The New Adventures was a novel series published by the eponymous imprint of Virgin Books.
The first book, published in 1991, continued the adventures of the Seventh Doctor and Ace where the television story Survival left off; later instalments introduced new companions like Bernice Summerfield, who became the range's main protagonist in 1997 when Virgin lost the licence for Doctor Who fiction. As the New Adventures were geared for an older audience than the TV show, they included mature themes, strong language, violence, and sexual elements.
Virgin Books launched two spin-off lines following the initial success of the New Adventures: the Decalogs, a series of short story collections; and the Missing Adventures, a novel range that told new stories with the first six Doctors.
The New Adventures concluded with Twilight of the Gods in December 1999, but Big Finish Productions obtained the licence for the later New Adventures characters and continued telling stories with Bernice Summerfield, Jason Kane, and Irving Braxiatel in their own line of audios, novels, and short stories.
From 1999 onward, Big Finish adapted several novels for audio by Big Finish, either directly or altered to omit the Doctor and focus on Summerfield. In 2007, the New Adventures novel Human Nature was adapted into the television episodes Human Nature and The Family of Blood.
Although several authors initially attempted to separate the Virgin Books and BBC Books continuities, the separation was eventually relaxed, and references to New and Missing Adventures began to appear in the Eighth Doctor and Past Doctor Adventures. In DWM 482, Steven Moffat said that he considered the New Adventures to be "a separate (and equally valid) continuity" to the BBC Wales television series.
Stories[edit | edit source]
The Dying Days was the final New Adventures novel to feature the Doctor, although So Vile a Sin was released out-of-order and published last. The Dying Days reintroduced Bernice Summerfield and the settings that would predominate the later New Adventures; its afterword specified that the following novels belonged to a series of "new New Adventures", although they were published under the same imprint, logo, and name.
Notes[edit | edit source]
Continuity[edit | edit source]
- The New Adventures introduced a few new companions into the life of the Doctor: Bernice Summerfield (debuting in Love and War), Wolsey the cat (debuting in Human Nature), and Roz Forrester and Chris Cwej (debuting in Original Sin).
- Ace was written out in Love and War and left the Doctor before reuniting with him in Deceit. During the intervening three years, she changed considerably. Ace left a second time, permanently, in Set Piece. Ace's character development and departure were contradicted by later media.
- Apart from the novels, some Doctor Who Magazine comics take place specifically in the New Adventures continuity. These feature the Seventh Doctor, Bernice, and the older version of Ace; their places in the New Adventures timeline were described in the 1993 article "Interweaving with the New Adventures".
- Eternity Weeps portrays the future death of Liz Shaw.
- The novels Cat's Cradle: Time's Crucible, Transit, The Pit, Iceberg, and Lungbarrow were adapted from rejected episodes for either the Sixth or Seventh Doctor.
- Several novels of the New Adventures featured old foes from the TV series, including:
- Timewyrm: Exodus – The War Chief
- Iceberg – Cybermen and the Cyber-Controller
- Blood Heat – Silurians and Sea Devils
- No Future – The Monk and the Vardans
- Legacy - Ice Warriors
- Blood Harvest – Great Vampires
- First Frontier – The Master
- Toy Soldiers – Ogrons (cameo only)
- Head Games – Valeyard (illusion only)
- Shakedown – Sontarans and the Rutan Host
- GodEngine – Ice Warriors and Daleks (cameo only)
- The Dying Days – Ice Warriors
- Dead Romance – Daleks (cameo only)
- The New Adventures were majorly linked to Virgin's Missing Adventures and Decalog lines.
- A story strand which originated in Blood Harvest continued into the first Missing Adventures novel Goth Opera in an effort to get readers to buy both books.
- Shakedown and Lords of the Storm both featured the Sontarans in the same month.
- The Missing Adventures novel Cold Fusion featured both the Fifth Doctor and the Seventh Doctor alongside Roz, Chris Cwej, and the Fifth Doctor's companions.
- Decalog 4: Re:Generations tells stories about the family of Roz Forrester, introduced in a New Adventures novel. The short story collection Decalog 5: Wonders includes the first Bernice Summerfield short story, The Judgement of Solomon by Lawrence Miles.
Adaptations[edit | edit source]
- The novel Shakedown was itself an adaptation of the Reeltime Pictures production Shakedown: Return of the Sontarans, greatly expanded to include the Doctor.
- In Big Finish Productions' Bernice Summerfield series, six New Adventures were adapted into audio: Oh No It Isn't!, Beyond the Sun, Walking to Babylon, Birthright, Just War, and Dragons' Wrath. Birthright and Just War were modified to remove Doctor Who elements to which Big Finish did not yet have the rights.
- The novel Human Nature was adapted into the two-part story Human Nature/The Family of Blood in Series 3 of BBC Wales' Doctor Who.
- Love and War was directly adapted by Big Finish into an audio drama in 2012. This was followed by The Highest Science, Damaged Goods, Theatre of War, All-Consuming Fire, Original Sin, and Cold Fusion.
Production notes[edit | edit source]
- So Vile a Sin was the final New Adventures novel to be published featuring the Doctor, but it was published out of narrative sequence due to delays preventing its completion. The death of a major character in that book was meant to be a surprise, but because of the production delay this was no longer possible, and the novel was adapted accordingly: its prologue began with the funeral for the character, and the event was made an intrinsic part of the narrative, rather than a shock conclusion.
- Following the broadcast of the 1996 TV movie, BBC Books took over the license for publishing original Doctor Who fiction, but there was an overlap of more than a year to allow Virgin to publish its contracted novels. As a result, the book line changed its branding, the Doctor Who logo on the front cover and spine removed beginning with the publication of Eternity Weeps.
- The cover design changed again with Another Girl, Another Planet, which removed the "New Adventures" identifier from the front cover and introduced a new title-lettering style.
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