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Who Killed Kennedy was a DWU novel published by Virgin Books. It was written by David Bishop. It is often considered by fans to be a part of the Virgin Missing Adventures series, although it was released as a standalone novel without ties to any of Virgin's ranges. Who Killed Kennedy was the first true Doctor-lite novel. It revolved around how journalist James Stevens' investigations into the assassination of John F. Kennedy led him into the world of the Doctor. This allowed the author to explore a number of televised stories from the perspective of a neutral observer, much as the character of Elton Pope would later be used in the television story Love & Monsters.

The book is further notable — perhaps even infamous — for a subplot involving the attempted rape, near-wedding and murder of former companion Dodo Chaplet. However, this aspect of the story has often been conflated with aspects of The Man in the Velvet Mask. As a result, many fans wrongly believe that Kennedy tells the story of Dodo dying from syphilis — something that never happens in either book.[1]

Stylistically, author David Bishop unusually attempts to present the story as genuine journalism. In pursuit of realism, he even allows Stevens front cover credit for writing the book.

Publisher's summary Edit

The shocking secret linking a Time Lord and a President.

President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas on 22 November, 1963.

Now, the publication of this volume reveals frightening new information about the assassination, the real reasons why the President of the United States had to die and an incredible plan to save the man known as JFK!

These stunning revelations involve an ultra-secret military force disguised as a minor off-shoot of the United Nations and an international terrorist leader who has twice brought the world to the brink of nuclear conflict.

For more than three decades the public has been fed lies, half-truths and misinformation. Now — despite government attempts to halt the publication of this volume — the complete, shocking story can be told. Read the book they tried to ban!

Plot Edit

October 1969 Edit

James Stevens is a Daily Chronicle writer, obsessed with the assassination of John F. Kennedy. He is annoyed today that he has to answer the phone. The caller is a man named Mullins, a porter at Ashbridge Cottage Hospital, trying to sell the newspaper a news story. The day before, there was a heatwave across Essex and meteorites fell in Oxley Woods. Furthermore, a man with inhuman blood was found in the woods. Stevens soon found himself driving to Essex in one of the Chronicle's vehicles.

He arrived to find the hospital swarmed with news reporters, as well as members of UNIT. They were met at the door by Captain Munro, who informed them that he could tell them nothing about the man or why they were there. Stevens noted as a brigadier and his female aide walked into the hospital. Minutes later, James saw the Brigadier driving away, avoiding their questions. Noticing the hospital's phone was in use, James went to a pub to call the paper.

He returned to the register, where he turned the apparently boring story into an eighteen-page-long "sexy" article "of deadly debris from space and sinister cover-up scaremongering". At 7:00 p.m, he was ready to go home, but was hesitant, due to his unhappy relationship with his wife, Natasha.

The next day, he was surprised to see the word "UNIT" had been replaced with the phrase "the authorities" instead. He asked who had done this and learned that an editor had changed it right before it went out. He was also shocked to see all of the other newspapers reacting with stories covering up the scene, calling the inhuman blood a "...prank gone wrong..."

Soon after, however, he received a phone call from an anonymous tipper telling him that someone tried to kidnap the alleged alien man. He called around and found one nurse who had seen the incident. She told him she had heard a gunshot and had looked outside, but had been warned to keep quiet. She refused to tell him any more and hung up. He soon realised that the target for this story shouldn't be the man, but UNIT. He went to the reference library, but was surprised to find that both "UNIT" and "Lethbridge-Stewart, Alistair Gordon" had folders, but each were empty, as if the contents had been removed. The following day, one of the most infamous terrorist attacks of the 1960s occurred. During the early hours of Black Thursday, terrorists began attacking helpless citizens in the street. They also turned off all power and disabled TV and radio stations, cutting off media. If the attacks had not stopped within the hour, the terrorists might have achieved their goal.

Stevens was late that day, and was shocked when told of the incident. Unlike his fellow reporters, he doubted the story, as it claimed there were only a few terrorists out of the hundreds of attackers. Despite this, the paper continued to print the official government story. Throughout the week, however, many people called the paper claiming to have been attacked by shop window dummies. This was written off with the heading "Black Thursday Brings Mass Hysteria".

