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A Girl's Best Friend: Misc


Dr Who

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From TARDIS Index File, the free Doctor Who reference.

A Girl's Best Friend
Series: Doctor Who -
K-9 and Company
Series Number: 1
Main character: Sarah Jane Smith
K-9 Mark III
Brendan Richards
Enemy: Hecate Cult
Setting: Moreton Harwood
Writer: Terence Dudley
Director: John Black
Producer: John Nathan-Turner
Broadcast: 28th December 1981
Format: 1 50-minute episode
Prod. Code: 7P
Previous Story:
Following Story:

A Girl's Best Friend was a single-episode story produced in 1981 as a pilot for a potential Doctor Who spin-off called K-9 and Company. The BBC chose not to commission a new series, but did televise the episode as a holiday season special (the first of its kind for the Doctor Who franchise, to be followed many years later by an annual series of Doctor Who Christmas specials). This was the only attempt at a spin-off series during the "classic series" era to make it to the filming stage; it would be more than a quarter-century before this was attempted again.

It is common for this episode to be referred to only by the series title, K-9 and Company, including its initial release on home video and in the Target Books novelisation.



Sarah pays a Christmas visit to her Aunt Lavinia's house in the village of Moreton Harwood. She discovers that Lavinia, a noted scientist, has unexpectedly left early for a lecture tour of the USA. She does however meet Brendan - Lavinia's ward - and Commander Bill Pollock - her partner in a small market garden business. Also in the house, in a box sent to her by the Doctor, she finds K9. Brendan is kidnapped by a local coven of witches who want to sacrifice him to the goddess Hecate. Sarah, with K9's assistance, foils their plan and unmasks their leaders - Commander Pollock and local postmistress Lily Gregson.


to be added




  • The Doctor sent K-9 to Sarah in 1978, it was in her flat in Croydon.
  • K-9 announces himself as "Mark III", referencing the previous two versions of K-9 (last seen in The Invasion of Time and Warriors' Gate, respectively) and in particularly differentiating himself from the version last seen with Romana.
  • K-9 plays on the running gag regarding the Doctor's name and the title of the parent series when Brendan asks, "Who is the Doctor?" and K-9 replies, "Affirmative."

Story Notes

  • This is the first official Doctor Who spin-off; the second is Torchwood, the third is The Sarah Jane Adventures, and the fourth is K-9.
  • The Sarah Jane Adventures debuted with its pilot episode, Invasion of the Bane, only 3 days after the 25th anniversary of the original broadcast of this pilot.
  • The Winter Hill transmitter in the North West region suffered a power blackout at the time this story was screening (most likely resulting in lower than expected ratings).
  • The theme music was composed by Ian Levine. Supposedly it was meant to be an orchestral score, but was altered to be electronically performed, with John Leeson "singing" in character as K-9.
  • Running 50 minutes, this was the first time a Doctor Who-related production had exceeded 30 minutes in length.
  • This story had the working titles of Sarah And K-9 and One Girl And Her Dog.


  • 8.4 million viewers


to be added

Filming Locations

  • Cirencester in the Gloucestershire countryside.
  • Pebble Mill studios in Birmingham
  • Sheepscombe, Gloucestershire
  • Wishanger Farm, Wischanger, Gloucestershire
  • Parish Church, North Woodchester, Gloucestershire
  • Barnsley House, Barnsley, Gloucestershire
  • Cheltenham Road, Bisley, Gloucestershire
  • Miserden Park Estate, Miserden, Gloucestershire
  • Miserden Nurseries, Gloucestershire
  • Miserden, Gloucestershire
  • Bear Inn, Bisley, Gloucestershire (Title sequence; Sarah typing on a typewriter)

Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

to be added



DVD, Video and Other Releases

  • A Girl's Best Friend was released on video on 7 August 1995.
  • Released along side The Invisible Enemy on DVD as part of K-9 Tales


Main article: K-9 and Company (novelisation)

See also

External Links

  • BBC - Doctor Who - The Classic Series - Episode Guide: A Girl's Best Friend
  • Doctor Who Reference Guide - Detailed Synopsis - A Girl's Best Friend
  • The Locations Guide to Doctor Who, Torchwood and The Sarah Jane Adventures: Story Locations - A Girl's Best Friend
  • Doctor Who: A Brief History of Time (Travel) - A Brief History of Time (Travel): A Girl's Best Friend

This article uses material from the "A Girl's Best Friend" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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