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The Companion Chronicles was a Big Finish Productions audio series that ran for eighty monthly releases across eight series between 2007 and 2014, before relaunching with yearly box set releases thereafter.

The general, but not invariable, ambition of the series was to tell stories using the companions of the first four Doctors. The typical release in the range used just two actors, a musical score, some foley work and sound design — meaning that the end result sat somewhere between an audio book and a full-cast drama.

Overview Edit

Concept Edit

Originally, the concept was to produce talking books featuring the companions of the first four incarnations of the Doctor who were unavailable to take part in the main range. While the range has remained primarily focused on companions who appeared earlier than Season 19, most releases in the range have not been true "talking books". In fact, all but one release — The Stealers from Saiph — use the convention of at least two characters in conversation with each other. Most have a sound design worthy of any title in the main range. On rare occasions, the range has moved away from its titular concern and featured characters who are more commonly considered "prominent guest stars" or "allies", such as King Peladon and Henry Gordon Jago.

Format and structure Edit

In general, Companion Chronicles have a fairly standard format. They are usually two, approximately 25 minute long episodes divided by a single cliffhanger, barring special double length releases released regularly each season from the fourth onwards. The part of the story that has to do with the Doctor is almost always told in flashback, as a recollection of a past adventure. Thus, the central character of the piece (i.e., the companion) is often depicted in two time periods. That is, there is typically an "older" version of the companion who recounts the adventure with the Doctor, and the "younger" version of the character, who is as he or she appeared on television.

The actor not portraying a companion is used in a variety of ways to allow stories in the range to have markedly different structures. Some common narrative uses for the second actor are:

Sometimes, the interrogator is revealed to be the principal adversary, as in Mother Russia or Frostfire; sometimes the listener knows the interrogator is the adversary right from the start, as with The Catalyst. In any case, the relationship between ex-companion and interrogator is usually a pretty obvious "framing device", which takes up a clear minority of the runtime of the release. However, in a few rare cases, as with the Home Truths trilogy, the interrogator is a co-star equal with the featured character and is given a a proper story with the "present day" companion woven into the companion's recollections of the Doctor's TARDIS.

Dwm companion chronicles

Preview art for the first series by Ben Wilsher from DWM 381.

The 2011 release Tales from the Vault was a departure from the "enhanced audiobook" format, being effectively a straight audio drama (albeit still one with a limited cast) that incorporated interviews with various companions.

Continuity Edit

A few of the plays tie in to others in the Big Finish Doctor Who range. The Darkening Eye is a prequel to The Death Collectors; Night's Black Agents explicitly occurs between City of Spires and The Wreck of the Titan; the Leela trilogy which begins with The Catalyst relies to some degree on the listener's knowledge of the Gallifrey audio series; and The Prisoner's Dilemma occupies a complicated narrative space, tying together the Virgin New Adventures with Big Finish's Key 2 Time series.

All the plays add to the their main characters' televised continuities. Some detail an adventure that adds little to their lives; for instance, Mother Russia gives Steven an adventure in Napoleonic Russia between the main narrative of The Gunfighters and its conclusory scenes, which lead into The Savages. Even the interchange with his interrogator is set within the main story. Thus, Steven gains merely another adventure that fits neatly in his established, televised timeline.

By contrast, other plays expand greatly on the known fates of their principal character/s. For instance, the trilogy of stories featuring Sara Kingdom, the main narratives of which take place between episodes of The Daleks' Master Plan, reveals that she had other adventures with Steven and the Doctor besides the quest for taranium which was the central plot of her televised adventure. More significantly, the trilogy also gives Sara, or at least her consciousness, a thousand-year-lifespan, a way to have met a different incarnation of the Doctor and thus a second chance to travel in the TARDIS.

Most plays settle somewhere between these two extremes. Thanks in part to the typical interrogative "framing device", most of the plays reveal something about the lives of the Doctor's companions after leaving him. In the very first Companion Chronicle, for instance, Vicki is shown to have remained with Troilus and to have had a large family. Equally, the series shows that Susan Foreman stayed with David Campbell, Jo Jones continued her globe-trotting life with Dr. Clifford Jones and Victoria settled down to raise a family.

