Sunday, March 8, 2009

Another Benny Double Feature: The Poison Seas and Death and the Daleks

For the first time since before Thanksgiving we're all able to get together. Due to time constraints today's session turns into another Benny double feature. I promise, next month we'll get back to main Who line.

Beer is courtesy of the Shiner Family Reunion pack. One beer each from their main releases then one Kosmo's Reserve which Shiner hasn't brewed in nearly ten years. Named for their founder, Kosmo's Reserve is a hoppy affair that provides different tastes as it finishes. I'm enjoying it way more than the Commerator.

After a meal of sweet and sour pork with wonton soup for me we start up The Poison Seas.

Tim: I'm picturing Sea Devils. The music seems to indicate Sea devils.

Angelie: Too much reverb. I can't understand what they're saying. I've had two cups of coffee. My goal is not to fall asleep.

Insert the first of many The Little Mermaid jokes as we listen to a Sea Devil soliluquay. Then we get to hear Benny trying to evade Carvers' questions and getting yelled at for not staying in her quarters.

Me: Yeah, Benny is really good at staying put and listening to orders.

Benny calls and bitches out Brax couched around a tender moment of asking him how Jason is doing. Then we go back to talking Sea Devils. The sound design is great, but of course you have to strain to really understand what they are saying due in part to the reverb. This ultimately is one that's probably best served listening by yourself with a pair of really good head phones. I find myself alternating between Little Mermaid songs and PJ Harvey.

Benny gets dropped off and we listen to Carver and her assistant wonder if Benny's going to be trouble. Carver notes that Benny will just be an innocent victim.

Me: Um yeah...Benny is not innocent and "trouble" really should be her middle name.

Benny starts talking with a Sea Devil.

Tim: Ok. I really can't hear anything at this point. There's too much going on in the background.

Angelie: I heard a corridor.

Tim: I don't know what this chamber is or where it's supposed to be, but whenever they're in it I can't hear a damn thing. (Sea Devil dialogue)

Carver kills a sea devil and then we go back to more hard to hear sea devil dialogue. Other stuff happens and Benny hooks up with her friend to investigate the killing of the sea devil. She explains to the lead sea devil that she's been sent to really determine who within the group is helping a terrorist group that Carver is leading. In another batch of hard to follow sea devil dialogue there's something in the water, and it's not just the sharks.

They go back to see the Principal and Benny utters a 'goddess'.

Me: Drink.

Benny gets found out by Carver and we end up back with Principal talking to Nedda. Nedda at one point says "how can this be?"

Me and Tim: (ala' Dune) For he is the Qwissatz Hadderach!

Principal reveals that he is the poison sea and he starts to strangle sea devils ala' Darth Vader. Carver reaveals the reason for all her barely post teen angst before she leaves Benny to die. She eventually gets rescued by Nedda who catches her up to speed on how Principal's gone all crazy. Meanwhile Principal is giving Carver some of his strangling treatment.

Benny gets all maudlin and starts talking about home and it's significance. She also mentions how some times she's tempted to take the time rings and just run away from it all. I point out that unless she's got mad skills she needs someone to work the other ring.

After a bad set of puns with Principal Benny runs into a not quite dead Carver. The bomb Carver set can be controlled by remote so Benny ups the time of destruction. Principal is getting all orgasmic about getting the planet back before he gets blown up by Carver's bomb.

Benny radios The Collection and something's going on as Brax replies in vague answers and keeps talking about her coming home soon.

I bring out my copy of Life During Wartime to show Tim and Angelie was Benny is coming home to and explain briefly what's going on. Then Death and the Daleks gets put into the player.

We get through the recap and Benny finds her dad is commanding the armies of the Fifth Axis. Benny says "cruk".

Me: Drink.

After evading the Fifth Axis and then evading Jason's enquiries as to the nature of their relationship Benny goes to see Brax. He talks about how his life has been distilled down to torture and interior decorating.

Me: Maybe that could be next year's edition of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. One way to get Ty to shut up.

Benny gets approval to visit Heaven and says goodbye to both Adrian and Peter. Peter cries as Benny talks about leaving.

Tim: (as Benny) It's not like I'm ever here anyway.

She talks about getting Isaac back.

Tim: (as Benny) We're bringing him back from the dark side.

