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Doctor Who Magazine Reviews

Doctor Who Magazine 197

Reviewed by Jon Preddle

This issue features a look at the Dalek Attack computer game. I am not a computer gamer, but I'm sure those who enjoy that sort of thing will get a few hints on how to play the game. One of my favourite Tom Baker stories, Image of the Fendahl, gets the Archive treatment, and there's a look at the filming of the Return to Devil's End video. The highlight of the issue is without a doubt the first part of Paul Cornell's strip, Emperor of the Daleks, which presents his version of the events that occurred on Skaro between Revelation of the Daleks and Remembrance of the Daleks - namely Davros' trial.

Doctor Who Magazine 198

Reviewed by Paul Scoones

When the magazine sent me this issue as a review copy I was delighted - not only due to the pleasant surprise, but also because it is such a good issue.

The news pages betray the lack of any progress on the programme production front, but elsewhere in the magazine's 52 pages the show is as alive as it ever was.

For me, the highlight of any new DWM is almost always Andrew Pixley's superb Archive section. Even generally unlikeable stories such as this issue's Time and the Rani are explored in fascinating and exhaustive detail that actually makes you want to watch the story again! So far, little more than a tenth of the stories have been covered, yet I hope the Archive continues in this format for as long as it takes to chronicle the entirety of televised Who.

With writer Paul Cornell currently at the helm of the comic strip, this regular feature has taken on new life. The latest instalment of his epic Emperor of the Daleks is very impressive, in spite of the inclusion of the generally disliked Absalom Daak.

'The Missing Stories' is the title of a new feature making its debut this issue, and as the name suggests, will be covering a number of unused scripts. It kicks off with a profile of Dick Sharples' The Prison in Space intended for Troughton's last season. I think it is a mistake however to spread each story out over two or more issues - only the synopsis for part one of four episodes appears here.

The New Adventure featured in Prelude is Deceit, but as with the last few entries in this column, doesn't give much of an idea of the novel at all; perhaps the writers are suffering from 'burn-out' by the time they come to write their introductory short story?

Other items well worth a look this issue includes insights into the making of the Silver Nemesis documentary, a very detailed Matrix Data Bank - just what you'd expect from Mr Pixley - more collectibles from David Howe, and a fascinating look at the sound effects work of Dick Mills of the BBC's Radiophonic Workshop.

Doctor Who Classic Comics 6

Reviewed by Paul Scoones

It's a relatively simple idea - take old Doctor Who comic strips from vintage publications such as TV Comic, Countdown, TV Action + Countdown and TV21, colour those previously printed in black and white and publish a selection of these strips each issue.

That's basically the formula for Doctor Who Classic Comics - and it's proving to be so much of a success that it's reportedly even outselling its sister publication, Doctor Who Magazine (both are edited by Gary Russell).

This issue features a complete Third Doctor story called Planet of the Daleks (no, not the TV story - the strip predates it by a year). The first four parts were colour centrespreads in Countdown magazine, but then as Russell explains in his editorial, that publication died and was reborn as TV Action + Countdown, and the Doctor Who strip moved to the front cover (the covers are reproduced complete) and a couple of black and white pages inside, so these have been coloured. The new colouring doesn't quite match the old unfortunately, but this doesn't distract from the story, which takes up almost the entire first half of the issue.

In the second half there's more of those delightful TV21 Dalek comic strips which DWM was printing not so long ago, and the second part of the Fourth Doctor's comic strip debut adventure Death Flower from TV Comic.

For me however, the most interesting item was an article on the history of the DWM comic strip from its beginnings through to the Fourth Doctor's final appearance. This is part of an on-going series of articles on the history of Doctor Who in the comics, and is thoroughly absorbing in a way that The Terrestrial Index's dry and flawed comic strip guide most definitely isn't.

This item appeared in TSV 33 (April 1993).