Spoilers are precisely defined here. Rules vary by the story's medium. Info from television stories can't be added here until after the top or bottom of the hour, British time, closest to the end credits roll on BBC One. Therefore, fans in the Americas who are sensitive to spoilers should avoid Tardis on Sundays until they've seen the episode.



Doctor Who and the Underworld was a novelisation based on the 1978 television serial Doctor Who television serial Underworld.

Publisher's summary[]

Exploring the very edge of the known universe, the Fourth Doctor, Leela and K9 discover a group of astronaunts searching for the lost gene bank of the Minyan race. During the perilous voyage, the astronauts' craft plunges into the heart of a recently formed planet, wherein an awesome secret is hidden.

How will the Minyan quest end?

What must the Doctor wrest from the Heart of the Oracle?

Chapter titles[]

  • Prologue
  1. The Nebula
  2. The Minyans
  3. The Intruders
  4. The Quest
  5. Buried Alive
  6. The Trogs
  7. Skyfall on Nine
  8. The Smoke
  9. The Mouth of the Dragon
  10. The Sword of Sacrifice
  11. The Crusher
  12. The Battle
  13. Doomsday
  14. The Legend

Deviations from televised story[]

  • The background to the Minyans, the Time Lords and the crew of the R1C are expanded upon.
  • Many scenes are combined and rearranged from the longer televised sequences to accommodate the briefer runtime of the story.
  • While the subject of the Doctor's painting aboard the TARDIS is left ambiguous on television, in the novelisation he mentions that he is repainting a spare control room in aquamarine blue, after the TARDIS's own refusal to redecorate herself.
  • Leela suggests returning to the TARDIS once the Minyan Patrol Ship has crashed into the Underworld, but the Doctor's desire to uncover the truth behind the P7E's disappearance gets the better of him. On television, he and Leela instead both choose to explore without discussion.
  • In the Doctor, Leela and Idas's discussion of the Question of the Sword, the Time Lord points out to Leela her own tribe's use of the Horda.
  • It is Idas rather than Idmon who trips and nearly causes the Doctor and Leela to fall into the crusher.
  • The Doctor gets replacement parts for the R1C from the P7E.
  • Rather than deliberately walking up to Rask with the fake Race Bank cylinders, the Doctor unexpectedly runs into him at speed and decides, at that moment, to use the opportunity to his advantage.

Additional cover images[]

Writing and publishing notes[]

to be added

British publication history[]

First publication:

  • Hardback - W.H. Allen & Co. Ltd. UK
  • Paperback - Target


This Target Book was released as an audiobook on 6 May 2021 complete and unabridged by BBC Audio and read by Louise Jameson with K9's voice by John Leeson.

External links[]