November 1969 Edit

Things soon return to normal.

Stevens has become the correspondent for the upcoming Mars Probe flights that would occur soon. Inspired by Britain's increasing space program, James begins writing a new column for the paper on scientific breakthroughs, and starts off by interviewing Ralph Cornish and Professor J.P. Kettlewell. He also had an appointment scheduled with Frederick Masters, but that was cancelled because Masters was unavailable.

The next day, a virus spreads through London. In the middle of the chaos, Stevens receives another call from his mystery tipper. He tells him that Frederick Masters had been the first to die from the plague sweeping London. Stevens receives Wenley Moor's phone number from the tipper, and calls the Research Centre. The Brigadier answers, but on discovering Stevens is a reporter, demands to know how he got this number before hanging up. Stevens is still able to write a good story, and the next day the Chronicle is surrounded by reporters. Apparently, his story had caused controversy in the government. Two officials already planned to quit. That night, he and his friends go to a bar to celebrate. Stevens ends up sleeping with a red-haired girl he meets, named Natasha.

Stevens returns home after his one-night-stand with the stranger. His wife, Natasha Stevens, is infuriated that he was home late, having made him a meal to celebrate that she may have been pregnant. He became enraged at her, since he had said that he had not wanted kids. He angrily left the house.

Stevens then decided that it was time to research further into this UNIT group...

December 1969 Edit

The Mars Recovery 7 went up into space to retrieve Mars Probe 7. It lost communication for a brief while, and came down without anyone in it. Days later, a second recovery mission went up, and Stevens then noticed Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart at the Space Centre on his TV set.

After finally receiving the permission to investigate UNIT, he finds a link between the group and C19, another group, which served as a link between UNIT and the government. In his research, Stevens soon found that UNIT also had an address, and he ventured there to try and meet the brigadier. He had no such luck.

After his trip to UNIT H.Q., Stevens began getting threatening mail and phone calls. Information was harder to get, and one day someone called suggesting he stop, or else he may end up in "the Glasshouse." The phone calls also soon began being sent to Natasha, who was informed that the caller had "...personal habits [of James] she might find very revealing." Stevens compared stories with his wife, and soon discovered that C19 had been trying to threaten him. Stevens decided to investigate the group further.

Unable to talk to most of his previous contacts anymore, Stevens found only one individual willing to talk him, a local fashion photographer infamous for her stories of an alien invasion, Isobel Watkins. Most had denounced her as a fraud, including Stevens, but he was interested in the fact that she also claimed UNIT and the Brigadier were involved in her invasion.

Stevens is shocked to discover that Isobel is not only not a raving insane person, but is also pretty and intelligent. She tells him of the alien invasion that she had witnessed, and describes the people she saw there, including the Brigadier, Zoe, Jamie and Doctor John Smith, or just "the Doctor." Stevens shows the most interest in the Doctor.

Walking home, Stevens notices a C19 car parked across the street from Isobel's house and runs — fearing that he is being followed.

January 1970 Edit

Stevens spent most of January 1970 secretly researching UNIT and placing it into a timeline, entitled "The UNIT Dossier."

February 1970 Edit

After typing his three-thousand word essay on UNIT, James returns to work on the newspaper. He renames his science column "Bad Science," due to all of the mistakes in science projects that had happened recently. He soon discovers another science project that had failed called the Inferno Project. In a pursuit of what had happened there, Stevens tracks down Greg Sutton who, after becoming drunk, tells about how the Inferno project had failed. He also tells him about another man named "Doctor John Smith" who had claimed to have gone to a parallel universe where the Inferno Project had caused the destruction of the planet. More shocking is that this man's appearance matches that of the individual who went up in the second Recovery 7 mission to save Mars Probe 7.

Shortly before publishing the first section of "Bad Science", Stevens once more receives a call from his mystery tipper. The tipper had called to congratulate Stevens on a job well done recently, but he hangs up once Stevens mentions C19 and the Glasshouse. The next day, Stevens is shocked to find that his article has been pulled. He finds that his friend Michael had been trying to salvage it by rewriting, but with no success. He was sent to the editor's room, where he was offered a double-raise, and up to £50,000 on the spot if he hands over all his evidence from his UNIT article. He refuses, and is fired automatically. He soon receives a call from the man from C19 who had been threatening him, who tells him that a surprise awaits him at home.

