In Review: Big Finish: Doctor Who: Once and Future: The Union

The truth about the Doctor’s degeneration will finally be revealed.

Synopsis: During The Time War, the Doctor has been injured and brought to a Time Lord field hospital. His body glows with energy, but this is no regeneration into a future form. Instead, the Doctor’s past faces begin to appear as he flits haphazardly between incarnations.

Staggering to his TARDIS, the Doctor sets out to solve the mystery of his ‘degeneration’. From the Earth to the stars, he follows clues to retrace his steps. He encounters old friends and enemies along the way. Tumbling through his lives, the Doctor must stop his degeneration before he loses himself completely.

The Doctor responds to a distress call from his granddaughter, Susan. He finds her at the Diamond Array — a huge multidimensional space station.

 Once there, the Fourth and Eighth Doctors discover the Array’s terrible purpose. Meanwhile, River Song has made a deadly alliance to try to save her husband. The truth about the Doctor’s degeneration will finally be revealed.


Review: The gang’s all here! Doctor Who: Once and Future: The Union delivered on every level. Once again, Big Finish demonstrated how to perfectly blend classic and modern Doctor Who.



Since the character beats and plot points are intertwined, this will have to be a spoiler-free review. That said, there are some elements I must generally mention.

To start with, Matt Fitton’s script was extremely well structured. He managed to deftly balance organic surprises with decades of necessary internal logic.

Second, I really enjoyed the universe-building Fitton did. The Diamond Array was lyrically literal. Moreover, the Union was brilliantly unhinged, even by the franchise’s usual standards.

Third, one particular casting choice was truly inspired. While I won’t discuss the character in detail, I will mention the actor.



The entire cast was marvelous. Indeed, many performances brought tears to my eyes. However, I must single out Maureen O’Brien.

It’s no small thing to cast a legacy actor in a different role. O’Brien obviously relished the new adventure the part allowed her.



Thank you, Big Finish. Doctor Who: Once and Future: The Union was an immensely satisfying denouement. I can’t wait for Doctor Who: Once and Future: Coda – The Final Act next month.


You can purchase Doctor Who: Once and Future: The Union here

Big Finish: Doctor Who: Once and Future: The Union
  • Story
  • Performances
  • Audio Production

Raissa Devereux became a life-long genre fan at the age of four when she first saw The Wizard of Oz at a screening at Arizona State University. Years later, she graduated from A.S.U. as an English major, History minor, Whovian, and Trekkie. Now a Florida transplant, she loves the opportunity Sci-Fi Pulse has given her to further explore space travel, time travel, masked heroes, gothic castles, and good yarns.
    One Comment
  • Davidhhh
    30 October 2023 at 2:30 am -

    You’re going to have to wait a lot longer than next month for the coda. It isn’t for another year!

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