the Darkness" is the title of the release for April 2002.
It is written and directed by Nicholas Briggs and was
recorded on the 22nd, 25th and 26th January 2001.
story, the fourth of the Eighth
Doctor's second audio season, is the second Eighth
Doctor story to be both scripted and directed by Nicholas
Briggs. After last season's "Sword
of Orion". Briggs has been busy for much of 2001 writing,
directing and producing the Dalek
Empire quartet of CD stories; yet this story is not
his only contribution to the 2002 season featuring Paul
McGann. For good measure, he also directed next month's
Time of the Daleks".
being in the middle of this second season of audio plays
"Embrace the Darkness" was the last to be recorded in
the January 2001 recording session at the end of a quite
strenuous and taxing two-week schedule.
Paul McGann, as the Eighth Doctor, and India Fisher, as
Pollard, are: Nicola Boyce, Lee Moone, Mark McDonnell
and Ian Brooker.
Taking action to avoid
others in the Vortex, The Doctor places the TARDIS
within sight of the Cimmerian system which, according
to the TARDIS Databank that Charley accesses, is described
darkness. Of the Cimerii, a people fabled by the ancients to live in perpetual
So named by
Throxillian explorers after its sun vanished and intrigued by legends about the
star's disappearance, The Doctor and Charley find themselves intercepted by an
automated Rescue Operational Security Module (ROSM) and transported to its
space craft that is en-route to Cimmerian IV.
The Doctor and
Charley soon discover that the implacably logical ROSM is programmed to
rendezvous with a small Throxillian party at the Cimmerian IV scientific base.
They think the planet is uninhabited, but someone has already attacked the
base, plunging its inhabitants into darkness.
The Doctor is
intent on investigating the ancient mystery of what could have happened to make
a sun vanish. But in the scientific base things have already turned into an
emergency, which means The Doctor and Charley are heading straight into
darkness and into grave trouble but first they must evade the ROSM's ruthless
protection of its mission objectives and before it terminates "Bio Hazard
Charley in escaping from being terminated by the ROSM finds
herself transported in an escape pod which takes her to Cimmerian IV. There she
finds out what has happened to the members of the scientific base and why they
think that they have entered the Darkness but in fact have lost their ability
to see. However, before she can come to terms with this horrific discovery she
too finds herself at the mercy of the alien invaders and subjected to the same
Meanwhile The Doctor also finds himself in the
Cimmerian IV scientific base with the Rescue Operational Security Module T723
Roving Assault Unit 1. But this deadly artificial life-form is experiencing
dire difficulties of its own.
With alien particles flooding the base it is up to
The Doctor to discover if there really are Cimmerians attacking the base and if
so what could their purpose be in spreading darkness and what long-dormant
peril will be awoken should the darkness be lifted?
The Doctor has
a plan to banish the darkness - but will he be to late and could he have made a
In a fight for survival, The Doctor must use all his wits
against an ancient race whose return to the Cimmerian System threatens
suffering and death on an apocalyptic scale.
- Featuring the Eighth
Doctor and Charley
- Serial Number: 8J
- Number of Episodes: 4
- Cover Length: 110 minutes
- Episode Lengths: 1 = 30'17", 2 = 35'05", 3 =
27'18", 4 = 32'18"
- This story takes place after "Doctor
Who: The Movie".
- Cover Illustration: Clayton Hickman
- Recorded: 22nd, 25th and 26th January 2001
- Recording Location: Christchurch Studios
- Released: April 2002
- ISBN: 1-903654-60-2
The Doctor and Charley travel to the remote
Cimmerian System to unravel the mystery of its sun. But darkness has already
embraced the scientific base on Cimmeria IV in more ways than one.
In a fight for
survival, The Doctor must use all his wits against a deadly artificial
life-form and an ancient race whose return to the Cimmerian System threatens
suffering and death on an apocalyptic scale.
MY TWO MAIN AIMS IN writing Embrace the
Darkness were to create a scary story and a story that could only work on
audio. As it turned out, those two aims fed well off each other. If it's
totally pitch black, the main sense the characters rely on is hearing. As
listeners of an audio play, that's all we have; so immediately the listeners'
experience gets that much closer to the characters'. There is, hopefully, more
a sense of sharing an experience rather than just hearing it.
As for the
scary side of things, the darkness and the audio medium both allow for a level
of gruesome content which would perhaps not sit so well in the Doctor
Who genre visually. Unpleasant things that make us squirm can happen
without a blatant visual representation of them turning the proceedings into
'shlock-horror'. Here, audio allowed me to deal with terrors of the mind rather
than revulsion at the visceral. Well, that's the theory anyway...
the story was recorded during one of the worst weeks of my life; featuring a
costly road traffic accident, terrifying personal relationship traumas and the
mother of all colds. Maybe some of that darkness is in there too.
This is the
first story I've written and directed for Big Finish for which I haven't
handled the post-production editing and music. Unfortunately, Dalek
Empire (or my 'concept album' as it has been humorously called by writer
Paul Ebbs) crowded out my schedule. luckily for me, this log-jam coincided with
my old friend Jim Mortirmore expressing an interest in returning to audio. Jim
and I worked together for many years on the Audio Visuals plays, so it was
great to see him back, bristling with new audio ideas. If he were writing this,
he would no doubt tell yon that it was no picnic working with me. I have a
strong sense of what I want to achieve in any work I do, and having someone
else (for a change) essentially re-interpreting something that was grimly fined
in my imagination was difficult for me... and, as a result, for him too. Put
simply, Jim just hasn't done it the way I would have. What he has done,
however, is very new, very different and very exciting. He never believes me
when I tell him, but Jim has a touch of the genius about him. I hope you will
be able to embrace the darkness he and I have created.
| Full Cast
|Gary Russell and
|Executive Producer for the BBC