Stevens arrived at home to discover that his notes and tape reels had been thrown amongst the room. On his bed he finds images of him with the woman he had a one-night stand with, with Natasha's handwriting written over it: "HOW COULD YOU?"

Stevens tries to call Natasha, but she hangs up after admitting that she is pregnant.

Worried, Stevens begins a trip to Castle Howarth to talk to Natasha. This is a long and cold journey, with all of the schools in that area shut down. A blizzard breaks out, and Stevens accidentally crashes his car into a tree. He walks the rest of the way.

Upon arriving Stevens meets Natasha's father, Lord Howarth, who tells him that the divorce papers have already been processed, and that if he ever talks to Natasha again, Howarth will have him killed. Stevens begins to protest, but before he can Howarth begins beating him up, to the point what he can barely move. The police arrive to beat him up and to take him to a hospital. He sees a pregnant Natasha weeping before blacking out.

He does not wake for thirty-six hours, and does not leave the hospital for another week. He decides to continue on his search for the truth about UNIT.

April 1970 Edit

After finding a new home to live in during March, Stevens began his work as a freelance writer in April. Despite the Daily Chronicle 's attempts to ruin his name, he still won an award for his journalism, and was able to begin his new carrier, hearing enthusiasm from Metropolitan 's editor Sally Lincoln.

Following his success, he is commissioned to write a book, also entitled Bad Science, based on his newspaper articles. The book, although not yet released, is having record-breaking preorders, and Stevens begins considering new ideas. He tells Henry Spencer, the person who commissioned the last book, that he had had two new book ideas, a sequel to Bad Science, and a book on the mystery of JFK's murder and the possible outcomes of it if he had lived entitled What if JFK Had Lived, cashing in on both the anniversary and the controvoursey behind Edward Kennedy's accidental killing of Mary Jo Kopechne. Stevens begins writing the two books, which come together in the deal. He finds out many new interesting stories about UNIT, including that they recalled a batch of plastic flowers, but was forced to put these aside as his Kennedy novel's deadline became closer.

June - November 1970 Edit

The Bad Science book is printed just around an election, and many news publishers criticises his book for trying to change the election. After a show where he talked off Alex MacIntosh, he goes to a bar with an old friend named Vincent Mortimer, who tells him that if he ever needs a TV appearance, just to call him.

Due to both the publicity of Bad Science and the research and writing of his JFK book, Stevens became behind on his UNIT papers. Four months after turning his second book in, however, Stevens is able to continue to work on his research. He is able to contact Martha, a worker at the Ministry of Science who is able to give him access to the first viewing of the Keller Process after he "makes it worth her while."

Three days later, he goes to see the process in action. There he sees for the first time one of the "Doctor" operatives and his companion. He witnesses and notes as the Doctor continuously interrupts Professor Kettering, mocking the Keller Machine during its presentation. Stevens keeps an active transcript. He sees the machine acting upon a patient, only this time failing, causing the patient to begin twitching in pain.

The scientists are dismissed, but Stevens stays, pretending to study the Keller Machine, but actually listening to the Doctor, who tells Kettering that he believes the Keller machine to be the kind of unearthly evil that UNIT looks into. After the Doctor had left, a guard threw Stevens out.

Bothered by the Keller Machine, Stevens began researching it. Not two days later, riots began breaking out and Kettering was dead. He contacted Sally Lincoln, who agreed to print his story in the Metropolitan. It was a popular scheme amongst newspapers to print shocking reports that were only barely outlined, so that other newspapers would do further research, thus giving the original high-praise. In an attempt to learn more about UNIT, Stevens also name-dropped Glasshouse, in hopes that someone would contact him about it.

December 1970 Edit

For several weeks, Stevens receives multiple calls about hypnotism, including one from an old lady who claims not only that she was attacked by a killer plastic flower, but also that Atropa belladonna — or Deadly Nightshade — was not very deadly at all. He nearly gives up on Glasshouse, until one day he receives a letter from a resident who writes in halting, hesitant scrawl, yet still answers many questions he needed answered about Glasshouse. The name left was "Dodo", and it had a phone number left for contact.

