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Audio - The Jupiter Conjunction

The Jupiter Conjunction
(Eddie Robson)

The release for May 2012 is "The Jupiter Conjunction" and sees Peter Davison, in the second of three releases for 2012, as the Fifth Doctor once again reunited, in the Big Finish Productions Doctor Who audio range, with his three companions: Nyssa, played by Sarah Sutton; Tegan Jovanka, played by Janet Fielding, and Turlough, played by Mark Strickson. Nyssa is once again the older version of this character that was introduced in the 2010 story "Cobwebs".

Also starring are: Rebecca Front, John Cummins, Ellie Burrow, Zoe Lister, Ben Porter, Simon Blake and Philip Pope.

This story has been written by Eddie Robson, directed by Ken Bentley and was recorded on the 17th and 18th January 2012.

Fifth Doctor
Fifth Doctor

Talking about this story Eddie Robson has revealed ‘I was given quite free rein. Having come out of a couple of quite detailed briefs - I'd just finished writing "The Five Companions" - it was just "write something that's got a sort of 1980s feel to it", and "future setting, not Earth", and that was all the direction I was given. I started off by looking at political events of the 1980s to kind of get me into the mindset. I wanted to go back and think "What might they have written a Doctor Who story about in the 1980s, but didn't?"'

I was initially inspired by the American plans to have a missile base in this country. I thought that was quite good ground. And there's partly a Cold War thing, which was covered by "Warriors of the Deep", but I think I've got a slightly different angle on it. It was very knotty and complicated - Alan Barnes, the script editor, said "This looks like it's got enough plot for three separate releases!" - so I went back and calmed it down a bit. That was how it developed’.

Eddie Robson has also revealed that it is difficult to juggle four regulars. As other writers, both for the television show and audio, have previously said ‘It is quite a lot of characters to deal with and I think that strongly influenced the way I ended up writing it. The way it turned out, it's kind of a conspiracy thriller, and I think that's because I was thinking of something that would need lots of different plot threads, all weaving together, because I knew I'd be splitting the characters up. I don't think I ever quite split them up into four separate storylines, but I knew it was going to need a lot of story, a lot of elements. The danger, I suppose, is that you let it crowd out your guest cast. You want some room for interesting guest characters’.

It's good to have a big cast. You can leave a character in the shadows for lots of it, or you can kill a character off half-way through. That gives you more flexibility. Alan will often say "We need to kill someone early on to establish a sense of danger", but in story terms, if you've only got eight characters for the whole thing, you don't want to kill one of them off immediately’.

Despite it broadly being a "conspiracy thriller", there's some thematic variation in The Jupiter Conjunction. ‘It begins with a sort of wrong-man thriller element because it does that thing that we've seen many times on Doctor Who where The Doctor lands and is immediately blamed for something. But one thing we haven't seen too many times is that rather than just being chucked in a cell or immediately executed, he has to go through a legal process. I thought that might be quite fun. So there's a wrong-man element, then a legal drama element... but then I think it becomes more Dr. Strangelove-y as it goes on, it gets a bit more warped...



Tegan Jovanka



Big Finish Magazine - Vortex: Issue 39 (May 2012)

Audio - Big Finish Magazine - Vortex: Issue 39
Vortex: Issue 39
 Issue 39 of 'Vortex - The Big Finish Magazine' was also sent out to subscribers with this release.

  In this issue...

    1. Editorial - Nick Briggs

    2. Sneak Previews and Whispers

    3. Article - Stargeate SG-1 – Reopening The Gate

    4. Article - Dark Shadows – You’ve Seen the Film, Now Try the Audios…

    5. Article - Nicola Bryant – Lost Memories

    6. Forthcoming Releases - May 2012 – February 2013

    7. Article
    - Competition Winner – Things I learnt When I Visited Big Finish

    8. Article
    - Blake’s 7 The Forgotten – A Novel Approach

    Vortex Mail

Published By: Big Finish Productions Ltd
Managing Editor: Jason Haigh-Ellery
Editors: Nicholas Briggs and David Richardson
Assistant Editor: Paul Spragg
Design: Mark Plastow
Published: May 2012
Page Count: 24

