Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor Vol. 1

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I really loved Peter Capaldi’s first season playing The Doctor. I even took the time to review every episode as they aired, something I plan on doing again this season. I was fortunate enough to get the first issue of this series at New York Comic Con before it was available for sale, and I enjoyed it quite a bit. When Titan reached out to us about reviewing the first collection, I had to take advantage.

Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor: Volume 1 - Terrorformer

Written by: Robbie Morrison
Art by: Dave Taylor and Mariano Laclaustra
Colored by: Hi-Fi and Luis Guerrero
Lettered by: Richard Starkings and Comicraft’s Jimmy Betancourt

Published by: Titan
Cover Price: $19.99

This collection contains Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor #1-5.

Warning! This review contains quite a few spoilers!

It is important to remember when reading this comic that Robbie Morrison was writing the early issues before any episodes starring Capaldi had really aired. So, I was real impressed with how well he had captured Capaldi’s voice. At NYCC last year, someone how commented that Robbie Morrison was a grumpy Scottsman, so he was the right choice to bring Capaldi to life.

This collection is made up of two stories. The opening two-parter is about the Doctor taking Clara to what’s supposed to be a frozen planet to help her learn to ski. Instead, they find the planet has been terraformed by a corporate interest in order to celebrate the marriage of their CEO. In the process, Dollar Corporation woke up an ancient evil that had been locked away by the Time Lords.

In the second story, an old companion of the Fourth Doctor reaches out to the Doctor for help. Unfortunately, by the time the Doctor gets there, he has already been killed, so the Doctor teams with his daughter in order to stop a Thugee cult from bringing back an alien entity.

I thought Robbie Morrison did a terrific job capturing Peter Capaldi and Jenna Coleman’s performances in this comic. From The Doctor’s little putdowns to Jenna’s quick little flash of thinking about Danny Pink, it always felt like these stories could have easily fit right in with last season of Doctor Who.

I also liked that the stories here integrated some classic Doctor Who elements. The story about the Time Lords capturing Hyperios and setting up an intergalactic alert system to warn about his return was pretty cool. Though I will admit it seems a little strange that this is the first time we have heard about this kind of intergalactic alert system. In the second story, they introduced a new companion for the Fourth Doctor. The parallel scenes of the Fourth and Twelfth Doctor both offering Jelly Babies was brilliant. And there was a great throwaway joke in the first issue about people hiding behind the couch because they were scared…a proud tradition Brits have done in regards to Doctor Who for decades.

I actually liked the stories here, but I did think that at times, the stories jumped around a little too much. It was often hard to follow what was going on, as scenes seemed to shift suddenly and characters appeared and left for no real reason. This was real noticeable in the Terrorformer issue. I suspect that story could have used another issue to make things flow a little smoother.

I also thought these stories did a great job discussing important social and political issues, but keeping it a light tough. Dollar Intergalactic’s desire to change a world to their own purpose was done in a clever way. And I liked that issues of sexuality, especially in a historic perspective, came up in the second story. Ever since Russell T Davies left, Doctor Who has lost a little bit of that social commentary element, and I thought it was a welcome addition here.

On a whole, I thought the art on this collection was really good, though I will admit I would have liked Clara and the Doctor to look a little bit more like their TV counterparts. It’s not a huge issue, but after seeing the beautiful painted cover from Alice X. Zhang, I almost felt like I got slightly cheated. Which is unfair, because Dave Taylor did a great job, especially on the varied settings, monkeys, and monsters he drew in this collection.

All in all, I thought these five issues were among the best Titan Doctor Who stories. I have said that some of the other series felt hit or miss at times, but on a whole, the Twelfth Doctor has been consistently good. I do think the trade is slightly overpriced at $20 for 5 issues. The trade is a hardcover, which takes some of the sting away, but for my money, I’d rather a softcover trade that was $10. But that is all dependent on your collecting and reading habits.

Title: Doctor Who: The Twelfth Doctor: Vol. 1 – Terrorformer
Written By: Robbie Morrison
Art By: Dave Taylor and Mariano Laclaustra
Company: Titan
Price: $19.99
  • Captures The Doctor and Clara perfectly.
  • Some light social and political commentary.
  • Dave Taylor creates terrific alien settings.
  • At times, stories were a little hard to follow.
  • Would have liked the characters to look more like the actors.
Is it worth your $19.99? These were really good stories, so if you are a Doctor Who fan, you'll probably enjoy it quite a bit.  I do think the cover price is a little high, but some people do prefer hardcovers.
4.0 / 5.0