Any Suggestions, Doctor? An Improvised Adventure in Space and Time

I remember when Doctor Who was a practically forgotten, long cancelled show that was only the domain of nerds (like me). I’ve also not forgotten the excitement of the return of the show to Saturday night TV and how happy my nerdy friends and I were to see children playing with toy Daleks and so it still gives me a thrill to see families lining up to see an un-ironic, celebration of this 50-year-old sci-fi serial.

It’s funny, fast paced, and even manages to fit in a moral at the end

Any Suggestions, Doctor? Has a simple premise: five improvisers create a completely new Doctor Who episode based on audience suggestions of location and title. Not much to it you’d think but, much like the TV show, with all of time and space to play with, there’s endless possibilities.

The show opens on a high with fantastic live music from Alex Rushfirth as the show’s very own Radiophonic Workshop who soundtracks the whole adventure with electric guitar, synths and sound effects. The cast enter and rush into the audience for high-fives all round and we get straight into the action with requests for locations and a cheer-off to decide which of the cast will be playing the doctor today; surprisingly, after the audience’s enthusiastic response to the question of our new, female Doctor in Jodie Whittaker, Charles Deane is elected to the role and serves up a wonderfully charming Doctor. Ably assisted by his companion, Winston Churchill, played as a mischievous lush by Lewis Dunn, we embark on our adventure: Who Shot The Dalek?

Since you’re guaranteed a different adventure every time, I’m happy to go with some spoilers for the story we saw; After a pre-credit stinger where Louise Jones’ backpacker meets a nefarious end, The Doctor and Winston Churchill, in their attempt to avoid any Nazi’s, find themselves in New Jersey in 1944. Here they discover that the Hindenburg II is being built as a superweapon to end the war and by interrogating a befuddled guard played by James Gamblin and a possible Nazi spy, played with relish by Harry Whittaker, they learn that the mysterious ‘Investors’ behind this plan are actually the Daleks!

The sight of three of the cast pottering about on stage with plungers, egg whisks, and camping torches strapped to their heads is delightfully silly and the choice to play the Daleks as neurotics with daddy issues pays of fantastically when the whole thing is revealed to be the machinations of the Master who plans to set himself up as ruler of the Daleks by providing a solid father figure. It’s funny, fast paced, and even manages to fit in a moral at the end. I’m sure the Doctor would approve.

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Performances

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The Blurb

Most fantastic improvised parody in all of space and time is back! Brand new episodes of Doctor Who created with your suggestions and a live radiophonic workshop. Featuring a troupe of highly experienced improv actors, we will whisk you away to the time of dinosaurs, a post-apocalyptic wasteland or even Slough! Now with a brand new live score and sound effects provided by our radiophonic workshop you can visit the end of the universe and be home in time for fish fingers and custard. Allons-y!

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