U.N.I.T. (United Nations Intelligence Taskforce) were an integral part of 1970’s TV show, Doctor Who, especially the Jon Pertwee years. When the new series began on television in 2005 it was not long before the Taskforce were slowly brought back into life with some new faces that became popular amongst fans. Jemma Redgrave played Kate Stewart (daughter of the original Brigadier, played by the late Nicholas Courtney) with her offsider Petronella Osgood (played with endearing charm by Ingrid Oliver). Both actresses have revived their roles in three previous audio boxsets for Big Finish and now lead the charge on this fourth boxset.
If there is one thing Big Finish loves, it’s a good crossover. In this instance, they have combined the current U.N.I.T. with the remaining members of the original U.N.I.T. – John Levene as Sgt. Benton, Richard Franklin as Captain Mike Yates, and Katy Manning as Jo Grant-Jones. All three of them slip back into their roles with consummate ease.
The story revolves around the Silurians, which were most prominent in the Pertwee years, before revived once more in the original series and then in the new series. Over four 50-minute episodes we meet a militant leader of the Silurians, Jastrok (played with menace by Richard Hope), and his equally extreme deputy Kalana (played by regular new Who Silurian Neve McIntosh). This extremist group of Silurians are determined to rid the world of the “disgusting apes” which populated the planet after their own species went into hibernation.
The current U.N.I.T. team unite with the former members to try and broker a peace deal, even enlisting the Sea Devils to try and help. Authors Matt Fitton and Guy Adams keep the pace rolling along and the dialogue as snappy as they can but there is no hiding the fact that much of this story is padding.
The cast do a fine job at keeping things exciting and the director Ken Bentley and producer David Richardson have put together an excellent sound mix as usual.
If you are nostalgic for the old U.N.I.T. cast, or a fan of the current ones, then this will keep you entertained but for other fans, it might be one trip down memory lane to ignore.
Reviewed by Rodney Hrvatin
Rating out of 10: 7
U.N.I.T. Assembled is available either as a download or as a physical CD from the Big Finish website until July 31 when it will be released to other retailers.