The Early Tales

By Graham Muir

This section covers everything other than what I call the real TARDIS Tales - the two to three page (or even longer) stories published in TSV from issue 14 onwards.

When I wrote my first letter to the newly-founded Christchurch-based New Zealand Doctor Who Fan Club, I included at the bottom of my letter an illustration of the McCoy Doctor watching videos, as the Club was about to have its first video marathon. I was forever drawing doodles at the end of my letters - the picture of the Doctor being strangled by his scarf was another - but I didn't expect them to be published! The first 'official' drawing I did for the Club was of a Cyberman strangling the Davison Doctor.

Since my drawings were appreciated by the Club, I then decided to send in a comic strip - called The Very Last Dr Who Story - which was actually a re-hash of a strip I had done in college. I was forever doing drawings at school at the cost of some of my school work - I don't recommend to anyone at school that they do this!

Andrew Poulsen - one of the editors of TSV at the time - then asked me to do a regular strip which would appear at the start of the zine. I did this for another four issues, but I have to admit that I didn't like being limited to doing four or five frame comic strips; I was more used to doing stories which ran to one or two pages.

The first full-page strip I produced for the Club was The J.N.T. Robot for the 25th anniversary special zine, Twenty-Five Years of a Time Lord. This was a taste of things to come (it's interesting to see how much I have simplified the McCoy Doctor over the years - those buck teeth in the early tales... ugh!). When I had finished drawing this story, I decided that my stories needed a title so I wrote down TARDIS Tales at the end and that was that! In fact, the first TARDIS Tales to be published was the strip about the Fifth Doctor's problems.

Until TSV 14 the only other illustrations I did (other than the comic strips), were of a Cyberman being shot by an arrow which was used in conjunction with a review I wrote of Silver Nemesis (and yes, I still like that story!); and the Beverly Hillbillies massacre in TSV 13 which was suggested by Craig Young (The Beverly Hillbillies replaced Doctor Who for a while on New Zealand television).

TSV 13 also marked the end of the short comic strips. Incidentally, my favourite of these was An Alternative Ending to The War Games as I'm quite pleased that the drawings actually look like the characters from The War Games and The Gunfighters (by the way, The Gunfighters isn't really that bad - well I liked it!).


A Cyberman strangling the Doctor
TSV 7 (May 1988)

The Doctor watching television
TSV 8 (August 1988)

The Doctor strangled by his scarf
TSV 11 (January 1989)

A Cyberman shot by an arrow
TSV 11 (January 1989)

The Raston Warrior Robot takes out the Beverly Hillbillies!
TSV 13 (May 1989)

Seven Doctors
TSV 17 (January 1990)

A typical fan's reaction to Ghost Light
TSV 18 (May 1990)

TARDIS Tales Comic Strips

The very last Dr Who story!
TSV 9 (October 1988) *

TARDIS Tales (The Fifth Doctor's problems)
TSV 10 (December 1988) *

TARDIS Tales (The Jolly Nasty Terminator Robot)
Twenty-Five Years of a Time Lord (January 1989)

TARDIS Tales (The Sixth Doctor gets zapped)
TSV 11 (January 1989) *

TARDIS Tales with Kane from Dragonfire!
TSV 12 (March 1989)

TARDIS Tales - An alternative ending to The War Games!
TSV 12 (March 1989)

TARDIS Tales - An alternative ending to Planet of the Spiders!!
TSV 13 (May 1989)

* These strips were reprinted in TSV 17 (January 1990)

Full Page Strips

Death to the Daftleks: A Pertwee parody I did at college in October 1986, just after the screening of Death to the Daleks.

Saucer and the Monster of Peladon: Another Pertwee parody, drawn in November 1986 when The Monster of Peladon was screened.

Two pages from Saucer and the Attack of the Onions, drawn in a school exercise book. Note the Doctor Who influences.

This item appeared in The Tardis Tales Collection (May 1993).