Comic Review – Doctor Who – The 11th Doctor / Issue #2
In issue #1 of Titan Comic’s New Adventures With the Eleventh Doctor, we had a rollicking good ride of a setup, introducing us to not only our Doctor and his companion, Library assistant Alice, but also to the tone, balance, lightheartedness and sense of wonder that writer Al Ewing and artist Simon Fraser will apparently be bringing to the series.
Proof that the whimsical tone and style shall be continuing is clearly evident from the very first panel here in issue 2, which starts off with our good Doctor engaging in a one-sided argument with the multi-colored pig mascot of Rokhandi World, the self-proclaimed “Friendly World for All”. That world, however just happens to be an amusement park that stands in contrast of the Doctor’s intended destination when he went about setting down the Tardis.
A destination where he had hoped to take Alice to show her “the most perfect planet in the universe.” And while this new world of amusement, created out of plastic and mind altering Rokhandi-floss might be a fun place to visit, the way we see the Doctor break down his feelings about the place is a not so subtle metaphor to Disneyland: Paris and it’s own split the masses way that people in that region feel about a theme park being only a short drive from the Louvre. If I make that come across as a little heavy-handed, it’s not my intention to and I don’t think that it is necessarily the book’s intention to either.
While the Doctor takes time to explain his previous experiences that took him to the planet, we do get a glimpse of that previous existence that is absolutely stunning in its pencils, colors and inks. The designs of the plants, creatures, and composition of it all is some amazing eye candy, and being presented as a double splash page along with the current incarnation they are visiting, let me tell you that these two pages are a beautiful work of art of which I’d personally put up a print for. Cheers, gentlemen.
The teamwork that we see between Alice and the Doctor in this issue is quite a relationship building type experience. Throughout these pages we are watching them still getting to learn about one another, make assumptions about each other, and relate their own ideas on how to deal with their adventure together. When the time comes for them to stand up, for and with each other, let’s just say the results appear to set in motion the next few issues.
Standing on its own pages, The Friendly Place is a read that feels so much like the Matt Smith portrayal of the Doctor that it is basically undistinguishable from the television series, yet it is still undeniably original in its own right.
+ Great use of a variety of panel types and sizes to keep pages looking fresh
+ The Art. Pencils, colors & inks all combining to provide a gorgeous look that truly captures the feel of fantasy and possibility.
The ending of issue 1 is referenced on the opening “previously” page, yet is noticeably absent from any showing or mention in the book