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Another Girl, Another Series

The Bernice Summerfield New Adventures

By Wade Campbell, with assistance from Kelly Buchanan

May 1997 heralded the publication of Paul Cornell's Oh No It Isn't!, the first New Adventure that did not feature the Doctor, the TARDIS, or any other BBC copyrighted creation. Prior to this, Virgin Publishing had successfully built a range of Doctor Who books that broke new ground. After publishing nearly 100 original novels and short story collections, Virgin were forced to abandon the Doctor Who line when BBC Worldwide declined the renewal of their license. The BBC had been making plans to take over the range as far back as the end of 1995 when it appeared that the television movie was finally going to get off the ground, and the potential income from Doctor Who merchandise was perceived to be likely to increase.

Virgin were left with the decision to either end the range or continue it with their most successful creation, Bernice Summerfield, as the lead character, along with the series' other notable inventions, the People (from Ben Aaronovitch's The Also People) , Chris Cwej, Jason Kane and Irving Braxiatel. Fortunately Virgin took the later option.

A lot of people wondered what this series could offer to Doctor Who fans who had a substitute for the original New Adventures in the BBC Doctor Who novels. There are a number of answers. Some people chose not to buy the BBC books on principle, after the BBC's appalling treatment of Virgin. Others had grown fond of the characters Virgin had created. Virgin had given many first-time writers the chance to have their original novels published, in their own stylistic and artistic fashion, and developed a following. Many of these authors continued to write for the new book line, and once the series was firmly established, new authors such as Nick Walters, Jon De Burgh Miller and Mark Clapham joined the range. And although Virgin weren't allowed to use Doctor Who copyrights, a number of familiar races appeared in all but name, most notably the Time Lords. The story arc featured in the final year's novels is perhaps the foremost reason to summon up enthusiasm to read the range.

Despite some initial concerns that continuing the New Adventures without the Doctor was a mistake, the series developed a significant and loyal audience.

The Series Begins

This article wouldn't be complete without the input of some New Adventures authors, so here's what two writers had to say when I interviewed them by email.

Mark Clapham

What essence do you believe that the New Adventures will lose in the transition to Big Finish?

It's not so much a matter of losing anything as being a totally different range. They're not the New Adventures, they're going to be a very different thing. I don't think I'm shocking anyone by saying that the Benny audio's weren't the New Adventures we've been reading from Virgin, that they had a different identity, and its that audio spirit that will continue in the Big Finish books. The audios have been well received by their target audience, who I'm sure will lap these new books up.

Personally, I'll miss the intelligence and wit of the Virgin NAs, the adventurous spirit you got from young editors finding young writers, both parties determined to make an impression on the wider publishing world. It already seems like a golden age, and it only ended a couple of months ago! Without the backing of a professional publishing firm, Big Finish are going to have to tailor the books to a narrower demographic, and that unfortunately means no experimentation, and nothing that might alienate potential readers by being too complex. I'm always impressed by people who go into self-publishing, and my instinct is to wish them luck. It's a brave thing to do.

What were your reactions to the canning of the New Adventures at the time, and was this wise on Virgin's behalf?

It was probably the right decision on Virgin's behalf, as there was little point continuing the range without an enthusiastic, talented editor who had a passion for the material, the instincts Peter Darvill Evans and Rebecca Levene brought to the range. A New Adventures range edited on the days when the editor isn't busy with Black Lace or Idol or whatever would be a bit lame. Personally, I miss the books, and I had a whole stack of exciting plans for the next ‘season’ of New Adventures which will now never be used.

Lastly, did you prefer writing the New Adventures to your Doctor Who book?

Beige Planet Mars is probably the book which is most me - The Taking of Planet 5 was Simon [Bucher-Jones]'s story which I was press-ganged (pretty willingly!) into helping with, while Twilight, as the last book, had a long editorial tick list of things that had to be included. The Virgin, post-Who New Adventures gave the author such freedom, the ability to tell all kinds of stories - I'm sure if they were still going I'd be writing one, or at least banging on their door every day demanding to write one!

Jon de Burgh Miller

As the co-author of the final New Adventure, what are your thoughts on the range stopping there?

Happy ones! Although it was sad to see the end of the range, I was overjoyed to be able to have the final say on the end, and make it one that I thought was interesting, that the fans would like, but was also slightly surprising, yet still felt appropriate. We may not have succeeded totally on all those counts, but I think we did the best job anyone could trying to juggle all those balls. The last chapter of Twilight is exactly how I, as a New Adventures reader, would have wanted the range to end, so I'm obviously quite happy to leave it there!

