ADVANCE Review: Doctor Who the 11th Doctor #1
It seems like just yesterday that the 11th Doctor said his final goodbyes. But The Raggedy Man lives on in Doctor Who the 11th Doctor #1. The story is superb, but the artwork is less than ideal.
The 11th Doctor #1 goes a different route than the 10th Doctor and tells a one and done instead of starting new arc. This fits with Steven Moffat’s style of telling one and done stories with the Doctor instead of multi episode epics. Al Ewing and Rob Williams use the abstract nature of Moffat’s stories quite well with a dog like creature that feeds on negative emotions. Simple, but speaks wonders about the human condition and plays off the Doctor’s love of humans well. The ending itself is very sweet and felt like a Moffat episode. The characterization of the Doctor is spot on by Ewing and Williams. He’s zany, but has a grounded human side to him as well. His quick chemistry with Alice feels natural and perfect for a character who wants to see everyone happy.
11th’s new companion, Alice, is set up very well throughout this #1. There is one thing that I wish Ewing and Williams hadn’t brought over, and that was the quick acclimation that the companion has to everything going on. Weird man chasing after a rainbow dog? Sure I’ll tag along! It breaks the issue to a degree as it makes zero sense for her to be joining this strange man, even if her life is incredibly sad. But it’ s a small qualm in an otherwise strongly written issue. While I normally like that companions have a base in their time period like a family, having the companion completely alone is also an interesting story angle I’m excited to see. After one issue I already want to see the 11th Doctor back so that I could see her interact with him in live action. The slight tease for future was a nice touch that dug a hook in me for the future. Ewing and Williams writing will be the main reason I come back for #2 in 30 days.
I read The 10th Doctor #1 first and I was blown away by the art. I was expecting something similar with this issue and I was really disappointed. The exaggerated style doesn’t suit the story well and looks completely ugly at points. The Doctor looks nothing like Matt Smith save a few panels. In fact, it looks like one of those artists on a boardwalk did a caricature of Matt Smith and Simon Fraser based his pencils off that. I hope that future issues will use a different penciler. It comes at no surprise that three letterers were needed for this issue. The constant change in color really set the tone of the book well. I didn’t realize until my second read through that the happier Alice got the more similar the thought boxes were to the Tardis. Great subtle touch.
Doctor Who the 11th Doctor #1 gets 3.5/5.
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