Doctor Who fans hungry for more adventures with the classic Doctors are in luck, as another novel highlighting a former Time Lord’s adventure is on its way to bookstores. This time, however, the novel will be written by former Doctor actor Tom Baker, and will be based on a movie script he’d written long ago. Scratchman will finally see the light of day thanks to Baker’s efforts — along with Penguin, which secured what sounds like an exciting story.
Scratchman will take Doctor Who fans back to the time of the Seventh Doctor, as he and Sarah Jane Smith travel to a remote Scottish island for some time on holiday. Their vacation is cut short when they realize the locals are being attacked by scarecrows. It turns out things are much worse than that, as the whole adventure turns out to be a trap by the “Scratchman” who claims to be the devil.
The story synopsis (via Radio Times) then says The Doctor will go up against the Scratchman and engage in a battle that will bring out some of his greatest fears. Tom Baker first created the concept during his run on Doctor Who with actor Ian Martin. Baker has attempted to bring the story to the screen over the years, but has only found success recently with his publishing deal with Penguin. The book is scheduled for release Thursday, January 24.
Scratchman will not be the first time Doctor Who has tackled evil scarecrows, or the devil. Killer scarecrows haunted a school in the episode “The Family of Blood,” which was itself based off the 1995 Doctor Who novel Human Nature. The episode where the Doctor squared off with a creature claiming to be the Devil was “The Satan Pit.” Both of these adventures happened during the David Tennant run, and don’t seem to be inspired by Tom Baker’s original concept.
Scratchman is the latest collaboration between Doctor Who and Tom Baker, who lent his voice to help complete an unfinished episode in 2017. Prior to that Baker had a cameo role in the 50th anniversary special for the series, which he didn’t appreciate as much as some fans may have. Baker is one of the more celebrated Doctors, among the classic actors to portray the character, and was known for his long scarf and overcoat, among other things.