Stevens calls the number, and discovers it belongs to a homeless shelter. There he eventually gets a hold of Dodo, who at first doesn't remember writing the letter, but eventually does. She agrees to meet him at a café.

The next day, Stevens waits for nearly an hour at the café before deciding to leave. That is when he meets Dodo, who tells him her story. She suffers from blackouts and memory-loss, and she often has flashbacks to scenes which could not possibly have happened to her, such as being in the old west, meeting one-eyed monsters, and seeing giant dolls dance around her. This all first started to happen to her on C-Day, and since then she had suffered from blackouts and often woke up in hospitals. One day they put her in a psychiatric hospital. She has memories of shock therapy. Before she can finish her story past there, she breaks down in tears and Stevens takes her home to his office, agreeing to get her home by 6:00, otherwise she won't have a bed to sleep in.

They went to his house, and eventually they return to the discussion, with Stevens taping the conversation. Dodo explains that she was put in a mixed-sex ward for the mentally insane, and one day one of the men had tried to rape her. She had kicked his head, causing him to fall against the wall and crack it open; the man dying as a result. The tape recorder clicks, indicating the tape was full. Stevens asks Dodo if she was hungry, telling her that it had passed six, and agreeing to her staying at his house. He lets her take a shower whilst he cooks dinner. Outside the bathroom door he places some of Natasha's clothes, which he figures will fit her. He eventually returns to knock on the door, astonished to see her come out fully transformed, in a simple blue dress. They eat dinner and discuss their childhoods, avoiding talking about Glasshouse entirely.

The next day, Dodo and James continue their discussion on Glasshouse. Dodo had been sent there after she had killed the other patient, and had been strapped to a bed for her entire time spent there. She had been interrogated by a man with piercing eyes, who had constantly asked her about a doctor. She had presumed he meant the one who had given her shock-therapy, but bringing that up only made him more mad. One day after she began yelling that she wanted to be left alone, she was released, with the "evil man" telling her that she was well-trained, but that he would silence her. She had been here not seven months before, yet still could not remember where it is or any more details. She had been homeless since then. That night, James asks Dodo to stay and live with him, and Dodo agrees, as long as she gets to pull her own weight, put away his unopened packages, and gets to leave whenever she wants. Before entry went to their separate rooms, Dodo kissed James on the cheek.

Dodo spends a fortnight working on on the house, repainting the ceiling and putting up new wallpaper. He returns home early one day, to find the house completely transformed. They go out to celebrate, and come home after drinking too much wine. Dodo finds her room much too dense with paint fumes to sleep in, and states that she has to now sleep on the couch. James is tempted to say something, but does not want to ruin their friendship.

James goes to the bathroom, and when he emerges he finds Dodo trying to undo her dress. He helps her do so, and when he has, she asks him to help undo her bra as well.

January - March 1971 Edit

James goes to meet up with a source code-named "Cassandra." He tells James about an incident where UNIT had been called in to the Nuton Power Complex to fight off terrorists.

James soon realises that his book about UNIT was going nowhere, and that he needed to start it soon. Just when he was going to, he receives a call from Elisabeth Shaw, who he had been trying to contact for some time. She agrees to meet with him if he comes up to Cambridge.

After celebrating the new chance to meet someone who worked at UNIT, James and Dodo return home to find that it had been broken into and ransacked. He, however, discovered that all his important files were still in his floor-safe.

James leaves for Cambridge, where he meets Liz, who informs him that she can only confirm or deny what he has to ask her. He learns that she was a part of many of the events he researched in his book, although how he did not learn. When he mentions C19, she looked shocked. She tells him that she did not support the group, and that UNIT spoke to the government through C19. She threatens to leave if he does not change the topic, due to past bad memories with C19. Liz also warns James that she believes that he has been misinterpreting UNIT, and that UNIT are actually the good of the government. She eventually leaves, and Stevens is approached by a C19 thug, who beats him up and tells him that he will be killed if he continues to research the organisation.

