Release Date: April 8th, 2018
Genre: Sci-Fi/Media Tie-In
Rating: 3/5 Stars
Other Doctor Who Reviews: Graphic Novel Review: Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor Archives Omnibus Vol. 1 / Doctor Who – The Tenth Doctor Adventures, Volume 1 / Graphic Novel Review: Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor Archives Omnibus, Vol 2 / Graphic Novel Review: Doctor Who: The Iron Legion
This is the second of these collections I’ve read, putting together the Doctor Who comics from the magazine, and whereas I enjoyed the first book – with Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor – I didn’t enjoy this one so much, featuring Peter Davison’s Fifth Doctor. It felt more dry, the stories not as compelling, as The Doctor moves through time, facing old and new enemies. There’s the addition here of a few extra characters, including a knight who takes the whole time travel thing very easily, a GI from an alternative world where Japan and the U.S. are still at war into the 1960s, and Shayde, a matrix agent.
There’s a lot going on in these comics, and although the story connects them all, there’s so many different elements and components to it, as well as a number of shorter tales squeezed in, it’s not that easy to follow. It feels very much like parts of Doctor Who were thrown into a pot, stirred in together, then crammed into a not great story.
The Doctor, too, spends most of his time as a passive character, just getting thrown from one thing to the next, not really doing much unless he absolutely has to. Maybe it’s because of the time lapsed between these stories actually coming out and me reading them, but it doesn’t hold up. The Iron Legion felt like a fun jaunt into the past, this was more like a painful visit. A number of plot threads were left hanging, and I think, personally, I don’t enjoy seeing The Doctor without compassion. He doesn’t go out of his way to hurt others here, but he just seems often like he doesn’t care.
Maybe if I’d seen more of Davison’s Doctor on screen, I might have responded better to this. I enjoyed the art work, at least, and there were some really good moments that stopped this slipping down below three stars, but overall it was simply okay, and unfortunately lacked the charm found in The Iron Legion.