Is wealthy heiress Ileana de Santos all that she seems? What sinister ailment afflicts her invalid son, tended by the mysterious Doctor Hayashi? And who exactly is Rosa, engaged on a secret quest to fulfil the destiny of her extinct tribe?
Time is running out for Rosa, Ileana and the Doctor, as the fearsome shadow of an ancient werewolf moves ever closer...
In 1589, Cologne, Germany, Pieter Stubbe is sentenced to death for crimes committed as a werewolf. Five hundred years later, in the year 2080, the Doctor and Turlough make their way to Rio de Janeiro for carnival. Others are nearby, as well; a young woman named Rosa Cayman is on a quest to prove herself in the wake of her grandfather’s death; a wealthy matron named Ileana de Santos is in Rio for the carnival as well, mourning the death of her husband; her son Victor is also with her, along with several servants, but Victor is ill and must have constant medical care from his physician; Dr. Hayashi. Ileana’s servant, Inez, finds a package leaking blood—and a message from an old lover that Ileana would as soon forget. She orders her people to leave Rio at once.
Turlough, disgruntled at the transformation of the area (which is now an overpopulated desert instead of the Amazon basin it once was), throws the remnants of a burger to a dog. Drawn by the food, other dogs form a pack, and begin chasing them. Just as the Doctor and Turlough are cornered, something in the distance howls, and the dogs scatter in fear. The Doctor realizes something terrible just happened, but keeps it to himself.
Ileana hears the howl, as well, and knows that time is short. She allows Hayashi to drug Victor, who is uncooperative otherwise, and they board the train to return to the ranch that is their home. On the train, she receives calls from the Grey One, the person she is fleeing. In the crowds of the city, the Doctor and Turlough feel a wave of fear ripple past, strong enough to affect even them; Turlough traces it to a strange wolf-faced man. The wolf-man’s hover-limo is heading to the train station, where the TARDIS is parked; the Doctor rushes Turlough back for it. Inside, the Doctor sets very precise coordinates, placing them just over the tracks ahead of the train; when it arrives, he travels very briefly in time, landing the TARDIS aboard the train’s last car.
Hayashi finds that Victor is missing. He has bitten through his restraints and killed—and probably eaten—Hayashi’s assistant, Juro. He nearly kills Hayashi as well. Inez smells the Doctor (or actually his celery), and recognizes the scent from a very brief encounter at the station as they were leaving, and believes it is the Grey One. On the way forward in the train, the Doctor and Turlough find Juro’s decapitated body. Two of Ileana’s servants, Jorge and Lichtfuss, arrive; they force Turlough into a kind of trance, and he nearly jumps off the train. The spell is only broken when something passes the window, and the servants go after it, hunting for Victor. Lichtfuss views the Doctor as a rival in his pursuit of Ileana’s affections, and suspects he may also be the Grey One.
Inez takes the Doctor and Turlough to Ileana and Hayashi. He offers to help, but Ileana is suspicious, and sends everyone out for a moment. While they are gone, she gets another call from the Grey One, who is Pieter Stubbe—not so dead after all. Elsewhere in the desert, Rosa has an encounter with Stubbe, but survives it due to her silver knife. The Doctor and Turlough spot what may be the Grey One outside; the Doctor goes to warn Ileana. Turlough is accosted by Lichtfuss and Jorge, who make him see a vision in a mirror, creating a suspicion that he may be a potential werewolf himself. Elsewhere, Hayashi is in secret communication with Pieter, who has bribed him. In Ileana’s cabin, Ileana admits that she and all her entourage are werewolves, and requests the Doctor’s help, forcing Hayashi to work with him. Victor bursts into the window, violently out of control. Hayashi tranquilizes him. At the same time, Turlough runs in, but upon seeing Victor, who is now fully in wolf form, he panics and leaps from the train. Ileana, meanwhile, thinks Hayashi has killed Victor, and loses control of her own lupine side, and begins to transform.
