Written by Nick Abadzis
Art by Elena Casagrande (and others)
Titan, out July 23
New York City – and on the eve of the Day of the Dead, it seems as if it may become more than just a festival for some Mexican families…
Set in the Year of the Specials, following Donna’s departure at the conclusion of Journey’s End, this first issue doesn’t feature the Doctor half as much as you might expect. In fact, although Tennant’s Doctor is a presence throughout, the focus is on Gabriella and her family, putting this firmly in the Russell T Davies “grounded on Earth” school of storytelling. There’s a definite resemblance to the opening episode of the revived series with its concentration on an audience identification figure rather than the Time Lord (and the climax can be seen as a nice reworking of Eccleston’s introduction to Rose).
The Tenth Doctor isn’t always an easy character to get right without the benefit of Tennant’s performance, but Abadzis does a fine job – the little aside about the President of Algeria is exactly the sort of thing you can see him wandering off on a tangent to discuss. It’s good to see the Doctor in New York – after all, they can’t set any of their Capaldi range there (until such time as a workaround is provided because the opportunity of filming there is too good – maybe the lock only works on that incarnation, and expires when he does?) – and not the New York of recent appearances, which placed the emphasis on recognised tourist spots. The Doctor is in Brooklyn, providing some unfamiliar backgrounds even for American readers.
The art is perhaps a little overly bright, and there’s the odd shot of Tennant which doesn’t quite hit the spot, but overall this is a solid start.
Verdict: If you’ve missed the skinny one with the sandshoes, then you’ll enjoy this new series. 7/10