The Pirate Planet – The way it was Meant to be Told

Doctor Who: The Pirate Planet by James Goss from a Douglas Adams story

Douglas Adams got his first television writing credit for this story in the 16th series of Doctor Who. He had a very elaborate story in mind and left behind several drafts and notes for how he envisioned it. The four episodes that aired in 1978 likely did not do it justice. I have to admit, that I haven’t seen it, but this novelization was absolutely fabulous.

I can only imagine this story being told in the current Doctor Who era with the larger budget and amazing special effects the show has now. I think it could work with any of the modern actors who have played the titular role.

James Goss wasn’t able to write in Adams’ voice, but I doubt many people could; Eoin Colfer did it successfully once and I was blown away. However, this story still has the wit, humour, and adventure that we have all come to expect from Adams.

This story revolves around the Fourth Doctor, Romana, and K-9 as they try to visit a planet and end up somewhere inexplicable. The coordinates are definitely right but the planet is wrong. Could it be the work on a space pirate? Or is something more sinister going on?

It was nice to see the bonus content at the end of the novel. It shows how Goss did his research and synthesized original notes, screenplay drafts, and production notes to craft a tale I think Adams would have approved of.

This was a great read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Highly recommended for any fan of Doctor Who and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy fans.

My List of 2020 Reads – coming soon