Stories Edit

Series 1 Edit

Main article: Series 1 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
1.1 Frostfire Marc Platt Maureen O'Brien 1st Vicki, Steven January 2007
1.2 Fear of the Daleks Patrick Chapman Wendy Padbury 2nd Zoe, Jamie, Daleks
1.3 The Blue Tooth Nigel Fairs Caroline John 3rd Liz, the Brig, Yates, Benton, Cybermen
1.4 The Beautiful People Jonathan Morris Lalla Ward 4th Romana II, K9

Series 2 Edit

Main article: Series 2 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
2.1 Mother Russia Marc Platt Peter Purves 1st Steven, Dodo October 2007
2.2 Helicon Prime Jake Elliott Frazer Hines 2nd Jamie November 2007
2.3 Old Soldiers James Swallow Nicholas Courtney 3rd The Brig December 2007
2.4 The Catalyst Nigel Fairs Louise Jameson 4th Leela January 2008

Series 3 Edit

Main article: Series 3 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
3.1 Here There Be Monsters Andy Lane Carole Ann Ford 1st Susan, Ian, Barbara July 2008
3.2 The Great Space Elevator Jonathan Morris Deborah Watling 2nd Victoria, Jamie August 2008
3.3 The Doll of Death Marc Platt Katy Manning 3rd Jo, the Brig, Yates, Benton September 2008
3.4 Empathy Games Nigel Fairs Louise Jameson 4th Leela October 2008
3.5 Home Truths Simon Guerrier Jean Marsh 1st Sara, Steven, Robert November 2008
3.6 The Darkening Eye Stewart Sheargold Sarah Sutton 5th Nyssa, Adric, Tegan, Dar Traders December 2008
3.7 The Transit of Venus Jacqueline Rayner William Russell 1st Ian, Barbara, Susan January 2009
3.8 The Prisoner's Dilemma Simon Guerrier Sophie Aldred, Laura Doddington 7th Ace, Zara February 2009
3.9 Resistance Steve Lyons Anneke Wills 2nd Polly, Ben, Jamie March 2009
3.10 The Magician's Oath Scott Handcock Richard Franklin 3rd Yates, Jo, the Brig, Benton April 2009
3.11 The Mahogany Murderers Andy Lane Christopher Benjamin, Trevor Baxter None Jago & Litefoot, Dr Tulp May 2009
3.12 The Stealers from Saiph Nigel Robinson Mary Tamm 4th Romana I June 2009

Series 4 Edit

Main article: Series 4 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
4.1 The Drowned World Simon Guerrier Jean Marsh 1st Sara, Steven, Robert July 2009
4.2 The Glorious Revolution Jonathan Morris Frazer Hines 2nd Jamie, Zoe August 2009
4.3 The Prisoner of Peladon Cavan Scott & Mark Wright David Troughton 3rd King Peladon, Alpha Centauri, Ice Warriors September 2009
4.4 The Pyralis Effect George Mann Lalla Ward 4th Romana II October 2009
4.5 Ringpullworld Paul Magrs Mark Strickson 5th Turlough, Tegan, Huxley November 2009
4.6 Bernice Summerfield and the Criminal Code Eddie Robson Lisa Bowerman 7th Bernice January 2010
4.7 The Suffering Jacqueline Rayner Peter Purves & Maureen O'Brien 1st Vicki, Steven February 2010
4.8 The Emperor of Eternity Nigel Robinson Deborah Watling & Frazer Hines 2nd Jamie, Victoria March 2010
4.9 Shadow of the Past Simon Guerrier Caroline John 3rd Liz, the Brig, Yates, the Mim April 2010
4.10 The Time Vampire Nigel Fairs Louise Jameson & John Leeson 4th Leela, K9 May 2010
4.11 Night's Black Agents Marty Ross Frazer Hines 6th "Jamie" May 2010
4.12 Solitaire John Dorney India Fisher 8th Charley, Celestial Toymaker June 2010

