by Douglas Adams
(adapted for audio by Gary Russell)
On Think Tank, a remote space station, a scientist known as Skagra steals the minds of his colleagues and escapes to Earth. The Doctor visits Romana and K-9 on Gallifery and asks for their help; they travel to Cambridge in the present day to visit Professor Chronotis, a retired Time Lord who is living life as a don in St Cedd's college. Chronotis wants the Doctor to return a book, 'The Ancient Law of Gallifrey', back to their home planet, but it has accidentally been taken by Chris Parsons, one of the professor's students. The book, which is made of a substance unknown to Earth, and which has temporal properties, mystifies Chris and his friend Clare. Skagra arrives at the college in his search for the book, which will give him the directions to Shada, the Time Lord prison planet, where Salyavin, the most powerful Time Lord in history is imprisoned. Skagra plans to use Salyavin to learn the secret of projecting a print of his mind into the mind of every sentient being in the universe - instead of ruling the universe, he will be the universe. After the Doctor retrieves the book from Chris, Skagra sends his mind-draining sphere after him; he is pursued through the streets of Cambridge, but eventually loses the book to Skagra, who then captures Romana and forces her to take the TARDIS to Shada. The Doctor, K9 and Chris use Skagra's spaceship to travel to Think Tank in search of Skagra and Romana, where they encounter the Krargs, huge crystalline servants of Skagra. Chronotis's college rooms are actually his TARDIS, which he uses to rescue the Doctor and his friends, and then travel to Shada. Skagra frees the Shadan prisoners, but is unable to find Salyavin. After Chronotis reveals that he is Salyavin, the Doctor beats Skagra in a mind battle, and imprisons him in his spaceship for eternity. Returning to Earth, the Doctor and Romana promise to keep Chronotis' secret.
Paul McGann(Doctor Who ), Lalla Ward (Romana), John Leeson Voice of K9), James Fox (Professor Chronotis), Andrew Sachs (Skagra), Sean Biggserstaff (Chris Parsons), Melvyn Hayes (Wilkin), Hannah Gordon (Voice of Ship), Nicholas Pegg (Think Tank Voice / Shada Voice), Barnaby Edwards (Caldera / Krarg Commander), Stuart Crossman (Motorist / Other Krargs / Constable), Susannah Harker (Clare Keightley)
2nd May 2003
It's about a book... A dangerous book.
Prelude / Parts 1-5
9th May 2003
The race to retrieve the book is on.
16th May 2003
Will the Doctor finally lose his mind?
The Doctor's death works in his favour.
(A new part every day this week...)
Part 1 - 17th May 2003
Part 2 - 18th May 2003
Part 3 - 19th May 2003
Part 4 - 20th May 2003
Part 5 - 21st May 2003
Part 6 - 22nd May 2003
Part 7 - 23rd May 2003
Who will be first to reach Shada?
30th May 2003
The Doctor does the time walk again.
6th June 2003
Directed by Nicholas Pegg
*Featuring the Eighth Doctor, the Second Romana, and K-9 MKII
*Originally, this story was never completed due to a strike at the BBC in November 1979; it was then cancelled at mid-production, and the filmed footage never broadcasted; however, it was later re-edited and released by BBC Video with linking scenes featuring Tom Baker
*On 13th November, 2002, BBCi announced that 'Shada' would be remade with Paul McGann as the Doctor, to be webcast online in 2003
*Due to its extended running time of 28 minutes, episode 4 was split into 7 parts and transmitted daily across a week
*This story was released by Big Finish on CD in 2003, as an extended, audio only, version of the serial that was originally 'broadcast' on the Cult pages of the BBCi website:
The Doctor has a spot of unfinished business. Reunited with his old friends Romana and K9, he answers a summons from Professor Chronotis, a retired Time Lord now living the academic life in a Cambridge college.
But the Doctor isn’t the only visitor to Cambridge. Somewhere in the city is the sinister alien Skagra, who is intent on stealing an ancient and mysterious book brought to Earth by the Professor many years before.
What is Skagra’s diabolical masterplan? And who or what is the mysterious Shada? To discover the truth, the Doctor and his friends must embark on a perilous journey that will take them from the cloisters of Cambridge to the farthest reaches of deep space, risking deadly encounters with a sentient spaceship, the monstrous Krargs, and an ancient Time Lord criminal called Salyavin. As the Doctor soon discovers, the fate of the universe hangs in the balance…
Written in 1979, the original production of Shada was halted by industrial action, and for many years the story remained unmade – until now. Featuring an all-star cast headed by Paul McGann, and boasting an unforgettable script by the great Douglas Adams, this legendary Doctor Who adventure is lost no more!