What plans were in store for Bernice if the range continued on?

Well, I don't want to say too much because I still intend at some point to put together a condensed anthology of stories showing what would have happened next. Also, despite it being up to personal preference whether the new novels from Big Finish are a continuation of the NA Bernice (to me the Big Finish stuff takes place in a bottle within the universe of the Vremnya Bernice) they are covering some similar ground as far as the final fate of Jason is concerned, so I wouldn't want to spoil anything they're doing by spilling the beans now.

Basically, had there been more New Adventures after Twilight, we would have seen the range move forward in a very positive and different way from what we had seen before. They would have taken their inspiration from books like Dead Romance rather than books like The Sword of Forever! Twilight's brief was to get rid of the Time Lords and the People, and to clear the decks for a sort of ‘Year Zero’ for the range, just in case there were more (although this was never very likely, and we knew this when writing the book). The follow-up book which Mark and I had prepared to give to Virgin just in case they decided to continue would have been set half a decade after Twilight, and would have introduced the new look New Adventures that would have been based around an ensemble cast including most of the old favourites (slightly reinvented in some cases) and a few more.

Benny would be pulling the strings behind everything, and still the central character, but would no longer be right at the centre of things in every book. Both Mark and I feel that while Benny is an extremely good character, there are others in the NA universe who have almost as much potential and it would have been fun to explore them more, and see Benny in roles other than that of the adventuring archaeologist. I don't think its too hard to work out from the end of Twilight of the Gods that (at least for a while) she would have been based on Vremnya (she has a job and for once actually goes to work rather than running off the whole time!), with her gang running around the galaxy on errands, dragging her into their adventures. She would also have finally come to terms with Jason's death, too. Until the fourth book, that is...

What do you consider to be the best elements of the Benny Books?

The strong characters were the New Adventures' greatest strength I think. Benny is fantastically well rounded and it's easy to get inside her mind; it's not surprising that people love writing for her. It's also no coincidence that the books got really good when the supporting cast, such as Clarence and Cwej (my personal favourite character), were given more to do, as I think one of the greatest strengths of the New Adventures was the way that they introduced so many fully rounded characters who grew and developed as the books moved along. The lack of any kind of reset button was highly refreshing, I found. Oh, and I think the way that the books tended to be written by different people all the time, and right up until the end the editors were more than happy to let new talent in to the range, was also a huge strength, but then I would say that, wouldn't I?

Paul Cornell's Oh No it Isn't! is a notorious book. Although having had considerable praise of late in the same way in which fans reappraise much hated episodes of Doctor Who, at the time of its release many considered it to be a vast disappointment. Involving a pantomime fantasy world created by alien technology, some people found this book to be rather tasteless. It felt as if it was written in a hurry and with as little thought as possible as to the initial impressions garnered by fans of the original New Adventures. I know of several people who discontinued following the range because of this book. Others, perhaps a minority, considered it entertaining and memorable. And a large role for Wolsey the cat has to be a good thing.

In Dragons' Wrath, Benny investigates an archaeological relic of the Knights of Jeneve with help from Braxiatel (who at this stage isn't annoyingly called ‘Brax’). This is a somewhat simple book made complex through sudden changes in characters' allegiances. The Knights of Jeneve had the potential to be a recurring group that might help or hinder Bernice, but thankfully only reappeared once, in Deadfall, as the Knights seemed motiveless and only hindered this readable book.

Beyond the Sun was the book that proved that the ‘Doctor-less’ New Adventures were a good idea. The characterisation is superb, including the introduction of Emile, the most interesting of Benny's students, and Jason's first appearance since their divorce. Although initially far from happy to see him, Benny still has strong feelings for Jason, and sets off to rescue him when he is kidnapped over an alien artifact apparently connected to a weapon with power beyond that of a sun. Despite Benny's best intentions, two of her students are caught up in the struggle in which the fate of two worlds hangs in the balance. The plot is absorbing, darker in tone than many in the range, and the resolution both surprising and effective. Matthew Jones is also one of the few writers to fit in a little genuine archaeology.

