15th Aug2017

‘Doctor Who: The Ninth Doctor #15’ Review

by Dean Fuller

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


The last couple of issues have been great fun, with Captain Jack both taking centre stage and driving the main plot forward. Last issue also turned a lot of what we thought we knew on its head. The dead then alive again, Zloy Volt turned out be dead again when it was revealed he was a Sin-Eater, and the second Captain Jack was not an out of time Captain Jack but a slightly mad billionairess called Addison Delamar in a Slitheen suit. It was as mad as it all sounds, and the rub was that we thought it was all to do with Captain Jack but it turned out that none of it was. It was all an elaborate trap to capture The Doctor, and to auction his memories off to the highest bidder. No shortage of takers of course.

Of course a mere bidding war for a Time Lord’s memories is not exciting enough, so we soon get a spanner in the works. Just as the auction is about to begin, with The Harrigan High Command, Church of the Evergreen Man, Queen Shreeker, and the Cybermen all ready to bid, a package arrives. Delamar opens it, to find she has been outfoxed, not by the captive Doctor, but the Cybermen. The package contained a cybermat, which starts to convert Delamar into a Cyberman herself, and makes her assassinate the other bidders. Funnily enough their colleagues don’t take too kindly to that and a huge free for all breaks out amongst everyone.

As The Doctor tries to resist his memories being extracted by the Cybermen as fighting rages everywhere, Tara, Rose and Jack are trying to escape the memory prison they are all trapped in. Rose breaks through, and Tara manages to take out Cyber Delamar before she can hurt The Doctor more. The damage she causes enables The Harrigan to destroy the Cyberman ship. As the bidding factions continue to tear the world apart, The Doctor realises the only way to stop all this is give them what they want. He broadcasts his memories live, and causes the fighting to stop. The memories are so visceral, so tragic, so sad the factions realise they should leave The Doctor’s memories where they are, and leave him with the huge burden.

‘The Bidding War’ was a great way to close out this ‘season’, especially as it was, and is, the main driving force of this incarnation of The Doctor. The guilt, and attempt at redemption, is what drives him, and it was nice how this played into the resolution of the end of the story. Cavan Scott did a great job of tapping into this, and making us think we were reading a Captain Jack story at first but then revealing something else. Great writing. My one criticism is that the character of Tara has been really under utilised ever since she joined the TARDIS, and this story again did very little with her. That aside, great stuff.

The art by Cris Bolson and Adriana Melo was very good indeed. Stylistically it was great to look at, but technically very impressive too. Loved the mixing up of panels from double page spreads to 15 panels on one page, and the fact that the pacing never missed a beat. Take a bow, art team, you deserve it.

So that’s it, the end of this run of the book. It certainly went out on a suitable high, and left me wanting to read more, which is the highest praise you can give any book. Roll on next ‘season’.

**** 4/5


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