Someone on the old Interweb once described Cavan Scott and Mark Wright’s new book Doctor Who: The Official Miscellany as merely an update on Justin Richards’ and Andrew Martin’s 1997 Doctor Who: Book of Lists, which detailed different aspects of Doctor Who’s past in fiction and nonfiction form. Whilst it’s true that some of the same subject matter is covered, Scott and Wright’s triumphant reimagining and delivery of the source material is a must for any Doctor Who fan old and new.
The Official Miscellany covers all aspects of Doctor Who’s first fifty years on and off screen alongside some truly wonderful illustrations (this reviewers two favourites included the Doctor’s family tree and an epic depiction of the Time War in full swing). Facts and figures are used with the unique wit and knowledge that one has come to expect from writers such as Wright and Scott, and absolutely no stone is left unturned.
Besides the usual facts and figures that an encyclopaedic Doctor Who fan would expect to find, it’s the new data that catches the attention. Want to know each Doctor’s height? The answer is there. Want to find out about the entire journey that the Doctor’s hand went on in order to become the part human Doctor we encountered in Journey’s End? You can look it up. Interested in which particular Doctor Who stories have name checked their own title mid adventure? It’s all waiting for you.
There may be some who are still shaking their heads at this point, thinking to themselves that they don’t need to know any of those facts or statistics. But it doesn’t stop there, little gems are dotted throughout the book that will make you think, make you gasp and make you wonder how you had never known about them, the research is impeccable and the result is unique.
In an age where information regarding Doctor Who is available at a few clicks of a button and addenda and errata are readily available for all to consume, Cavan Scott and Mark Wright have achieved something excellent; they’ve looked at the history of Doctor Who’s first five decades and offered the public something very new indeed. This is a fine effort that deserves your time and attention.
Doctor Who: The Official Miscellany has an RRP of £12.99 and is available at all good bookshops now - and you can order from Amazon now where it costs just £9.09!