The Gathering (audio story)
|Main enemy:||Katherine Chambers, James Clarke|
|Publisher:||Big Finish Productions|
|Post production:||David Darlington|
|Cover by:||Lee Binding|
|Release date:||September 2006|
|Format:||2 episodes on 2 CDs|
|Big Finish Doctor Who audio stories|
|The Reaping||Memory Lane|
- You may be looking for the Torchwood episode of the same name.
The Gathering was the Fifth Doctor's entry in a loose trilogy of stories surrounding an attempted Cyberman invasion of Earth, further detailed in The Harvest and The Reaping. It also takes place concurrently with The Veiled Leopard.
As an individual story, however, it was certainly most notable for being the first monthly Doctor Who audio story to feature the Fifth Doctor was travelling alone (due to his companions being engaged in the events of Veiled Leopard), and the first to feature Janet Fielding as Tegan Jovanka. It was thus the first time she had reprised the role since 1985's A Fix with Sontarans. As of 2013[update], it remained the only performed Doctor Who story to feature only the Fifth Doctor and Tegan alone, without any other companions. It was also set later in Tegan's life than any other performed story, occurring in Jovanka's middle age, and was further unusual for showing Tegan in her native Brisbane, Australia.
At the time it was released, it was thought to be Fielding's "one and only" audio story, and the marketing reflected that. However, in the light of her more regular audio appearances in the 2010s, that aspect of the story became less well-remembered.
Publisher's summary edit
But things don't always go as expected. It's been over twenty years since she chose to leave the Doctor. She's got a job, mates...a life.
Meanwhile her friend, Katherine Chambers, makes a decision that could change all their lives, and Tegan discovers that you can never really escape the past...
to be added
- The Doctor - Peter Davison
- Tegan Jovanka - Janet Fielding
- Katherine Chambers - Jane Perry
- James Clarke - Richard Grieve
- Michael Tanaka - Dait Abuchi
- Eve Morris - Janie Booth
- Jodi Boyd - Zehra Naqvi
- Waiter - Jef Higgins
- Alan Fitzgerald - Nicholas Briggs
- Rosemary Stark - Belinda Hoare
- Recording by - Toby Robinson
- Sound Design, post-production, music, and CD mastering by - David Darlington
- Series theme by - Ron Grainer
- Arranged by - Peter Howell
- Theme remastering by - David Darlington
- Cover illustration by - Lee Binding
- Story Editor - Alan Barnes
- Assistant Producer - Ian Farrington
- BFP Administration - Brenda Smith, Miles Haigh-Ellery, and Chris Eaton
- Marketing Director - John Ainsworth
- Producers - Gary Russell and Jason Haigh-Ellery
Real world edit
- Tegan sarcastically asks the Doctor whether he expected her to be the new James Bond.
- The Doctor confirms that he was with UNIT, was requests not to be asked when that was. This is a reference to the UNIT dating controversy.
- A film adaptation of the American television series Miami Vice is advertised on a radio station in Brisbane. The presenter notes that Colin Farrell is one of the stars. The original series was referred to in AUDIO: The Reaping as being a favourite of Anthony and Nathaniel Chambers in September 1984.
- The radio newscaster Rosemary Stark mentions that 22 September is the birthday of a British singer and actress named Billie. However, the radio is turned off before her surname is stated.
The Doctor edit
- Alan claims that there is no record of the Doctor travelling alone during his fifth incarnation. He is somewhat disappointed that it was not the Seventh Doctor who travelled to the Gogglebox, as he believes that he "knows everything."
- Tegan has taken over her father's stock feed company Verney Food Supplies, which he presumably inherited from her maternal grandfather Andrew Verney. Her mother is still alive and calls to wish her a happy birthday.
- An illustrated preview of this story with artwork by Martin Geraghty featured in DWM 374.
- The story states that something will cause the Doctor to lose some of the memories of his fifth incarnation, seemingly after his next regeneration. The cause of this has not yet been revealed, although it has been hinted that it was due to his subsequent regeneration. (AUDIO: Peri and the Piscon Paradox)
- This audio drama is part of a loose trilogy encompassing The Reaping, The Gathering and The Harvest.
- Besides the Doctor, Kathy and Nathaniel Chambers are the only characters to appear in both this story and AUDIO: The Reaping.
- Both this story and its sequel AUDIO: The Harvest take place on the relevant companion's birthday. 22 September 2006 is Tegan's 46th birthday whereas 12 October 2021 is Hex's 23rd birthday.
- Released in September 2006, this is one of the few Big Finish audio dramas to take place at the time of its release. Another example is AUDIO: The Condemned, which was released and takes place in February 2008.
- This audio drama was recorded on 29 and 30 June 2006 at The Moat Studios.
- The opening broadcasts refer to the launch of the British airship R101 in October 1930 (AUDIO: Storm Warning), the first manned mission to Mars in the 2000s (AUDIO: Red Dawn), St. Gart's Hospital (AUDIO: The Harvest), the 2012 London Olympic Games (AUDIO: Frozen Time; TV: Fear Her, Good as Gold) and the beginning of World War V in the 49th century (AUDIO: Singularity; TV: The Unquiet Dead).
- In an attempt to reach the Ice Caves of Shabadabadon, the Doctor lands in the newly opened Gogglebox inside the Moon instead. He claims that he has always wanted to visit the Ice Caves. While in his sixth incarnation, he would later attempt to bring his companion Peri Brown to see them. Following a brief (and accidental) return to the Gogglebox, they instead travelled to Peri's home town of Fell's Point, Baltimore, Maryland, USA in September 1984 after Peri learned of the murder of Anthony Chambers, the father of her best friend Kathy Chambers. (AUDIO: The Reaping) The Eighth Doctor would eventually visit the Ice Caves in the company of Samson and Gemma Griffin. (AUDIO: Terror Firma)
- The Doctor obliges Alan by telling him that he was responsible for the Great Fire of London in September 1666 (TV: The Visitation), "sort of" responsible for the disappearance of the Mary Celeste's crew (TV: The Chase) and that he worked for UNIT (TV: Spearhead from Space, et. al), though he is seemingly unsure as to exactly when. Alan mentions that they are rumours claiming that the Doctor was present when mankind discovered fire (TV: An Unearthly Child) as well as rumours which suggest that he shall witness the end of the universe (TV: Utopia, The Big Bang).
- While investigating unusual energy signatures that appear throughout Earth's history, the Doctor detects a television transmission emanating from Fell's Point, Baltimore, USA in September 1984 in which Lt. Doyle of the Baltimore Police states that "the vagrant charged with the brutal murder of father of two Anthony Chambers has escaped. He is believed to be still in the Fell's Point neighbourhood and is on the run with an accomplice known only as 'the Doctor'." Based on this evidence, the Doctor determines that his future self is already in Baltimore in 1984 (AUDIO: The Reaping) and therefore decides to travel to the location of the next energy spike, namely Brisbane, Australia in September 2006.
- The Doctor previously visited Brisbane in January 1983 in the company of Tegan and Nyssa after defeating Father Thane and the Elite of Florana. (AUDIO: The Elite, Hexagora) Furthermore, the three of them and Turlough had subsequently travelled to the city in the 51st century. (AUDIO: The Butcher of Brisbane)
- Tegan has had no contact with the Doctor since she left the TARDIS in 1984. (TV: Resurrection of the Daleks) She inquires after Turlough, whom she learns has likewise ceased travelling with the Doctor in the interim. (TV: Planet of Fire)
- The computer System would later appear in AUDIO: The Harvest and AUDIO: The Word Lord.
- Shortly before travelling to the Gogglebox, the Doctor dropped off Peri and Erimem in Monte Carlo in 1966 and instructed them to prevent the Veiled Leopard from being stolen while the Seventh Doctor's companions Ace and Hex were simultaneously trying to steal it. He briefly conversed with his future self and was observed doing so by Peri and Erimem, who remained unaware of his identity. Peri described the Seventh Doctor as "a kooky little guy in a weird pullover" and commented that he kept looking at herself and Erimem strangely. (AUDIO: The Veiled Leopard)
- Tegan mentions her encounters with the Daleks (AUDIO: The Elite; TV: Resurrection of the Daleks) and the Mara (TV: Kinda, Snakedance; AUDIO: The Cradle of the Snake) and nearly being killed by the Cybermen (TV: Earthshock, The Five Doctors).
- Kathy refers to the circumstances of the Doctor's upcoming regeneration as related to her by Peri in 1984. (AUDIO: The Reaping) The Sixth Doctor would later claim that he had been experiencing problems with his memory since that regeneration, (AUDIO: Peri and the Piscon Paradox) which could account for the fact that he did not recognise the younger Kathy in 1984.
- Tegan tells Kathy that the Doctor will not change history to save anyone, as evidenced by his refusal to go back in time and save Adric following his death. (TV: Earthshock) During his eighth incarnation, however, the Doctor saved the life of Charley Pollard, who was destined to die in the crash of the R101. This action had major ramifications for the Web of Time. (AUDIO: Storm Warning, Neverland)
- The Doctor attempts Venusian aikido, which he often used during his third incarnation. (TV: Inferno, The Mind of Evil, The Claws of Axos, Day of the Daleks, The Time Warrior)
- Tegan has an alien tumour that she developed in her travels. Owen Harper's girlfriend Katie Russell similarly had such a tumour. (TV: Fragments)
- James Clarke is implied to be an agent of the Forge. The Doctor would not learn of the existence of the Forge until his sixth incarnation. (AUDIO: Project: Twilight)
- The Doctor orders System to remind his next incarnation about Katherine Chambers by planting "8687" — the name of the bar where he was reunited Tegan — everywhere. Unfortunately, despite him wondering what the string of numbers meant, the "8687" clue did not jog the Sixth Doctor's memory. (AUDIO: The Reaping).
- Official The Gathering page at bigfinish.com
- The Gathering at the Doctor Who Reference Guide
- DisContinuity for The Gathering at Tetrapyriarbus - The DisContinuity Guide