He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not – Interview with Writer Carrie Thompson

Paul McGann joins Time Lord Victorious with the first full-cast audio from Big Finish. Carrie Thompson, writer of He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not, took the time to speak to me about taking the Eighth Doctor into the Dark Times.

On the desert world of Atharna, the Doctor’s life is about to be changed forever.

Looking to visit one of the Seven Hundred Wonders of the Universe, he’s quickly embroiled in a web of deceit. Worse than that, this Wonder of the Universe is missing, and the Doctor is about to encounter one of his most dangerous and duplicitous adversaries.

The Doctor is about to meet Brian.

Synopsis

Doctor Who – Time Lord Victorious: He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not is out now and is available from the Big Finish website.

Interview with Carrie Thompson

With the Time Lord Victorious event occurring over innumerable forms of media, how did Carrie first hear about her chance to write a piece of that jigsaw?

I first heard about it through my first producer at Big Finish, Alfie Shaw. He called and asked if I would be interested, and of course I said yes! I have always been interested in transmedia storytelling, and the opportunity to work on a project like that and it be a Doctor Who story is a dream come true!

Carrie Thompson
He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not by Carrie Thompson
He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not by Carrie Thompson

The plot came together quickly and a very special character was added to the story…

I was sent an outline of the episode and the characters that needed to be in it. I was so excited to see Brian the Ood!

Carrie Thompson

This is Carrie’s second foray into the world of Doctor Who audio, having penned The Second Oldest Question for the Short Trips range last year. How did moving to a full cast story change the writing process?

It was a completely different experience. I pretty much had free rein on my first audio story, whereas the story for this was largely in place for this one.

Carrie Thompson

And what about tying into the larger Time Lord Victorious narrative? Did having a predetermined outline make it difficult or did opportunities to work in the references come naturally?

It wasn’t too tricky – I had the outline of the episodes that the other writers were working on, and I was working under the excellent guidance of Matt Fitton [script editor], who kept me on course. 

Carrie Thompson
Brian the Ood
Brian the Ood

Brian the Ood

We know that Carrie was excited to write for Brian the Ood, the MVP of Time Lord Victorious, but what was it like crafting his dialogue?

It was the best! I love the Ood, and having the opportunity to write for one as unique as Brian was a real treat. He’s such a complex character; the contradictions that are presented in the idea of an Ood assassin are a joy to write. 

Carrie Thompson

The Eighth Doctor

He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not marks the first full appearance of the Eighth Doctor in TLV, other than a few brief appearances in The Knight, the Fool and the Dead, and kicks off a trilogy of audios starring Paul McGann. Did introducing the Doctor to this new environment change how Carrie wrote him?

To be honest, no! As soon as I knew who I was going to be writing for, I re-watched the scant screen stuff available and listened to some Big Finish Eighth Doctor episodes, then I decided to lean more into his Byronic qualities.

Carrie Thompson
The Eighth Doctor recalls Gallifrey | Doctor Who The Movie | BBC

With the Eighth Doctor’s dalliance with Dark Times due to continue next month in The Enemy of my Enemy by Tracy Ann Baines and conclude in December with Mutually Assured Destruction by Lizzie Hopley, was there much collaboration between the three writers?

I didn’t speak to them at all! I worked mostly in isolation, with Matt Fitton expertly guiding the ship. 

Carrie Thompson

Oodles

Every Doctor Who fan, let alone writer, has a character or monster they’d really like to work with some day. What would be Carrie’s choice?

I would like to write a Sontaran story one day. And more Ood. More Ood is always good, isn’t it?

Carrie Thompson

Agreed, more Ood is always good!

Hermetic Arts

To close out our interview, I ask Carrie what she has coming up outside of Doctor Who…

If you like horror, I co-run a theatre company called Hermetic Arts, with Chris Lincé. We have a couple of excellent audio stories on our website, and info on all of our shows. Have a listen and a look! @hermetic_arts 

Carrie Thompson

With thanks to Carrie Thompson for taking the time to chat with me and Big Finish for their support.

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