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Comic Book Review
Cyberships on fire in the Thames, as the Ninth Doctor battles for the soul of London! Dinosaur danger for the Eleventh Doctor, as the Cybermen attempt to conquer human prehistory! Caught in the middle of an ancient alien war, the Cybermen present a third side for the Tenth Doctor to face! And for the Twelfth Doctor, a deeply personal showdown with the architect behind the universe’s current chaos – Rassilon, the fallen leader of the Time Lords. Now the Cybermen have access to unlimited time travel. With it, every defeat is now a victory. Every foe is now dead… or Cyberized. No TARDIS, no help, no rescue – there is no resistance… only the Cyberiad…!
The second issue of this multi-Doctor Cyber-themed event maintains the pattern of the first, with each of the Doctors inhabiting separate points in space and time, and not crossing paths with one another just yet.
Some of their plotlines owe a debt to comic strips published in Doctor Who Magazine, with the Cybermen interacting with Silurians and dinosaurs – as in the Cybermen strip penned by Alan Barnes and drawn by Adrian Salmon – and the Tenth Doctor meeting a thoroughbred Sontaran – as in the Seventh Doctor strip Pureblood written by Dan Abnett with art by Colin Andrew.
Here the ‘original’ Sontaran, their emperor, with his white beard and billowing red cape, looks rather like a Sontaran version of Santa Claus. I can just imagine the young Sontaran cadets sitting on his knee: “And what would you like for Christmas, little boy?” “The total defeat of the Rutans, for the glory of the Sontaran Empire!”
Artist Ivan Rodriguez and his incoming colleague Walter Geovanni provide some impressive images, such as Gallifrey’s Capitol surrounded by a vast fleet of Cyberships and an asteroid shaped like a Cyberman’s head, but they still struggle to capture the likenesses of all the television characters. The Ninth and Twelfth Doctors are the most recognisable – I believe Geovanni handled the latter’s pages.
Each of the different Doctors’ scenes ends at a dramatic moment, providing lots of little cliffhangers throughout the episode… which is just as well, as the one that ends the issue isn’t the most exciting ever. Where we leave the Ninth Doctor is the most nail-biting. How will he get out of that one? Will the Doctors ever meet? Find out (maybe) in the next issue...