After mistaking the TARDIS for a police box, Dodo joined the Doctor and Steven on their adventures without a say in the matter. During her adventures alone with the Doctor, she came to wonder if she was cut out for adventures and chose to remain in 1966 London after a period of conditioning by WOTAN.
Dodo's life after leaving the Doctor was full of contradictory accounts, including one where she spent her life in psychiatric hospitals before being murdered and one where she became a secretary and regretted leaving the Doctor.
Her interactions with other companions were fairly limited. She knew Steven the best, having travelled alongside him for an extended period of time. She also briefly hit it off with Polly Wright and briefly encountered Ben Jackson, both of whom joined the Doctor after Dodo decided to leave.
Early life Edit
Dorothea Anne Chaplet (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy) was born in 1949. (PROSE: Salvation) Her grandfather was French (TV: The Massacre) and, for a school project, she researched her family tree, finding evidence that she was descended from Huguenots who left France to escape persecution. (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy) Steven Taylor would later speculate that she was a descendant of Anne Chaplet. (TV: The Massacre)
According to one account, Dodo had lived in the poorer parts of London before her mother and father died and she moved in with her aunt, a wealthy social-climber. This resulted in her accent being situational, as she struggled to believe that the squalid existence into which she had been born and the world to which her aunt aspired were part of the same reality. Continually reinventing herself based on her surroundings made her feel that she had been an actor all her life. (PROSE: The Man in the Velvet Mask)
According to another account, Dodo's parents were not poor and had been rich enough to take her to the Florida Everglades, a trip that instilled a wish for exploration. Her mother died in an accident and her father was hospitalised after suffering a mental breakdown, leading to her living with her great-aunt Margaret. Dodo was forced into elocution lessons, causing her to develop a "natural" and a "posh" accent. She began to see herself in two ways: "Dorothea", the proper young lady that Margaret wanted her to be, and "Dodo", the plain child at school. (PROSE: Salvation)
She was not a good student and likely never made it to sixth form, much less university. (PROSE: Salvation) She neither spoke nor understood French, largely because she skipped her French lessons in school to learn how to kiss behind the school gymnasium. (PROSE: The Man in the Velvet Mask) She took a first-aid course at school but was not very good. (PROSE: The Gunfighters) As a child, she went to Whipsnade Zoo. (TV: The Ark)
According to one account, she switched schools in the middle of term after moving to live with Margaret and was ridiculed by her new classmates for her accent, thinking her ill-educated. They nicknamed her after the dodo, an extinct, stupid bird, but instead of rejecting the nickname she embraced it and tried to change people's perception of the name by becoming "cool". (PROSE: Salvation)
Travels in the TARDIS Edit
Meeting the Doctor Edit
In 1965 when she was 16, (PROSE: Salvation) Dodo saw a small boy knocked down by a car. Seeking help, she saw the TARDIS on Wimbledon Common and, believing that it was a police box, entered it. Instead of a policeman, she found the First Doctor. (TV: The Massacre)
One account said that Margaret made Dodo spend her time helping an elderly neighbour do his shopping and other menial tasks. One night, an alien ship crashed nearby and its pilot killed the neighbour and assumed his physical form. When Dodo learnt what had happened to him, the alien kept her prisoner. She escaped and rushed across Wimbledon Common, heading for what she thought was a police box. Her story about witnessing an accident was an attempt to cover up the truth in case she had run into the alien's ship by accident. (PROSE: Salvation)
With Steven Edit
After Steven Taylor entered the TARDIS, the Doctor dematerialised without giving Dodo a choice in the matter. Steven protested, but wasn't able to counter the Doctor's logic. (TV: The Massacre) The TARDIS travelled not in time but to New York City where Dodo helped the Doctor and Steven defeat the compatriots of Joseph, the alien who kidnapped her in London. (PROSE: Salvation)
After New York, the TARDIS crew found themselves on the Ark, which Dodo was sure was Whipsnade Zoo. Unfortunately, she had a cold which was inadvertently passed on to the humans and Monoids, who had no resistance to it. Upon learning of her role in the plague, Dodo was distraught that she had caused this terrible event. Back in the TARDIS, the Doctor turned invisible (TV: The Ark) and they learnt that they had been taken to the Celestial Toyroom by the Toymaker. In his domain, Dodo and Steven had to play a series of games, in which she was frustrated by Cyril's cheating. (TV: The Celestial Toymaker)
