Saturday, December 5, 2015

Doctor Who: The Ninth Doctor #5 - A Review

The Doctor had planned to take Rose and their new friend Captain Jack Harkness to the planet of Excroth. Instead, they found themselves inside the massive asteroid belt of what was Excroth! More, they were trapped in a war between the time-plundering robots known as The Lect and the centaur-like Unon, who have established themselves as the new guardians of Time in the wake of the Time Lord's destruction.

It was a conflict The Doctor was reluctant to get involved in, though he finally sided with The Unon since they seemed nominally concerned about protecting the universe.  Even if they cared little about Rose being a captive of The Lect! But now Rose has shown up fighting alongside The Lect and the Unon quickly take Jack hostage and imprison him in The Void. Can The Doctor puzzle out which side is in the right... if anyone is in the right?

Cavan Scott brings this story to a wonderful conclusion. There's one last twist in this final chapter and it's a good one. The voices of the individual characters all sound perfect and the humor of Rose, Jack and Nine playing off of each other is well captured. But what really makes this feel like a Ninth Doctor story is the continued theme of ambiguity and the fact that, in war, there is never truly "a right side" to be on.

Rachael Stott returns for this final issue and I couldn't be happier. Stott seems to have been responsible for the finishes that prevent all the characters from glowing as if they were regenerating Time Lords. Blair Shedd did an amazing job of capturing the likenesses of the cast and the coloration by Anang Setyawan was good. Yet the final artwork in the early issues was distractedly bright. There are no such issues here.

Thankfully, this is not the end of Titan Comics and The Ninth Doctor.  The issue concludes with an announcement that Nine will be joining the rest of the modern Doctors in getting a monthly series starting in April 2016.  Fantastic news, for all fans of The Ninth Doctor, I'd say!

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