May 1971 Edit

On Beltane night, James and Dodo watch a broadcast on BBC3 for the program The Passing Parade, which is broadcasting the unearthing of a tomb in Devil's Hump in the village of Devil's End. The broadcast goes wrong and suddenly transmission is cut. James calls Vincent to see if he can get a look at the footage as it has been removed from public viewing. He drives down to London and upon rewatching the footage, recognizes the woman (Jo) who was with the Doctor at the demonstration of the Keller machine, as she runs to help the collapsed Doctor. James arrives home to discover that the perpetrator has been caught and is identified as the terrorist Victor Magister (a disguise). He has supposedly been responsible for the strange events of the past year or at the very least, blamed. James realizes that he can't report on this and resigns himself to continuing his book on UNIT, C19 and the Doctor, deciding to wait and see if Victor Magister's trial reveals anything new.

June-July 1971 Edit

James is invited to a special panel on Victor Magister before his upcoming trial on The Passing Parade. Editor of the Daily Chronicle, Peter Wise, is also on the panel and the two butt heads. James finally goes far enough and as he reveals UNIT, C19 and the conspiracy around Victor Magister, the program is cut and James is warned that he must leave, despite Vincent's praise. He returns home but suddenly receives a warning from "Cassandra". His house if fire-bombed and he is beaten to a pulp again by the same C19 operative who approached him in the Cambridge bar. Dodo spends the night in their neighbour's house after their house burns down from the bombing and James goes to the police station to report the attack and destruction of property. He is led to a room, thinking he is going to speak to a higher authority but it turns out to be a trap laid by the Master, and James is knocked unconscious by the C19 operative accompanying the Master who has warned him that he has gone too far.

Dates Unknown 1971 Edit

James awakens to find himself in the infamous Glasshouse prison, a prisoner of the Master, now referring to himself as the Director. There he meets UNIT soldier Private Francis Cleary and together they hatch a plan and manage to successfully escape. They get back to London and inform Vincent while James reunites with Dodo who tells James she has a surprise for him when for when they're alone (it is strongly implied Dodo is pregnant). Vincent tells them they've been given the green-light to do a special on the Glasshouse for Paradise Parade, and James will go with a camera crew to expose the fraudulent facility while Cleary will appear on the program to explain what is occurring behind the doors.

August 1971 Edit

The program airs but when James arrives in Evesham at the Glasshouse facility, it is found to be unlocked and seemingly abandoned with the Master nowhere to be found, while Cleary comes across as insane in the studio interview, and they lose all credibility of their story while Vincent and the crew are humiliated nationally on live TV. Vincent is outraged and dismisses James while Cleary is nowhere to be found. James returns home to find Dodo murdered with the police believing James is the culprit and he is brought to the station for questioning.

After a lengthy twelve hours of harassment and interrogation by the police, the coroner's report for Dodo comes through and it is found she was killed at midnight, giving James an alibi since he was on live national television. He is let go but with his world around him crumbling, he returns home, picks up some items and decides to leave London to get some quiet and properly mourn Dodo.

September 1971 Edit

Distraught over Dodo's death, James takes an excursion to Brighton and buries Dodo. He buries her by himself, remembering Dodo saying she had no living relatives but he is joined by another "small, slightly disheveled man" (implied to be the Second Doctor or Seventh Doctor). He spends several weeks debauching himself and wallowing in pity until one night he catches a news program presenting on the peace talks that are supposed to happen at Auderly House the next day between world super-powers like China and the UK. James realizes that although he can never redeem his career as a journalist, he can still expose UNIT for the evil organization he thinks they are and so returns to London to collect his car and at least regain some credibility and dignity. He then drives up to Auderly house and sleeps nearby in his car, hoping to get the scoop in the morning.

