Russell T Davies' first Doctor Who story brought to life by Sylvester McCoy

Contributed by
May 5, 2015, 5:43 PM EDT

Before Russell T Davies successfully brought Doctor Who back to our TV screens in 2005, he’d written a Seventh Doctor adventure titled Damaged Goods. The book was published in 1996 as one of 61 novels that were licensed by the BBC, and has been out of print ever since. After almost 20 years, you can now finally relive this "long-lost" adventure, since it’s now out on CD (and for download) as a Big Finish audio production. Davies said:

"It’s funny when you look back to those Doctor Who-less times. When this came along, I thought, ‘I’ll do it, as I’d always wanted to write Doctor Who, and if you don’t write a novel, that’s the end of it’, so I threw myself into it. As far as I was concerned, it would be the only bit of Doctor Who I’d ever write, so I threw everything into it, with ideas I had stored up for years and years."

The cast includes Sylvester McCoy, who’s back as the Seventh Doctor, and former EastEnder actress Michelle Collins. The story sees the Doctor face off against an alien in the body of a drug dealer. McCoy said:

"It’s a great story, but it’s also historical because it’s Russell T Davies’ first Doctor Who story, and it’s a great privilege to be in it. It’s very truthful to the world he comes from and his experiences, and he uses it to tell the story of other worlds. It’s interesting to see what Russell has done with Doctor number seven."

The story also features twin brothers who were separated at birth when their mom sold one of them, and that twin is dying. That's some pretty dark stuff, right there. Apparently, this twins thing was optioned at one point by ITV for a drama, but it was never produced.

Davies revealed how the idea came about: "Part of it is a response to Blood Brothers -- I saw it on Broadway and I’ve always had an argument with it." He said he disliked the plot in which the twins are split-up and grow up in different households, adding:

"The rich one grows up to be nice and the poor one grows up to be rough and a criminal. I’d always wanted to do a story of what if the twin in the poor household does well and is the talented one, and the one in the rich household has a terrible time."

Here’s the audiobook’s official blurb:

The year is 1987 and there’s a deadly new narcotic on the streets of London. As part of their investigations the Doctor and his companions Chris and Roz move into the Quadrant, a rundown housing estate. An ancient alien menace has been unleashed, a menace somehow linked to a local gang leader known as The Capper, a charmed young boy called Gabriel and his mother Winnie, the enigmatic Frei Foundation, and Eva Jericho, a woman driven to the brink of madness.

As London descends into an apocalyptic nightmare, the Doctor must uncover the truth about the residents of the Quadrant and a desperate bargain made one dark Christmas Eve.

Elements from this story eventually made it into Davies’ Doctor Who TV show, including a council estate and a family named Tyler (but no connection to Billie Piper’s Rose).

(via The Mirror)