|Country of origin||United Kingdom|
|No. of stories||5 (+1 unaired)|
|No. of episodes||20 (+6 unaired)|
|Original release||1 September 1979 –|
12 January 1980
The seventeenth season of British science fiction television series Doctor Who began on 1 September 1979 with the story Destiny of the Daleks, and ended with The Horns of Nimon. This was Graham Williams' final series producing Doctor Who. The script writer was Douglas Adams.
See also: List of Doctor Who cast members
Tom Baker continued as the Fourth Doctor. Lalla Ward, who played Princess Astra in the season 16 finale The Armageddon Factor, returned to the series as the newly regenerated Romana, replacing Mary Tamm in the role. After John Leeson declined to return as K9, David Brierly replaced him in the part for the season's final four serials, including Shada.
Davros returns in Destiny of the Daleks, this time played by David Gooderson.
See also: List of Doctor Who episodes (1963–1989)
Season 17 was intended to follow the same format as had every season since Season 13, with five 4-part serials and a 6-parter closing the season out. However, the planned final serial of the season, Shada, was affected by an industrial dispute involving the BBC's technicians; while the location filming and the first studio recording session were completed, strike action by staff meant that the planned second studio session had to be cancelled. Although the dispute was resolved and plans were put in place to continue work on the story, it was eventually shelved, as the BBC was concerned that its Christmas productions might be affected. A BBC historian has suggested that by cancelling completely instead of finishing what little was required, the management could demonstrate that the strikes had consequences. Ironically, the viewer ratings of Season 17 were also affected by a strike, with the BBC's main rival, ITV, off air due to a dispute.
|Serial title||Episode titles||Directed by||Written by||Original air date||Prod.|
|104||1||Destiny of the Daleks||"Episode One"||Ken Grieve||Terry Nation||1 September 1979||5J||13.0||67|
|"Episode Two"||Ken Grieve||Terry Nation||8 September 1979||5J||12.7||—|
|"Episode Three"||Ken Grieve||Terry Nation||15 September 1979||5J||13.8||63|
|"Episode Four"||Ken Grieve||Terry Nation||22 September 1979||5J||14.4||64|
|The TARDIS lands the Fourth Doctor and Romana on a strangely familiar planet. There, they meet the android Movellans, who are locked in a war with the Daleks. The planet is Skaro, and in a bunker sits an enemy long thought dead — Davros, creator of the Daleks.|
|105||2||City of Death||"Part One"||Michael Hayes||"David Agnew" (Douglas Adams,|
Graham Williams, and David Fisher)
|29 September 1979||5H||12.4||—|
|"Part Two"||Michael Hayes||"David Agnew"||6 October 1979||5H||14.1||64|
|"Part Three"||Michael Hayes||"David Agnew"||13 October 1979||5H||15.4||—|
|"Part Four"||Michael Hayes||"David Agnew"||20 October 1979||5H||16.1||64|
|In 1979 Paris, the alien Scaroth intends to erase human history by saving his fellow Jagaroth 400 million years in the past.|
|106||3||The Creature from the Pit||"Part One"||Christopher Barry||David Fisher||27 October 1979||5G||9.3||—|
|"Part Two"||Christopher Barry||David Fisher||3 November 1979||5G||10.8||67|
|"Part Three"||Christopher Barry||David Fisher||10 November 1979||5G||10.2||—|
|"Part Four"||Christopher Barry||David Fisher||17 November 1979||5G||9.6||—|
|On the planet Chloris, the Doctor and Romana soon find themselves caught up in a long and secret enmity between the Lady Adrasta, who rules the planet in fear, and the mysterious Creature that she keeps in a Pit.|
|107||4||Nightmare of Eden||"Part One"||Alan Bromly||Bob Baker||24 November 1979||5K||8.7||—|
