Synopsis: Alongside Sarah Jane Smith, life on Bannerman Road was always an adventure for Rani Chandra and her friends. They had a childhood of mystery and wonder, of meeting aliens, time travelers, lost princes, intergalactic robots, and so much more.
Sarah Jane is gone. Childhood ends. Everyone grows up eventually. But the story doesn’t stop there. When Rani and Clyde are reunited, adventure finds them once again. They’re ready and waiting to take on the world!
Review: I’ve always thought The Sarah Jane Adventures was the best Doctor Who spin-off. Big Finish has done a marvelous job of recapturing what made it such a wonderful show. All the while, the writers allow Rani and Clyde to organically develop into adults.
The three tales in this set follow Rani and Clyde’s journeys after losing Sarah Jane. What I love is that the tone of the stories isn’t maudlin. Rani and Clyde are allowed to process their grief while celebrating their own accomplishments.
“Here Today” by Joseph Lidster is an excellent start. Lidster wrote for the original series, and his love for that corner of the Who-universe is evident in every syllable of his script.
His characterizations are spot on. Moreover, he makes the best use of a meta-level easter egg to parallel a certain character’s journey with Sarah Jane’s.
“Destination: Wedding” by James Goss is where Rani and Gita shine. Goss makes all the wedding tropes his own as the two women confront the mystery together.
I also love how naturally Goss drops celebrity names left and right. As surreal as the overall story is, they don’t seem out of place.
“The Witching Tree” by Lizzie Hopley rounds out the set perfectly. Listeners are treated to Rani’s podcast in an immersive way.
Additionally, the ongoing plot threads a resolved story that contains tonal nods to the original Sarah Jane pilot — K–9 and Company.
As an added bonus, listeners get a surprise guest appearance from another spin-off character. However, I guarantee it isn’t the one anyone expects.
Anjli Mohindra, Daniel Anthony, and Mina Anwar reprise their roles with joyous aplomb. From first to last, they make it feel like the show never ended.
Thanks, Big Finish. I heard your love and effort throughout this first set. I can’t wait for the return of Mrs. Wormwood!
You can purchase Rani Takes on the World: Beyond Bannerman Road here.
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- Audio Production10