Ship of Fools is a parody of all murder mystery detectives combined into one and has Benny forced to catch a culprit who stole an archaeological masterpiece. In Dave Stone fashion, the book requires a lot of patience, but rewards with sparkling wit and an abundance of humorous situations. The early books in the series seemed to abide by a staple formula, involving Benny lecturing on Dellah, and then going off-world to sort out a mess or investigate a dig. These novels failed, being lightweight and soulless. Ship of Fools fits this pattern and seems like a ‘filler’ before his later, much improved books.

Down is not as good as Lawrence Miles' later books, but is extremely interesting and fun. The story closely resembles a pulp film in that Benny and some Dellahan students journey to the centre of the Earth. They are joined by Mr Misnomer, hero of a popular fiction series who appears not to be so fictional after all. The People also play a central role for the first time. In fact, the theme of the story is about people re-inventing themselves to suit their environments - or so Miles claims. This is Benny's story but edited as she feels necessary, much in the same way as Dead Romance is Christine's story. By no means perfect, there are nonetheless some great ideas in here, and the events of this book take on new significance later in the series.

The Knights of Jeneve reappeared in Deadfall, a lacklustre book that featured Jason as the main character as he sets out to rescue Chris Cwej. Much like Dragons' Wrath, the Knights hinder the book, as there is too much focus on them, rather than the other characters who may or may not be part of the order. Perhaps the most amusing character is the cat that sets its mind on protecting its feeders, and in the end does very little. Although the majority of the characters returned to participate in the later highly regarded story arc, their involvement in the adventure is hashed together and makes little sense.

One of the stranger books in the original New Adventures was The Death of Art. The cover blurb of Ghost Devices claimed that this book was just as complicated - a statement guaranteed to generate a mixed response. It isn't that complicated, simply overwritten. The plot revolves around one giant paradox, and there are long paragraphs about technobabble, physics and psychology. Once again, a book that had potential focuses on the plot rather than the characters. However the book did introduce Clarence, once a ship of the People but now inhabiting the body of an angel after a terrible accident reduced him to near-human capability.

Mean Streets, like most Terrance Dicks books, relies heavily on his past ideas. So it is no surprise that you would have to be familiar with Shakedown to fully understand the story. The book is not to be taken seriously; expect a pulp action serial about Chris and Benny investigating gangsters in an Overcity. Garshak the Ogron is one of the main characters, however, he bears little resemblance to the gentleman figure he was in Shakedown. Now he appears to be a copy of Dekker from Blood Harvest. Though entertaining, the book is overly silly.

Running to Stand Still

Christopher Bulis added to his vast number of novels published with Tempest, a straightforward murder mystery novel set aboard a futuristic train. Although much less confusing or overwritten than many other Benny New Adventures, Tempest is still mediocre. The range was looking very tired already after an upbeat beginning and looked as if it was just going through the motions. In the end, like the majority of Bulis's books, Tempest doesn't impress and is therefore forgettable.

Walking to Babylon is unique in that it is the only Doctor-less New Adventure in which Bernice gets to time travel. Typically for Kate Orman, the early Babylon setting is wonderfully researched, and doesn't detract from the main plot. Bernice must stop two wayward ‘People’ who have travelled to Babylon before God destroys the city to stop a war breaking out between the People and the Time Lords. This novel broke with the series' rather beleaguered format in which Bernice simply went to another planet in each book. Unfortunately, this example wasn't followed as the series otherwise remained within its original mould.

Any piece of Dave Stone's fiction is crammed full of ideas and humour, and Oblivion marked a return to some of his better work. Many of the main players from Sky Pirates! end up in a surreal universe with Chris, Jason, Bernice and a young Roz (neatly pinched from her earlier timeline). There are numerous parodies in this novel of the series in general - particularly the way in which everyone has seemed to forgotten the Doctor. However, this book does draw a lot of its ideas from Sky Pirates! and demonstrated that the range was becoming littered with references to itself and the original Doctor Who line.

The Medusa Effect comes from the most prolific of the Bernice New Adventures authors, Justin Richards. It is a competent book that strives to be a great standalone novel. While the book's blurb may sound like the film Event Horizon, The Medusa Effect is a lot more accessible, and deals with Bernice discovering that the original crew of a long abandoned ship are taking over the personalities of the newcomers. It does tend to stick to the original mould of the first few New Adventures, but Richards has the knack of always delivering the goods.

The majority of New Adventures authors who have attempted to write epics have been unsuccessful while Human Nature and The Also People prove that a character-driven story works very well. Paul Leonard and Nick Walters' Dry Pilgrimage tried this approach and although quite interesting, was perceived as overlong with a lot of padding. As a standalone the book is a pleasant read about a religious alien sect, but pales in comparison to books that were just round the corner.

