fitton

Ruth Anderson and Evelyn Piper unite on a mission of mercy. An old friend is in trouble and in the path of dangerous forces.

Jackie Burchell could reveal secrets that change lives. But first, she must find her own way back. When things are at their worst, it’s old friends who keep you going.

7.4 Reconnection by Christopher Hatherall

As Jenny continues her plan to restore electricity across the country, she meets someone she never thought she’d see again – but it’s a very different Abby Grant to the one who left the Grange.

Not everyone is in favour of Jenny’s project, and the women find danger in a remote power station. It may be too late for them to reconnect…

NOTE:  Survivors contains adult material and is not suitable for younger listeners.

Written By: Roland Moore, Simon Clark, Matt Fitton, Christopher Hatherall

Directed By: Ken Bentley

Cast

Carolyn Seymour (Abby Grant), Ian McCulloch (Greg Preston), Lucy Fleming (Jenny), Louise Jameson (Jackie Burchall), Helen Goldwyn (Ruth Anderson), Zoë Tapper (Evelyn Piper), Katherine Rose Morley (Sonia Meadows), Brian Protheroe (Abraham / Gruff), Ewan Bailey (Garth Warren / PA Announcer), Harry Myers (Neville Trent), Susie Emmett (Sylvia Jeffries), Graham Seed (Barstow/ Soldier), Justin Avoth (Clock-Winder / Blair), John Banks (Daniel Connor), Alistair Mackenzie (Nick), Jamie Laird (Ewan)

Producer David Richardson
Script Editor Matt Fitton
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs

Big Finish release trailer for series seven of Survivors audios

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - cover

BIG FINISH HAVE released an intriguing short trailer for the seventh series of new Survivors audio adventures released later this month.

Series seven is still available for pre-order (in both CD and digital download formats) on the Big Finish site, while the previous six series (and the audiobook version of Terry Nation’s 1976 Survivors novel) are all available for purchase.

Series eight of Survivors audios will be released in June 2018; with series nine following in November 2018.

 

Survivors audiobook becomes Big Finish Listeners’ Choice title for November 2017

Survivors - Terry Nation - Big Finish - audiobook
Survivors – Terry Nation – Big Finish – audiobook

BIG FINISH’S CRITICALLY acclaimed unabridged audiobook version of Terry Nation’s 1976 Survivors novel, voiced by Carolyn Seymour (Abby Grant), recorded and released in December 2014, has been selected at the company’s “Listeners’ Choice” title for November 2017.

This means that the purchase cost of the download version of the audiobook has been slashed to £2.99, on the Big Finish site, for the whole of November.

In an one-page retrospective in this month’s free-to-read Vortex magazine, producer and director Neil Gardner reflects on the experience of working with narrator Carolyn Seymour on the book:

What can I tell you about working with Carolyn? Over those days she was the consummate, but fun, professional actor, narrating superbly and with great character. All in all, it was one of my most memorable and enjoyable audiobook productions.

Kenny Smith. 2017. ‘Listen again [Survivors audiobook],’ Vortex, 105, p.22.

 

If (even at that price) you’d like to try-before-you-buy, the latest free-to-listen Big Finish podcast (hosted by Nick Briggs and Benji Clifford) includes a fifteen minute ‘Audio Tease’ of the Survivors audiobook. (In the opening segment of the podcast the pair also discuss their involvement in the music and sound design of the seventh series of Survivors audios.)

 

 

Survivors - The Listeners Choice - Big Finish

‘British Invaders’ sci-fi podcast discusses Big Finish Survivors audios

British Invaders - podcasts

THE BRITISH INVADERS sci-fi podcast team have dedicated the two most recent shows (episodes 270 and 271) to discussing the first six series of Big Finish’s Survivors audio dramas.

The podcasters, who previously discussed the original Survivors TV series in a 2011 edition, turn their attention to the audio incarnation of Survivors, discussing themes, characters, realisation, sound design, plot and more. Each instalment addresses three series (Part 1 – series 1-3; Part 2 – series 4-6).

Spoiler alert: both instalments are highly complimentary and enthusiastic about Big Finish’s Survivors imprint. Although some key plot points and character developments are revealed along the way, this is more of an introductory overview. For detailed synopses and reviews of all of the episodes released so far, head over to the Episodes section of the Big Finish: Survivors mini-site.

Listeners can stream or download the content; and subscribe to the podcast series on iTunes or through another pod capture service.

British Invaders 270: Big Finish Survivors (Part 1)

Survivors was Terry Nation’s post-apocalyptic drama from the 1970s. Big Finish Productions is now producing brand new Survivors audio dramas with original cast members and some new characters. This time, we discuss these audios (10 September 2017). [Listen to the episode on the British Invaders site]

British Invaders 271: Big Finish Survivors (Part 2)

Survivors was a 1970s BBC post-apocalyptic series created by Terry Nation. Big Finish Productions is now producing Survivors audio dramas with new characters along with some of the originals. We are discussing the audios (24 September 2017). [Listen to the episode on the British Invaders site]

Big Finish release details of series seven of new Survivors audio dramas

Big Finish - Survivors - series seven - cover

Synopsis

The world has ended. ‘The Death’ pandemic crossed continents, sparing only a fraction of the global population.

The survivors are now trying to pick up the pieces and rebuild society – to create a new future.

But with no cities, no laws, no technology, everyone must start over. And the worst of human nature has survived along with the best…

Four new battles for survival, from the world of Terry Nation‘s cult-classic series.

7.1 Journey’s End by Roland Moore

Alone and resolute, a mother has spent the years since the Death searching for her son. She is closing in on her final lead. One last hope to find Peter.

But for Abby Grant, the worst possible thing might be to find what she is looking for…

7.2 Legacy by Simon Clark

Greg Preston is dead. But the work he did in forging his foundation, in bringing communities together, lives on.

When she and Ruth encounter those whose lives he touched, Jenny Richards is forced to remember how the man she loved abandoned her. But when she meets a common enemy, can she find the strength to make a stand?

7.3 Old Friends by Matt Fitton

Ruth Anderson and Evelyn Piper unite on a mission of mercy. An old friend is in trouble and in the path of dangerous forces.

Jackie Burchell could reveal secrets that change lives. But first, she must find her own way back. When things are at their worst, it’s old friends who keep you going.

7.4 Reconnection by Christopher Hatherall

As Jenny continues her plan to restore electricity across the country, she meets someone she never thought she’d see again – but it’s a very different Abby Grant to the one who left the Grange.

Not everyone is in favour of Jenny’s project, and the women find danger in a remote power station. It may be too late for them to reconnect…

NOTE:  Survivors contains adult material and is not suitable for younger listeners.

Written By: Roland Moore, Simon Clark, Matt Fitton, Christopher Hatherall

Directed By: Ken Bentley

Cast

Carolyn Seymour (Abby Grant), Ian McCulloch (Greg Preston), Lucy Fleming (Jenny), Louise Jameson (Jackie Burchall), Helen Goldwyn (Ruth Anderson), Zoë Tapper (Evelyn Piper), Katherine Rose Morley (Sonia Meadows), Brian Protheroe (Abraham / Gruff), Ewan Bailey (Garth Warren / PA Announcer), Harry Myers (Neville Trent), Susie Emmett (Sylvia Jeffries), Graham Seed (Barstow/ Soldier), Justin Avoth (Clock-Winder / Blair), John Banks (Daniel Connor), Alistair Mackenzie (Nick), Jamie Laird (Ewan)

Producer David Richardson
Script Editor Matt Fitton
Executive Producers Jason Haigh-Ellery and Nicholas Briggs

Starburst preview of Big Finish Survivors series six now available online

The feature previewing the release of series six of Big Finish’s Survivors audio dramas, first published in the print edition of Starburst (Issue 438, June 2017 – before the series was released), has now been made freely available to read online on the Starburst web site.

In addition to the review of the new series published in the online edition of Starburst, individual episode reviews of each of the episode reviews in the series have also been published on the S:AWA Big Finish mini-site.

Starburst - Big Finish - Survivors - series six - preview - online

Starburst #438 - Big Finish - Survivors - series six - preview