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Audio - The Secret History
The Secret History
(Eddie Robson)

As Big Finish's Doctor Who main range has been their backbone since July 1999 Executive Producer Nicholas Briggs revealed that 'In April, May and June - for releases 198, 199 and 200 - we are doing something very special indeed, which is all the idea of script editor Alan Barnes'.

Fifth Doctor
Fifth Doctor

Alan Barnes has stated 'I thought: what if the Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctors turned up bang in the middle of earlier, unseen adventures - standing in for their 'proper' selves, who've gone AWOL for some reason or other...? Locum Doctors, if you will! And so that's what we've done...'.

These three stories pose the question 'If any of the Doctors changed their own past, even in the smallest way... what might happen to their future?'

So, why have some of The Doctors been cropping up with the wrong companions? The final part of the 'Locum Doctors' trilogy - also the landmark 200th release in Big Finish Productions' Doctor Who 'main range' - has the answers.

'I was told "we're going to come up with a mechanism for how this works", but it was left a bit flexible' writer Eddie Robson has revealed. 'A lot of it was down to how I was going to wrap it up, because it needed to be something that fitted in with how my story proceeded. So we hammered it out between us. But I was told "It's Peter Davison in a William Hartnell story", and "Maybe it could be a historical to make it extra Hartnell-y", so I ran with that'.



As such this release in June 2015 stars Peter Davison in a story called "The Secret History" for a very 1960s sort of adventure where he becomes trapped in sixth-century Constantinople with First Doctor-era companions Vicki (Maureen O'Brien) and Steven Taylor (Peter Purves).

In this story the Fifth Doctor is plunged back into history... in more ways than one and we at last learn the reason why he's being dragged back into the lives of his former incarnations.

This story has been written by Eddie Robson and directed by Barnaby Edwards.

Steven Taylor

Steven Taylor

Starring are: Graeme Garden, Lysette Anthony, Tony Millan, Giles Watling, Tim Wallers, Sarah Woodward, Nicholas Briggs, Elizabeth Morton, John Banks and Barnaby Edwards.

'At first it should proceed like a straight histor
ical', Eddie Robson has revealed. 'It's got that sort of travelogue-y quality, like most of those Hartnell historicals where there's an element of travelling, and it's not so much about a menace to defeat, it's more that adventure gets generated by the fact that they get cut off from the TARDIS, so they get involved in machinations and have to make sure they don't change history. So I was bringing in elements like that'.

'I also tried to give it a bit of that 'educational' feel that you get in the First Doctor adventures, where it does feel like it's about exploring a time and a culture, rather than all that just being nice period dressing for a story that you could have done in a different time - which is what you get with later historical stories'.


Big Finish Magazine - Vortex: Issue 76 (June 2015)

Audio - Big Finish Magazine - Vortex: Issue 76
Vortex: Issue 76
 Issue 76 of 'Vortex - The Big Finish Magazine' was also sent out to subscribers with this release.

  In this issue...

    1. Sneak Previews & Whispers – Torchwood

    2. Editorial - Kenny

    3. Article - Doctor Who: Peter Purves - Taylor Made

    4. Article - Passport to the Future

    5. Article - Bernice Summerfield - Life On Mars

    6. Article - Survivors - Only the Strong Survive

    7. Article - Cursed Among Equals

    8. Article -
    Listen Again - One Hundred

    9. Vortex Mail

    10. Coming Up... Release Schedule – June 2015 - March 2016

Published By: Big Finish Productions Ltd
Managing Editor: Jason Haigh-Ellery
Editor: Kenny Smith
Executive Producer: Nicholas Briggs
Line Producer: David Richardson
Design: Mark Plastow
Published: June 2015
Page Count: 24


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  • Featuring the Fifth Doctor, Vicki and Steven Taylor
  • Number of Episodes: 4
  • Cover Length: 120 minutes
  • Episode Lengths: 1 = 29'37", 2 = 28'05", 3 = 29'58", 4 = 31'21"
  • Total Length: 119'01"
  • Also features 27 minutes of trailers, music and special behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and producers.
  • Cover Illustration: Tom Webster
  • Recorded: TBA
  • Recording Location: Moat Studios
  • Released: June 2015
  • ISBN: 978-1-78178-461-7

On the Back Cover:

Audio - The Secret History

The TARDIS brings the Doctor, Steven and Vicki to the Italian city of Ravenna in the year 540 – besieged by the army of the celebrated Byzantine general Belisarius. Caught up in the fighting, Steven ends up on a boat bound for Constantinople, the heart of the Roman Empire.

Rescuing Steven, however, is the least of the Doctor's problems – because he shouldn't be mixed up in this particular adventure at all. Someone has sabotaged his own personal timeline, putting him in the place of his First incarnation... but who, and why? The truth is about to be revealed – but at what cost to all of the Doctors, and to the whole future history of the planet Earth?


Full Cast List:

The Doctor Peter Davison
Vicki Maureen O'Brien
Steven Taylor Peter Purves
The Monk Graeme Garden
Sophia/Ostardi Lysette Anthony
Procopius/Yazid Tony Millan
Belisarius/Ravennato/Ostardi Giles Watling


Tim Wallers
Theodora Sarah Woodward
Ravennato/Gaoler/Slave/Hippodrome Guard Nicholas Briggs
Ravennata Elizabeth Morton
Antoim/Imperial Guard John Banks
Antoim Barnaby Edwards

The Production Team:

Writer Eddie Robson
Director Barnaby Edwards
Sound/Music Andy Hardwick
Theme Music David Darlington
Script Editor Alan Barnes
Producer David Richardson
Executive Producers Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery
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