The lovely people at Big Finish have just released an updated cover to one of their November Doctor Who releases that celebrates the series’ 50th anniversary.
The Beginning is part of the company’s ongoing series of Companion Chronicles – semi-staged audiobooks, narrated by one of the series companions and with guest appearances by other actors. In this case, the companion concerned is the Doctor’s granddaughter Susan, played once again by Carole Ann Ford, in a story written by Marc Platt and directed by Lisa Bowerman. The new cover contains a subtle difference to the original artwork, to more closely tie in with events as seen in The Name of the Doctor. Here’s a direct comparison, by the power of GIF: Personally, I quite like the look of the original pyramid, but I can completely understand why it’s been changed. Now that we “know” what the Doctor’s TARDIS looked like as it was first taken, there’s no point in making it look like anything else…
If Tricky really thought he was an android, how did he explain a need for nutrition (and the resultant excretion)? But if the conceit about having been tricked into believing he’s robotic doesn’t really stand up from that angle, the clues are there: right from the beginning, his attitude to the plight of the Doctor and Clara – and of the TARDIS herself – is the most human of the three brothers’.
2. That’s some heavy polystyrene you’ve got there
Poor Jenna-Louise Coleman. It can’t be easy to have to wake up from a completely unconscious state, free yourself from under what is doubtless supposed to be extremely cumbersome masonry, leap to your feet and then brush yourself down in the space of about three seconds.
You can, apparently, just about manage it in the time allotted if you ensure that not a single step of that process looks genuine.
“Where do you keep your heart, love? Is it free and allowed to roam?” The Doctor initiates a long overdue reunion.
Where do you keep your heart, love? Is it free and allowed to roam? I’ll show you where my heart is And you shall be my home.
From morning to night I wander From darkness to light I roam But you are where my heart is And you shall be my home…
As she waited for him to arrive, she hummed the tune he had taught her as a child. Fond tears welled up as she remembered those happiest of days.
The reunion itself started joyous enough for her. She wrapped her frail, ageing arms around his chest, pressing her cheek tightly against the warm wool of his jumper. He had changed so much since she had last seen him. The flowing white hair was much shorter, and now a slightly curly brown. As he whispered into her ear, “I’ve missed you”, she even detected a Celtic accent. Pulling him ever closer to her, she realised that what was once a frail, feeble body had become taut, upright. In fact, he was now so much younger in appearance than she was that she felt strange calling him ‘Grandfather’.
The happiness did not last. Looking up into his face for the first real time since his arrival, she noticed that the piercing grey of his eyes was diffused by sadness deeper than anything she had ever seen in him before.
His mouth opened and closed, opened and closed in an almost comical manner as he tried to say the words he needed to tell her. She could see the palpable fear of hurting her holding him back, strangling his words before they had the chance to emerge. Finally, painfully, he spat them out: