It’s sad to note that so few stories have been told featuring Christopher Eccleston’s fantastic Ninth Doctor, especially when comparing his extended tales against the audio, comic, and novels adventures of, for instance, the Fourth, Seventh, and Tenth Doctors; fortunately, Big Finish is starting to amend this with the upcoming boxset, The Ninth Doctor Chronicles.
Though Eccleston isn’t returning to arguably his most famous role, the four-part release will star Camille Coduri and Bruno Langley as Jackie Tyler and Adam Mitchell respectively, alongside Nicholas Briggs. Meanwhile, Claire Wyatt will play Adriana Jarsdel in The Bleeding Heart, and Laura Riseborough as renowned author, Emily Brontë in The Window on the Moor.
So what of the stories themselves? The official synopses have been unveiled, and they’re enough to ensure we’re very excited:
The Bleeding Heart by Cavan Scott
Galen is a place where people come to heal. The renowned ‘planet of peace’ seems the ideal venue for talks between two warring races. But when death disrupts the diplomacy, Cosmic Nine news reporter Adriana Jarsdel uncovers a different story. Luckily, someone is there to help. A battle-weary veteran from another war. The Doctor has come to Galen – but is he looking for peace, or something else entirely?
The Window on the Moor by Una McCormack
Emily and her sisters once told each other fables of warring kingdoms: wicked princes, noble dukes, and their battling armies. Now she wanders the moors of her childhood alone, remembering those tales. The TARDIS arrives amid a strange civil war, with prisons made of glass and cities stalked by terrifying beasts. As windows open between worlds, stories and storyteller meet, and Rose comes face to face with Emily Brontë.
The Other Side by Scott Handcock
Rose has invited a new friend on board the TARDIS, against the Doctor’s better judgement. But when the Time Lord tries to take his unwelcome guest home, a temporal tsunami cuts the journey short. The travellers find the source of the disturbance inside an abandoned cinema. Will Adam Mitchell help or hinder when the Doctor and Rose discover what is lurking on the other side of the screen?
Retail Therapy by James Goss
Jackie Tyler is a success. Every home should have a Glubby Glub, and Jackie is star saleswoman on the Powell Estate. At last, she’s found her calling and it’s only a matter of time before she can give Rose the life she deserves. But the Doctor isn’t impressed. Jackie Tyler isn’t just filling peoples’ houses with useless clutter. He believes she’s launching an alien invasion…
Range producer, Scott Handcock (who’s also in charge of the Torchwood line) adds:
“It’s a unique format, and one that allows Big Finish to explore new stories for the Doctor’s most recent incarnations while we’re waiting to get the original actors into studio. David Richardson and Matt Fitton have worked hard to assemble a really authentic set of scripts that evoke the era, and Helen Goldwyn’s direction, coupled with some stunning sound design, elevate these Chronicles above a straightforward reading! We’ve adventures in the past, the present, the future; a celebrity historical and family feud; the Doctor and Rose Tyler being brilliant in the TARDIS… In short, it’s the trip of a lifetime!”
The Ninth Doctor Chronicles is released in May, expected at the same time as UNIT: Assembled, and is priced at £20 on Download and £23 on CD (or in part of a Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Doctor Chronicles bundle for £55 or £66). It goes on general release at the end of July, at which point the prices become £30 and £35.
So will you buy this set? What’s its main drawing point? The Ninth Doctor? Or Jackie?