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The Mysterious Planet was a novelisation based on the 1986 television serial The Mysterious Planet.

Publisher's summary[]

The TARDIS has been taken out of time and the Doctor has been brought before a court of his fellow Time Lords. There the sinister Valeyard accuses the Doctor of breaking Gallifrey's most important law and interfering in the affairs of other planets.

If the Valeyard can prove him guilty, the Doctor must sacrifice his remaining regenerations. To prove his case the Valeyard focuses on an adventure set in the Doctor's past.

It is an adventure set on the planet Ravolox, a seemingly primitive world but one which the Doctor and Peri find strangely familiar...

Chapter titles[]

  1. The Trial Begins
  2. Underground
  3. Barbarian Queen
  4. The Stoning
  5. The Reprieve
  6. Meeting the Immortal
  7. Escape
  8. Captives of Queen Katryca
  9. The Attack of the Robot
  10. Hunt for the Doctor
  11. Secrets
  12. Tradesman's Entrance
  13. The Big Bang
  14. End and Beginning

Deviations from televised story[]

  • Valeyard, like Inquisitor, seems to be a Time Lord title, a Special Prosecutor assigned by the High Council in serious, often political, cases.
  • The "lenient" sentencing during the Doctor's previous trial, as mentioned by the Valeyard, is explicitly linked to his five-year exile on the planet Earth.
  • The Doctor informs Peri they are currently two million years or more after her time period, while in the televised version it is not explicitly clear whether the Doctor said "two million" or "two billion."
  • The Trial Station is said to be in a graveyard of spaceships.
  • Balazar mentioning the Immortal and the Doctor being unfamiliar with the term is omitted.
  • The L1 is referred to simply as the Service Robot.
  • Broken Tooth attacks Drathro and is killed after he has killed Katryca, rather than after intervening to try and save her.

Writing and publishing notes[]

  • to be added

Additional cover images[]

British publication history[]

Hardback (November 1987)
  • W.H.Allen & Co. Ltd. UK ISBN:0491030967, copies priced £7.95 (UK))
Paperback (April 1988)
  • Target / W.H. Allen & Co. Ltd. One single paperback edition, estimated print run: 22,500, priced £1.99 (UK).


This Target Book was released as an audiobook on 5 September 2013 complete and unabridged by BBC Audio and read by Lynda Bellingham as part of The Trial of a Time Lord Vol. 1.

The cover blurb and thumbnail illustrations were retained in the accompanying booklet with sleevenotes by David J. Howe. Music and sound effects by Simon Power.

The audiobook was reissued on 2 April 2020 as part of The Trial of a Time Lord Collection.

External links[]