Review: Doctor Who #9
The TARDIS has recently been on the fritz, but now it has gone completely out of control. And the Doctor is nowhere to be found! Meanwhile, white holes have been forming throughout time and space, sucking in everything around them. What does the Hypothetical Gentleman have to do with it all? Find out in the four-part story “Sky Jacks”!
A new 4 part Doctor Who adventure kicks off this month in the pages of Doctor Who volume 3 issue 9. The story, Sky Jacks, is written by Andy Diggle and Eddie Robson with art by Andy Kuhn. Charlie Kirchoff provides colors and Shawn Lee rounds out the cast with lettering. This is also the first issue featuring The Doctor’s newest companion Clara. So is Sky Jacks a good start for a new era of Who comics or does it overshoot the runway?
The story opens August 5, 1945 somewhere north of Iwo Jima. A crew of Airmen are on a special mission to deliver their payload, Big Momma, somewhere in Japan. If you’re a history buff you’ll know from the conversation about two other planes delivering Fat Man and Little Boy that these are the two atomic bombs that were dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima. So after being shot at, the third atomic bomb crew are swallowed up by a mysterious white hole. Cut to Clara who is asleep in her room in the TARDIS. She wakes up and notices things aren’t exactly right. The TARDIS is acting weird…well weirder than usual. When she wanders around a few new rooms, she finds a big red button with a note that tells her not to hit the big red button. Of course she presses it. She finds herself falling from the sky only to land on a giant metal bird. The same plane we saw lost in the opening pages is there to help reel Clara to safety. The crew give her a rundown of what they know about where they are and promise to take her to the Smith. The Smith is a builder and inventor, but he’s a bit of a kook. With The Doctor nowhere to be seen, can this Smith give her the help she’s looking for?
Diggle writes an interesting opening issue. It’s pretty fast paced and really focuses on Clara. If this issue was an episode, it would be one of the Doctor-lite adventures. Diggle does a good job of getting Clara’s voice right. Comics take a while to make, so I’m not sure how many episodes he had seen before writing the script, but he keeps everything in the vein of what we see on TV. There’s even a slight feel of the recent episode Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS. The art is great. It feels a little cartoony and looks like a Doctor Who comic strip. Robson and Kirchoff do a good job with the high flying action scenes.
Bottom Line: The first issue of a big four part story should set things up and grab your attention so you want to come back for the rest of the story. Diggle does that and does it well. He presents a fresh story that brings a new companion in and puts her at the forefront of the action. 4/5