Sarah Jane was originally written to be killed off. When Elizabeth Sladen decided to leave the show in 1976, they wrote this episode where Sarah dies. The Doctor and Sarah would discover two alien life forces fighting against each other in North Africa, and she would have died because of an alien.
It was strongly rejected by the production team, especially Tom Baker and Elizabeth Sladen. Although both of them weren’t happy with Sarah’s real ending.
“Susan Jameson reads a brand new original story featuring the Fourth Doctor and his companion Mrs Wibbsey. In 18th Century coastal Italy, the local fishermen haul in an extraordinary catch: a gigantic serpent. The Doctor identifies it as an alien, but to the ailing locals this fabled sea creature has the capacity to heal them - if only Count Otto will share it with them. When Mrs Wibbsey comes under the influence of the Count, the Doctor finds himself snared by the wicked power of a seemingly immortal magician, the infamous Cagliostro! Set after the events of the Nest Cottage Chronicles, the story is read by Mrs Wibbsey herself, as played by Susan Jameson.”
I’d like to think no-one who is part of the Doctor Who tumblr community would do this, but I’m just going to say it just in case:
Do not pirate the Doctor Who audio plays (Well: don’t pirate in general). Big Finish is a small company and has been hit by piracy before and badly. It forced them to end then previously successful Sapphire and Steel range because piracy of the series in it’s third series was so bad that Big Finish had to abandon the series on a cliffhanger. Which was never resolved. At all.
(And I’d love to drum up support for a renassiance for the series: but guess what? The licencise expired this year and Big Finish can no longer sell the series. It’s gone. Forever. Outside of inflated Ebay prices. Thanks for that, pirates - and if you want to know what your missing out on: Sapphire & Steel was a really great continuation of a 1980s horror/fantasy/science fiction series about two mysterious human figures who appear to be human, but are anything but who appear when strange events begin to occur and investigate in a procedual fashion. It’s a really surreal offbeat series and I’d strongly recommend it to anyone to watch the original (which I only found out about through the older generations of Whovians) . The revival series also had Mark Gattis playing a new character, Gold and he was fantastic. But, now that’s gone. Forever.)
And Big Finish have been honest about just how much, despite the Doctor Who name, piracy has cut into sales and despite Big Finish having Moffat’s favour that licencise isn’t cheap.
In addition, as a small company, Big Finish, despite the Who name, face distribution problems in getting their products out their on the market. So, their products don’t have anywhere near the same exposure as the revival series and it’s tie-in media does. Colin Baker himself spoke out about it and about the realities of the situation and means of production itself - and while Dark Eyes (and the promotion of it in DWM) came along and it doesn’t seem to be as pressing as it once was, I still can see how all the newfound intrest in the Eighth Do ctor could lead to a rather unfortune knock on effect for Big Finish.
And apparently people have been buying subscriptions so they can obtain the subscriber specials and upload them on the internet? A big source of Big Finish’s revenue comes from the subscriptions.
Big Finish also had to let their Stargate licencise expire due to poor sales.Apparently, this was due to a large portion of the fandom prefering a new series over audio drama set within the time frame of the series, but I’m more then willing to bet that piracy played a role in poor sales as well.
Ok, so I wanted to see how each character compared based on how long they are on the show. The first graph is the different Doctors (including the War Doctor), and the second graph is the Companions. (sadly I couldn’t included all companions, so I left out people who were only there for one adventure, with the exception of Grace, the guys in UNIT, both K-9 and Kamelion, and anyone one who wasn’t in the tv series or movie. Also both Romans are included as one person). The values are based on the total running time of all the episodes the specific character was in, excluding any mini episodes.