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July 18th, 2018 29 comments

Doctor Who Marco Polo 1st Doctor Audio CD

Available to order from

Zienia Merton reads this captivating novelisation of an epic ‘lost’ historical TV adventure featuring the First Doctor.

The young Venetian, Marco Polo, is on his way to the Emperor’s court in Peking when he meets four intrepid time travellers: the elderly Doctor, his granddaughter Susan, and their companions Ian and Barbara.

The TARDIS has broken down whilst on Earth, in the year 1289. Marco Polo recognises in it a means of winning favour with the Emperor, and he insists that the travellers accompany his caravan to Cathay.

The journey is fraught with sandstorms, drought, bandits, would-be assassins and many other hidden dangers. Even if they do arrive safely at the court of Kublai Khan, the Doctor and his friends have no guarantee of ever seeing the inside of the TARDIS again…

Zienia Merton, who played Ping-Cho in the original BBC serial, reads John Lucarotti’s own novelisation of his 1964 TV adventure.

Duration: 4 hours approx.

Categorised under: Audio stories, CD


  • Michael Parsons

    August 22nd, 2021 - 10:07am

    further to my comment above regarding this release according to the recent doctor who magazine this release is still available on cd but I can not obtain It from Amazon or eBay Galaxy four or who one or the who shop so where is it available to

    • booboo

      August 22nd, 2021 - 10:19am

      doesn’t seem to be stock anywhere, a few have sold on ebay so it did exist but Penguin list it as download only now so its not a current stock item

  • Michael Parsons

    August 5th, 2021 - 2:12am


  • Gordon

    July 19th, 2018 - 11:07am

    Unexpected but intresting choice

    • Alex

      July 19th, 2018 - 1:54pm

      Agreed. I mean it’s a good choice, she played a prominent role in the episode, it just seems a bit left-field from the type of cast they attract at this point. I would’ve thought either Carole-Anne Ford or Mark Eden were just natural obvious choices. But I look forward to it! It’s one of my favourite novelisations.

  • TigerMan1995

    May 18th, 2018 - 9:44pm

    Is anyone going to make a cover with the white McGann logo when this comes out? I would love that.

    • William Byers

      July 18th, 2018 - 12:21pm

      I think it looks great.
      When I was a 5 or 6 I wish that there were more things with the Davies era logo on it because I would have watched classic Who from a young age. It’s all about Brand Recognition. With all of the new people who will watch Doctor Who they will look at what has that logo as it catches their eye. Recognition = Comfor

  • Gordon

    May 17th, 2018 - 12:09am

    After this year we will only have the following to go from the classic era
    1st Doctor:
    An Unearthly Child (wrapped up in rights issues)
    The Keys of Marinus
    The Reign of Terror
    The Romans
    The Celestial Toymaker
    The Savages
    The War Machines
    The Smugglers

    2nd Doctor
    The Power of the Daleks
    The underwater menace
    The Crusaders
    The Faceless Ones
    The Evil of the Daleks
    The Enemy of the World
    The Wheel in Space
    The Krotons
    The Seeds of Death

    3rd Doctor
    The Time Monster
    The Monster of Peladon

    4th Doctor
    Revenge of the Cybermen
    Terror of the Zygons
    Planet of Evil
    The Android Invasion
    The Seeds of Doom
    The Face of Evil
    Image of the Fendahl
    The Sun Makers
    The Power of Kroll
    The Armageddon Factor
    Destiny of the Daleks
    Nightmare of Eden
    The Horns of Nimon
    Warriors’ Gate
    The Keeper of Traken

    5th Doctor
    Arc of Infinity
    Resurrection of the Daleks (never officially novelised)
    Planet of Fire

    6th Doctor
    Attack of the Cybermen
    Vengeance on Varos
    Revelation of the Daleks (never officially novelised)

    7th Doctor
    Time and the Rani
    Silver Nemesis

    8th doctor
    The movie

    • Gordon

      May 17th, 2018 - 12:10am

      Scrap the crusaders

    • Alex

      May 17th, 2018 - 1:54am

      Wow, really? I didn’t realise there was so many left un-audiobooked (though I do tend to forget just how much classic who there is at times). So, assuming one is done 1 every month, that gives 4.5 more years, plus we can assume there’d be months where it’s other novelisations and the such being read, so really it’s still a bit over 5 years until we’ve got them all.

    • PJ

      May 17th, 2018 - 4:30pm

      Plus The Hand of Fear and Warriors of the Deep.

  • TigerMan1995

    May 16th, 2018 - 4:30pm

    Now only two more stories to go from Season 1: Doctor Who and the Keys of Marinus and The Reign of Terror

  • Nuallain

    May 16th, 2018 - 11:01am

    Isn’t it kind of time the default image template was updated for these things? None of them are going to have the 1996 logo on them when they actually come out.

    • booboo

      May 16th, 2018 - 11:42am

      made one up, not seen any kind of official one yet

  • Whorules

    May 16th, 2018 - 10:32am

    I’d rather get reprinted versions of the books than these audio versions. My copy of marco polo is still in good condition but it is 33 years old now! More reprints and new target books please…

  • Alex

    May 16th, 2018 - 5:11am

    Gordon, how do we know that Age of Endurance was recorded in 2014? Not that I don’t believe you, I just wasn’t aware they did EA’s so far in advance. I assumed that was mainly just the Fourth Doctor Adventures where they record years in advance.

    • Anonymous

      May 16th, 2018 - 7:44am

      Not the guy you’re asking, but that’s the date recording on the Big Finish website. If you have a look around, you’ll see that William Russell hasn’t worked now for BF since 2014, and I honestly doubt he will again.

    • Gordon

      May 16th, 2018 - 9:44am

      There was a q and a by nick Briggs on facebook and he said that it was for availability reasons

    • Alex

      May 16th, 2018 - 1:00pm

      Thanks! I did check the Age of Endurance technical details (which is where they normally have the “Date Recorded” thing but it wasn’t there). And thanks! Really is a shame he isn’t fit enough to do Big Finish again (I assume it’s just health/exhaustion reasons he’s reluctant).


    May 16th, 2018 - 2:25am

    Like Caves, with this being such a highly regarded story I’d have thought they’d record this one ages ago. I hope it’s either William Russell or Mark Eden reading.

    • Alex

      May 16th, 2018 - 3:06am

      Sadly, I doubt William Russell would read it. Russell’s stopped doing audio work for Big Finish, assumably because he’s 93 and probably doesn’t have the energy to keep doing it, so I doubt he’d be able to do a 3-4 hour audiobook.

      Mark Eden is possible though? I’m honestly expecting either Carole Anne Ford or Peter Purves, as the BBC has had him recording quite a bit lately in terms of audiobooks.

    • Gordon

      May 16th, 2018 - 4:09am

      Probably will be carol Ann ford or mark Eden. Seems unlikely to be William Russell as he hasn’t done audio work for some time. Even the last big finish stuff was done 2 years before it was out. He’s 92 year old. He’s earned the right to put his feet up

    • TARDISGuy

      May 16th, 2018 - 4:24am

      He has read quite a few at this point.
      Carole Ann Ford makes sense as she read Planet of Giants not long ago.

    • Andy

      May 16th, 2018 - 5:08am

      I thought Russell had retired after his work in 2016 for Big Finish? Something about his health, iirc

  • bryan

    May 15th, 2018 - 8:42pm

    Silly to get excited, as these are all coming out eventually.

    But I have been waiting for this one.

    After the small cryptic message from William Russells` Agent , that we shouldnt rule out some more Audio work. I was hoping he would Read this one (although Mark Eden would be excellent as well.

    It also seems there are ghost listinfs for An Unearthly Child 2018 release or TBA on the Audiobooks wiki page , which is usually very very accurate. and has normally said about the problem with the copyright. So hopefully this one can finally come out too.

    • TigerMan1995

      May 16th, 2018 - 4:33pm

      An Unearthly Child was planned to be released in Nov 2013 but AudioGO went into bankruptcy and the release was cancelled. When Penguin picked it back up in early 2014 the release date would be Nov 2014 but was cancelled again because of “rights” issues. We still don’t know when it’s coming out. Do note it’s not the 1981 novelisation but a new one by Nigel Robinson written, of course, in 2013.

    • J45ON96

      May 17th, 2018 - 12:33am

      Cryptic message from his agent?


    May 15th, 2018 - 8:34pm

    Are these Target Audiobook or the original TV story on CD? I’m presuming it’s Target considering Marco Polo has already been released

    • Gordon

      May 16th, 2018 - 10:42am

      It’s an audio reading of the target book

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