John Ostrander is an American comic book writer who made several abortive attempts to write for Doctor Who prior to his first published work of fiction for the franchise, Autopia in 2009. In the mid-1980s he wrote a theatrical play, The Inheritors of Time that was abandoned due to lack of funding.[source needed] Prior to that, Ostrander's first published work in the DWU was likely the foreward to Blood and Hope, written in October 2003.[statement unclear]

In March 2004, Big Finish Productions announced that Ostrander was to write the audio play Dead Man's Hand, initially scheduled as the September 2004 installment of their monthly range. Gary Russell, the executive producer for Big Finish at the time, said in Doctor Who Magazine that it was "set in the gambling, gun-totin' world of the American Wild West". (DWM 341) The story would have featured the Seventh Doctor and companions Ace and Hex. The following month, scheduling changes to facilitate the consecutive releases of the final installments of the Eighth Doctor's Divergent Universe arc pushed Dead Man's Hand to March 2005, with Graham Duff's Faith Stealer taking its original slot. (DWM 343) In August 2004, a second delay was announced and Dead Man's Hand was pushed back to June 2005, with Dreamtime by Simon A. Forward taking its place. (DWM 347) By 8 December 2004, the story was no longer listed on Big Finish's schedule online, replaced by David A. McIntee's Unregenerate!.[1] A report on Big Finish's announcements of forthcoming plans at the 2005 Gallifrey One convention suggested it could be released in September that year or possibly be pushed back to 2006, depending on Ostrander's schedule.[2] However, these tentative plans never materialized, no further updates came and Ostrander's script ultimately went unproduced.


  1. Doctor Who Monthly audio releases. Big Finish. Archived from the original on 2004-12-08.
  2. big finish 2005 plans. Outpost Gallifrey (2005-02-24). Archived from the original on 2005-02-28. “John Ostrander's Dead Man's Hand may be released in September this year, depending on the writer's schedule; if not, there are other scripts that can take its place as it is bumped again to next year.”

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