The Next Life was the sixty-fourth story in Big Finish's monthly range. It was written by Alan Barnes and Gary Russell and featured Paul McGann as the Eighth Doctor, India Fisher as Charlotte Pollard and Conrad Westmaas as C'rizz.
It was the final Big Finish Doctor Who audio story to feature Paul McGann as the incumbent Doctor, since his next audio release Terror Firma was released after Christopher Eccleston's television debut in Rose and David Tennant's debut in the television story The Parting of the Ways. More significantly, it concluded the adventures set in the Divergent Universe that had begun at the end of the audio story Zagreus. At six episodes, it was unusually long, especially for an Eighth Doctor audio.
"All things must die."
Washed up on the sandy shores of a paradise island, a wild-eyed shipwreck survivor is rescued by the wife of Daqar Keep, the richest man in the galaxy.
Her name's Perfection. He's the Doctor. Together, they face a journey into the dark heart of this mysterious island, to discover the deepest secrets of this timeless cosmos. That's if the giant crabs, killer crocodiles and murderous natives don't get them first.
And in a universe that's facing extinction, even the best of friends may soon become enemies...
This life is almost over. Not everyone will make it to the next.
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- The Doctor - Paul McGann
- Charley Pollard - India Fisher
- C'rizz - Conrad Westmaas
- Perfection - Daphne Ashbrook
- Daqar Keep - Stephane Cornicard
- Guidance - Paul Darrow
- L'da - Jane Hills
- The Kro'ka - Stephen Perring
- Rassilon - Don Warrington
- Louisa Pollard - Anneke Wills
- Simon Murchford - Stephen Mansfield
- Mother of Jembere-Bud - Jane Goddard
- The Doctor has committed to memory all of the Liverpool F.C. strikers and goals from 1964-1965 to 2013-2014, which he describes as "a terrible season."
- The Doctor suggests placing Guidance's moonstone on eBay.
- When lost on the beach the Doctor acts like Robinson Crusoe and says that he won't find any Friday or any other day of the week.
- The Doctor once witnessed a hoodoo ceremony on Haiti.
- Charley's uncle Jacques lived in Cannes after World War I. He was a concert pianist until he lost one of his arms at the Battle of Passchendaele. He taught her how to speak French.
- C'rizz does not fully grasp the concept of time but understands the general idea.
- On 4 October 1930, Simon Murchford told Charley that his father had not worked since 1926.
- Murchford lost many good friends during World War II.
- In year fifty at the Academy, the First Doctor fed a snapping wart fowl to his fellow student Valyes' summer project. Valyes has held a grudge ever since.
- Charley has told C'rizz about King Edward VII.
- After Charley expresses her admiration for Rassilon, C'rizz suggests that she has a thing for Time Lords.
- Perfection claims that Daqar Keep is the richest man in the galaxy.
- Rassilon and the Kro'ka put Charley and C'rizz into dreamweavers.
- The Church of the Foundation has a presence in three galaxies.
- This audio drama was recorded on 24 August, 25 August and 31 August, and 3 September 2004 at The Moat Studios.
- An illustrated preview for this story appeared in DWM 351 by Mike Collins.
- Beginning in Zagreus, this story concludes the Divergent Universe story arc.
- The end of this story leads into Terror Firma.
- This story was originally released on CD. It is now available as a download only.
- Charley mentions that there is no lost love between herself and the TARDIS. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- C'rizz refers to the moonstone given to him by his father before his wedding to L'da. (AUDIO: The Last)
- C'rizz mentions the invasion of Zone Eutermes by the Kromon. (AUDIO: The Creed of the Kromon)
- C'rizz tells the illusory L'da that he killed her. (AUDIO: The Creed of the Kromon)
- Charley refers to her encounter with the holographic version of her mother created by the TARDIS. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- Charley cannot recall the name of Rathbone, the South African spy who attempted to kill her on the British airship R101 on 5 October 1930. However, she is still haunted by the expression on his face as he fell from the R101 to his death. (AUDIO: Storm Warning)
- The Kro'ka recalls being tortured by Rassilon using a particle wave disseminator on Caerdroia. (AUDIO: Caerdroia)
- Rassilon and the Kro'ka recently stole two dreamweavers from Caerdroia. (AUDIO: Caerdroia)
- Suffering survivor's guilt for having survived the crash of the R101, Simon Murchford became an Anglican minister. (AUDIO: Storm Warning) He succeeded Reverend Matthew Townsend as the Cardington airbase's chaplain following his death in 1951. The R101 had been launched from Cardington. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- The Doctor and Charley previously encountered Rassilon in the Tomb of Rassilon in the Death Zone on Gallifrey. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- Rassilon reminds Charley that the Doctor did not want her to come with him to the Divergent Universe. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- Rassilon refers to the Miraculite. (AUDIO: Faith Stealer)
- Charley has told C'rizz that the Doctor became infected with the anti-time creature Zagreus shortly before they entered the Divergent Universe. (AUDIO: Neverland, Zagreus)
- The Doctor refers to having a meal on an island in the Pacific Ocean in 1939. (COMIC: Tooth and Claw)
- Charley mentions that she visited the Crystal Palace as a child. She would later do so again in 1851. (AUDIO: Other Lives)
- It has been several months since C'rizz began travelling with the Doctor and Charley. (AUDIO: The Creed of the Kromon)
- Charley refers to her sisters Peggy and Cissy. (AUDIO: Zagreus, A Blind Eye)
- The Doctor once again mentions playing Tiddlywinks with the Tsarina. (AUDIO: Storm Warning)
- After mentioning Macbeth, the Doctor superstitiously corrects himself by referring to it as "the Scottish Play." (AUDIO: Medicinal Purposes, The Book of Kells)
- The Doctor refers to the sound creature (AUDIO: Scherzo), the cave creature on Setarus (AUDIO: The Twilight Kingdom) and Landscar (AUDIO: The Last).
- The Doctor reminds Charley that they are members of the Tourist Faith. (AUDIO: Faith Stealer)
- Charley refers to the sound made by the Divergence as they attempted to break into the primary universe on Gallifrey. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- The Doctor recalls that he and Charley were placed in a chamber which accelerated the evolutionary process when they first arrived in the Divergent Universe. (AUDIO: Scherzo)
- Keep refers to the extinction of the dinosaurs 65 million years earlier. (TV: Earthshock)
- The Doctor uses his mental link with the Kro'ka to contact him telepathically. (AUDIO: Caerdroia)
- The Doctor, Charley and the Kro'ka previously encountered Keep's swarm of insects in the Kromon sector of the Interzone. (AUDIO: The Creed of the Kromon)
- Charley recognises the Daleks as she encountered them in London in the 2050s. (AUDIO: The Time of the Daleks)
- Rassilon would eventually escape from the Divergent Universe at some point before the Last Great Time War. He was resurected by the Time Lords to serve as the Lord President of Gallifrey in the early days of the war. (PROSE: Engines of War, AUDIO: Desperate Measures, TV: The End of Time)
- Simon Murchford quotes the Fifth Doctor by saying "sorry, must dash". This is ironical since he is taking the position that was previous occupied by a projection of the Fifth Doctor. (AUDIO: Zagreus)
- Rassilon and Kro'ka have the exact same conversation when stepping into the time loop as the Doctor and Charley had in AUDIO: Scherzo. They were also in the very same situation.
- Official The Next Life page at bigfinish.com
- DisContinuity for The Next Life at Tetrapyriarbus - The DisContinuity Guide