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Published on July 23rd, 2011 | by Christian Cawley

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Doctor Who in Comics Exhibition

A really fantastic exhibition of Doctor Who comic strips is set to open over the next few days, featuring the Doctor in all of his sequential art guises from TV Comic through to the America Doctor Who comic books from IDW.

Doctor Who in Comics: 1964-2011 takes place at the Cartoon Museum from July 27th to October 30th, features over 100 works and is the first to showcase the Doctor in his many incarnations, demonstrating how the character has evolved in comics over the last 47 years. The museum hopes that during the exhibition the public will help solve the mystery of who created a number of early comic pages including iconic images of the Daleks and Davros.

The show includes all eleven Doctors – plus his early film incarnation played by Peter Cushing. Doctor Who in Comics is of course intimately connected to the TV programme, but the comic stories have also taken fans on imaginative and far‐flung adventures which would have been way beyond the budget and special effects capacity of the BBC.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

Frames from The Crimon Hand illustrated by Martin Geraghty, David Roach, James Offredi.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

From Dalek Omnibus, 1976, artist unknown.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

Doctor Who and the Genesis of the Daleks, artist unknown.

It is amazing to consider that the Doctor has been appearing in comics for 47 years and has been drawn by many great comic artists including Frank Bellamy, Martin Geraghty, Dave Gibbons, Dave Lloyd, John Ridgway and Lee Sullivan. Between 1989 and 2005, when the programme was off the air, apart from a one‐off TV film in 1996, the Doctor lived on in comics, the only place where fans could continue to see their hero in new adventures.

While Doctor Who first appeared on BBC television on 23 November 1963, what is less well known is that on 14 November 1964 the Doctor featured in his own strip in TV Comic and he has continued to appear in comics in every year since. In 1979 he finally got his own title with the arrival of Doctor Who Weekly, the publication that became Doctor Who Magazine, the biggest selling SF magazine in the UK.

In his comic life the Doctor was sometimes ahead of his time. In 1980 he was accompanied by his first black companion Sharon – 25 years before Mickey Smith or Martha Jones appeared on screen. Favourite villains such as the Daleks, the Cybermen, and the Master make several appearances and many important characters such as Sarah Jane Smith, K‐9, Brigadier Lethbridge‐Stewart, Rose Tyler, Mickey Smith, Martha Jones and Amy Pond all feature.

The exhibition features plenty of examples of how the comics have influenced the TV show, such as original illustrations from the 2006 story which went on to inspire the famous TV episode Blink, and artwork from the only story to be written by a ‘Doctor’ – The Age of Chaos by the Sixth Doctor, Colin Baker.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

The Usual Suspects Revisited, Lee Sullivan.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

From the Brilliant Book of Doctor Who, illustration by Martin Geraghty.

Doctor Who in Comics 1964-2011

From the Tides of Time, illustrated by Dave Gibbon.

Visitors to the exhibition will find samples from stories that first appeared in classic publications such as TV Comic, and TV Century 21 as well as Doctor Who Weekly, Doctor Who Monthly, Doctor Who Magazine, Doctor Who Adventures and the American Doctor Who magazine.

Additionally, the museum is also running special Doctor Who themed workshops for kids over the summer.

Artists whose work appears in the exhibition includes: Frank Bellamy, Doug Braithwaite, Mark Buckingham, Mike Collins, John Canning, Paul Crompton, Vincent Danks, Al Davison, Dave Gibbons, Steve Dillon, Martin Geraghty, Paul Grist, Gerry Haylock, Walt Howarth, Dicky Howett, Richard Jennings, Daryl Joyce, Roger Langridge, Dave Lloyd, Paul Neary, John Ridgway, John Ross, Andrew Skilleter, Ben Templesmith, Ron Turner, Barrie Mitchell, Adrian Salmon, Lee Sullivan and Andy Walker.

You really have no excuse not to attend this fantastic collection, which runs from July 27th to October 30th at The Cartoon Museum, 35 Little Russell Street, London, WC1A, 2HH.

Opening times are Tuesday to Saturday 10.30-17.30, Sunday 12-17.30, and admission for adults is £5.50 – under 18s enter free.

Find out more at www.cartoonmuseum.org.

(With thanks to Anita)

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About the Author

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A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.




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