20th Jul2017

‘Doctor Who: The Ninth Doctor #14’ Review

by Dean Fuller

Written by Cavan Scott | Art by Cris Bolson, Adrian Melo | Published by Titan Comics


Last issue wasn’t a very good issue of Doctor Who. That’s not to say it wasn’t a good issue of course, because it wasn’t bad at all, but what it was was an issue of Jack Harkness, Time Agent. That’s ok of course, as who doesn’t like a man of action / innuendo spouting Time Agent, certainly not me. Jack of course has recently had his memories restored, after having some erased, and has become aware of some not so good things he did for the Time Agency in the past. One thing especially has bothered him, his assassination of Zloy Volt, a man he was told would develop weapons of mass destruction in the future. Then Jack discovered he was lied to.

Volt was actually about to invent free time travel for all, something the Time Agency did not want, and Jack found out what they had done. Then two years of his life disappeared. Two surprising developments rounded out last issue. Zloy Volt was in fact very much alive and well after all, and the assassin Captain Jack saw about to try and assassinate him in the present was…him. Yep. The Doctor, Rose, and Tara come looking for Jack, or Jack’s, but he’s nowhere to be found. The fact they can remember him is a good sign, as he hasn’t been eradicated from history, as the Eradicator gun tends to do. Only one thing left to do when looking for someone in the 54th Century. Hit social media.

Social media has advanced a little in the future, with people being able to ‘experience’ their friends posts, rather than read them. Rose has a baby for example. Not really, of course, but experiences a post from the birth of a baby. The Doctor uses that hook to try and find Jack’s memories, which he tracks back to Nomicae, a Silicon Valley-esque planetoid. Bizarrely, Jack’s memories and experiences are being sold as a premium content package, obviously not something Jack would willingly do. They track Jack to the offices of social media giant Memgram, and plug back into the memories of the unconscious Jack. As expected nothing is what it seemed.

Zloy Volt was dead, and is dead, and was killed by Jack. The ‘current’ Volt is a Sin-Eater, a humanoid capable of imitating anyone. The other Captain Jack was actually a wealthy billionairess, Addison Delamar, in a sort of Slitheen suit who was getting back at Jack for his double crossing of her in the past. The kicker? She was using him to entrap The Doctor, which of course has worked nicely. The Doctor is to be the star of a sale, the sale of a Time Lord’s memories, especially those of the legendary Time War. The Harrigan High Command, Church of the Evergreen Man, and Queen Shreeker all turn up in person to bid, and it wouldn’t be an auction without a phone bidder. That would be the Cybermen, via holo-link. Let’s get that bidding started shall we.

‘The Bidding War’ was a great read, taking the already fun Captain Jack storyline and in many ways turning it on its head. Quite a lot of what I thought was going on turned out to be misdirection. Well played Cavan Scott, well played. The Doctor returned to centre stage, yet again both brilliant and victim to the mistakes and sins of his past. The art by Cris Bolson and Adriana Melo was excellent, really mixing up panel sizes and placement, throwing in two page spreads and varying up the style of the real world with that of the memories. Great work all round, and some nice winks to Who history.

So, who will bid the most for The Doctor’s memories? Will he be the subject of a Bargain Hunt? Will he go Under The Hammer? Will Addison Delamar Flog It? Let’s hope those bidding find some Cash in the Attic.

Couldn’t resist.

But buy the book, it’s great.

**** 4/5


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