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Digital Subscriptions > Doctor Who Magazine > 512 > ALL THE FUN OF THE Fair


Sarah Dollard, the writer behind the recent episode Thin Ice, tells DWM why she would love to go to the frost fair…

It’s March 2017, and Doctor Who Magazine is meeting with Sarah Dollard to discuss a murder.

It’s been almost 18 months since Clara Oswald bravely faced her own mortality on a gloomy London Trap Street. Millions of viewers gasped as the spectral Raven passed through her and she crumpled to the ground in slow motion, a victim of the Quantum Shade and her own overconfidence. Even as the numb Doctor regarded her lifeless body, the internet was already convulsing in shock. Clara was stone cold dead! And lovely Sarah, writer of Face the Raven, was the author of her misfortune…

“Yes I was!” she chuckles gleefully. “Seriously though, it was amazing being at the Gallifrey One convention in Los Angeles last year, a few months after the episode went out, and having people talk to me face to face about the story and Clara’s fate. One woman started crying when she talked about what Clara meant to her, and then I started crying! I’d cried every time I wrote or edited Clara’s death scene, so all of those emotions were still there.”

It must have been nice for Sarah to realise, via feedback on Twitter, that the episode had gone down well? In some quarters, they were raven about it!

“The fans were nice to me,” she nods with relief. “Of course, you read five or ten nice things about your work, but then one person hates it and you go away and think about that person who hated it for the next year. Obviously that’s what I did! But no, the fact that people who love the show responded to my episode meant so much to me.”

That was then, this is now. Sarah has taken time out of her busy current schedule to sit down with DWM at the Picturehouse Central cinema on Shaftesbury Avenue. As it turns out, it’s a good and not-sogood choice of venue – good because Sarah enthuses over how it’s one of her favourite places to hang in London, but not so good because the members’ bar doesn’t open until midday, and we’ve pitched up for morning tea. Oh well. The bustling downstairs café will have to do.

The main topic of conversation is Thin Ice – the third episode of the current season, and Sarah’s second script for Doctor Who. Fans around the world have now experienced all the fun of the frost fair on screen, but Sarah and I meet about six weeks prior to transmission. As talk turns to monsters in the Thames and details of a new companion, we keep our voices low and cast the odd suspicious look at nearby patrons. Potential spoiler fiends, every one of them.

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About Doctor Who Magazine

Contents include: • Previews of the new episodes Knock Knock, Oxygen, Extremis and The Pyramid at the End of the World • Knock Knock guest star David Suchet is interviewed • An in-depth interview with Doctor Who the director of the first two episodes of the new series, The Pilot and Smile: Lawrence Gough • Doctor Who writers Frank Cottrell-Boyce (Smile) and Sarah Dollard (Thin Ice) reveal the stories behind their scripts • Bill Potts makes her comic strip début in the first part of the new comic strip adventure The Soul Garden, by Scott Gray, with art by Martin Geraghty. • It's the end of the world as we know it as The Fact of Fiction delves into the 1966 story The Ark. • DWM reviews of the first three episodes of the new series: The Pilot, Smile and Thin Ice. • Previews, book and audio reviews, news, the Watcher's column, prize-winning competitions and much, much more!