27 August 2012

Review: Doctor Who Annual 2006 edited by Clayton Hickman

Hardcover, 62 pages
Published 2005
Acquired August 2009

Read June 2012
Doctor Who Annual 2006
edited by Clayton Hickman

This set of stories are some of the scant few adventures to feature Christopher Eccleston's ninth Doctor: aside from this book, there's just six novels and a slim collection of Doctor Who Magazine comic strips. Despite being written by luminaries such as Paul Cornell and Rob Shearman, they're mostly just okay. Nothing terrible, but Gareth Roberts's "Doctor vs Doctor" just seemed too convoluted, and I never engaged with Cornell's perhaps-too-alien "The Masks of Makassar."  Shearman's was a bit better, with "Pitter-patter" giving us some nice creepy moments, and Daryl Joyce turning in some excellent illustrations.

The best stories are definitely the fun little comic strip ("Mr Nobody") by DWM stalwart Scott Gray and illustrator John Ross and "What I Did On My Christmas Holidays by Sally Sparrow" by Steven Moffat, which went on to become the television story "Blink," but is a fun Moffat adventure in its own right. (I actually bought this book to get this story, so that I could assign my students to write a short paper on that adaptation!)

There's also some puzzles and behind-the-scenes stuff which is utterly disposable, with the exception of the volume's highlight: "Meet the Doctor" and "Meet Rose," both written by Russell T Davies. There's nothing quite like seeing how the characters are viewed by their creator himself.

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