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Comic Book Review
Time to take the fight back to those who have accused the Doctor of horrible war crimes and chase down the truth! The TARDIS team needs to break into a remote prison to get the tech that will allow them to pull off an incredible heist… Sounds like they’ll need some expert help! But with the bounty hunter The Then and The Now still in relentless pursuit, is there any weapon in the universe powerful enough to stop it…?
First the War Doctor, then Abslom Daak… and now this episode, The Judas Goatee, gives us not only the Master but also some Sontarans! This series just keeps on making me go “Oh, wow!”
“Imagine someone so… impressively insane they’d discovered a sort of ultra-sanity,” is how the Doctor describes the Master in this issue, “Someone, say, who likes to play god… Someone so horrifically manipulative he was able to write out his involvement in some mysterious, ancient, time-locked atrocity.” When Alice points that the Doctor’s plan is just as devious, she has a good point, but Si Spurrier skilfully offsets this dark thought with humour. “It’s. I’m. I…” stammers the flummoxed Doctor, “I’ll do a witty riposte later, okay?” And, in due course, he does!
Following the revelation of his Doric column-shaped TARDIS towards the end of last issue, we don’t get to see much of the Master, and when we do it’s only in flashback, but the concept he embodies is big.
Spurrier’s depiction of the Sontarans has something to say about fundamentalism and radicalisation, in another brilliant speech from the Doctor: “The problem, you see, is that mindless devotion to a cause is… well… it’s actually repulsively common. Sontarans… Cybermen… Daleks. The loss of the self, faceless efficiency, blah blah blah… That’s how wars are fought.” One of the Sontarans’ strategies is to use a suicide bomber against the enemy.
Meanwhile, Alice’s attraction to Abslom Daak in the previous issue is reciprocated here. “You got purdy hands,” he says. And, after his little moment of humanity last time, there’s an even greater one near the end of this instalment. I love what the writers are doing with Daak in this series.
As for the final page… time to go “Oh, wow” again!