Written by Cavan Scott | Art by Adriana Melo | Published by Titan Comics | Format: Paperback, 32pp
Last issue was a great start to the new ongoing adventures of the Ninth Doctor. Although the 9th Doctor is not the most defined of the Time Lords, in companion Rose Tyler and Time Agent Jack Harness you have possibly the best assistants in Who history (although I can’t not mention K-9 because, well, K-9). This trio could almost write their own adventures, given half a chance, but luckily for us scripter Cavan Scott does that pretty well too. The blurring of fact and fiction, creator and created was part of the theme of last issue, when the team travel to Gharusa Prime, where Doctor Who is a huge Holovid entertainment show, and The Doctor is a superstar.
To add to the fun last issue, there was an actual other Doctor running around as well, and to cut a long story short (hey, read last issue’s review) our Doctor and Captain Jack ended up arrested, and Rose ends up in a spot of bother when she comes face to face with the Slitheen. The fun continues this issue, as while the Doctor is trying to persuade the Gharusian police he is the real Doctor, Rose discovers that Slist, a Slitheen, has been the one mimicking him, wearing the skin suit. Slist is hiding from the Jinglatheen, a race who look very similar but hate the Slitheen (stay with me here). They then approach Slist (back looking like The Doctor) asking for his help, thinking he is the real Doctor, and he agrees to help though clearly with his own schemes in mind.
After their misunderstandings are cleared up, the freed Doctor and Captain Jack realise they are dealing with Slitheen, and that Rose has been abducted. Rose is en route to the Jinglatheen home world, trapped by an explosive probe under her skin forcing her to play the role of companion to Slist’s fake Doctor. The Jinglatheen have brought the (fake) Doctor to a peace conference, where he is to try and help unite the races and keep the peace. Slist is happy to do this, as he wants to reap the expected financial rewards afterwards, but Rose decides she cannot allow it, and her unmasking of the Doctor as a Slitheen, and a female one at that, sees all hell break loose and Rose again in mortal trouble.
This was a fun read, a little bit slapstick with quite a bit of humour and just a few more serious moments thrown in. People forget that Christopher Eccleston brought a certain brand of humour to the role, even though his incarnation was more serious than most before, and Cavan Scott taps into that nicely here. The dialogue throughout, from all the characters, is very well written, and you hear the actors voices in your head as you read. As with last issue, my only relatively minor gripe is that the main story progression is slow, the actual content of the issue quite light, though masked very well by sparkling dialogue and quite a few in-jokes.
The art by Adriana Melo seemed better than last issue, or at least I enjoyed it more. It suited the light tone very well, the likenesses of the lead characters were very good, and the dialogue and pace of the script were made to work even better by the great layouts and choice of panel style. The Slitheen and Jinglatheen were especially drawn well, as both comical in appearance but with that little air of menace when provoked. Great work.
Cavan Scott did that great thing, using existing Who lore as the basis for the story but then adding his own little embellishment going forward. Next issue’s wrap up should be fun.
Doctor Who: The 9th Doctor #2 is out now from Titan Comics