The Doctor took Dodo and Steven to Tombstone, Arizona in 1881, fulfilling Dodo's lifelong wish to see the American West. The Doctor introduced her as "Miss Dodo DuPont, wizard of the ivory keys" and later said that she was quickly becoming prey to "every cliché-ridden convention" of the era. (TV: The Gunfighters) Afterwards, they went on holiday to Russia where they spent some time relaxing and Dodo taught piano to a gentleman's daughter. (AUDIO: Mother Russia) Only a few days after facing the Toymaker, they were again taken to the Celestial Toyroom where Dodo had to play musical statues and Murder in the Dark. (PROSE: Murder in the Dark)
Dodo visited a carnival on Bukol with Steven (PROSE: The Golden Door) and worked as a maid at 64 Carlysle Street. (PROSE: 64 Carlysle Street) The travellers went to 1240 Kiev, (PROSE: Bunker Soldiers) Logopolis, (AUDIO: He Jests at Scars...) the Jungle of Tropicalus, (COMIC: Death to the Doctor!) 1966 London, (AUDIO: This Sporting Life) Kappa 537, (AUDIO: Return of the Rocket Men) Comfort (AUDIO: The War To End All Wars) and Africa, where they searched for a crashed spaceship. (AUDIO: Tales from the Vault)
On the planet of the Elders and Savages, Dodo wandered off into the city and discovered Senta's laboratory, uncovering the life-force transference that kept the Elders alive. She said farewell to Steven when he chose to remain on the planet to oversee the peace between the two factions. (TV: The Savages)
Alone with the Doctor Edit
Dodo and the Doctor continued travelling together, visiting Tarron circa 10,000,000 where they investigated the Azmec Corporation, (PROSE: Tarnished Image) 1947 Scrabster Harbour where she had difficulty finding her sea legs (AUDIO: Master of Earth) and the Golden Hind. (AUDIO: Maker of Demons) In 19th century England, she pretended to be the Doctor's granddaughter and uncovered an unmanned Time Lord capsule beneath Bletchington Station. (AUDIO: The Horror at Bletchington Station)
Dodo came to recognise that the Doctor was becoming increasingly frail. At one point, he explicitly said that she would have to leave the TARDIS as Steven had done and that he would have to face the next phase of his life alone. During this melancholy period, Dodo often had to nurse the Doctor. They arrived in France in an alternate timeline where she lost her virginity to Dalville. She contracted Minski's virus, possibly sexually, but chose to keep it as a reminder of the lost timeline. (PROSE: The Man in the Velvet Mask)
Due to previous adventures, Dodo became mistrustful of the Doctor and wondered, not for the first time, if she was cut out for adventure on a planet in the grip of a crystalline parasite. (PROSE: There are Fairies at the Bottom of the Garden)
The TARDIS landed in London on 20 July 1966, where Dodo and the Doctor met Ben Jackson and Polly Wright and learnt of WOTAN and its War Machines. WOTAN conditioned Dodo to betray the Doctor, but the Doctor was able to break her conditioning and sent her to the country to recuperate. (TV: The War Machines) A newspaper article stated she was recuperating at a country estate in Hertfordshire, where she told police that she had no memory of her experiences. (PROSE: "WOTAN - The Super Computer!") She recovered and sent a message with Polly for the Doctor, saying that she felt much better and planned on staying. (TV: The War Machines) The Doctor believed that she had grown tired of travelling. (AUDIO: The Yes Men)
Later life Edit
At some point, Dodo was taken to the Black Archive by UNIT to have her record as a companion of the Doctor taken. Her memories of the visit were subsequently erased and she was sent on her way. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
According to one account, Dodo went on to have a mundane career as a secretary after leaving the TARDIS. The torpor of her life made her regret her decision to leave the Doctor and long, in adulthood, to again travel in the TARDIS. She thought that she would be better able to appreciate such travels now that she was "older and wiser". It was during a particularly nostalgic moment that she accidentally bumped into Sarah Jane Smith, though neither recognised the other as a friend of the Doctor. (PROSE: Ships)
Dodo later attended Sarah Jane's memorial on a "bright, cold Spring day", where she discussed Sarah Jane with other guests and helped fight the Jackals of the Backwards Clock to foil the Trickster's revenge plot. (WC: Farewell, Sarah Jane)
According to another account, Dodo suffered severe and recurrent psychiatric problems as a result of having been controlled by WOTAN. Shuttled from hospital to hospital, she was eventually sent to the Glasshouse where she was interrogated brutally by its director, the Master, for information on the Doctor. She was turned out onto the street and became homeless.
