By Paul Scoones
Telos, out now
A mammoth overview of the pre-Marvel Doctor Who strips…
As with any encyclopaedia of this sort, you have to admire the dedication and love of the subject that the author undoubtedly has – particularly to constantly sift through and reread some of the more horrendous examples of Doctor Who that appeared in the comics over the first sixteen years of the show’s original run.
The book is saved from being a dry compilation of facts and figures by the extras that Scoones has discovered, including a load of paperwork from the BBC archives, which explain how some even worse atrocities were prevented – and makes you wonder why some of them were allowed, given the notes made on others.
Some years back, Panini produced the Classic Comics run, which reprinted some of these stories (notably the Countdown/TV Action ones that I still remember clearly from their first publication). Scoones challenges some of the assertions made in the accompanying articles in those, often by reference to the original writers.
With added material on the Dalek strips in TV 21 and the Annuals, this is a fascinating glimpse at an often-overlooked part of the Doctor Who story. 7/10