REVIEW: Doctor Who Comic UK Issue #8

The eighth issue of the official Doctor Who Comic from Titan Comics is in shops now in the UK. The super-size summer special gathers together the new ongoing adventures of the Tenth, Eleventh and Twelfth Doctors as portrayed onscreen by David Tennant, Matt Smith and Peter Capaldi. The comic appears every four weeks in newsagents and supermarkets and can also be ordered online. Subscription options are also available.

Doctor Who – The Twelfth Doctor
The Fractures Part 3
Writer: Robbie Morrison
Artist: Brian Williamson

The mysterious Fractures have broken through to our Universe in their search for dimension-hopping scientist Paul Foster to stop the whole of reality from rupturing. As their body-hopping menace spreads across London and UNIT is compromised, the Doctor is forced to attempt a risky solution to restore the entities’ victims. The chapter reaffirms just how much the Doctor is motivated by injustice and the mistreatment of others and also the degree of self-sacrifice he is willing to make to help just one individual. While the Twelfth Doctor may be brusque in nature and often insensitive, his sense of justice as usual overrides his calculation of risk. Though there’s a happy ending for now the episode leaves the consequences of the Doctor’s actions open for a future chapter.

Doctor Who – The Eleventh Doctor
The Rise And Fall
Writer: Al Ewing
Artist: Boo Cook

Through the new adventures of the Eleventh Doctor and his travels with Alice, Jones and ARC, one entity has been a constant shadowy presence – that of the mysterious ServeYouInc. Following their last encounter with the mysterious and powerful Talent Scout, the Doctor is appalled to see Alice revert to the grief-stricken, insecure woman that he met back on Earth, while living mind ARC has retracted into a ball of fear. The Doctor has decided that it’s time to confront the beings behind this company, and he’s hatched his most businesslike plan ever. The Doctor of course has no idea what he’s walking into but, underlying his scatty, disorganised exterior it’s very clear that he has had enough and whatever is waiting for him in the company’s executive suite is about to see the side of him that monsters run from. However, has the Doctor met his match at last? His actions on Rokhandi woke a being that had been trapped and divided to contain its power. The Talent Scout nearly got the better of him once before by making him an irresistible offer – can the Doctor be bought so easily again? And what could such a powerful entity achieve if it had the TARDIS in its grasp? As Jones and Alice face their own peril, the nature of ARC’s origins is revealed. They can only hope that he’s able to help them deal with the new version of the Doctor that has just stepped out of the elevator...  

Doctor Who – The Tenth Doctor
The Weeping Angels Of Mons Part 3
Writer: Robbie Morrison
Artist: Daniel Indro

As if being trapped on the desolate battlefields of the Somme wasn’t dangerous enough, the Doctor, Gabby and a band of terrified soldiers have found themselves surrounded by a desperate crowd of starving Weeping Angels. Gabby realises, almost too late that a staring contest against one of the quantum-locked foe has much higher stakes than the ones she’s used to at home against her kid brother. It takes a handsome hero to rescue her – and for once it’s not the Doctor. The attraction between Gabby and Scottish soldier Jamie Colquhoun is growing but there’s no time for romance in the trenches. The Doctor needs the TARDIS to get Gabby to safety – and guess who has her again…

Fortunately, as ever, he  has a knack of discerning bravery and ingenuity within the people he encounters and encouraging them to make those talents known, and he has found the right ally here in the form of soldier Jamie Colquhoun. Jamie isn’t the first hero of the Somme that the Doctor has encountered and there’s a nice nod back to the closing scenes of The Family Of Blood where the Doctor and Martha paid tribute to Tim Latimer.

Writer Robbie Morrison intersperses the rising tension and hopelessness of the battlefield with a little romance and some timey-wimey twists. The Doctor’s quicksilver character jumps out from the pages, flipping from deadly seriousness to ridiculous in an instant and you can all but hear David Tennant speaking the dialogue. The artwork jumps pleasingly from the dark, desperate hues of the battlefield - slate greys, mud browns and dark blues to a sunny day in modern day France, with azure skies and bright red poppies. In all, the Doctor and Gabby's adventure aside, the story arc remembers the fallen of the Great War and the sacrifices that were made and also acknowledges the friendships and loyalties that developed between young, frightened men in that terrible situation. Jamie is offered an easy escape from the horrors of war, but in the end he chooses instead to do the right thing for his peers and colleagues.