Tuesday, 12 June 2018

It was a Devil Ship.. The Voyager

Voyager feels like a deliberate attempt at an epic Doctor Who story, much as Trial of a Time Lord would be for the TV show a couple of years later. But unlike on the TV show, the makers of the comic stories did not have their imaginations limited by a BBC budget. Artist John Ridgway gives this story the requisite sense of scale from the very first panel.

The Doctor begins the story already trapped on board a ship with a mysterious craggy-faced manny with a big collar (although not quite a Time Lord collar). The manny claims to be "a Lord of Life!" as the ship goes over a giant waterfall, and then the Doctor wakes up because it turns out it was only a dream. This would be a disappointing end to the story, except we are only four pages in and the story is just beginning!

The Doctor goes looking for Frobisher, who is at last named as such... although it is not actually his real name:
The Whifferdill, in spite of numerous aliases, had finally adopted the name "Frobisher", in deference to the Doctor's love of all things English...

Already Frobisher has adopted the shape of a cute penguin, which will be his main shape for the rest of his time in Doctor Who, rather than the round-faced alien form he used in The Shape Shifter.

They find a ship in the ice that resembles the one from the Doctor's dream, and go aboard.

They go into the captain's cabin and find star charts of places the Doctor doesn't recognise, and then a strange old manny comes in with a gun and he wants the charts too.

He takes the charts and escapes to a flying machine that the Doctor calls "a da Vinci original!" The Doctor and Frobisher go back to the TARDIS so that they can give chase.

Frobisher decides to stay as a penguin, although it is not clear for now if this is a joke or not.
"Anyhow, I'm staying a penguin for a while for... well, personal reasons...
D'you know... I once spent fourteen years as a till on a checkout counter in a supermarket in Walthamstow? I did it for love...
But she thought I was only in it for the money..."


The old manny lands by a lighthouse and goes inside. The Doctor can tell that this is a lighthouse for ships, but
"Not the kind of ships that sail on the sea..."
(I think he means spaceships.)

The TARDIS lands and they go outside. Investigating the island before they go into the lighthouse itself, Frobisher goes into the water and sees there is "a space-craft of some kind" hidden there.

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