The Sword of Forever is the most epic of all the New Adventures books. As in the majority of Jim Mortimore's books, there is a lot of pain, death and suffering and the whole world nearly dies again. However, Mortimore tried to be a bit too arty with this effort and as a whole the book probably only makes sense to a select few. Whatever the fascination with death is, there are quite a few set pieces that memorable and the inclusion of Patience (not to be confused with the Time Lady in Cold Fusion), the smart raptor, is well worth the trouble of reading. It's a bizarre book, which doesn't seem to fit the style of the rest of the series at all, and would work just as well, if not better, as a completely stand-alone novel (which wouldn't require any significant changes).

The series received a face-lift with Another Girl, Another Planet. The series title was removed from the cover, and a new layout introduced. This relaunch was intended to make the books more marketable to the USA market, although the actual impact would have been marginal. The authors were also told to drop references to other novels and make each book feel like an individual story, although this directive only lasted for about two books. Martin Day and Len Beech produced a respectable thriller with this novel, which is heavily influenced by The X-Files, and a lot more adult than the majority of the previous books. The book centred on Benny helping out a friend on a planet where politics and the Bantu Co-operative are prevalent. The ending hinted at secrets buried on Dellah, prefiguring the upcoming story arc.

Lance Parkin and newcomer Mark Clapham teamed up to produce one of the series' better books in Beige Planet Mars. It could be argued that the setting of an archaeologists conference is in fact a very funny parody of the goings on at a Doctor Who convention. However the book is more like Total Recall by the end as Bernice must stop a ploy to unleash a veteran super-computer. As a standalone novel, it far surpasses the quality of average ‘filler’. Beige Planet Mars would however soon be superseded by even more memorable novels.

The Arc

The Doctor-less New Adventures was the first to feature a story arc that was well received by fans. Neither the BBC range nor Virgin's own Doctor Who New Adventures managed to meet fans expectations with various story arcs which were either too loosely linked, as in the Cats Cradle trilogy, or ended in a complete cop-out, as happened with the Alternate Universe saga.

Surprisingly, the ‘Arc’ started in Where Angels Fear, just two books after the relaunch of the series, which firmly stated in its writers' guidelines that the books would not rely on references from previous books, or be sequels to authors' own back stories. This decision was overturned with the story arc that closely mirrored BBC Books' ‘war’ arc in which the Time Lords face an impending war with an unnamed enemy. With the introduction of the story arc, the series now had a firm direction. Bernice and her friends would be involved in individual stories with the war mostly featured in the background. Subtle clues were dropped to avid readers in each new book, and discussion on the internet was rampant.


or, Oh My God, They Killed The Doctor! You Bastards!
by Kelly Buchanan

The most notable element of Where Angels Fear, already a very significant book in its own right, was the involvement of a certain mysterious twin-hearted alien going under the alias “John”. Now, who do we know that uses that name? A certain Dr John Smith, perhaps?

John's true identity is a matter of some dispute, and there is evidence both supporting and casting doubt on the theory that he is indeed everybody's favourite Time Lord. But considering the small fact that Virgin didn't have permission to use the Doctor, in my opinion they stretched plausible deniability to the limits. If John was intended to be the Doctor, could they have made it clearer without using the name?

And if the Doctor wasn't John, then where was he? Given the Time Lords' reaction to the situation it's hardly plausible that he didn't know what was happening on Dellah, and it's not the sort of thing he'd be likely to ignore. What would the Doctor have done upon finding out trouble was brewing? Begin investigating and give Benny a cryptic warning (Another Girl, Another Planet), perhaps? Attempt to come up with some way to defeat the Gods and try to save as many lives as possible?

He has changed somewhat since we last saw him, of course. A regeneration or five and all the experiences that go along with them will do that. And his behaviour on Dellah is influenced by the need to manipulate people's beliefs about him for his own purposes - under the circumstances, what people believe is of tremendous importance.

He presents himself as a drinking, smoking, womaniser, but drinking at least is nothing new for the Doctor, and even if you ignore the TV Movie's suggestion that he's not as asexual as previously implied, there's plenty of evidence that John's interest in Renee is strictly an act. She certainly thinks so; “she was damn sure it had nothing to do with sexual gratification”. She also sees similarities between him and Braxiatel.

