Doctor Who: Short Trips: How to Win Planets and Influence People – Written by James Goss & Performed by Rufus Hound – Download (Big Finish)
9.30am: Registration and networking
10.00am: Keynote Speech: Oops, that’s not my TARDIS!
11.20am: Presentation: How to Win Planets and Influence People
Gallifreyan genius and professional speaker The Monk has lectured widely for several centuries, and shared his wisdom through the following bestsellers: The 7 Habits Of Truly Terrible People, Who Moved My Sun?, Feel The Fear And Detonate It Anyway, The One Million Year Manager and his latest self-help guide; Ice Men Are From Mars, Karate Is From Venus. How to Win Planets and Influence People promises to be one of the Monk’s most dynamic – and controversial – talks to date (with slides).
12.00pm: Lunch (Vegetarian / Peladonian options are available)
Have you ever sat through a staff development day or one of those industry conferences? If so, you’ll be familiar with the format of How to Win Planets and Influence People. The (Meddling) Monk, played by the rather excellent Rufus Hound, is giving a talk on how to invade the Earth. But worry not – this isn’t Death by PowerPoint (or laser beam), nor is it someone with halitosis, a flat monotone and a sweaty top lip reciting yet another list of desperately dull bullet points. And reciting them word for word from YET ANOTHER SLIDE while the audience look at their watches in desperation before glancing wistfully at the buffet slowly going off in a corner of the room.
Thankfully, as the slideshow continues, the Monk actually gives a rather enthralling performance; his Do’s and Don’ts of Planet Invasion are brilliantly accurate, and he has a lot to say about the truth behind housing prices. It’s clear that this particular Short Trip is going to be of great interest to all of us grown-ups, even if its tongue is so far in its cheek it sounds like John Merrick at a company picnic.
Throw in questions from audience member and journalist Sarah Jane Smith and some classic Fourth Doctor and Harry Sullivan shenanigans and overall, How to Win Planets and Influence People is a proper, old-school, laugh-out-loud romp of a story. Goss and Hound’s obvious enjoyment at being involved in such a properly funny Short Trip shines through from the start. James Goss absolutely ‘gets’ the Monk as a character and Rufus Hound’s portrayal brings him wonderfully to life at his impatient, ‘I grow weary of you idiots’, snarky best. All I want now is a box set dedicated to the Monk and his ‘and I would have gotten away with it if it weren’t for you pesky kids’ adventures. Big Finish, any chance of sorting this out for me? Bex Ferriday