Series 5 Edit

Main article: Series 5 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
5.1 The Guardian of the Solar System Simon Guerrier Jean Marsh 1st Sara, Steven, Bret, Mavic Chen, Robert July 2010
5.2 Echoes of Grey John Dorney Wendy Padbury 2nd Zoe, Jamie, The Company August 2010
5.3 Find and Replace Paul Magrs Katy Manning 3rd Jo, Iris Wildthyme, Huxley, the Brig, Benton September 2010
5.4 The Invasion of E-Space Andrew Smith Lalla Ward 4th Romana II, Adric October 2010
5.5 A Town Called Fortune Paul Sutton Maggie Stables 6th Evelyn November 2010
5.6 Quinnis Marc Platt Carole Ann Ford 1st Susan December 2010
5.7 Peri and the Piscon Paradox Nev Fountain Nicola Bryant, Colin Baker 5th, 6th Peri January 2011
5.8 The Perpetual Bond Simon Guerrier Peter Purves, Tom Allen 1st Steven, Oliver February 2011
5.9 The Forbidden Time David Lock Anneke Wills, Frazer Hines 2nd Polly, Ben, Jamie March 2011
5.10 The Sentinels of the New Dawn Paul Finch Caroline John 3rd Liz April 2011
5.11 Ferril's Folly Peter Anghelides Mary Tamm 4th Romana I May 2011
5.12 The Cold Equations Simon Guerrier Peter Purves,Tom Allen 1st Steven, Oliver June 2011

Series 6 Edit

Main article: Series 6 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
6.1 Tales from the Vault Jonathan Morris Daphne Ashbrook, Yee Jee Tso, Peter Purves, Wendy Padbury, Katy Manning, Mary Tamm 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th Matheson, Sato, Steven, Dodo, Zoe, Jamie, Jo, Romana I July 2011
6.2 The Rocket Men John Dorney William Russell 1st Ian, Barbara, Vicki, Rocket Men August 2011
6.3 The Memory Cheats Simon Guerrier Wendy Padbury 2nd Zoe, Jamie, The Company September 2011
6.4 The Many Deaths of Jo Grant Cavan Scott & Mark Wright Katy Manning 3rd Jo October 2011
6.5 The First Wave Simon Guerrier Peter Purves & Tom Allen 1st Steven, Oliver, Vardans November 2011
6.6 Beyond the Ultimate Adventure Terrance Dicks Colin Baker, Claire Huckle, Noel Sullivan 6th Crystal, Jason December 2011
6.7 The Anachronauts Simon Guerrier Jean Marsh & Peter Purves 1st Steven, Sara January 2012
6.8 The Selachian Gambit Steve Lyons Frazer Hines & Anneke Wills 2nd Jamie, Polly, Ben, Selachians February 2012
6.9 Binary Eddie Robson Caroline John 3rd Liz March 2012
6.10 The Wanderer Richard Dinnick William Russell 1st Ian, Susan, Barbara April 2012
6.11 The Jigsaw War Eddie Robson Frazer Hines 2nd Jamie May 2012
6.12 The Rings of Ikiria Richard Dinnick Richard Franklin 3rd Yates, the Brig, Benton June 2012

Series 7 Edit

Main article: Series 7 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
7.1 The Time Museum James Goss William Russell 1st Ian July 2012
7.2 The Uncertainty Principle Simon Guerrier Wendy Padbury 2nd Zoe, Jamie, The Company August 2012
7.3 Project: Nirvana Cavan Scott, Mark Wright Maggie O'Neill, Amy Pemberton, Sylvester McCoy 7th Lysandra, Sally, Elder God September 2012
7.4 The Last Post James Goss Caroline John, Rowena Cooper 3rd Liz, Emily, the Brig October 2012
7.5 Return of the Rocket Men Matt Fitton Peter Purves 1st Steven, Dodo, Rocket Men November 2012
7.6 The Child Nigel Fairs Louise Jameson 4th Leela December 2012
7.7 The Flames of Cadiz Marc Platt William Russell, Carole Ann Ford 1st Ian, Susan, Barbara January 2013
7.8 House of Cards Steve Lyons Anneke Wills, Frazer Hines 2nd Polly, Jamie, Ben, Sidewinder Syndicate February 2013
7.9 The Scorchies James Goss Katy Manning 3rd Jo, the Brig, Scorchies March 2013
7.10 The Library of Alexandria Simon Guerrier William Russell 1st Ian, Barbara, Susan, The Mim April 2013
7.11 The Apocalypse Mirror Eddie Robson Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury 2nd Jamie, Zoe May 2013
7.12 Council of War Simon Barnard, Paul Morris John Levene 3rd Benton, the Brig June 2013

