When Doctor Who Series 10 concludes in early July, that will make 36 full seasons of television (plus some specials) spanning 54 years. 839 episodes is a pretty daunting for anyone, but there are actually hundreds and hundreds more hours of fully acted, fully produced Doctor Who stories out there. Big Finish, the British audio drama company, has been making radio plays using past Doctors since 1999 and there are now more Big Finish audio stories than there are TV stories, but that shouldn’t stop you from listening, especially when you can listen to so many on Spotify for free!
This has been a thing for awhile, but we heard about it courtesy of io9 (who got it from Reddit). On Spotify, Big Finish has uploaded over 30 hours of their best audio plays that you can listen to immediately, even placing them in playlists featuring the first episode of the various stories, so you can see if you like it before committing.
There are also playlists of the full stories, as well as one specifically devoted to the newer Fourth Doctor range. But seriously, you’ll have plenty of amazing adventures just listening to the Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, and Eighth Doctor adventures. Other than the Fifth, these are Doctors who were underserved on television and have become absolutely brilliant in audio format.
And because even that is a tough mountain to climb, here are some of my favorites for you to dip your toe. I’ll go in release order, so you can find them easier on the playlist. Keep in mind, I haven’t listened to even a tenth of all the Big Finish Doctor Who audio plays that exist, but I’ve truly loved the ones I have.
- “Storm Warning“: The Eighth Doctor (Paul McGann)’s first adventure in audio format introduces his companion, Edwardian adventure woman Charlotte “Charley” Pollard, in a super steampunky airship caper.
- “Bloodtide“: If you like Silurians, then this adventure with the Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) should be right up your alley.
- “The Chimes of Midnight“: Another Eighth Doctor and Charley adventure, this one is a very creepy ghost story which uses the medium of audio incredibly effectively. This story just wouldn’t work the same way if you could see it.
- “Spare Parts“: This one takes the Fifth Doctor (Peter Davison) and his companion Nyssa (Sarah Sutton) to the planet Mondas, just as the Mondasians are beginning to fully become Cybermen. An intensely creepy story.
- “Master“: The final story in a short series that saw various Doctors tangle with various villains (Omega and Davros being the earlier ones), this one finds the Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) sending his arch-nemesis and former friend the Master (Geoffrey Beevers) somewhere with no memory of his former evil deeds.
And as I said, these are just some of the hundreds of stories available from Big Finish on Spotify. For. Free.
Have you partaken in Doctor Who audio adventures in the past? What’ve been your favorites? Let me know in the comments below! (Nerdist)