Blood and Hope

Roots: In his foreword, John Ostrander refers to his never-produced Doctor Who stage play The Inheritors of Time. There are extracts from the American Declaration of Independence, July 4th, 1776, and the Declaration of the Immediate Causes Which Induce and Justify the Secession of South Carolina From the Federal Union. There are references to James Dean, Upstairs Downstairs, John Wayne, Doris Day's Calamity Jane, Scarlet O'Hara, Foghorn Leghorn, Queen Victoria, Martin Luther King, Gregory Peck, and Bambi.

Continuity: The Doctor attempts to take Peri and Erimem to visit the American Wild West. He briefly stays in the town of Gable, where he helps the local medics to treat the injured, and also delivers a baby. He again uses the alias Doctor John Smith. The Doctor saves Abraham Lincoln from an early assassination attempt in Richmond and befriends the President.

Peri is forced to shoot Colonel Jubal Eustace through the head to save Erimem's life. The Doctor convinces Peri to keep an audio-diary to let out her feelings about her killing of Eustace. The last time Peri cried was for her Dad, although whether he died or she cried when he left her Mother isn't made clear. Peri thinks the Doctor may be English, and has heard him use the alias John Smith but isn't convinced that it isn't his real name. Peri's Mum thinks the English are repressed. Peri used to watch John Wayne movies with her Dad. Peri's home before she met the Doctor was California. Peri spent some time in the South when she was younger and manages to adopt a passable Southern accent.

Peri has been introducing Erimem to twentieth century clothing, including bras. Erimem dons a light blouse, a pair of jeans, and a buckskin jacket. Erimem's hair is growing longer. She is forced to pose as Peri's slave whilst they are stranded in the South. Erimem loves chocolate. She can't make good coffee. The Doctor persuades Erimem, like Peri, to keep an audio-diary, which she initially finds confusing.

The TARDIS can manufacture gold or currency of any kind. The TARDIS records Peri and Erimem's audio-diaries for them when they speak to an empty room.

The location to which the Doctor takes Peri and Erimem to recover from their experiences is a wide-open prairie with tree-covered mountains in the distance. There are animals resembling a cross between a cat and a rabbit, implying that it isn't on Earth.

Links: There are references to the Doctor and Peri's first meeting with Erimem in Thebes (The Eye of the Scorpion). There is a reference to Peri's stepfather Howard (Planet of Fire). The Doctor mention having studied medicine in Glasgow (The Moonbase).

Location: Diensberg, Massachusetts, December 15th 1860, April 16th 1861, May 5th 1865; Lyon Ridge, South Carolina, December 19th 1860, February 14th 1861, December 16th 1961, August 28th 1863; Buckley, Virginia, February 16th 1861, May 10th 1861, February 21st 1865, March 24th 1865; Gable, West Virginia, February 21st 1865, March 17th 1865, March 20th 1865, April 5th 1865, April 18th 1865; Washington D.C., March 19th 1865 and April 11th 1865; Billingsville Prison, Virginia, March 26th 1865; Richmond, Virginia, March 28th 1865, April 3rd to April 6th 1865; Appomattox Court House, Virginia, April 9th 1865; Headquarters of the Army of North Virginia, April 9th 1865; An unnamed planet, date unknown.

Unrecorded Adventures: Peri and Erimem have got drunk together on several occasions, including the time they downed three bottles of Denebian wine outside a bar on Rida whilst they watched the four suns set into the sea. The Doctor takes Peri and Erimem to the wedding of Paul Johnson and Claire Bartlett at the end of the novella.

The Bottom Line: A welcome return for the historical Doctor Who story, Blood and Hope illustrates the horrors of the American civil war magnificently. The driving force behind the novel is Peri's reaction to being forced to commit murder, making Blood and Hope the latest in a string of Doctor Who novels and novellas to transform her from screaming bimbo to three-dimensional character. The only slight disappointment is that more use isn't made of Erimem in her prose debut, especially since McLaughlin created the character.

Discontinuity Guide by Paul Clarke

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