mini-season for the Sixth
Doctor concludes in March
2012 with the release of "Wirrn Isle",
by William Gallagher. The TARDIS travels to the Nerva
colonies on Earth in a story set after the 1975 Fourth
Doctor story "The
Ark in Space".
is safe to say that going by the title of this story
that The Wirrn are back!
the name 'Wirrn' is mentioned you can of course be
forgiven for instantly thinking of the one seen falling
out of the storage cupboard in "The Ark in Space".
revealed by the William Gallagher, the writer
of this story and their previous audio adventure
the 2009 story "Wirrn Dawn", ‘Wirrn
scare me incredibly, but this is not saying a
great deal. I frighten ridiculously easily, but
I think now that it also means I can write it,
because I really get how scary things are for
the characters. That's the key part of "Wirrn
Isle", though: the effect of the Wirrn on
the characters. Fear magnifies the cracks that
are already there’.
knew what the Wirrn could do and though I had to show
that for new listeners I had to move them on at least
a little. I felt I really got to concentrate on the
impact of the Wirrn on my characters. So I felt the
pressure of living up to it, but I also felt ignited
by that story’.
Wirrn had gone down so well with listeners in our
Eighth Doctor story "Wirrn Dawn", that
we were really keen to get them back’, Executive
Producer Nicholas Briggs has revealed. ‘The
trick was to find another strong story for them
that wasn't just a reworking of "The Ark in
Space" or "Wirrn Dawn", and I think
William Gallagher has come up with an entirely
new story, with lots of very real characters with
the kind of emotional concerns that we can all
Isle" also brings to a close the trilogy of
stories featuring the Sixth Doctor's newest companion,
Flip Jackson. ‘Flip is Jonathan Morris'
character. He, John Dorney and I talked a lot about
the whole process of our three stories. Jonny briefed
us on her and I think both John and I went back
to him on occasion to check what we were doing
was consistent with what he had in mind. I had
such a clear idea from Jonny that Flip seemed very
real to me immediately. So much so that I felt
bad about some of the things I was putting her
Colin Baker, as the Sixth Doctor, and Lisa Greenwood,
as Flip Jackson, are: Tim Bentinck (David Archer
in The Archers) who plays Roger Buchman,
Jenny Funnell (from the sitcom As Time Goes
By) is Veronica
Buchman, while Dan Starkey (the Sontaran Commander Strax in the 2011 Eleventh Doctor stories "A Good Man Goes to War"
and "Let's Kill Hitler") is
Sheer Jawn. Also starring are: Tessa Nicholson,
Rikki Lawton, Helen Goldwyn and Glynn Sweet.
This story has been
directed by Nicholas Briggs and was recorded on the
21st and 22nd June 2011.
- Featuring the Sixth
Doctor and Flip Jackson.
- Serial Number: 7C/NAC
- Number of Episodes: 4
- Cover Length: 120 minutes
- Episode Lengths: 1 = 27'10", 2 =
25'52", 3 = 28'11", 4 = 30'25"
- Total Length: 111'38"
- Also features 32 minutes of trailers, music
and special behind-the-scenes interviews with
cast and producers
- This story takes place between "The
Trial of a Time Lord (The
Ultimate Foe)" and "Time
and the Rani".
- Cover Illustration: Simon Holub
- Recorded: 21st and 22nd June 2011
- Recording Location: Moat Studios
- Released: March 2012
- ISBN: 978-1-84435-606-5
On the Back Cover:
year is 16127. Four decades have passed since the
colonists of Nerva Beacon returned to repopulate
the once-devastated planet Earth – and the
chosen few are finding the business of survival tough.
beyond the sterile safety of sanitised Nerva City,
transmat scientist Roger Buchman has brought his family
to an island surrounded by what they once called Loch
Lomond, hoping to re-establish the colony he was forced
to abandon many years before.
something else resides in the Loch. A pestilent alien
infestation that the Doctor, beaming in from Nerva
City, remembers only too well from his time aboard
The Wirrn are back. And they’re hungry.
|On the Inside Cover:
Only in Doctor Who: comedy plus
time equals tragedy. Even if you come to Wirrn
Isle first, the Doctor hasn't. He's got to come to terms
with the events of John Dorney's comedy The Fourth
Wall and I had to make sure he had no time to do it.
Keep him on the move, keep him in trouble.
don't have to read very far into the title Wirrn
Isle to gather what the Doctor will be up against, but it's
the second word that's key. This is about a small family
living on a frozen Loch Lomond island and coming under
threat. It's an alien threat, but what that really
does is split open all the fault lines in this little
Isle is about what we all do to one another and the
things we choose to care about.
Originally, Alan Barnes just asked me
if I thought I could do something with Wirrn . I have
no idea how we got from that one word to this whole
tale, but I relished getting there with him, with John
Dorney and Jonathan Morris - and with a cast that really
makes you feel the cold of this lonely island.
script is very much a family affair. Of course, on
one level it's a rip-roaring, thrilled-packed battle
with a horde of Wirrn trying to take over the Earth,
but I defy anyone who has kids not to be moved by the
desperately poignant moments about loss and parents'
fears for the safety of their children.
keeping with the family theme, this story picks up
on the developing relationship between the Doctor
and Flip. They are mistaken for father and daughter,
and it's in this story that we really feel the Doctor's
concern for her - especially since she's at her most
me, this story was the culmination of a great recording
block. We seem-to have given Colin Baker more than
his fair share of new companions, but he's such an
accommodating chap and his Doctor's character offers
so many unique opportunities for character interaction
that we can never resist giving the Sixth
a new challenge. The genuine warmth between Colin
and Lisa really comes through in this story.
| Full Cast List:
|Philippa 'Flip' Jackson
|Helen Goldwyn and Dan Starkey
The Production Team:
|Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery