The Fishmonger

An alternate Programme Guide by Charles Daniels

The Second Entry in the Charles Daniels Unauthorized Programme Guide
Fiction Appendix O' 5.1 Surround Sound

BF05 - The Fishmonger - 

CD Blurb

 The owner of a first rate chippie is in a mental ward. Another's on the run.
Their intended victim is covered in lard. Terrorists are planning the most
fiendish lunch order in British history. A talk-show host is vaguely hungry.
A Whitehall insider whispers about a mysterious speaking haddock, with a hidden
agenda. And somewhere else the tea is getting cold.

 Everyone's got something they want you to eat. It'll only take another fad
diet for the situation to erupt -- and something is pushing the books and meal 
planning cards. 

 But you can trust the Doctor to order Cod and Chips. Can't you? 

Plot Summary

 Part One 

 Young Steven Keyser unsuccessfully attempts to assassinate Servalan Harper,
the head of the British National Party.  The attempt is unsuccessful, not
because his gun jammed, or he brought the wrong type of ammunition, but only
because he relied on a rather bony chicken to do the job.

 Steven hoped that he could fulfil his destiny when he fulfilled her order
of Chicken and Chips, by supplying her with a "throat chokingly" good meal.

 When Harper doesn't choke on a chicken bone, his associate Walter Jacobs
flees in terror.

 The monster that Steven had sensed in Harper gets to him before the security
guards do - which is good, because it's only proper Doctor Who if a monster
is doing the killing, and not some lame arse rent-a-cop. 

 Some time later, shock-radio disc jockey Mick Thompson is startled when a
strange man called the Doctor walks into his studio booth in the middle of a
broadcast, stark naked, whilst speaking only in French.

 The Doctor speaks directly to the listening Walter, telling him that he's
right; there is a monster out there.  Unfortunately Walter hasn't taken French
since secondary school, so he's not certain but he believes this naked French
man has just told him over the radio "You are right; a monster lives in my

 Walter calls in and tells the Doctor to stop being so damned clever and just
warn him in plain English.  But the Doctor refuses and insists on explaining
the nature of the monster to Walter in the art of mime.

 Sadly, this does not help over the radio.

 Frustrated beyond all belief Walter hangs up without telling the Doctor where
he's calling from. 

 Unphased, The Doctor continues trying to explain the situation to Walter by
rubbing wine glasses so they emit deeply annoying high pitched whines.

 Just then Thompson recovers from the shock of having his show hijacked by
a naked Frenchman with a Scottish accent. Thompson openly mocks the Doctor's
claim that there's something evil out there that must be fought. 

 The Doctor looks deep into the inner-fears locked within Thompson's mind,
but discovers only mild anxieties about the possibility of faltering booksales
and some rather trivial concerns over the exact dimensions of his penis.

 Ace then calls in, asks the Doctor to stop playing freaky mind mojo with
Thompson and run off to meet her as she has located Walter.

 Ace found Walter hiding in his hotel room, "reading" several pornographic
magazines from Switzerland and drinking heavily from the mini-bar.

 Walter pulls out an EXTREMELY bony piece of chicken and points it at Ace,
threatening that he WILL make her eat it UNLESS she keeps talking until he's
sure that she's clear of the monster that Keyser taught him to hear. 

 She tries to convince him that there are no such things as monsters - but then
remembers her own life of the last several years and shifts her argument
firmly to "Well, I probably won't kill you, Walter."

 But when she tells him who sent her and he realizes that the man on the radio
was the legendary Doctor, he flees in terror - again. 

 The Doctor finds him in the lift, but Walter is too frightened to listen to
him; Keyser had shown Walter some very questionable films made in Bangkok
during the 70s - horrible, exciting, awful, disgusting, wonderful films --
and the Doctor was in all of them!

 Walter flees - again, again - before the Doctor can say anything to him.

 Having lost his one lead, the Doctor decides that humanity can go screw itself.
He's had enough of their crap.

 To relieve the tension, the Doctor decides to go and poke fun at people in
psychiatric ward for the clinically insane.

 To the Doctor's complete surprise, and mild annoyance, the ward he chose -
"St. Mungo's Psychiatric Torture Facility For The Truly And Deeply Disturbed" -
is EXACTLY where they brought Keyser to question him further. 

 Keyser explains to the Doctor that his encounter with the Fishmonger has left
him a nervous wreck; he will be consumed with terror for the rest of his life,
and that is going to make it very hard to meet any girls.

 The Doctor carefully considers the situation and decides that he can't help
him.  The psychological damage is far too extensive, the technology needed 
unobtainable, and more to the point - he simply can't be arsed.

 To pass the time the Doctor decides to investigate the story behind the
Fishmonger, but it won't be easy; he might have to do some actual research.

"Something tells me that just typing 'Fishmonger' into Google and hoping the
hits are relevant and useful just won't do for this alien menace."

 For a laugh though the Doctor does just that and discovers the awful truth -

 The Fishmonger is an ancient and terrible intelligence, unstoppable,
unkillable, an immortal primal force, that travels from planet to planet,
leaving it's victims with a compelling and irresistible craving for fish.

"It may not sound that devious Ace, but trust me; Worlds have fallen to such
cravings.  Famine, hatred, fear, and a thousand million chippies, spread
wherever the Fishmonger goes."
 In reality its efforts to stir up hunger and cravings are so pathetic that
they usually go unnoticed, except by those like Keyser or Walter who are
sensitive to its presence - each being proud members of "the fish 'n chip
providing community" as they like to phrase it.

 Keyser tells the Doctor that Walter will probably try to go after Harper at
the next rally, but when he realizes that the Doctor intends to stop Walter 
he attacks him, insisting that Harper is a monster and must be stopped. 
Ace and a security guard pry Keyser away from the Doctor, and the Doctor and
Ace depart, no closer to a solution. If Walter kills Harper at the rally the
monster will just move on to a new host, and all Walter will have done is
commit murder... 

 Harper's PR consultant, Roderick Travis, warns her of the Doctor's involvement;
he used to work for the Bangkok Tourist Board, and knows the Doctor to be a
menace to society and good, decent, filthy pornography everywhere!

 A porno nut like Keyser would no doubt also have known of the Doctor and his
involvement with...well with just about everyone!

 Travis will therefore arrange for the police to add the Doctor to their 
"Kill-Repeatedly-First Ask-Questions-Later" list.

 Meanwhile, preparations for the rally proceed as planned, and extra security 
precautions are put in place in case any rebels should show up. As Harper
prepares to take the stage, Travis assures her that nobody can get into the
rally without their knowing it -- but unsurprisingly, he's failed to take into
account transport bracelets and the TARDIS' ability to materialize out of thin

 As they search for Walter, Ace hears just enough of Harper's speech to realize
that she's urging God-fearing white folk to speak up against Kebab Vans. 

 The Doctor is more interested in the beat of the speech than in the actual
words -- which makes him exactly like the speech writer.

"It's sort of a great, repetitive, classic number, that just makes you want
to hate, and chant, and agree, and vote."

 The Doctor and Ace find Walter huddled beneath centre stage with hot lard
running down his fingers and a strange lump of something or other held in
his hands -

"Deep Fried Mars Bar, with a bit of Deep Fried Cheeseburger, and some Deep
Friend Pizza.  I'll make her eat this!!  And if the cholesterol and salt
doesn't kill her immediately - it will at least knock a good ten years off
her life!"

 Ace tries to take the fried food away from Walter, but he quickly explains
that if she comes any closer he'll eat it himself.

 The Doctor and Ace can't let that happen - they can't live with that on
their consciences.

 At that moment Harper's speech is interrupted by the sound of explosions,
gunfire and laser fire. Walter is convinced that the creature's war has begun,
and Ace desperately lunges for him as he suicidally brings the deep fat fried
concoction to his own lips... 
Part Two 
 Ace manages to restrain Walter while the Doctor rips the food-like substance
out of his hand. 

 Ace drags Walter out to the street while the Doctor gleefully rushes toward
the sound of gunfire. 

 After moving the TARDIS the Doctor meets with Ace and Walter, and plans to
investigate the attackers and find out what their agenda is.  First they need
to find a logical staging ground from which to launch their own investigation.

 Luckily, the Doctor remembers a man named Paul, who he once met at a pub, who
told him he could spend a night at his place if he really needed to -- of course
that was 13 years ago and in a different body; but still, an invitation is
an invitation!

 Paul is somewhat taken aback when the Doctor and Ace burst into his flat,
carrying a would-be assassin on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

 "Hello Paul!  We last met at the Goose and Ferret, you were drunk and I was
Tom Baker at the time, but my how things change! I hope you got that rash
looked after - MY, WHAT CRAZY WEATHER WE'VE BEEN HAVING!  Mind if I sleep
on your couch?  CHEERS!"

 The Doctor promptly slumps over dead as a doornail, leaving Ace and Walter
to do the explaining.

 Twelve hours later the Doctor wakes himself up and switches on Paul's radio
full blast. The entire bedsit vibrates from the noise and Paul, clad in only
a bathrobe, screams at the Doctor that it's horribly late and that he has
work first thing in the morning.

 The Doctor apologises - he can't possibly pay attention to what Paul is saying
just at the moment, things are far too important at this stage and besides he
can't hear him over the radio anyway.

 Over the radio he hears Mick Thompson playing a recorded message from
Roj Karadjic, the leader of the United Front terrorists, speaking through
either a vocal synthesiser or a very large paper cup -- the radio is so old
and bad it's hard to tell.

 Karadjic tells the world that the United Front cannot tolerate the immorality
of the Harper ethnic cleansing agenda; they are therefore engaging in the
highly moral activity of blowing up random people and buildings until everyone
sits down, thinks sensibly, and does the right thing.

 It all sounds like typical terrorist garbage UNTIL the Doctor notices that
Karadjic has momentarily stopped his self-righteous rants in order to share
with the audience his strange and unexpected new craving for trout.

 It appears that the Fishmonger is drawing unstable people to five star
restaurants, causing further panic. 

 Harper makes a statement deploring the violence -

"After all, they didn't even have the decency to use domestically produced
explosives!  I mean, if that doesn't say it all!"

 The Doctor is forced to switch off the radio when Paul smashes it into a 
million pieces out of frustration and anger.

 The Doctor and Ace manage to calm Paul down and he settles into an uneasy

 When everyone mistakenly believes that Paul is actually totally asleep, and 
only then, does the Doctor explain his unusual theory to Ace -

"Imagine a world seduced by luxury cuisine.  Every restaurant, every hotel,
a five star wonder.  Finest spices from distant and exotic trade planets.
Fresh vegetables, Lean and Healthy Meats, endless panoramic displays of
colour and style - all ruled over by robotic chefs bent on perfection.
Nothing cheap, nothing fast, nothing rushed or hurried..."

"No chippies.  Sounds awful."

"EXACTLY!  So what do all the chippies do?  Go extinct?  Out classed,
out done, out evolved?  Or do they fight back?  Do they invest in and
develop a terrible, unthinkable psychic weapon - that makes you crave

"Wait a minute Professor.  Are you saying, the British National Party
is controlled by demon chippies from outerspace?"

"PRECISELY!  The horrid psychic weapons were unleashed upon cuisine
world. The designs worked well, too well.  Cravings for fish that
could never be satisfied.  Ripping apart towns, then cities, then
countries, then worlds.  A base, lustful craving for fish, travelling
through the cosmos.  Without conscience, without reason, without

"Professor.  I feel...hungry."

"I know Ace.  So do I.  So do I."

 Paul is frankly sceptical.

 In an effort to show off and sound vaguely credible the Doctor builds a
force field generator out of the spare parts in his junk cupboard.

 "Fine," says Paul. "Great.  But what's the soddin' use for it?"

 The Doctor explains that it is a field which he can tune to any wavelength.
Then, after thinking about the implications, he realises that in this situation
it is actually totally useless.

 Defeated, the Doctor eats the entire contents of Paul's fridge and leaves.

 Ace and Paul follow the Doctor to the local corner shop, where, instead of
the usual bored-looking check out assistant they discover a crackling blob of
electric, psychic energy hovering in mid-air.

 The Doctor tries to put on a brave face and asks how much a box of matches
would be, but Ace can see even the Doctor is scared shitless by this unexpected
turn of events.

 When the strange, ungodly, crackling-blob of alien death calmly informs the
Doctor that matches are 18p a box, the time lord decides to change his tact -

 "Excuse me for asking, but isn't it a bit unusual for an alien being of pure
psychic hatred to be working in a corner shop?  I thought you'd be
over qualified." 

 It is obvious to Ace, the Fishmonger is trying to frighten them away before
they can buy any Smarties. 

 With great indifference the blob explains that, if it so chooses, it can
release a charge of its stored emotional energy into them, condemning them to a
lifetime of fish desire, just as it did to Steven Keyser.

 Surprisingly the Doctor produces a frying pan from his jumper and gives the
blob a jolly good thwack.

 It retreats, badly drained.

 "Frying pans, the arch-nemesis of fish." the Doctor explains to Paul.

 Just then Walter realizes that the Doctor intends to leave Harper alone once
he's dealt with the Fishmonger, and in his despair he tries to choke himself
on a rich tea biscuit. 

 Ace stops him, understanding that he's terrified of what will happen if
Harper gets into power, and convinces him that there's a peaceful way to stop

 Although The Doctor doesn't help matters when he says -

 "Peaceful??  It will take a bullet. I'm sure of it!"
 The Doctor later admits that he just said that to be needlessly cruel and
sadistic however.

 Meanwhile, down the road and a bit to the left, the United Front bombs a pet
store which they claim "Contained various kittens sympathetic to the racist
agendas of the oppressors".

 Various people are horribly killed, but the Doctor and Ace didn't know any of
them and they didn't advance the plot at all - so we'll just skip on.

 The Doctor explains that he'll have to do something before they go too far.
Ace asks the Doctor if blowing up innocent kittens isn't already too far and
he whaps her over the head with his umbrella.

 Walter reluctantly uses his contacts to arrange a meeting with the United Front,
although he isn't convinced they should be stopped - he's always secretly hated

 Upon arriving at the rendezvous, however, the Doctor, Ace and Walter are
confronted by insane terrorists, dressed as giant dogs. 

 Their encounter is witnessed by the police, however they assume it to be
either a wild student prank or LSD laced coffee. 

 Word eventually reaches Travis that the Doctor has been seen consorting with

  Even if the Doctor manages to get away from the terrorist in one piece,
he'll urgently need a flea dip AND under newly passed paranoid laws
Travis has enough evidence to hold him as a suspected international
terrorist (basically a totally shaky rumour has been received from an
unknown source). 

 The Doctor realizes that the terrorists are armed with rubber squeaky toys,
which are outlawed on almost every civilised planet. 

 The terrorists take their prisoners to a busy McDonalds, and the suspicious
Karadjic questions them, demanding to know what they want - for lunch!

 Walter identifies himself and vouches for the Doctor and Ace, and Karadjic
agrees to let them join up -- but the Doctor has no interest in joining the
Front. He just wants to stop them from making a grave mistake before anybody
gets seriously hurt -- well not counting those kittens of course.

 Walter, however, believes that the Front is doing the right thing by opposing
Harper, and despite the Doctor and Ace's objections he agrees to join up. 
Now Karadjic must deal with the Doctor and Ace - quoting his favourite
philosopher he explains that those who aren't with him must therefore be
against him.

 Ace, however, refuses to let him intimidate her, and, speaking calmly and
rationally, she turns around and walks towards him, knowing he doesn't really
want to hurt anyone, urging him to put the gun down and let them just walk away.
But instead, he shoots her. 
Part Three 

 Ace is going into shock, that cliffhanger was completely against the well
worn cliche of the calmly talked down gunman.

 The Doctor is horrified, and Walter is stunned; now that something quirky
and unusual can actually happen, they are all terribly lost.

 This isn't what Walter wanted at all, and he refuses to join the Front unless
they start acting stupid like typical fictional terrorists.

 To prove that they are capable of this Walter demands that they explain their
entire plan, in detail and with diagrams wherever possible.

 Karadjic agrees to explain later, but first he calls for an ambulance which
takes Ace to the hospital.  

 Karadjic admits that he can't get over the habit of dialing 999 in an emergency
even if he actually CAUSED that emergency -

"It's gotten me in trouble with the police so many times, I can't tell you!"

 The Doctor travels to the hospital to wait for Ace to awaken. While there, he
is confronted by the Fishmonger, but it can do nothing to him; he's already had
an enormous breakfast and can't even THINK about eating anything else. 

 Walter doesn't understand why Karadjic is being so accommodating to him, until
Karadjic explains that he feels a strong and compelling homoerotic attraction
to him -- and then Walter rather wished he still didn't understand why Karadjic
is being so accommodating to him.

 Over the next three weeks, the United Front continues its campaign of terror
and crossdressing and the political climate grows ever more fearful. 

 The Doctor finally gets another chance at the Fishmonger when Harper agrees
to make an appearance on Mick Thompson's show.

 The Doctor wishes he had some way to contain Harper in a small area long
enough for him to tackle the monster, but WHAT could allow that?

 Paul reminds him of the force field generator he built in part two for no
apparent reason and the Doctor finally sees an application for it.

 Paul installs the Doctor's force field generator in Thompson's booth,
claiming that it is a security precaution -- but as another security
precaution, Harper has decided to become a hyper-evolved mega-genius who
is impervious to the affects of force fields -

"Never know when that will come in handy in politics, darling."

 The Doctor is reluctant to leave Ace in the hospital, but eventually
decides "What the hell?", and leaves Ace alone, unconscious, and defenceless.

 Soon after the Doctor departs, Walter shows up and approaches Ace, who turns
out to have just been acting unconscious hoping that the Doctor would shut up
and stop trying to entertain her by playing the spoons.

 Walter explains that he is afraid of the Doctor. He believes that the Doctor
is an alien who has the power to bend minds, that he is a covert agent for
rogue elements of the United Nations, AND, most disturbingly, he believes he
saw a picture of him in one of those Swiss magazines he was looking over in the

 The Doctor dismantles the useless force field and calls Thompson, offering him
an exclusive on the terrorist threat if Thompson agrees to meet him, alone, in
the middle of the night, in a deserted warehouse where Ace was shot. 

 Thompson, being a moron, agrees to do so. 

 Ace and Walter decide to drop in at the warehouse to see what the Doctor has
planned for Thompson.

 The Doctor has trapped Thompson in the force field, and as the terrified
Thompson protests, the Doctor force feeds him fish...and to his total shock,
nothing happens. 

 When the Doctor studies the readings on his makeshift Crave-o-meter he finds
that the Fishmonger is not in Thompson...and it never was.

 The Doctor can't understand where the Fishmonger is hiding.

 Perhaps Walter is just a frightened and sick young man, and is only hearing
voices. Perhaps the energy blob he hassled at the local corner store was
just a regular psychic energy blob going about its life, when he needlessly
and unjustly hit it with a frying pan.

 Walter, unable to bear this revelation, collapses sobbing, but Ace still
doesn't understand; what the Doctor is saying makes no sense. Or so she thinks
until he speaks to her -- and she hears the tones of the Fishmonger in his
Part Four 

 Ace is in no position to do anything about the monster in the Doctor's voice;
A mob, ravenous for fish, is on its way to the warehouse. 

 The Doctor has a plan to stop the hungry riot, although Ace believes he just
wants to prevent her from becoming suspicious of him. 

 He offers Thompson an exclusive interview with those responsible for the
sudden fish craving suffered by humanity over the last three weeks.

 Thompson asks how the Doctor can possibly arrange such a meeting -- and he
promises to explain later.

 Travis is hard at work ensuring that the media coverage of the riots is
favourable to the BNP, and that party candidates are being filmed making public
statements deploring the violence. The ads will be on air within the week, and
the fact that Ace and Walter fled the hospital just before the riots broke out
plays into their hands perfectly. 

 Harper, however, is somewhat taken aback by Travis's unfortunate choice of 
words - "The voters won't even realise that we orchestrated this whole damn

 In fact, if she didn't know better, such comments would make her question
Travis's integrity.

 The Doctor takes Thompson, Ace, and Walter to a safe house where Karadjic is
sheltering from the mobs.  The Doctor instructs Karadjic's to tell his side
of the story to Thompson.

 Karadjic admits that there is no organisation behind the United Front -- it's
just him and some like-minded friends who got together to dress up as dogs and
rub each other's bellies -- and somehow, it all got horribly, terribly out of

  Travis then arrives, calling out to Karadjic by name and telling him that it's
all under control, and realizes too late that the Doctor is present. It was
Travis who supplied the United Front with government-issue weapons, seeing them
as a ready-made army to remove all cats from the planet earth -- and therefore
removing the main mammalian competitor for the world's fish supply.

 The Doctor, satisfied, reveals that they've just broadcast their confession
live on Thompson's show. 

 The police arrive and arrest Travis and Karadjic, while Walter is taken to an
institution for treatment; Ace assures him that he'll be well looked after, and
that she will deal with the monster herself. 

 Ace flees from the Doctor and shuts herself behind the force field so he can't
get at her. 

 On Ace's instructions, Paul has collected the freakishly horrible fried food
mess which Walter was going to eat to kill Harper with a cholesterol overload,
and set it up next to the force field generator.

 Ace tells the Doctor that she won't let the Fishmonger turn the Doctor into a
a crazed vessel of hunger and unfulfilled desire; she's willing to die to save
him from that.

 Deeply saddened, the Doctor tells her that the Fishmonger has driven into HER

"Look inside yourself Ace.  Don't you want it so badly?  Can't you just TASTE


"No I won't Ace.  Because you already want it.  It's already INSIDE of you!"

 Ignoring the lesbian subtext, Ace decides to listen to him, and she exorcises
the Fishmonger - crushing it out of existence. 

 The Doctor is sorry for what Ace has gone through, but at least he can be
flattered that the worst thing she feared is that the Doctor would go bad. 
He LOVES how naive street smart Ace can be.

 He and Ace depart, having saved the world once again... from the alien
fishmonger, at least. 

 Mick Thompson, however, is back on the air, telling people to call in
with their neat new diet ideas. It's time to eat carbs again. 

What do you want for lunch? 
Books/Other Related Material- 

The Atkins Diet OF Evil!
- And -
The Sushi of Death

Links and References - 
In a conversation with Walter we get references to a previous Ace story arc -

Walter: You don't understand. This Doctor.  The things he has done.
        He walks in perversity.  You can't understand.  No one has EVER
        done anything like the things he's done.

   Ace: Oh I don't know, I was once wrapped up in cross-temporal incest
        to save the world from mannequins.

Untelevised Misadventures -
The Doctor finally does explain later, and apparently he created both the
British National Party AND the United Front as a gag gone horribly wrong
during a UNIT Christmas Party.

Dialogue Train Wrecks

Doctor: You don't understand.  The Fishmonger was created by an advanced
        pan-galactic hypercivilization with access to the resources of
        millions of worlds.  The earth just doesn't have enough fish to
        satisfy these cravings!
        Your planet will be stripped bare and covered in malt vinegar before
        you know what's hit you!


