The Three Doctors was a novelisation based on the 1972 television serial The Three Doctors.

Publisher's summary Edit

1975 edition Edit

Jo glanced up at the Doctor. 'Things must be pretty serious then.' 'They are, Jo. Very serious indeed. The whole of the Universe is in danger!'

The most amazing DOCTOR WHO adventure, in which Doctors One, Two and Three cross time and space and come together to fight a ruthlessly dangerous enemy – OMEGA. Once a Time Lord himself, now exiled to a black hole in space, Omega is seeking a bitter and deadly revenge against the whole Universe...

DOCTOR WHO scripts — awarded the 1974 Writers' Guild Award for the best British children's original drama script.

2012 BBC Edition Edit

The President of the Time Lords turned triumphantly to the Chancellor. "You see, my Lord? We cannot help the Doctor, but perhaps he can help himself!"

A mysterious black hole is draining away power from the Universe. Even the Time Lords are threatened. The Doctor is also in trouble. Creatures from the black hole besiege UNIT Headquarters. The only person who can help the Doctor is... himself.

The Time Lords bring together the first three incarnations of the Doctor to discover the truth about the black hole and stop the energy drain. The Doctors and their companions travel through the black hole itself, into a universe of anti-matter. Here they meet one of the very first Time Lords - Omega, who gave his race the power to travel through time.

Trappend for aeons in the black hole, he now plans to escape - whatever the cost.

This novel is based on a Doctor Who story originally broadcast from 30 December 1972 to 20 January 1973.

Featuring the first three Doctors as played by William Hartnell, Patrick Troughton and Jon Pertwee, together with Jo Grant and the UNIT organisation commanded by Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart.

Deviations from televised story Edit

  • Jo is given greater respect from the First Doctor than in the television story.
  • The Second Doctor speaks to the man from the ministry in person rather than on videophone.
  • An original sequence features the Brigadier, Jo and Benton fruitlessly trying to fortify UNIT.
  • The last name of Arthur Ollis is changed to Arthur Hollis.
  • There is a Young Time Lord in the novel who was not present in the TV story.
  • The Gel guards are named as Blob men.
  • The Blob men, as Terrance Dicks described them, appear to have arms and legs and a sort of head. This is different from the TV story, as in the TV story, they are blobs of jelly with a claw.
  • The blob men are more advanced in the novel. An example is when Benton blows one apart, the legs keep running before finally, the legs fall down.
  • Mrs. Ollis (Hollis in this novel) has the first name of Mary.

Writing and publishing notes Edit

  • Title page includes: “THE CHANGING FACE OF DOCTOR WHO: The cover illustration portrays the first, second and third Doctors”
  • This was the first novelisation to be published without using the form "Doctor Who and ..."
  • A few years after this book was published, Target Books began numbering its Doctor Who novelisations. Rather than number the stories in order of broadcast, or original publication, Target initially numbered the books alphabetically. Coincidentally, however, The Three Doctors, numbered as No. 64 in the Target series, was also the sixty-fourth story to be broadcast (if one does not consider the single-episode TV: Mission to the Unknown as a standalone story).
  • This novelisation was later released as part of The UNIT Collection.
  • There is a reference in Chapter 7 to the Master being the only other Time Lord the Doctor has faced as an enemy before Omega. However, on television, he had previously faced the Monk, (TV: The Time Meddler) and the War Chief. (TV: The War Games)

Legacy Edit

10D 2.17 Cover E

The cover for the final issue of the second year of Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor

The cover to The Three Doctors is an homage to the cover of an issue of Marvel's Fantastic Four comic. It has become quite famous and iconic among fans, and it was the basis for one of the alternative covers for an issue of Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor, featuring Sutekh.

The cover of Night of the Intelligence similarly imitated said cover.

Additional cover images Edit

British publication history Edit

First publication:

  • Hardback
W.H. Allen & Co. Ltd. UK
  • Paperback


60p (UK)
1976 reissue with new cover by Jeff Cummins
1991 Virgin Publishing with a new cover by Alister Pearson priced £2.50 (UK)

Editions published outside Britain Edit

  • Published in Poland in 1993-1994 by Publishing Empire as Wladcy Czasu.

 Audiobook Edit

An unabridged audiobook of the story was recorded by Gabriel Woolf for the RNIB in 1978, alongside The Loch Ness Monster and Carnival of Monsters. It was only available to the registered blind. More recently this story was released on 8 April 2010 complete and unabridged by BBC Audio and read by Katy Manning.

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.

External links Edit

to be added

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