Braxiatel and John seem to have had a serious falling out at some point in the past, but by the end of the book Braxiatel knows he'd misjudged him, and would be more inclined to be friendly when meeting a previous incarnation later in his own personal timestream (Theatre of War). Although he implies to Renee that he doesn't know John, he actually just denies being his friend and volunteers that he's familiar with John's race (naturally, if he is of the same species himself). When speaking to John in person, he admits to knowing who he is, and refers to their different peoples rather than species. An ambiguous term, one possible meaning that would fit being simply Gallifreyans and renegades.

Although Benny doesn't recognise John's face, she finds him strangely familiar. And she is important enough to John for him to drop everything and rush off to confront the Gods to save her - beings so powerful that the People and the Time Lords are fleeing them en masse. That confrontation was pure Doctor; facing up to near-omnipotent forces of evil with barely more than his wits. And this time, finally, pushing his luck just a little too far...

Where Angels Fear was indeed the turning point of the range, featuring the fall of Dellah to unnamed Gods who converted the majority of the population into ‘believers’. This is a menace powerful enough to terrify both the Time Lords and the People. The main failing of the book was its low page count - such momentous events needed to be dealt with at greater length. It received a mixed reaction from readers.

The Mary-Sue Extrusion was a typical Dave Stone novel, masking the seriousness of the situation and virtually ignoring Bernice in favour of the ‘unnamed techno-assassin’ whom, although popular with readers, was basically the Jason mould from Death and Diplomacy. Stone infuriated some people by only providing very small clues as to what was really happening. Dave Stone used a clever analogy of the New Adventures to create a piss-take of the range within the book. The threat of the Gods was downplayed far too much, making this a disappointing follow-up to Where Angels Fear.

If Dave Stone teased, Lawrence Miles flabbergasted people with his third New Adventure, which really shifted readers' discussions away from Doctor Who books to the New Adventures. Although extremely complex, it was perhaps the cleverest book of the series as you were so caught up with the plight of Christine Summerfield. The internet was rife with discussions of the two separate book lines crossing over into one via the Bottle Universes in Dead Romance and the BBC Novel Interference. The book also caused a lot of heartache for retro-continuity buffs when Twilight of the Gods was published. Dead Romance casts the Time Lords in an entirely new light.

Tears of the Oracle brought Benny back as the main character at last in a book which many saw as a perfect Doctor Who novel and introduced the ‘War’ team of Benny and her friends. The book was very reminiscent of Theatre of War and almost acted as a sequel where the story of the Braxiatel Collection is revealed, as are important arc threads involving the People and the Time Lords. Unknown to some fans, this was also where Dave Stone and Justin Richards locked horns regarding certain events in the arc, which were to continue in the next three books.

Dave Stone followed up with Return to the Fractured Planet, which once again was a first person narration and a sequel to The Mary-Sue Extrusion. While some believe it was a total re-hash of his previous book, this time around the situation is taken more seriously, to good effect. Though Benny is again reduced to a minor role, this book is more focused and fits more naturally into the arc.

Justin Richards was rushed into writing the penultimate New Adventure. The Joy Device feels distinctly out of place within the angst of the arc, yet it is a joy to read due to its impressive way of catching on that fans needed a break from the arc. Benny goes for a holiday out on the frontier and Jason and Clarence try to sabotage her vacation. This book puts many of its standalone predecessors to shame. It is perhaps too much of a comedy, at the expense of plausibility and character integrity.

The story arc finally concluded with Twilight of the Gods, the most anticipated book because it finally concluded both the arc and Virgin's association with the Doctor Who universe. We also learned the nature of the Gods, which many readers would find quite disturbing if not surprising. The book is more of a sequel to Where Angels Fear than anything else, and also set up the ‘Search for Jason’ story thread which would have seen Benny and Cwej search for Jason in the realm of the enemy, had Virgin continued the range. That indeed would have been a worthy addition to the series, which will probably now not take place in the Big Finish series.

The End

In the end the decision to can the series was non-commercial. The books were selling very well - Lance Parkin has said that Beige Planet Mars sold about 75% as many copies as The Infinity Doctors. What brought about the downfall of the New Adventures was apathy among the managing staff at Virgin. Basically nobody within the company cared about the range. Even Virgin's Megastores in some parts of England did not sell their own range of novels, but stocked the BBC's Doctor Who range. Virgin wanted something extremely commercial with lots of guns, space travel and big bangs. Although some of the New Adventures displayed these characteristics, they were not really the pulp Science Fiction that Virgin wanted. Other evidence of this apathy is apparent in the Virgin Worlds line, which has suffered the same fate as the New Adventures range. The final blow was dealt when the series' originator, Peter Darvill Evans, left Virgin Publishing.

