The first two issues of this series were good stories, full of fun touches and classic Doctor Who moments. But in the third issue of Doctor Who: The Thirteenth Doctor the creative team absolutely stepped it up in an issue that felt ripped from the show.
Jody Houser, Rachael Stott, Enrica Angiolini, and Comicraft bring us the latest chapter in the TARDIS crew’s adventures.
The Doctor, Graham, Ryan and Yaz find themselves staring down the barrel of Doctor Perkins’ gun moments after they rescued him. After talking him down (and revealing they were never in any actual danger thanks to the TARDIS), he spills his story and they offer to help. This leads the crew to an alien temple, and a new adventure.
I have to say this is the first issue of this run so far where everything went right. There was nothing awkward in the dialogue. The art looked great. It just clicked.
In particular, the speech that Houser wrote for the Doctor in the first few pages was brilliant. It had a lot of the earmarks of the great speeches delivered by Tennant, Smith and Capaldi, but the cadence and tone felt unique to Whittaker’s version of the Doctor. This wasn’t a speech any other Doctor could deliver, and Houser nailed that feel.
The plot thickened here as well in a very fun way that felt like classic Who. However, Houser, Stott, and Angiolini knew that they had an “unlimited budget” thanks to the comic medium, so they filled it full of landscapes and creatures that no episode could ever capture. It was grand and imaginative in ways that episodes of the show simply cannot be.
Stott has quickly adapted and got her footing. In the first couple of issues, her work on the characters from the show looked very photo referenced, while the characters original to the comic were a little cartoony. This issue she found the right balance of both, and really has some amazing character work, especially in body language and facial expressions.
Another place the art sings is in the interiors of the TARDIS. Stott and Angiolini brings the TARDIS to life, with great design work, and some gorgeous lighting and color work. It looks stunning and jumps off the page.
It really impresses me when a comic goes from good to great, and as quickly as this one has, it’s even better!
Doctor Who: The Thirteenth Doctor #3 is available now from Titan Comics.