|"Part Two"||Alan Bromly||Bob Baker||1 December 1979||5K||9.6||—|
|"Part Three"||Alan Bromly||Bob Baker||8 December 1979||5K||9.6||—|
|"Part Four"||Alan Bromly||Bob Baker||15 December 1979||5K||9.4||65|
|The TARDIS lands at the site of a hyperspatial collision between two spacecraft – as a result of which, neither ship is dimensionally stable, risking the lives of all those aboard.|
|108||5||The Horns of Nimon||"Part One"||Kenny McBain||Anthony Read||22 December 1979||5L||6.0||—|
|"Part Two"||Kenny McBain||Anthony Read||29 December 1979||5L||8.8||—|
|"Part Three"||Kenny McBain||Anthony Read||5 January 1980||5L||9.8||—|
|"Part Four"||Kenny McBain||Anthony Read||12 January 1980||5L||10.4||67|
|After colliding with a spaceship, the Doctor, Romana and K9 learn that young natives from a peaceful planet called Aneth are being transported into a great labyrinth called the "Power Complex".|
|108.5||6||Shada||N/A||Pennant Roberts||Douglas Adams||Unaired[note 1]||5M||—||—|
|The story revolves around the lost planet Shada, on which the Time Lords built a prison for defeated would-be conquerors of the universe. Skagra, an up-and-coming would-be conqueror of the universe, needs the assistance of one of the prison's inmates, but finds that nobody knows where Shada is anymore except one aged Time Lord who has retired to Earth.|
Part 4 of The Horns of Nimon saw the last appearance of the diamond-shaped logo that had been used since The Time Warrior in 1973.
The entire season was broadcast from 1 September 1979 to 12 January 1980.
|Season||Story no.||Serial name||Number and duration
|UK release date||Australia release date||USA/Canada release date|
|17||104||Destiny of the Daleks||4 x 25 min||July 1994||August 1994||May 1997|
|105||City of Death||4 x 25 min||April 1991||September 1991||May 1994|
|106||The Creature from the Pit||4 x 25 min||July 2002||October 2002||October 2003|
|107||Nightmare of Eden||4 x 25 min.||December 1998||March 1999||May 1999|
|108||The Horns of Nimon||4 x 25 min.||June 2003||September 2003||October 2003|
|108.5||Shada||—||July 1992||February 1993||October 1992|
|Season||Story no.||Serial name||Number and duration
|R2 release date||R4 release date||R1 release date|
|17||104||Destiny of the Daleks[a]||4 × 25 min.||26 November 2007||6 February 2008||4 March 2008|
|105||City of Death||4 × 25 min.||7 November 2005||1 December 2005||8 November 2005|
|106||The Creature from the Pit||4 × 25 min.||3 May 2010||1 July 2010||7 September 2010|
|107||Nightmare of Eden||4 × 25 min.||2 April 2012||3 May 2012||8 May 2012|
|108||The Horns of Nimon[b]||4 × 25 min.||29 March 2010||3 June 2010||6 July 2010|
|108.5||Shada[c]||1 × 25 min.
4 × 18 min.
1 × 14 min.
|7 January 2013||9 January 2013||8 January 2013|
|Shada (Animated Edition)||1 × 138 min.||4 December 2017(D,B)||10 January 2018(D,B)||4 September 2018|
|104–108.5||Complete Season 17[d]||27 × 25 min.
1 x 138 min.
4 x 18 min.
1 x 14 min.
|20 December 2021(D,B)||16 February 2022(D,B)||5 April 2022(D,B)|
See also: List of Doctor Who novelisations
|Season||Story no.||Library no.[a]||Novelisation title||Author||Hardcover
|17||104||21||Doctor Who and the Destiny of the Daleks||Terrance Dicks||22 November 1979||—|
|105||—||City of Death (unabridged)||James Goss||21 May 2015||11 February 2016[e]||21 May 2015|
|City of Death (abridged)||—||5 April 2018||—|
|106||11||Doctor Who and the Creature from the Pit||David Fisher||15 January 1981||7 April 2008|
|107||45||Doctor Who and the Nightmare of Eden||Terrance Dicks||18 September 1980||21 August 1980||6 October 2022|
|108||31||Doctor Who and the Horns of Nimon||16 October 1980||—|
|108.5||—||Shada||Gareth Roberts||15 March 2012||31 January 2013[e]||15 March 2012|