Doctor Who Extended Media Review – Placebo Effect by Gary Russell

Placebo Effect by Gary Russell was the thirteenth novel in the BBC Eighth Doctor novel series. It featured the Eighth Doctor and Sam Jones. It also featured Stacy Townsend and Ssard, a human and Ice Warrior respectively, who had travelled with the Doctor in the Radio Times comic stories and the 1997 Unofficial Annual (see review here). 

The Doctor and Sam go the the artificial planetoid Micawber’s World to attend the wedding of the Doctor’s former companions Stacy and Ssard. Unfortunately Stacy and Ssard fly off to their honeymoon shortly into the novel and are not a part of the narrative afterwards. The main flow of the story centers around a drug trade and some murders involving the Foamasi and the Wirrrn. There is an interesting use of time travel when the Doctor leaves to pick up Stacy’s parents for the wedding and takes several weeks giving them a tour of the universe while only being gone a few hours away from Sam. I also like when Sam challenges The Doctor for never mentioning Stacy and Ssard to her making her lie to them to spare her feelings. It is reminiscent of the scene in the series when The Doctor tells Rose why he never mentioned Sarah Jane to her. The book was a little slow and I wish there was more of Stacy and Ssard, 7 out of 10.