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Audio - The Year of the Pig
The Year of the Pig
(Matthew Sweet)

 The final release for 2006 was originally going to be "Circular Time". However, this story is now the first release for 2007.

December 2006’s audio release is now a Sixth Doctor and Peri story written by Matthew Sweet and is titled "The Year of the Pig". It is directed by Gary Russell and was recorded 27th and 28th March 2006.

 Maureen O’Brien, who first appeared in Doctor Who between 1965 and 1966 as the First Doctor’s companion Vicki , is set to make her return in this release playing the part of Miss Alice Bultitude, ‘a dotty collector of theatrical ephemera’.

Also staring is former Blake’s 7 regular (and guest star in 1977’s "The Sun Makers") Michael Keating, as Inspector Chardalot, Paul Brooke, as Toby, and former EastEnders actress Adjoa Andoh (who was one of the cat nurses in "New Earth") as Nurse Albertine.

Sixth Doctor
Sixth Doctor
 "The Year of the Pig" is set in Twentieth-century Ostend where The Doctor and Peri become embroiled in an attempt to locate theatre legend Toby the Sapient Pig.

The TARDIS has taken The Doctor and Peri to Ostend, in 1913. While on the beach they are unaware that they are being watched by a rather strange guest in suite 139 of the Hotel Palace Thermae. Strange because he has trotters, a snout and a curly tail...

 Toby the Sapient Pig is a swine on the run. Two peculiar strangers have been hunting him across Europe. The first, Miss Alice Bultitude, is an Englishwoman and collector of obscure theatrical ephemera. The second, Inspector Alphonse Chardalot, is a celebrated member of the detective police - the man who brought the trunk murderess of St Germain to justice.

War is coming. A war in which millions will die. And Toby the Sapient Pig knows it. The Doctor and Peri find themselves doing battle with a villain who wants to wipe every last human from the face of the earth - once he's had just another dish of truffles. And maybe a valedictory glass of fizzy lemonade…

The Doctor and Peri are supposed to be having a reading week but after they become involved in saving, along with Miss Alice Bultitude, Inspector Alphonse Chardalot from drowning in the sea they find themselves being invited to dine with the Inspector in the Hotel Palace Thermae. But is Inspector Alphonse Chardalot who he claims to be and how come he needed rescuing from the sea? Miss Alice Bultitude has her doubts about the Inspector and discusses them with Peri. She then informs Peri and The Doctor about the strange guest in suite 139. Which leads them to a short-lived encounter with Toby who panics when he recognises The Doctor.



All Peri can remember of this encounter is entering a room in the hotel and witnessing a pig in clothes, eating potato ships, watching a film depicting a pig wearing a ruff and dictating Shakespeare... The next thing she wakes up with Inspector Alphonse Chardalot in her hotel room being told that she was found at the bottom of a laundry chute. While the Inspector goes off to investigate further Peri is left being cared by Nurse Albertine…

Of The Doctor and Miss Alice Bultitude there is no sign of them in the hotel and so Inspector Alphonse Chardalot finds himself investigating there disappearance. He is unaware that they are both with Toby - Miss Alice Bultitude it seems is in awe of Toby while The Doctor is his prisoner. It seems the reason for Toby need to hide himself away is due to him being paranoid about a man from the future who is going to kill him - but Toby plans to use the time machine to undo the mistakes of history and to destroy the abomination that he sees as the human race. Luckily for The Doctor no one, apart from Peri, knows that he has a time-machine. Until that is Peri finds the TARDIS is also missing and so informs Inspector Alphonse Chardalot of why it is so important that it is also found.

Could The Doctor actually be the man from the future that Toby fears so much or could it be the Inspector? Who has taken the TARDIS and who is the real villain? Will Peri’s steamy rendezvous with the Inspector reveal who it is? Why does the Inspector have a device to detect time travellers and why does he imprison both Peri and Nurse Albertine and then kidnap Miss Alice Bultitude and pignap Toby? What will be the result of The Doctor’s rendezvous on a Brussels bound train and the revelation of a diary that he finds in the Inspector’s luggage? And what will happen when Peri and Nurse Albertine arrive in Brussels closely followed by The Doctor and Toby.

It seems that not everyone is who they claim to be leaving The Doctor and Peri with the difficult task of unravelling the truth, to prevent Toby’s assassination, to prevent a rather radical operation and to retrieve The TARDIS.

 Also for this month is a bonus story for subscribers to the Big Finish Productions Doctor Who audio range. This single-CD adventure is entitled "Return of the Daleks" and features a solo Seventh Doctor in a battle with his arch enemies - The Daleks. - "Return of the Daleks" is a crossover of sorts with the earlier Dalek Empire audio series and has been written and directed by Nicholas Briggs. Briggs, who is also the voice of the Daleks in the Doctor Who television series, once again is heard shouting 'Exterminate' at The Doctor.

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  • Featuring the Sixth Doctor and Peri.
  • Serial Number: 6YA
  • Number of Episodes: 2
  • Cover Length: 146 minutes
  • Episode Lengths: 1 = 76'48", 2 = 67'10"
  • Total Story Length: 133'58"
  • This story takes place between "Revelation of the Daleks" and "The Trial of a Time Lord" and follows on from "The Reaping".
  • Cover Illustration: Stuart Manning
  • Recorded: 27th and 28th March 2006
  • Recording Location: The Moat Studios
  • Released: December 2006
  • ISBN: 1-84435-169-6

On the Back Cover:

 Ostend, 1913. War is coming. A war in which millions will die. And the guest in suite 139 of the Hotel Palace Thermae knows it. Which is odd, considering he has trotters,
a snout and a lovely curly tail.