Dodo eventually met and fell in love with journalist James Stevens, at that time investigating UNIT. Whilst Stevens was being interviewed on a live television broadcast, Dodo was murdered by Francis Cleary, a former UNIT soldier, Glasshouse patient and another of the Master's hypnotically controlled pawns. Only after her death did Stevens learn that she had been carrying his child.
The Doctor attended the funeral in their second or seventh incarnation and attempted to offer solace to Stevens. After hearing of Dodo's death, the Third Doctor told Stevens that he still saw Dodo as being his responsibility and that she had died before her time. (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy)
Undated events Edit
At some point, Dodo, along with all the other companions, was scooped out of time by Adam Mitchell and held captive until the first eleven numbered incarnations of the Doctor arrived. She was later freed and returned to her own time. (COMIC: The Choice, Endgame)
Dodo's caring nature was probably what made her dislike cheating and other unfair behaviour. Whilst this annoyance could be seen many times, it was most visible when the travellers met the Celestial Toymaker. It was his games, attitude, and Cyril's cheating which frustrated Dodo. (TV: The Celestial Toymaker) She was keenly interested in the Wild West and said she had always wanted to meet Wyatt Earp. (TV: The Gunfighters) Dodo was not frightened to investigate on her own, with Steven saying "If it wasn't allowed, Dodo would be first in the queue!" (TV: The Savages)
Dodo was short and slim with dark hair, black eyebrows and hazel-green eyes. She had an oval-shaped face with a wide mouth and thin lips. Her hands were small and delicate. (PROSE: Who Killed Kennedy) The Doctor believed that she looked like Susan Foreman. (TV: The Massacre)
Skills and abilities Edit
Behind the scenes Edit
In initial drafts, her name was Anne.
Will the real Dodo Chaplet please stand up? Edit
Because she only had four-and-a-half stories on television, Dodo is one of the companions least featured in other media. Unfortunately, almost all of these other appearances conflict. The Man in the Velvet Mask differs from Salvation on what Dodo's childhood was like. Salvation differs from "Bell of Doom" over why she first approached the TARDIS in Wimbledon Common. Mask, Who Killed Kennedy and Ships all disagree over what might have killed her in the 1960s or 1970s — or even whether she died in those decades. To be sure, other companions have stories which differ over the odd biographical detail. We can wonder, thanks to The Sarah Jane Adventures story Death of the Doctor, whether Liz Shaw actually died in the novel Eternity Weeps. However, the degree of difference between individual Dodo stories is unusually high and approaches that of the conflicting descriptions of the life of Ace, who effectively has several largely irreconcilable alternate timelines.
Did Dodo die from syphilis? Edit
There is a widespread belief in fandom that Dodo's fate in the novels is that she contracted syphilis. This view was taken by the long-running podcast, Radio Free Skaro, some of whose hosts vociferously maintained in episode 177 that she "died of syphilis" in Who Killed Kennedy. Even David Bishop, the author of Kennedy, said in his notes to the e-book version of his novel that Dodo contracted "an illness interpreted by some as a form of space herpes".
All that's pretty wide off the mark, however. The idea that she died of syphilis is a common conflation of Who Killed Kennedy, where she's simply killed by the Master, and The Man in the Velvet Mask, where she contracts the genetically-engineered Minski's virus through sexual contact. However, she doesn't die from it, nor was it even possible for her to do so, according to the Doctor. Minski's virus wasn't anything close to a venereal disease and could have been contracted by drinking water or consuming food contaminated by it. Perhaps more to the point, the word syphilis doesn't occur once in either novel. Dodo does have two sexual tragedies in Kennedy, however; she admits to having killed her would-be rapist in unarmed combat and she is murdered while pregnant.
- ↑ http://www.shannonsullivan.com/doctorwho/serials/w.html=?idomahony Production Notes for The Massacre