James awakens when he hears a large blast coming from the building and abandons his car, running towards the sound at the behest of his memories of Tubbs, the cameraman from the Chronicle. Just then he is attacked by an Ogron but is saved by the Doctor. The Doctor helps James get away from the house as it is about to explode after which he is taken by Sergeant Benton to see the Brigadier. Finally meeting face-to-face, the Brigadier courteously explains to James that UNIT is not the shadowy evil organization he depicts them as in his articles and thinks them to be but are actually trying to keep the world safe. He further explains that they are now aware of C19 but C19 was never their contact or liason and they had previously thought it abolished, as it turns out it was yet another of the Master's schemes. James is shocked so the Brigadier, in an act of good faith, takes James to a tent and reveals to him the secret held from the world and what UNIT does to protect them, by giving him a first-hand glance of his first alien, an Ogron. Overwhelmed, the Brigadier has James put up in a nearby hotel courtesy of UNIT so he can recover from the ordeal and shock. James realises that he has been wrong all along, and people like Isobel Watkins and Professor Shaw tried to tell him that UNIT was never the villain but he refused to listen, preferring a good story over the facts and how this had cost Dodo her life. He remembers Cleary accusing him of preferring to stand by and do nothing by reporting rather than take responsibility in this world since one is part of it (on their train ride after escaping the Glasshouse back to London) and he realizes now Cleary was right. He contemplates suicide and points the gun he was carrying to his temple.

14th September 1971 Edit

Before James can pull the trigger there is a knock at the door. The hotel owner gives him a piece of paper left by the Doctor with a number to reach him, asking James to call him immediately. James does and answers all the Doctor's questions. The Doctor realizes over the course of the questioning that the Master is putting his plan to destabilize the time-space continuum into action using Cleary and other brainwashed UNIT soldiers to assassinate key figures in Earth's history. He instructs James to use the Time Ring that he took from Cleary to go back in time and stop him from doing whatever the Master instructed him to do, which seems to be to prevent the assassination of U.S. president John F. Kennedy. James does so and arrives in Dallas on November the 22nd, 1963.

22nd November 1963 Edit

James arrives in Dealey Plaza in Dallas, Texas. He is greeted and taunted by the Master but leaves him to find and stop Cleary. James eventually finds him fighting with Lee Harvey Oswald and the two are knocked out. James, to his horror, realizes that to ensure the assassination of Kennedy, he must do it himself. He lines up at the window and takes the shot, catching site of the Master and fires, but misses, however, a shot, fired from elsewhere, succeeds and the assassination prevails. James manages to catch site of the perpetrator and a manically laughing Master and although is stricken with horror, he has no time to lose and sets up Oswald to look as if he took the shot for when he is inevitably found. As the police close in on them in the clocktower, James grabs Cleary and uses the Time Ring to transport them back. They arrive in his hotel room.

14th September 1971 Edit

Cleary is taken to hospital but has suffered permanent brain damage. Meanwhile, James calls the Doctor again and explains what happens but the Doctor asks him to leave out the part about who actually killed Kennedy, surmising James will have to live with that knowledge alone. The Doctor thanks him and apologises that the world will never know of his heroic deed and departs on account of an urgent matter. James is left to contemplate about what to do now.

January 1996 Edit

James explains what happened over the past quarter century since the events of Auderly house. Cleary, severely brain damaged, never managed to recover and eventually dies in his mother's arms but James visited him as often as possible, eventually setting up a charity for soldiers experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder in Cleary's name. He recounts what has happened to the many people he met, such as the Brigadier retiring and becoming a mathematics teacher at a public school while his publisher Henry Spencer died of AIDS in 1983. Victor Magister (the Master) escaped before his trial and was blamed for many of the peculiar events that occurred afterwards throughout the 1970s but was soon forgotten as he was never caught again. James became a journalism tutor and mentioned that his favourite students had been Ruby Duvall and Sarah Jane Smith.

Finally, he reveals he kept the Time Ring and that he was the one who did assassinate Kennedy but as a fifty year old man, and it was himself, at his current age, that he saw from the clocktower on his trip back in time to stop Cleary. He has been tormented with this knowledge all his life and goes back in time to fulfill his final duty, sickeningly acknowledging the Master's victory in his torment and hopes that the contents of the book will have helped to shed some light on the mystery.

Characters Edit

References Edit

Companions Edit

Earth conflicts Edit

Individuals Edit

Time technology Edit

  • The Master gives Francis Cleary a Time Ring. He and James Stevens use it to visit the assassination of John F. Kennedy.

Notes Edit

  • However, the cover has the silver diamond Doctor Who logo usually associated with the Virgin Missing Adventures and is generally grouped with those novels.

Continuity Edit

External links Edit

Footnotes Edit

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