There may be only three new episodes of Doctor Who on television in 2022, but thanks to Big Finish, there’s still plenty of new Doctor Who dramas to enjoy. Here are some of the highlights to look forward to.
As a new year dawns so does a new era for Big Finish Productions. Officially approved creators of Doctor Who audio dramas since 1999, they recently had their licence extended to March 2030. And as the Thirteenth Doctor’s time in the TARDIS draws to a close, we can also expect Big Finish to soon be able to fold elements and characters from the past few years into their universe. But before that they’ve already unveiled many of their plans for 2022. And it’s set to be a very exciting year for fans of Doctor Who audio drama.
From Tom Baker to Paul McGann, there are boxsets starring classic Doctors throughout the year
Big Finish continue to work with every living classic Doctor, with more releases for every Doctor from Tom Baker to Paul McGann coming soon. And recent format changes make their adventures easier than ever to jump on board to enjoy. With some ranges having been around for ten or more series, and the monthly range having well over two hundred numbered releases, it could seem intimidating to new listeners.
But now their stories will be arranged into boxsets, each with its own overarching name, to make clear when you can pick up a complete adventure.
Tom Baker, still considered by many the definitive Doctor, is back for five more adventures, across two boxsets in March and June. He starts off these new stories in ‘Solo’ travelling alone, investigating a mystery on one of Gallifrey’s moons, before meeting new friend Margaret Hopwood (Nerys Hughes) in a small English coastal town menaced by a sinister figure on a beach.
Peter Davison’s two boxsets, out in January and September, celebrate four decades of the Fifth Doctor with ‘Forty 1’ and ‘Forty 2.’ The drama features rematches with the Cybermen, Ice Warriors and Autons. But the new adventures are linked by a common mystery – how has the Fifth Doctor become unstuck in time, revisiting key moments from his past? And how can he find his way back to his proper place and companions?
Colin Baker’s Sixth Doctor gets a very special release in March, with Russell T Davies’ first ever Doctor Who script being brought to life. ‘The Mind of the Hodiac’ was originally submitted to the 1980s Doctor Who production office, but never made. However, Davies came across his script last year and now this adventure for Baker and Bonnie Langford’s Mel will finally come to life on audio.
Bonnie Langford’s also back as Mel, this time alongside Sylvester McCoy’s Seventh Doctor in June for ‘Silver and Ice.’ The set collects two stories, with two factions of Cybermen clashing in Bad Day in Tinseltown, while Return to Ribos revisits the medieval backwater world from classic story ‘The Ribos Operation.’
In April, Paul McGann’s epic ‘Stranded’ series comes to a close with a fourth volume, as the Doctor struggles to set right a ‘wrong’ future history of a dystopian Imperial Earth. But before that it’s back to the beginning for the Eighth Doctor with ‘The Further Adventuress,’ and four new stories set during his travels with his original Big Finish companion – the ‘Adventuress’ herself, Charley Pollard.
A new epic for the Eighth Doctor kicks off in November, but details and even the name are still under wraps for now. The same is true of the second Seventh Doctor volume out the same month. There are also two Sixth Doctor boxsets out in May and August, similarly without specifics yet.
Christopher Eccleston and David Tennant will also be back for more Big Finish thrills in 2022
2022 also continues the dream come true that is Christopher Eccleston’s return to Doctor Who: four more standalone volumes, comprising of nine new episodes, beginning with ‘Old Friends’ in February, featuring the Doctor’s first post-Time War meeting with the Brigadier. Set before the Ninth Doctor encountered Rose Tyler for the first time, these stories are perfect for fans new to Big Finish to dip into.
David Tennant, too, continues to conquer the worlds of Big Finish. His Tenth Doctor battles Sir Derek Jacobi’s War Master in a timey wimey duel set before ‘Utopia’ for the Master, but after it for the Doctor. It all unfolds in ‘The War Master: Self-Defence’ in June. In July, he teams up with Colin Baker to take on the Weeping Angels in ‘Wink,’ and the three stories in September’s ‘Tenth Doctor Classic Companions’ collection send the Doctor and K9 on a series of encounters with old friends Leela, Nyssa, and Ace.
The first three Doctors and the War Doctor all return too, thanks to careful recasting
Sir John Hurt may not be with us any longer, but thanks to the astonishing work of Jonathan Carley we have more adventures from the early days of the War Doctor to come in 2022. Beginning with ‘Battlegrounds’ in May, the newly-regenerated Doctor continues to bring the fight to the Daleks in two new boxsets set during the Time War. There’s also more from David Bradley’s take on the First Doctor in April.
Meanwhile, the intriguingly-titled ‘Beyond War Games’ in July features the Second Doctor in stories apparently set between Troughton’s last story and Pertwee’s first. And Tim Treloar’s version of the Third Doctor returns for epic seven part story ‘The Annihilators’ in February and another boxset in November.
Big Finish also bring new outings for Rory, UNIT and Torchwood this year
There’s also more from the wider world of Doctor Who coming in 2022. Arthur Darvill returns as Rory in ‘The Lone Centurion: Camelot’, as the plastic companion continues his two thousand year vigil over the Pandorica in King Arthur’s court. Kate Stewart, Osgood, and the rest of the UNIT team are back for two more volumes of ‘UNIT: Nemesis’ in March and November after the tense cliffhanger of volume one.
The Torchwood range of monthly adventures set throughout Torchwood’s history is set to continue at least until March. And January’s ‘Peladon’ has a little bit of everything. With four stories set at different points in the planet Peladon’s history, it includes visits by the Sixth and Eighth Doctors, and the Doctor’s wife herself, River Song. David Troughton even returns as King Peladon, as seen in 1972 classic ‘The Curse of Peladon.’
It all adds up to a bumper year of quality Doctor Who audio drama in 2022. And with Big Finish making announcements throughout the year, there could be a lot more action to come. Which release are you most excited for?
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