Bev gets rescued and Benny and Jason make it to Heaven. The planet. Last seen in Love and War Benny starts going down memory lane. Angelie is able to guess Jason's dialogue when he tells Benny that he still loves her. Benny and Jason sneak out in the evening to go to the Heavenite arch.

Angelie: I'm sorry, but if I didn't know they were in a tent and I heard that zipper sound...

They get to the arch and Jason notes that it's huge.

Angelie: That's what she (Benny) said.

They stumble upon the Daleks and we get a history of the word "cruk" before Jason goes on a "cruk" tirade.

Me: That's like a chug right since someone other than Benny is saying it?

I tell Tim when this was released and then he tries to figure out which version of the Daleks he should be envisioning.

Bev starts the food riot and then we go back to Benny and Jason being revived by the Daleks.

Tim: That looked cool in my head. That was a really nice sound effect.

Me: You know, they could just grab some kid that plays World of Warcraft all day and probably get a better level of tactical knowledge.

Benny wonders if the Daleks have other military minds hidden behind the doors.

Tim: Cause the Rani already did that.

As usual Benny turns the interrogation around and antagonizes the Daleks. Jason mentions that no one would normally think to do that to the Daleks and they can never go to the zoo together.

Me: I *so* want that line on a t-shirt. Really. If someone put that on a t-shirt I'd be a happy girl.

Benny tells Jason to take his fat suit off.

Tim: (as Benny) I don't want to die without having another go with you.

Benny and Jason make another stab at rescuing Isaac. Jason kills a bunch of Daleks and then remarks at how strange it is for Isaac to have been placed in the storage room.

Me: Not as strange as you blasting Daleks while being naked? Speaking of which, I don't see Captain Jack killing Daleks naked.

Tim: No, thankfully he put his clothes back on before he took out those two What Not To Wear robots.

Me: See, another reason why he's just a poor man's Jason Kane.

Isaac offers to comfort Benny as she feels bad for getting a bunch of Axis officers killed.

Me: No, that didn't sound creepy at all. This just makes me all the more sad that Ian Collier is dead.

Disc one ends with Brax unveiling his TARDIS and Benny, Jason, and Isaac preparing to defend themselves to the death if need be against the Daleks.

Tim: I was able to follow that better than the one with the Sea Devils. I like them and I think it's cool they were in a story, but it was hard to understand some of them.

Isaac would rather fight in a battle than watch Peter.

Me: God, no one wants to spend anytime with the kid.

Angelie: Poor kid.

The Killoran Liberation Army arrives and Jason leads the revolutionary army through the door to the armory.

Tim: Is that a music cue lifted straight from Aliens?

Jason assumes that Adrian means him when Adrian says the best man won in the battle for Benny's heart.

Tim: (laughing) What a dumb ass.

The battle continues and eventually the Collection gang get all together inside Brax's TARDIS. Insert awkward moment number 378 as Isaac tries to get Benny and Jason to return home with him. Isaac is still really under control of the Daleks so things go all pear shaped as the Daleks try to capture Brax's TARDIS. They're able to turn things around and eventually get the Axis officers to kill off most of the Daleks. Jason and Benny go after the last one while Brax comes up with a plan to take care of the Dalek fleet.

In typical Benny/Jason fashion they decide the perfect time to rekindle their relationship is in the middle of looking for the last Dalek. Their makeout session is interrupted by the Dalek who Jason eventually gets around to killing.

Using Isaac to give out new orders Brax and Benny do what The Doctor couldn't do in Genesis of the Daleks and destroy the Fifth Axis.

Tim: I didn't fall asleep once.

Angelie: I didn't either. It was just hard to understand what they were saying in the first one we listened to.

Tim: It was good to hear the Daleks. And I liked hearing Brax finally acting like a Time Lord.

Me: This has always been one of my favorites and is in frequent rotation along with The Crystal of Cantus and Just War. On the whole the series is finally finding its footing and properly incorporating all the various characters. I understand from an economic side why they probably don't do more double disc Benny's, but it's fun to get an expansive story that features everyone on the Collection. It's an excellent core group of actors who should be allowed to interact with each other more often.

Check back next month when we'll do The Apocalypse Element and The Fires of Vulcan. Also keep an eye out as I might start doing the Companion Chronicles as a solo effort.

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