The Demons of Red Lodge was the first story in the audio anthology, The Demons of Red Lodge and Other Stories, which comprised the one hundred and forty-second release in Big Finish's monthly range. It was written by Jason Arnopp and featured Peter Davison as the Fifth Doctor and Sarah Sutton as Nyssa.
The Doctor and Nyssa awaken in an empty room with no idea of how they ended up there. Busting their way out into a forest, they are surrounded by unknown entities causing them to panic and flee where they stumble onto an old cottage after fleeing through the forest, watched by two beings from afar, resembling them in appearance.
There they meet an old maid named Emily Cobham who reluctantly lets them inside, where after questioning her, the Doctor learns that they have arrived in 17th century Suffolk at the village of Red Lodge. They also learn that Emily's twin sister Ivy is ill upstairs and although the Doctor offers to try and help her Emily refuses it and leaves to get some wood. While eating food Emily prepared for them, the crackling fire jogs their memory and they recall arriving in the TARDIS and being attacked by some creatures. The Doctor instructs Nyssa to go check on Ivy while he goes to find Emily.
Nyssa finds Ivy and learns that she never had a sister. As Nyssa approaches the window at the laments of a terrified Ivy, the Doctor confronts Emily. Just then, Nyssa finds her doppelganger and is kidnapped while the Doctor, picking up on Emily's idiosyncrasies, hears Nyssa being kidnapped and Emily reveals her plan.
Nyssa's doppelgänger explains that it takes two charges to fully absorb both her physical form and her mind to complete its transformation and she cannot move as she has been paralysed. The Doctor confronts Emily, who reveals she and the others are part of an alien species called the Speera and that they absorb the likeness and mind of their targets to blend with a population before trying to take over a planet. The Doctor is about to be absorbed by his doppelgänger Speera when he manages to escape, finds Nyssa and saves her. However, they are cornered by the other Speera who have taken the form of the villagers of the village of Red Lodge, and trap them, releasing their Speera doppelgänger to absorb them and take their place. However, Nyssa tricks them into replicating the Doctor who they think is human and which causes them to overload their form as he has two hearts causing a biological defect that destroys them all. The Doctor laments over their actions and Nyssa asks to stay for a while longer to enjoy the sunrise and ponder over Traken, a subject she hasn't allowed herself to ponder for a long time as the Speera's attempt to replicate her brought it to the fore-front of her mind. The Doctor agrees, saying that there is no rush to be anywhere.
- The Doctor - Peter Davison
- Nyssa - Sarah Sutton
- Emily Cobham/ Ivy Cobham - Susan Kyd
- Villagers - Duncan Wisbey, John Dorney
- Matthew Hopkins, Witchfinder General is mentioned as being the former owner of the cottage.
- Ivy asks Nyssa where she's from, and Nyssa says "a very long way away".
- When Emily questions whether the Doctor respects life in all its forms, he assures her he does, but says "with the exception of ones that have eye-stalks and a habit of exterminating galaxies..."
to be added
- The Doctor refers to their visit to Pudding Lane in September 1666 and the consequent start of the Great Fire of London. (TV: The Visitation)
- Nyssa recalls Traken. (TV: The Keeper of Traken)
- The Speera that attempts to absorb Nyssa mentions her father's death. (TV: The Keeper of Traken)
- It is revealed the cottage belonged to previous Witchfinder General Matthew Hopkins. The thirteenth Doctor and crew would later land in 17th century England and pose as Witchfinder General when investigating the Morax in Bilehurst Cragg, along with and unbknownst to King James I. (TV: The Witchfinders)
- Official The Demons of Red Lodge page at bigfinish.com
- DisContinuity for The Demons of Red Lodge at Tetrapyriarbus - The DisContinuity Guide