The Doctor talks her down, and she reverts to human form. He wants to stop the train to find Turlough, but she can’t; they have almost arrived. However, she promises to send someone for him as soon as they stop. Lichtfuss eavesdrops; his jealousy is getting the better of him. Turlough, meanwhile, is still alive; running through the desert, he encounters Rosa. She lets him join her, and they compare notes, especially about her encounter with the Grey One. Back at the train—which is just arriving—the Doctor learns that Hayashi is mapping Victor’s genome, in an attempt to eradicate the werewolf condition from everyone. The Doctor considers that genocide, and disapproves, but until he can recover Turlough, he has no choice but to work with Hayashi.
No one is waiting at the ranch—a bad sign. Other werewolves are in the area though. Ileana sends Lichtfuss to search for Turlough, and takes everyone else back to the ranch with her. Along the way, the Doctor stops the medicine Hayashi has been giving Victor. He wonders why they aren’t flying, which would be quicker; Ileana explains that the werewolves are bound to the earth, and get sick if they are too high above the ground. Victor begins to recover; the medicine wasn’t curing him, it was making him ill. Ahead of them, the ranch is seen to be afire. Pieter is responsible, but how did he know where they were going? She suspects Hayashi has been telling him.
Rosa and Turlough are attacked by werewolves, led—unknown to Turlough—by Lichtfuss. They are interrupted by a howl from the Grey One, which Turlough recognizes from the Carnival. He takes Rosa’s knife and flees, trying to lure the Grey One away. At the ranch, the wolves gather at Ileana’s summons, and Lichtfuss brings Rosa as a gift. Lichtfuss challenges the Doctor to fight for Ileana. They are interrupted when Pieter—the Grey One—arrives to claim Ileana as his; she was his lover once before, and she will be again. He has swallowed Turlough, but couldn’t kill him because of the silver knife; he regurgitates Turlough as an offering to Ileana. Lichtfuss turns his challenge to Pieter, who kills him instantly. The Doctor gets Turlough to a hover-van, and Turlough gives him the knife; the Doctor goes to confront Pieter, whom he knows will kill as many innocents as possible. He exposes the truth about Hayashi’s planned genocide. He challenges Pieter—and Ileana declares him her champion, and (if he survives) husband.
The situation becomes a standoff; Pieter will no more be able to consume the Doctor than he could Turlough. Pieter turns his attention, and that of the wolves, to Hayashi; they will give him a lead and then hunt him down. Even the Doctor is affected by Pieter’s mental power, but breaks free; he escapes in a van with Turlough and Rosa. The wolves have taken the train to return to Rio; Pieter has promised to lay waste to the city and the humans as a gift to Ileana. The Doctor takes the van up to 120 feet, where the wolves can’t reach; he sees the moving train, but realizes the last car—with the TARDIS—has been cut loose by Ileana. She realized the box was important, and that it can help the Doctor stop Pieter.
They recover the TARDIS, but arrive in Rio too late, after the wolves have already arrived and corralled the humans. Turlough locates the corralled populace, but is captured by Victor, who takes him to Ileana. The Doctor realizes that Pieter and his wolves are at the Christ statue above the city. He returns to the TARDIS and finds an old dog whistle that once was used for K9 Mk. II. The silent whistle irritates the lesser wolves, and summons them to the Doctor; he persuades them to abandon and turn on Pieter.
On the mountain by the statue, Victor and Turlough arrive; Ileana and Pieter are already there. Pieter is about to kill Turlough, when the TARDIS arrives; its appearance rattles Pieter. The Doctor gets Turlough inside. Pieter tries to get the Doctor to reject Ileana on the basis of her monstrous nature, but he accepts her anyway. Pieter tries to kill them both, but he is wounded by Rosa. Ileana flees, and the Doctor and Rosa return to the TARDIS. Pieter follows them in, and is stunned at the size of the interior. The Doctor takes them into space, breaking Pieter’s link to the Earth, and he begins to weaken and die. As he is older than humanity, he has no human form, and will not revert. Surprisingly, Rosa comforts him as he dies.