Series 8 Edit

Main article: Series 8 (CC)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
8.1 Mastermind Jonathan Morris Geoffrey Beevers, Daphne Ashbrook, Yee Jee Tso None The Master, Matheson, Sato July 2013
8.2 The Alchemists Ian Potter Carole Ann Ford 1st Susan August 2013
8.3 Upstairs Mat Coward Maureen O'Brien, Peter Purves 1st Vicki, Steven September 2013
8.4 Ghost in the Machine Jonathan Morris Katy Manning 3rd Jo October 2013
8.5 The Beginning Marc Platt Carole Ann Ford 1st Susan, Stoyn November 2013
8.6 The Dying Light Nick Wallace Frazer Hines, Wendy Padbury 2nd Jamie, Zoe, Stoyn December 2013
8.7 Luna Romana Matt Fitton Lalla Ward, Juliet Landau 4th Romana I, Romana II, Trey, Stoyn January 2014
8.8 The Sleeping City Ian Potter William Russell 1st Ian, Barbara, Vicki February 2014
8.9 Starborn Jacqueline Rayner Maureen O'Brien 1st Vicki, Ian, Barbara March 2014
8.10 The War To End All Wars Simon Guerrier Peter Purves 1st Steven, Dodo, Sida April 2014
8.11 The Elixir of Doom Paul Magrs Katy Manning 8th Jo, Iris Wildthyme May 2014
8.12 Second Chances John Dorney Wendy Padbury 2nd Zoe, Jamie, The Company June 2014

The First Doctor: Volume One Edit

Main article: The First Doctor: Volume One (audio anthology)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
9.1 The Sleeping Blood Martin Day Carole Ann Ford 1st Susan June 2015
9.2 The Unwinding World Ian Potter Maureen O'Brien Vicki, Ian, Barbara
9.3 The Founding Fathers Simon Guerrier Peter Purves Steven, Vicki, 1st Doctor's mind copy, Sida
9.4 The Locked Room Simon Guerrier Peter Purves Steven, 1st Doctor's mind copy, Sida, Vardan

The Second Doctor: Volume One Edit

Main article: The Second Doctor: Volume One (audio anthology)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
10.1 The Mouthless Dead John Pritchard Frazer Hines, Anneke Wills, Elliot Chapman 2nd Jamie, Polly, Ben June 2016
10.2 The Story of Extinction Ian Atkins Frazer Hines & Deborah Watling Jamie, Victoria
10.3 The Integral David Bartlett Frazer Hines & Wendy Padbury Jamie, Zoe
10.4 The Edge Rob Nisbet Frazer Hines

The First Doctor: Volume Two Edit

Main article: The First Doctor: Volume Two (audio anthology)
# Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
11.1 Fields of Terror John Pritchard Maureen O'Brien 1st Steven, Vicki 15 June 2017
11.2 Across the Darkened City David Bartlett Peter Purves Steven, Vicki, Daleks
11.3 The Bonfires of the Vanities Una McCormack Anneke Wills & Elliot Chapman Polly, Ben
11.4 The Plague of Dreams Guy Adams

Special releases Edit

Title Author Performer Doctor Featuring Released
The Three Companions Marc Platt Anneke Wills, Nicholas Courtney, John Pickard 2nd, 3rd Polly, the Brig, Brewster, Ben, Jamie Serialised over 12 chapters beginning with AUDIO: The Magic Mousetrap in April 2009
The Mists of Time Jonathan Morris Katy Manning 3rd Jo 19 August 2009 (free download with DWM 411)
Freakshow Mark Morris Mark Strickson 5th Turlough, Tegan 4th March 2010 (free download with DWM 419)
The Companion Chronicles: The Specials (box set compilation of The Three Companions, The Mists of Time, Freakshow) Various Various Various Various August 2011
The Revenants Ian Potter William Russell 1st Ian, Barbara 31st May 2012 (free download with DWM 448)

Notes Edit

Cover gallery Edit


External links Edit