Aug 3, 2014

COMICS: Double Doctor Adventures

Another set of comics I'd like to feature is newly released Doctor Who by Titan Comics, featuring the Tenth and Eleventh Doctor each in his own series. Being a Doctor Who fan who's a had a while to blog about the traveling Time Lord, it's only proper that I feature the Doctor's latest adventures in 2D world.

Both standard covers are made by Alice Zhang, more popularly known as alicexz on deviantART. Alice became a fandom favorite for her colorful renderings of BBC Sherlock and eventually, Doctor Who. As with Rocket Raccoon, the regular covers are prettier than the variant and you can see the variants (as well as the covers for the following issues) right on the Doctor Who website. But the covers aren't the only interesting thing about these comics.

The Tenth Doctor #1
Tenth's comic book adventures begin after the the end of Season 4. This chapter starts off nicely with killer laundromats attacking the Doctor's newest companion, Gabriella, a frustrated artist struggling between fulfilling her dreams and running the family business. Sounds like in a day in the life, eh? Not quite. The story goes for a supernatural theme with ghosts, freaky photographs, the appearance of a Goat-man/devil-character and a shape-shifting monster.

I'm not really a fan of supernatural enemies. Monsters make a story darker and scarier but it doesn't necessarily make it a better one. Besides, Doctor Who is more supposed to be about exploring new worlds and meeting new creatures and having adventures across the galaxy. If I wanted another series about demons and evil, there are plenty of comic alternatives on the market.

Anyway, we meet the Doctor walking around the neighborhood with a nifty tracking device in hand. I'm not quite sure if he's following the Goat-man or the trail of randomly panicking people. This part becomes a confusing for me. Over the panels where people suddenly freak out, the Doctor is the only other entity around so there's no clear cause for riot. I'm not sure if these scenarios are related to Hector's encounter with the devil.

The comic follows both Gabriella's and the Doctor's storylines separately until they meet at the train where the shape-shifting life-sucker decides to make an appearance. Ten barely has time to use his sonic when we end with a cliffhanger. Ah. So this issue feels more like the prologue before the opening credits.

The great thing about this issue is the intriguing menace and the lovely artwork by Elena Casagrande. She illustrates Ten very nicely so I just might buy the next issue because the art is good.

The Eleventh Doctor #1 
While Ten's story has a menacing plot, Eleven's adventures take after his personality with a lighter tone. After the Eleventh Doctor leaves the newly-weds Amy and Rory, he meets the disheartened Alice Obiefune, whose mother recently died and everything else just started falling apart. The Doctor invites her to help him catch the giant rainbow space-dog and changes her life for the better. What I like about this issue is how it can stand alone by itself, like a one-shot adventure. I believe Alice will stay for the next issue and if every issue is a one-shot then conveniently it's like watching the series. I can read any issue without worrying about the previous chapter.

I have dual thoughts about the art for this series. Simon Fraser is a great artist and I know Matt Smith has a very unusual face but Fraser could've drawn better to make the Eleventh Doctor's comic book version more appealing. I really feel bad for Eleven when his comics turn out this way.

After reading both issues, I realized the comics didn't do the series enough justice for me. Unlike superheroes who were born from imagination and comics, I find that the Doctor's charm isn't something I like to just read. I'm sure the Doctor Who comics and other novels have great stories to tell but I prefer to enjoy my time and space adventures through the actors' own antics and see the TARDIS materializing on my screen.

SPECIAL REVIEW: Titan Comics has excellent quality to its pages. With thick, glossy pages I don't have to worry about ripping a page and the vibrant colors bring each panel to life. The quality of Titan Comics makes my reading more enjoyable and collecting the issues more bearable.

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