A long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away and a long time ahead in a place just around the corner, there was a war. The Last Great Time War. Though many worlds and species were involved, there were ultimately two sides to the conflict—the murderous Daleks of Skaro and the Time Lords of Gallifrey, who took upon themselves the duty of preventing other races from interfering in the natural fate of the universe.
When the war threatened to destroy all reality, one Time Lord acted to save countless lives at the cost of condemning his whole species to oblivion. This Time Lord was a renegade known as The Doctor, though he denied himself that name during the war for reasons of honor no other Time Lord truly understood. When the conflict ended, the stress of his actions triggered a regeneration—a transformation of body and soul that Time Lords underwent to prolong their already long lives.
Reborn as a younger but more bitter man, this new Doctor fell into his old habits—wandering the universe and helping those in need as The Last of the Time Lords. His travels might have ended early had it not been for the actions of Rose Tyler—a 19-year-old shop-girl from 2005 London, whose acrobatic know-how helped to stop an alien invasion. As thanks for her aid, The Doctor offered Rose a chance to travel with him and see the wonders of the universe.
The two later picked up another time-traveler—Captain Jack Harkness. Reportedly a former Time Agent from the 51st Century, Jack had turned to crime and was running a con game at the height of the London Blitz when Rose and The Doctor found him. Luckily—for Jack, at least—his natural heroic impulses and an act of sacrifice to make up for his past crimes was enough to inspire The Doctor to save his life and offer him a place on his ship as well.
The three friends have been traveling the whole of time and space for a while now and a bond has formed between them. This bond will be tested, however, when The Doctor curtails their wanderings to investigate rumors of old Time Lord weapons being sold on the interstellar black market. What The Doctor, Rose and Captain Jack ultimately discover may pave the way for another Time War if left unchecked!
Writer Cavan Scott does a fantastic job, perfectly capturing the zeitgeist of the Ninth Doctor era of Doctor Who. The story remains true to form throughout, drawing upon series’ reoccurring themes of friendship, sacrifice and regret. Scott’s script also captures the humor common to most Ninth Doctor stories and one can hear the voices of Billie Piper, John Barrowman, and Christopher Eccleston whilst reading Scott’s dialogue.
The artwork is decidedly more mixed. Blair Shedd does a fair job caricaturing the established cast, though there are some panels where they look slightly off-model. A greater problem is Shedd’s coloring, which leaves the human cast so yellow as to appear jaundiced for most of the book. Indeed, they practically glow with a pale light at some points! The chapters of the book handled by artist Rachael Stott and colorist Anang Setyawan are much better, both in terms of consistency in the character design and in color quality.
Weapons of Past Destruction is rated 12+ and I believe that rating to be a fair one. There’s nothing in this story that is inappropriate for teen audiences. Indeed, much like the Doctor Who show itself, there’s nothing here that would be inappropriate for an all-ages audience, though younger readers will need some help with some of the bigger words.
Doctor Who: The Ninth Doctor, vol. 1: Weapons of Past Destruction
by Cavan Scott
Art by Blair Shedd, and Rachael Stott
Titan Comics, 2016
Publisher Age Rating: 12+