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Digital Subscriptions > Doctor Who Magazine > 496 (Feb 16) > FROM TIME LORD TO WARLORD


Now that we’ve heard from the man himself, let’s find out a bit more about his new series of audio adventures. New listeners start here...

Of all the Doctor’s many lives, the incarnation who renounced his name and values to fight in the Last Great Time War remains the most enigmatic.

After the War Doctor’s first appearance (as the twist ending to 2013’s The Name of the Doctor), we quickly discovered his augmented arrival as a young warrior (The Night of the Doctor), followed by his role in the final moments of the War, and his own regeneration from old age (The Day of the Doctor). But barring the 2014 novel Engines of War, we learned very little about the dark days in between.

All that changed late last year, when Sir John Hurt returned to the title role in the first instalment of Big Finish’s The War Doctor, a series of 12 hour-long audio dramas which sets out to fill some of these gaps.

“The canvas is completely blank, because the Time War went on for almost eternity,” nods executive producer Nicholas Briggs. “The thing that attracted me to it is war stories. I’m fascinated by war stories. I was brought up by parents who’d been in the Second World War, and experienced it as children, as teenagers in air raids. So I’m steeped in that, even though I’m not the war generation, and I find war narratives absolutely fascinating. They feel like home territory, for me.”

As well as directing the entire run of The War Doctor, Nick wrote its opening three episodes, which were released in December as Only the Monstrous, the first of four box sets. “The ‘guys on a mission’ scenario – a film like Where Eagles Dare – is one of the archetypal types of war movie, and I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be interesting to apply it to the Doctor?’,” Nick recalls, of that volume. “First of all, the Doctor wouldn’t want to be one of the guys on a mission, so that immediately disrupts the pattern of that narrative as told in war stories.”

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About Doctor Who Magazine

Contents include: John Hurt interview; the War Doctor on audio; Steven Moffat answers readers' questions; Feature – The story of Doctor Who videogames; Comic Strip – Theatre of the Mind written and illustrated by Roger Langridge; A tribute to Anthony Read; The Fact of Fiction – The King's Demons; Time Team – The Beast Below; Missing in Action – The Myth Makers; Relative Dimensions; Wotcha; Reviews and Previews; Crossword