TARDIS Index File

Gareth Roberts

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Gareth Roberts
Other names: Gareth John Pritchard Roberts
In the DWU
Main jobs: Writer
Stories: See below
Main time period active:
1993-1996, 2005-2012 (prose)
1994-1996, 2001-2006 (comics)
2007-present (television)
Career highlights
IMDb profile
Twitter page

Gareth Roberts (born Gareth John Pritchard Roberts) is a television writer and novelist. He has a substantial body of work related to Doctor Who, across every medium in which Doctor Who fiction has appeared. Indeed, it would be fair to consider him, along with Paul Cornell, as amongst the most versatile writers of Doctor Who fiction.

His work is consistently described as "witty" or "humorous" by reviewers. It betrays a desire to make less popular or under-explored characters "work". This penchant for exploring unusual character combinations has, in various media, made him an early proponent of stories featuring the teams of Vicki/Steven, Susan/First Doctor, Mel/Sixth Doctor, Romana II/K9, Rose/Mickey and Jack/Rose.

He has written for the BBC Wales version of Doctor Who and The Sarah Jane Adventures. For the latter program, he was Head Writer for the first series.

Before becoming a fixture at Upper Boat, he was heavily involved in writing popular British soap operas from 1997 to 2003. Brookside, Coronation Street and Emmerdale have all employed his services.

Doctor Who Edit

Books Edit

Roberts began writing professional Doctor Who fiction in the early 1990s, when he started contributing to the Virgin New Adventures and Virgin Missing Adventures novel ranges. His works were generally hailed by fans for their consistent use of good humour. It has been said that his creations, the Chelonians, were "one of the best monsters created in the novels".[1] All of his Missing Adventures were set in televised eras generally recognised for their strong use of humour. The Plotters was a First Doctor novel said to evoke the Dennis Spooner era, reminiscent of The Romans and The Time Meddler.[source needed] The bulk of Roberts' prose work betrays Roberts' bias for the Graham Williams/Douglas Adams era. No other Virgin writer used the combination of the Fourth Doctor, Romana II and K9 as much as Roberts. It has been said that Roberts' Missing Adventures were "love-letter[s] to the Graham Williams era".[2] It is perhaps for this reason that Roberts was chosen to be the BBC Wales representative for the documentary about the Graham Williams era included with the UK DVD release of The Ribos Operation.

Roberts is one of a few writers who has written for both the original Virgin lines and the BBC Books series that have accompanied the BBC Wales series of Doctor Who. In fact, he and Justin Richards are the only two authors as of 2012 to write a Missing Adventure, a New Adventure, a Ninth Doctor novel and a Tenth Doctor novel.

Audios Edit

He has exclusively used companion Melanie Bush in his audio plays, once with the Sixth Doctor and once with the Seventh. His work with co-writer Clayton Hickman was amongst the very first to employ Mel in audio, and can therefore be said to have been instrumental in redefining the generally fan-disliked companion for audio.

Beginning in 2014, some of his novels from Virgin Books were adapted for audio for Big Finish Productions' Novel Adaptations range.

Comics Edit

Roberts' first works in comics were Plastic Millenium and Operation Proteus, both of which featured the comic first appearances of televised companions. Millenium, in fact, is the only appearance of Mel in comics, while "Proteus" affords a very late debut for Susan, outside of cameos and parodies. It also posited a pre-Unearthly Child TARDIS, something that had never been considered by the comics before.

Years after this story, Roberts' work experience with Clayton Hickman in audio would help him get a steady string of work in 2005. Roberts was the dominant comics writer during the Ninth Doctor's era. Concepts in his comic work during this period would later make their way into Roberts' televised episodes of Doctor Who. He was entrusted with writing "the Shakespeare episode" in series 3 largely on the strength of his Ninth Doctor comic, A Groatsworth of Wit, in which he revealed his detailed knowledge of Shakespeare. The poisoning scene in The Unicorn and the Wasp was directly lifted from one of his comic strips. [source needed]

His final comic story as of 2012, The Lodger, also featured the debut of a televised companion. He was the first author to put Mickey Smith in a comic strip.

He also contributed to the charity reference book Behind the Sofa: Celebrity Memories of Doctor Who.

He was interviewed in issue 485 of Doctor Who Magazine for the revival series' tenth anniversary. He commented that he always believed that the show would return to TV.

Television Edit

Doctor Who Edit

BBC Red Button Edit

Documentaries Edit

The Sarah Jane Adventures Edit

Comic Relief Special Edit

Prose Edit

Novels Edit

Virgin New Adventures Edit

Virgin Missing Adventures Edit

BBC New Series Adventures Edit

BBC New Series Adventures - Quick Reads Edit

BBC Books Doctor Who novelisations Edit

The Sarah Jane Adventures novelisations Edit

Short fiction Edit

Doctor Who Magazine Edit

Brief Encounter Edit

Virgin Decalogs Edit

Short Trips Edit

Doctor Who annuals Edit

Doctor Who Yearbooks Edit

Doctor Who Storybooks Edit

Audio Edit

Big Finish Doctor Who audio stories Edit

Novel Adaptations Edit

Comics Edit

DWM comic stories Edit

Doctor Who Magazine (special issues) Edit

Stage play Edit

External links Edit

References Edit

  1. Stephen Gray; Paul Clarke. Discontinuity Guide - The Highest Science. The Whoniverse. Retrieved on 3rd September 2012.
  2. Lawrence Conquest's review of Only Human

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