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September Books 6) The Age of Chaos

6) The Age of Chaos, by Colin Baker

Yes, it's a real rarity - the only full-length Doctor Who book written by one of the Doctor Who actors. Colin Baker had written three Sixth Doctor stories featuring his own character and Bonnie Langford's Mel, but here's a full 96-page graphic novel published by Marvel in 1994, taking the story of Peri further. I have not seen the series in which she gets married off to Brian Blessed (or killed, depending on the interpretation), but Colin Baker obviously feels as strongly about it as most fans do:

Anyway, it's a fun quest story, rather in the Conan the Barbarian genre of medieval romps, though with inevitable science fictional overtones; the Doctor, his penguin-shaped companion Frobisher, and a locally recruited warrior set off to save Peri's grandchildren and their kingdom, Peri herself having disappeared some time back. My only problem with it is that the artist who drew three quarters of the book, Barrie Mitchell, referred to so positively by Baker in the introduction, doesn't actually draw the Doctor to look very much like Baker at all! (Mitchell is apparently best known for having drawn "The Four Marys" in the girls' comic Bunty, though I doubt that he did it for the whole run from 1958 to 2001 as WikiPedia implies.) The artist of the first quarter of the book, veteran John M Burns, seemed to me to catch him rather better.

Barrie Mitchell's depiction of the Sixth Doctor

John M. Burns' depiction of the Sixth Doctor

This books is something of a curio, admittedly, but quite fun. Edited to add: For more on it see miss_s_b here and here.


Sep. 15th, 2007 05:47 pm (UTC)
Does Ian Marter not count as a Doctor Who actor or am I splitting hairs? Hares. Heirs. Whichever. Or would he be a Doctor Who actor?
Sep. 15th, 2007 06:15 pm (UTC)
Absolutely. In fact he's not even the best example; his one original novel, Harry Sullivan's War, didn't feature the Doctor. Three people (Mark Gatiss, Glyn Jones and Victor Pemberton) have both written actual broadcast Doctor Who stories and appeared in (different) actual broadcast Doctor Who stories as actors. But Baker is the only actor who has both played the title role and written fiction set in the Whoniverse.

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