Toby the Sapient Pig is a swine on the run. Two peculiar strangers have been hunting him across Europe. The first, Miss Alice Bultitude, is an Englishwoman and collector of obscure theatrical ephemera. The second, Inspector Alphonse Chardalot, is a celebrated member of the detective police - the man who brought the trunk murderess of St Germain to justice.

 This was supposed to be a reading week for The Doctor and Peri. Now they must do battle with a villain who wants to wipe every last human from the face of the earth - once he's had just another dish of truffles. And maybe a valedictory glass of fizzy lemonade.


On the Inside Cover:

 Year of the Pig - which fantasises itself to be a lost fragment of old Doctor Who - first became a certainty at the launch of the new Doctor Who. But the new Doctor Who almost did for it. It was the pig you see. Would a pig in a toupee on the balcony of a Belgian hotel be considered too similar to a pig in a spacesuit trotting around the corridors of a twenty-first century hospital? I was pondering this question at the press launch for Rose, nursing a gin and tonic and basking in the warmth of a lucent Billie Piper, when Russell T Davies bounded in, grinning that big Russell T Davies grin. And a moment later, it was all on.

 I suppose that if I’d been a smarter operator, the play might have entered production more briskly I sent the script unsolicited to Big Finish, and as the title begins with the antepenultimate letter of the alphabet, it slushed in the slush pile for a year. Clearly I should have called it Aardvarks of Fear. No chance of the Stitheen adding metal prostheses to one of those...

A quick note on the historical background. There was a performer called Toby the Sapient Pig, though he was long dead by 1913. There was a movie called Zeb, Zack and the Zulus. There was an incontinent monkey in Madame Ensor’s souvenir shop in Ostend. As for the rest, I just tried to think what Donald Cotton would have done, and kept typing.

Matthew Sweet,
August 2006

Matthew Sweet presents Night Waves as Radio 3 and The Culture Show on BBC2, and has a doctorate in Wilkie Collins. His books and TV programmes include Shepperton Babylon, Inventing the Victorians and Silent Britain. He has also written two Doctor Who short stories - one about ink, one about earwigs...

Who's Who?

The Sixth Doctor

First television appearance: "The Twin Dilemma"
First chronological Big Finish audio appearance: "Davros"

 He has been exploring the universe for hundreds of years. He fights injustice. He defeats evil. He helps people. The Doctor sacrificed his previous life on the planet Androzani Minor to save his companion Peri from a toxic virus. After his regeneration, he and Peri remained good, if somewhat argumentative, friends and they are still travelling the cosmos together. The Doctor’s forthright, often abrasive, nature frequently alarms Peri, especially as he can be blunt to the point of rudeness in the face of great danger. However, he retains his loyalty, integrity and ultimate belief that evil must be fought, and vanquished...

Peri Brown

First television appearance: "Planet of Fire"
First chronological Big Finish audio appearance: "Red Dawn"

 Perpugilliam Brown has travelled with two incarnations of The Doctor. Their relationship used to be somewhat... fractious - but these days, it is generally lighthearted and friendly. A keen botanist, resourceful and compassionate, Peri also has a edgy side - combining a wry sense of humour that can infuriate her travelling companion. She also possesses the useful ability to charm even the most dangerous of opponents with her honesty and apparent naivete that actually hides a quick-wit, a resource learned from The Doctor which both she and The Doctor exploit whenever necessary.


The Cast Gallery:

The Sixth Doctor - Played by Colin Baker

‘Over there, having dinner at that corner table. That’s only Marcel Proust I had no idea he was staying here. Oi! Marcel! I’ve got a bone to pick with you!’

 Peri - Played by Nicola Bryant

‘There was a pig. And it was sitting in an armchair, eating potato chips and watching a movie. He was sobbing his heart out. There was a pig doing the Yorick speech from Hamlet. Is this of any use, or are you just having a laugh at my expense?’

 Miss Bultitude - Played by Maureen O’Brien

There’s someone in this hotel I’d very much like you to meet. I’ve followed him halfway across Europe, and I need you to be witness to his presence here. To prove that he actually exists.’

 Inspector Chardalot - Played by Michael Keating

‘I knew a girl who kissed like you. The trunk murderess of St Germain. Strangled her victims with the cord of her silk dressing gown, but they all went happily to the grave. Or, I should say, to the left luggage department of the Gum du Nord.’

 Toby - Played by Paul Brooke

‘God bless the King of the Belgians! I know what you’re going to say about all those people who got their heads stuck on poles in the Congo, but he certainly knew a thing or two about how to spend time at the seaside.’

 Nurse Albertine - Played by Adjoa Andoh

‘I saw you through a telescope, once. And there was something about way that you just crashed through that awning. I’m told it’s the kind of thing that you do. Now let me examine you. Don’t worry, I’m a professional.’


Full Cast List:

The Doctor Colin Baker
Peri Nicola Bryant
Nurse Albertine Adjoa Andoh
Toby The Sapient Pig Paul Brooke
Inspector Chardalot Michael Keating
Miss Bultitude Maureen O’Brien

The Production Team:

Writer Matthew Sweet
Director Gary Russell
Sound/Music Andy Hardwick
Theme Music David Darlington
Producers Gary Russell, Nicholas Briggs and Jason Haigh-Ellery
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