Their Finest Hour was the first story in the audio anthology Ravenous 1, produced by Big Finish Productions. It was written by John Dorney and featured Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor and Nicola Walker as Liv Chenka, alongside Ian McNeice as Winston Churchill.
Publisher's summary Edit
In the early days of the Second World War a strange and elusive craft attacks British targets. Could it be a German superweapon? Churchill calls for the Doctor's assistance and with the help of a squadron of Polish fighter pilots the TARDIS crew take to the skies to investigate.
The Royal Air Force continues to engage the Luftwaffe during the Battle of Britain. In August, Red Leader tries to investigate a strange rectangle in the sky. Despite warnings from the base to disengage, the whole of Red Squadron is destroyed. With such unexplained RAF casualties persisting, Winston Churchill calls the Doctor for assistance.
He reaches the Eighth Doctor and Liv Chenka via the TARDIS telephone during their search for Helen Sinclair. They arrive on 27 August 1940 and Churchill explains the situation. Without the necessary RAF units to spare to aid the Doctor in his investigation, the Doctor recruits two exiled Polish pilots trained by the Polish Air Force, Pilot Officers Jan Ostowicz and Wilhelm Rozycki. After equipping their planes with protective force fields, they take to the skies to investigate. Wilhelm and Liv eventually locate the rectangle but find themselves abducted.
Jan and the Doctor return to Churchill to report their discoveries. Though they are presumed dead, Liv and Wilhelm discover the Heliyon who are startled by their use of force fields and assume hostile intent. They reveal their own ship and move to attack the RAF base. The rest of the Polish pilots are deployed to fend them off, while Liv and Wilhelm escape the ship via a parachute jump.
The Poles fend the Heliyon off and the ship head towards London. Churchill orders RAF squadrons to join the fray, while he, Liv, the Doctor, Jan and Wilhelm all make their own way towards London. Liv and Churchill return to the TARDIS, Liv making sure to keep Churchill outside. Inside, she contacts Heliyon Prime and asks why the Heliyon are attacking Earth. Heliyon Prime explains their rules of war: in order to preserve their own population, the two blocs chose another planet on which a war is already being fought and chose sides randomly. The winning side of that planet's war determines who wins the Heliyon war.
However, Heliyon Prime determines that fanatics have been interfering in Earth's war by preying on the RAF to influence the outcome in their favour, an illegal action which constitutes a war crime. As the British and Poles overpower the Heliyon ship, the crew attempts a kamikaze attack to wipe out London. Just in time, Heliyon Prime intervenes, freezing the ship in place and then taking it away from Earth to justly punish the crew.
The Doctor and Liv stay in England a while longer. Before returning to their search for Helen, they take the time to say goodbye to Jan and Wilhelm. They find Jan who informs them the British were impressed by the Poles' performance against the Heliyon and have allowed them to engage the Germans in aerial combat. He also delivers the sad news that Wilhelm was shot down by the Germans and killed on the night of 28 August. After Jan departs, a shaken Liv laments how Wilhelm survived a frantic engagement with aggressive aliens, only to be killed the next day by another human.
- The Doctor - Paul McGann
- Liv Chenka - Nicola Walker
- Winston Churchill - Ian McNeice
- Wilhelm Rozycki - Laurence Dobiesz
- Jan Ostowicz - Gyuri Sarossy
- Secretary / Ground Control - Tracy Wiles
- The Heliyon - Beth Chalmers
- Pilot - James Joyce
- The Doctor equips the fighter planes with force fields.
- This story was recorded at The Moat Studios.
- This is the first story since The Red Lady that doesn't feature Hattie Morahan as Helen Sinclair, though she would return later in World of Damnation.
- Liv mentions Molly O'Sullivan and the First World War. (AUDIO: The Great War)
- The Doctor notes how Liv has survived the Eminence, (AUDIO: Time's Horizon, Eye of Darkness) and Padrac and his cohorts. (AUDIO: Stop the Clock)
- The Doctor doesn't trust Churchill having access to the TARDIS. (TV: Victory of the Daleks)