Big Finish (the same company which produces the Doctor Who audios) is now reviving the series, but the books will probably never be the same again as they do not have the rights to use many of the likeable characters from the New Adventures.

Six Must-Reads

Dead Romance Lawrence Miles wanted this to cause as much controversy as Transit did when it was first released. Instead, Miles drew admiration from virtually everyone who has read this book. Not only does it tell us about Christine Summerfield, it draws on Miles' brilliant ideas and philosophies to produce an intriguing story. Admittedly it caused a lot of confusion as to the contrasting Enemies in the book ranges and provided the idea of Bottle Universes separating the BBC and Virgin Universes.

Walking to Babylon Something of a classic from Orman that primarily involves the People making a deserved return. There were hints here of a future war between Gallifrey and the People, although unfortunately we will never see this eventuate now. There are plenty of touching moments between Benny and the Victorian linguist who is plainly out of his depth in Babylon.

Tears of the Oracle The books around this period drew heavily on a reoccurring ‘family’ of characters. Above all, this book is fast moving, and simply a joy to read as we learn about the characters' hidden desires and how far they are willing to go to know what the future holds for them. Particularly reminiscent of some of the old New Adventures, and in comparison blows away many of the books in the BBC's Eighth Doctor range.

Twilight of the Gods The New Adventures had to finish with an all out bang, rather than a whimper, and this delivered on it's promises to wrap up the series. Although written a little workman-like, the plot rockets along as the Gods are found out. The best fact about this book is that it encompasses everything that made the range a success and weaves it altogether to tell a blistering tale of hope and the difference that people can make.

Beyond the Sun The ideal ‘typical’ Benny book. A routine archaeological dig turns into a dangerous adventure involving hostile aliens, strange cultures, and powerful ancient artefacts. But the basic concept is fleshed out with unmatched style and imagination, and the characters are some of the best of the series. Emile and Tameka in particular are well developed, believable, and likeable, making what they go through really matter.

Where Angels Fear A book heralding massive changes for Benny and Virgin's entire Doctor Who universe, to an extent few series of any kind dare attempt. In this one book we see the devastation of Dellah, the flight of the Time Lords and the People, the beginning of the Gods arc - and the death of the Doctor. And on top of all that, it's a great read.

Ten Great Moments

In Return to the Fractured Planet Benny must decide on whether to read her diaries or burn them. Considering that her diaries are such a defining part of the New Adventures, one can't help but to will her not to burn them.

We see in Oblivion what Chris, Roz, Bernice and Jason's lives might have been like if they hadn't met the Doctor. The most disturbing is that Jason would end up like his dad and become a wife beater.

In a great comedy moment in Oh, No, It Isn't, Wolsey is insisting that Benny is his master, Dick, and Benny checks to make sure that she isn't male.

In Deadfall, Jason introduces his new fiancee to Benny and exclaims ‘please don't kill her’, a great throwback to Death and Diplomacy - which in turn was a reference to Love and War.

Beyond the Sun defines Benny's adventurous spirit when she discovers a sewer and tries to explain to her archaeology students why they should all be excited about excavating an ancient sewer in a wet, muddy field.

Although many people consider all of Dead Romance to be brilliant, there is one bit where someone can't help but to be amused. Chris Cwej is working for the Time Lords, who have manipulated his mind, and he remembers the Doctor as the Evil Renegade who did strange things to him when they travelled together in the TARDIS.

In The Joy Device Jason and Clarence try to stop Benny from sleeping with the adventurer and author Dent Harper, and the whole thing nearly backfires on them.

Twilight of the Gods has without a doubt the most anticipated moment where the Gods are finally revealed to be... Well that would be ruining the moment, wouldn't it?

Lawrence Miles' Down provides a real shock when Mr Misnomer's true identity is revealed, forcing a re-evaluation of the entire book.

Chris's initial reaction when he discovers that he has regenerated into a new body - a short and stumpy one with a receding hairline - is definitely one of the highlights of Tears of the Oracle.

The New Adventures

This item appeared in TSV 60 (June 2000).