Mince Spies was the second story in 2014's Christmas Lights anthology series. It was written by Fang Rock, under the pseudonym Jon Bland ("son of Robin", the droll writer commenter). It featured the Third Doctor and Liz, and was set in the seventies (or was the eighties).

It wasn't notable for anything, except for being blissfully short. The story will be picked up at Christmas 2015 in A Christmas Carol.

Summary Edit

Three years after leaving UNIT, Liz leaves their Christmas Party, disappointed at the Doctor's absence. Lost in her thoughts, she's almost run over by Bessie as the Time Lord careers round the country lanes. Reunited, they begin to investigate the possibility of a spy within the organisation.

The trail takes them to the Moon and back. At UNIT HQ, they discover the intruder and give chase as they escape on a motorbike. Arriving at the Christmas Party, they discover Corporal Bell is responsible. It soon transpires that it was all a misunderstanding and Bell was actually making a "pass" at the Doctor. Unfortunately, that's exactly his response, causing Bell to leave the event in an undignified manner.

The Brigadier toasts his two colleagues' good health.

Behind the Scenes Edit

Written by Fang Rock:

This was one story where the title came first. I thought it would be fun to do a UNIT spy thriller at Christmas, but that of course isn’t what we got at all. Jon Pertwee’s first series is my favourite of his, thanks in no small part to Caroline John’s Liz Shaw. So, going with my theme of underappreciated TV teams, I was always going to want to include them. I didn’t just want to do another story for Season 7 though, I wanted to examine their relationship a bit more deeply, and in doing that, I tried to highlight contrast between them.

This was most easily achieved by setting both up with separate lives, and setting it a few years after Liz left. Mince Spies is supposed to be set just before The Time Warrior, which explains the reference to the missing scientists, and why the Doctor’s alone. Liz famously never got a trip in the TARDIS either, so that was something I wanted to include. Although this is far from the story I first envisioned, I quite like it. And I’ve the title for the sequel in mind already…

Reviews Edit

Written by Poison Bacon:

Another cracker, excuse the pun. You seem to be using unusual Doctor and companion teams, it's great. Poor Corporal Bell! One thing... Four years after Liz left but no Jo? The series is shaping up to be fab.

Written by Kymera:

Well, that one was, again, interesting and fun. I think I'm beginning to see a pattern with the Doctor and cases of mistaken identity. Have I stumbled upon an arc of some kind, or am I just making up an early H.A.T.? Too soon to decide, I reckon, so I'll have to keep an eye out in the next posts.

As to the writers ... I have to admit, I do get an Omie vibe from this one.

Written by BigDocFan:

A fun festive story here, Classic Jon Pertwee story, nice use of Liz, she finally got a trip in the TARDIS.

All characters were soo in character so to speak, Brigadier's brief appearance was fun.

Certainly felt like Pertwee story with the Bessie vs Motorbike chase

Written by Cybertrash:

Another enjoyable festive story with a welcome return for Liz Shaw - a highly underrated companion. She was written well apart from the Elvis line, which I felt was out of place. The 3rd Doctor was captured brilliantly. Nice appearance from the Brigadier and Benton. Bessie too! The spy plot was interesting, but I wasn't keen on the misunderstanding, as this had already been done in Three Wise Men And A Baby and so it came across as repetitive in this one. As Joe said, the chase was good. I thought it was cool how Liz finally got to travel somewhere because she was doomed to stay on Earth as a companion during that amazing S7 (still one of my all-time favourites!) Overall, a nice story

revolving around UNIT, but I think I slightly preferred the first one. 

PS - I'm guessing this was either penned by Fang Rock or Cyberstudent. At first I thought Poison Bacon, but then he reviewed it so that ruled him out! Hard to tell who has written because nobody's posted stuff for years!!!

Written by Mavros:

Ere, too much Pertwee, in my opinion...

Well done Fang Rock ... Mav is beginning to like and understand the complexities of FANFIC... I think

Ere, Mav loves the 'Fact' that 'the cool writers' are turning to the Third Doctor so far... loves it