The Doctor returns to Rio and allows the wolves to take Pieter’s body. Rosa departs as well. Ileana comes to say goodbye to the Doctor, but uses her powers to prevent Turlough from seeing or hearing her. She wants to go with him, but he cannot take her; she too would die, and she has Victor to live for—and the Doctor will not give up his travels for her. She agrees, and departs, leaving Turlough and the Doctor to go on their way.
- The Doctor - Peter Davison
- Turlough - Mark Strickson
- Ileana de Santos - Eleanor Bron
- Doctor Hayashi - Burt Kwouk
- Pieter Stubbe - Nicky Henson
- Anton Lichtfuss - David Hankinson
- Rosa Caiman - Sarah Gale
- Inez - Jane Burke
- Magistrate - Nicholas Pegg
- Victor - Barnaby Edwards
- Jorge - Derek Wright
- Tourist - Marc Platt
- Greetings Card - Alistair Lock
- Jaguar Maiden Vocals - Jez Fielder
- The Doctor describes Cleopatra as having "all the subtle wit of a carpet beater."
- Pieter mentions Anastasia.
- Ileana mentions Lord Lucan.
- The new spine design for the range that started with Loups-Garoux was based on the 1999 David Bowie album releases. This is also the first Main Range release to debut the new cover design, following the distinct bronze logo on the Eighth Doctor releases.
- Loups-Garoux is the French word for werewolves, but it is misspelt. The correct spelling is "Loups-Garous". That said, the x variant does have some precedent, for instance in the novel Blood and Chocolate.
- Marc Platt previously wrote about werewolves (and referenced the French term "loups-garous") in his short story Loop the Loup.
- This audio drama was recorded on 9 and 10 December 2000 at The Moat Studios.
- An illustrated preview for this story featured in DWM 304 with artwork by Lee Sullivan.
- The first issue of Big Finish Magazine (a promotional CD) was released with this story.
- Alistair Lock's score for the story was released on the CD Music from the Fifth Doctor Audio Adventures alongside the scores for The Eye of the Scorpion and Primeval.
- This story is set between Resurrection of the Daleks and Planet of Fire.
- The Doctor uses K9 Mark II's dog whistle to draw the werewolf pack. (TV: The Ribos Operation)
- The Doctor places the TARDIS in hover mode. (TV: Castrovalva)
- After his mind had been merged with that of the Eighth Doctor, the British journalist Gideon Crane referred to the Doctor and Turlough's encounter with "lupine activity" in Brazil in order to test the actual Doctor's identity. (AUDIO: Minuet in Hell)
- The Doctor would later encounter a werewolf at the Psychic Circus on Segonax in his seventh incarnation, (TV: The Greatest Show in the Galaxy) and another in 1879 Scotland in his tenth. (TV: Tooth and Claw)
- The Doctor and Turlough talk about many previous female companions who have travelled in the TARDIS including Susan, Barbara, (TV: The Daleks) Vicki, (TV: The Rescue) Dodo, (TV: The Massacre) Polly Wright, (TV: The War Machines) Victoria Waterfield, (TV: The Tomb of the Cybermen) Zoe Heriot, (TV: The Invasion) Jo Grant, (TV: Terror of the Autons) Sarah Jane Smith, (TV: Invasion of the Dinosaurs) Leela, (TV: The Robots of Death) both Romana I (TV: The Ribos Operation) and Romana II, (TV: Destiny of the Daleks) Nyssa (TV: Logopolis) and Tegan Jovanka. (TV: Castrovalva)
- Official Loups-Garoux page at bigfinish.com
- DisContinuity for Loups-Garoux at Tetrapyriarbus - The DisContinuity Guide