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The Reaping was the eighty-sixth story in Big Finish's monthly range. It was written by Joseph Lidster and featured Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor and Nicola Bryant as Peri Brown.

It was the Sixth Doctor's entry in a loose trilogy of stories surrounding an attempted Cyberman invasion of Earth, further detailed in The Gathering and The Harvest.

It was notable for featuring significant details about Peri's life in Baltimore, Maryland. It was, from the perspective of Peri's mother Janine Foster, a direct sequel to Planet of Fire. It also began a loose trilogy featuring a time-travelling band of Mondasian Cybermen from the future (relative to 1984) with some commonality with the Cybus Industries Cybermen which had recently been featured in Rise of the Cybermen / The Age of Steel.

Publisher's summary[]

On the morning of 9 May 1984, Peri woke up. She was expecting to spend the day relaxing in Lanzarote and, that evening, leave her mother and stepfather to go travelling with some guys she'd only just met.

But things don't always go as expected­ as her friends and family discover when, four months later, she returns home having travelled further than anyone could have imagined.

Meanwhile her friend, Katherine Chambers, mourns her father and Peri finds herself meeting some other familiar faces.


Part One[]

The Doctor and Peri return to Peri's time in 1980s Baltimore, so Peri can attend the funeral of close family friend, undertaker Anthony Chambers.

Suspicious, the Doctor requests permission to talk to the accused murderer, Daniel Woods, and breaks him out of jail upon discovering the police department is being controlled by an alien source.

Local TV news reporter Natalie Woods secures an interview with the officer in charge of the murder investigation, Lt. Doyle, and succumbs to the same malign influence affecting the police department. They put out a broadcast accusing the Doctor and Woods of being escaped murderers, imploring viewers to "be like us" and remain indoors.

Peri, her mother Janine, and Chambers' children Kathy and Nate find a video cassette which appears to show Chambers prophesying his own death.

The Doctor and Woods go to the graveyard where Woods claims he witnessed Chambers being murdered by a "silver ghost."

After being joined by Peri, Janine, Kathy and Nate, a sound is heard coming from Chambers' freshly placed coffin. To their horror, Chambers bursts from his coffin, now converted into a Cyberman...




  • Through the Gogglebox, the Sixth Doctor stated that you could see the first television performance of the Pussycat Dolls, every Police Academy film and the film Battleship Potemkin.
  • When talking to the Cyber-Leader, the Sixth Doctor does an impression of the 1970s British comedian and magician Tommy Cooper.
  • When searching for identification, the Doctor finds tickets for the opening night of The Rocky Horror Picture Show in his pockets.
  • The Doctor refers to George Orwell's novel 1984.


  • At an indeterminate point in the far future, though not before the 52nd century, the British monarchy was abolished and the last monarch was executed. Footage of that event could be viewed via the Gogglebox.



Illustrated preview by Martin Geraghty from DWM 373.

  • The phrase "86, 87" may be a reference to the Big Finish number for this story (number 86) and that of The Gathering (number 87), both by Joseph Lidster.
  • An illustrated preview by Martin Geraghty featured in DWM 373 for this story.
  • The Cyber-Leader is from a point in the distant future where the Cybermen have gained time travel based on a combination of their own systems and Time Lord technology.
  • Commander Zheng, one of the earliest Mondasian Cybermen who was introduced in AUDIO: Spare Parts, returns for a brief cameo appearance towards the end of the story. He is depicted as still being operational in September 1984.
  • Besides the Doctor, Kathy and Nathaniel Chambers are the only characters to appear in both this story and AUDIO: The Gathering.
  • This audio drama was recorded on 20 and 21 March 2006 at the Moat Studios.
  • This story is set between Revelation of the Daleks and The Trial of a Time Lord.
  • This story was originally released on CD and download. It is now available as a download only.


External links[]