Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Critic Becomes The Critiqued: Arturo vs. Doctor Who: A Room With A Deja View!

In this case, the Who - as in who's writing it - is half the selling point for this book, as noted comics muckraker Rich Johnston steps onto the frontline, as it were, in his first published piece with a licensed character - "the licensed character I spend my childhood wanting to be," he notes on his site, and "my adolescence wanting to write and my adult years wanting them to bring back."

No spoilers here, but Johnston's love for The Doctor - here, The Tenth Doctor - shines through. The story seems to take place not long after the events of Journey's End, and backs up some of the feelings we've seen Ten express in the recent television specials. Luckily for him, though, something pops up to get his mind off the doldrums and into a new mystery.

The thick of the story itself relies on a fun narrative trick, as The Doc encounters a sort-of interplanetary Benjamin Button - their conversation forces the reader to do a little extra work, but the payoff is worth it. Much like the last couple of televised specials, in fact, the book leaves you with a little smile at the end - nothing earth-shattering, mind you, but a nice one-off dose of fun. Still, if Johnston gets another crack at the character, I wouldn't mind seeing what else he can do with him.

@ThePeterPixie and I will be talking about the book more in depth on the show, and I'll be posting a chat with Johnston himself from SDCC during the weekend.

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