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  • Featuring the Fifth Doctor, Nyssa, Tegan Jovanka and Turlough.
  • Serial Number: 6H/H
  • Number of Episodes: 4
  • Cover Length: 120 minutes
  • Episode Lengths: 1 = 23'50", 2 = 23'57", 3 = 24'39", 4 = 29'26"
  • Total Length: 101'52"
  • Also features 20 minutes of trailers, music and special behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and producers
  • This story takes place between the television stories "Enlightenment" and "The King's Demons".
  • Cover Illustration: Amazing15
  • Recorded: 17th and 18th January 2012
  • Recording Location: Moat Studios
  • Released: May 2012
  • ISBN: 978-1-84435-628-7

On the Back Cover:

Audio - The Jupiter Conjunction

Eight slash Q Panenka, a craggy comet with a 13km circumference, has an elliptical orbit that takes it between Earth and Jupiter. Which, in the year 2329, makes it a cheap means of space freight – the second class postal service of the solar system. But when the TARDIS lands on Panenka, the Doctor, Tegan, Turlough and Nyssa discover a community falling apart at the seams – plagued by thefts, and mysterious disappearances among the 'piggybackers' who eke out a desperate existence on the comet.

While Tegan and Nyssa suit up for a dangerous excursion into the comet's Unstable Zone, the Doctor and Turlough find themselves pawns in a game that could lead to tragedy for both Earth and Jupiter alike…


On the Inside Cover:

Writer's Notes

One of the things I like about Doctor Who generally, but especially 1980s Doctor Who, is the way it makes space fantastic and normal at the same time. Amongst the amazing creatures and epic events, there are grimy tollports, domestic arguments over the TV and freighters captained by Beryl Reid.

When the idea came up of setting a Doctor Who story on a comet, this seemed perfect. We talk about comets as 'blazing' because that's how they look from a distance, but as a child I remember discovering to my surprise that they're actually big hunks of ice, cold and a bit dirty-looking. The notion of riding a comet is romantic, but then you get there and what do you find? A low-budget logistics company. I've tried to take the big idea, shrink it down to life-size, then make it big again.

Like the comet in this play, things have a habit of coming back around. I drew on the headlines of the 1980s when developing the themes, and yet in several aspects I feel it's still quite relevant. Don't question the deals that are being done: your leaders have your best interests at heart...

Eddie Robson
March 2012

Director’s Notes

It's important for me, as a director, to be excited by the script. My work throughout the process, from casting to working with actors, sound engineers and sound designers, is all informed by my feelings for the material. I have to be emotionally engaged in the process. I need to feel what you feel when you listen to it. Thankfully, the scripts are always exciting. But every now and then one lands on my desk that really captures my imagination.

With The Jupiter Conjunction it was the contrast between the epic scale of the events that are played out, and the tiny rock on which it all comes to a head. A tiny rock hurtling between two worlds in conflict, never quite on one side nor the other. Forever caught in the middle. Batted back and forth like a ping pong ball. That's a great image. And it's great storytelling.

Ken Bentley
March 2012


Full Cast List:

The Doctor Peter Davison
Tegan Jovanka Janet Fielding
Vislor Turlough Mark Strickson
Nyssa Sarah Sutton
Patricia Walton Rebecca Front
Anton Falcao John Cummins
Chica St Jude Ellie Burrow
Violet Silvaner Zoe Lister
Major Nash Ben Porter
Manny Simon Blake
Jovians Philip Pope
Pilot/Advert Voice/Guard Simon Blake
Shop Assistant Ellie Burrow
Newsreader/Guard John Cummins
Computer Voice Philip Pope

The Production Team:

Writer Eddie Robson
Director Ken Bentley
Sound/Music Richard Fox and Lauren Yason
Theme Music David Darlington
Script Editor Alan Barnes
Producer David Richardson
Executive Producers Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery
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