   Ace: It's a Fishmongoid from the planet Fishmongos!

Dialogue Gems

Doctor: Just for once I'd like to come up with a very good plan that
        doesn't involve lots of last minute plot holes.


Doctor: Are you looking for the butterfly?

   Ace: What, the one that beats it wings and tips the balance so the
        hurricane happens?

Doctor: No, the one that just landed on your ice cream.

   Ace: Uggh, I can't eat that now!

Doctor: Too bad, Mint Chip.  The flavour that changes the world.


Travis: Isn't this the point where you arrive in the midst of chaos and
        sidle into the good graces of the authority figures when they're
        not paying attention?

Doctor: No, that's on page 47.
        Right now we're on page 38, where I just say something terribly
        out of character and self-referential, as to make the author of
        the piece appear terribly clever and post-modern, and give him
        that warm, self-indulgent feeling to make the rest of his cold
        miserable life that much more bearable.

Travis: So it's an act of pure masturbation?

Doctor: No, that's on page 97.  And I don't even get the batteries until
        scene 24.

Listener Reviews 

"For a story where the main enemy is a strange, nebulous desire to go to the
local chippie -- it wasn't half bad."   - Frank Zambini (2001)

"My only complaint, is that I would have liked to have heard the 7th Doctor
played by Ozzy.  This is an audio programme, and I like experimentation.
We all know what Sylvester McCoy sounds like as the 7th Doctor, but picture
Ozzy - the 7th Doctor, drunk, high, Brummie, armed only with a question
mark umbrella, a silly hat, and a vaguely hot companion in a leather jacket.
That would truly capture the magic of the series for me...even if no one
could understand what the hell the Doctor was saying!"
                 - Oddball Review Monthly (Dec 2000)

"The 7th Doctor and Ace are amazing in a story that is virtually faultless aside
from inescapable problem... It's written by somebody who is clearly in LOVE
with the McCoy era.  This should have been written by someone openly hostile
to Sylvester McCoy, Sophie Aldred, Cartmel, and the 80s in general.
The author of this audio should have been foaming at the mouth to attack and
rip into the actors and their established characters.
If the author would have gone to jail for attacking the actors -- then this
would undoubtedly be a true classic."
  - Deeply Unbalanced Reviews Weekly (November 23rd, 2000)

Sylvester McCoy Speaks!
"Did you notice I started the audio play naked in a recording studio and
we never did record a scene where the Doctor put clothes on?  
So here he was - running through abandoned warehouses, fighting space demons,
toppling governments, all while completely naked!
Except for carrying the question mark umbrella, after all he wouldn't
want to get a cold."

Sophie Aldred Speaks!
"I don't know if he was method acting or just being anti-social,
but yeah, he was a naked a lot."

Rumours, Slander, and Libel

 In 1999, it was announced that Doctor Who would soon be returning in an
exciting series of mouse pads.

 Fandom had hit an all time low.

 Crushed by 10 years (okay, actually 20 years) of neglect from the BBC, and
a failed American television movie - fandom had lost hope.

 At conventions Doctor Who luminaries such as Nicholas Courtney and Fraser
Hines often had to share autograph tables with Deep Roy and the guy who
played the robot in Lost In Space. 
 Not to mention a humiliating Sci-Fi Con in Dallas where Sylvester McCoy got
second billing to the original Ewoks and a cardboard cut out of a Cylon.

 Just when all hope was lost, Big Finish audio adventures were announced.

 I knew immediately that the duty fell to me to completely ignore them for
6 years, until I saw a handful in a bargain bin at The Works.

 The idea for the new series apparently came to producers Gary Russell and
Jason Haigh-Ellery in 1996 when they thought to themselves 
"Hey, how can WE cash in on this Doctor Who thing?"

 Only much later did the company secure a license from BBC Worldwide to
produce a series of audio plays, because that's the sort of thing you do
if you don't want to get sued.