Review: Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor #1 by Robbie Morrison & Dave Taylor

Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor #1

Written by: Robbie Morrison
Art by: Dave Taylor
Cover by: Alice X. Zhang
Colored by: Hi-Fi with Dave Taylor
Lettered by: Richard Starkings and Comicraft’s Jimmy Betancourt

Published by: Titan
Cover Price: $3.99

Note: This is a review of the digital version which can be found on Comixology.

Warning! This review contains quite a few spoilers!

Summary (contains spoilers): This issue starts on a planet that is being terraformed. Something has gone wrong, and what is supposed to be a lagoon is now full of lava.

An engineer goes to check it out, and is attacked by his robot assistant who declares “Hyperios rises!”

Cut to the TARDIS. In order to help her get ready for a school ski trip, the Doctor is taking Clara to Isen Vi, home of the colder, crispest snow in the universe. No surprise to anyone who has seen any episodes of Doctor Who before, but when they arrive, they find the planet has been terraformed into a jungle.

Clara’s hat is stolen by a monkey-like creature. She gives chace, and is ambushed by a large group of monkey creatures.

The Doctor chases them off with the sonic screwdrive and says that he believes the entire planet is manmade by a company called Dollar Intergalactic. Drones try to capture the Doctor and Clara, though he reprograms them to give him information and sing a parody version of Time Warp:

The Doctor points out that the planet is heading towards global cataclysm. The head of Dollar Intergalactic arrives and says that no one is allowed to leave.

Soon, there is a distress call from elsewhere on the planet where a ship has crashed. The Doctor and Clara take the TARDIS to rescue them. The Doctor realizes the problem is coming from underground. They discover the terraforming process has woken some kind of creature in the core of the planet…

Review: As I said when I reviewed an issue of the Eleventh Doctor, Alice X. Zhang’s covers are a HUGE selling point for Titan’s Doctor who series. I actually got to meet her at New York Comic Con, and she is not only a great artist, but really cool too. I even ended up buying a Sherlock painting from her website for my sister’s birthday. For this cover, she really captured Peter Capaldi perfectly.

This issue had a lot more to offer than just the gorgeous cover. Huge props to Robbie Morrison. He wrote this issue before any episodes with Peter Capaldi had aired. Despite that, I think he captured the Doctor’s voice pretty perfectly. I especially loved how he constantly mocks Clara and even throws a smackdown on his older self’s “fashion sense.” At NYCC, they joked that since he was Scottish, Robbie Morrison had an advantage in writing Peter Capaldi;  clearly it worked.

I also loved some of the in jokes they managed to put in this one. We got some “Doctor Who?” action:

And also a quick “hiding behind the couch” reference:

The current season of Doctor Who has been great about slipping in those kinds of references, and again, it was great that Morrison was able to get all that in there without having seen the new episodes. It really helped me feel like I was getting an additional episode of Doctor Who when I was reading this comic.

I will just say that I didn’t particularly like the story for this one. It felt a little disjointed at times. It was especially odd when the head of Dollar Intergalactic arrives demanding no one is allowed to leave the planet. The next page, the Doctor and Clara are off rescuing someone else, and it is never clear what happened to Kano Dollar…really there was no point in him showing up for a page just to vanish. It just felt distracting from the story.

Same with the Doctor revealing that the Time Lords had left beacons around the universe to alert when there is trouble. Not only was this an unnecessary name drop, it seems to contradict a lot of what has happened before in Doctor Who…you would think these alerts would have gone off when the Silence were working to destroy all of the Universe…not for when an angry lava creature got up on the wrong side of the bed.

The art on this issue was really good, though I will admit I would have liked Clara and the Doctor to look a little bit more like their TV counterparts. It’s not a huge issue, but after seeing the beautiful painted cover, I almost felt like I got slightly cheated. Which is unfair, because Dave Taylor did a great job, especially in drawing the TARDIS, jungle scenes, and the monkey creatures.

So far, the Eleventh Doctor is still my favorite of the Titan’s Doctor Who comics. They really seem to be building an interesting story with an entire team of companions.  But I definitely enjoyed this issue, and I will continue to buy all three series.  FOUR actually.  At NYCC, they formally announced that they will be doing rotating series starring the other Doctors.  The first one up is the Ninth Doctor with Rose and Captain Jack.

I also asked them if they would be doing something with the War Doctor.  They said they do have the rights to do so, but weren’t ready to announce anything yet.  I definitely hope we will hear something soon.  Titan has been doing a great job with the Doctor Who license!


Title: Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor #1
Written By: Robbie Morrison
Art By: Dave Taylor
Company: Titan
Price: $3.99
Pros:
  • Another great cover by Alice X. Zhang.
  • Robbie Morrison captured the Doctor and Clara really well
  • Dave Taylor really brought the setting to life perfectly.
Cons:
  • The story felt a little disjointed at times.
  • It would have been nice if Clara and the Doctor looked more like Jenna Coleman and Peter Capaldi.
Is it worth your $3.99? 7.5/10 –  The Twelfth Doctor’s new comic series is off to a real good start.  Robbie Morrison has a great feel for these characters.  It wasn’t quite perfect, but definitely enough to keep me interested.

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