Dodo Chaplet
Dodo Chaplet.png
Vital statistics
Played by Jackie Lane
Years active 1966
Travelled with First Doctor
First story The Massacre
Last story The War Machines
Previous Next
Sara Kingdom Ben

A dodo is an extinct, flightless bird. It apparently tasted alright, and it was famous for being silly looking. I think they had one in Alice in Wonderl--

What? They named a Companion Dodo? That's fucking stupid. Show me some evidence that this happened. That's right, you can't.


Dodo Chaplet (played by Jackie Lane) travelled with the First Doctor and is introduced at the end of The Massacre, which is entirely missing.

She got hypnotised halfway through her sixth story The War Machines and went off for a "rest", only to never appear again.

Probably died.

In all fairness though, she was a fucking awful character who never did anything useful on the show; she gave vulnerable future humans a life-threatening fever, constantly got distracted from the tasks set in front of her in The Celestial Toymaker like a child with a bad case of ADHD, and randomly blundered into the gunfight at the OK Corral and got captured because the situation needed a damsel in distress for some reason. She was good in The Savages, but it feels completely out of character considering what a fucking dunce she had been in the previous three stories, as well as how she would be in The War Machines.

Some of the novels tried to make Dodo into an interesting character, but they mostly did so by ignoring the dull character seen on-screen and pretending there was a completely different and much more interesting character named Dodo who traveled with the Doctor and Steven (to be fair, she could be interesting at times on the show, but in a twist of bitter irony, it was almost always on the episodes that got junked). The one exception is Who Killed Kennedy, which left Dodo as Dodo and instead followed up on how her abandonment in The War Machines ruined the rest of her life, which is either horrific or schadenfreuderifically entertaining, depending on how much you hate the character.

The one thing all the novels agree on is that she died of space syphilis in the 1970s.

At one point, it was a popular topic in fandom to speculate on whether even Big Finish could fix the character. Unfortunately, Jackie Lane had no desire to reprise her role. Eventually, they included her in some of the Companion Chronicles (a sort of hybrid between a book on tape and a one-man show) starring Steven. Even Marc Platt couldn't come up with much interesting to do with her, but there is something to be said for hearing Peter Purves describe her actions instead of having to watch Jackie Lane perform them.

Behind the scenes

Ultimately the character was not deemed a success by the programme's makers, and Lane's contract was not extended beyond episode two of The War Machines

To replace her, two new characters, Polly (Anneke Wills) and Ben (Michael Craze), thought to be more in tune with the "swinging sixties", became companions.

RIP Dodo.