By Nick Abadzis, Leonardo Romero, Arianna and Azzurra Florean, Richard Starkings and Jimmy Betancourt
Someone or something is abducting the ancient ancestors to the Human Race and one lone caveman named Munmeth aims to do something about it.
After being turned down by the only neighboring tribes that are still around, Munmeth runs across Gabby and an unconscious Doctor in need of help. After the Doctor recovers, Munmeth takes him and Gabby along on his quest to find the missing Neanderthals only for each of them to be abducted along the way. Gabby is separated from the others and meets someone who strongly resembles a more evolved Munmeth on a spaceship.
The cold open with Munmeth I found somewhat dull in his narration of events and a lack of tension in his allies rejection to his pleas for help. Also, the way the Doctor recovers so easily after some basic treatment of herbs seems like a stretch. Which may fit in with the way 10th Doctor stories worked in the show when he was around, it’s hard to be sure. Rarely did it seem like he faced danger or injury in most episodes. Gabby herself has an interesting time adjusting to Munmeth in that she knows as a Neanderthal he will face extinction to Homo Sapiens despite all his positive traits. Which leads to one problem I had with the issue, scientific accuracy. Granted I don’t know much about prehistoric human history so I had to Google search if Hyenas and Wooly Mammoths existed at the same time (they did) but I had trouble believing that Munmeth was what a “Caveman” should look like. I wasn’t expecting Fred Flintstone, but maybe darker complexions, larger jaws and hands and more body hair. Of course Doctor Who isn’t always accurate in the details, but they do try at times. For now, I’ll give the benefit of the doubt to Abadzis that he did his research for the script. It was also a nice touch having the TARDIS neural link fail to translate some of the words Gabby used with Munmeth since he would have no equivalent context to understand them.
Art-wise, Romero does a solid job on pencils in drawing early humans along with a Mammoth and spaceships. Some figures in the distance can seem alittle too vague, but he uses good technique in storytelling. Romero stays consistent with drawing the human form, and their clothes and weapons. It may look like something out of 10,000 BC but the art doesn’t suffer. On color, both Arianna and Azzurra Florean do a good job of conveying the winter like environment as well as the rocks, trees and brush in the backgrounds. I sort of wish half the spaceships didn’t look so phallic, but if the flying saucer design works then I guess a pointed rod with a cylindrical base would too. I’m looking forward to see what else this art team can do when more aliens are thrown into the story.
Overall, this is a decent Doctor Who story that is a little light in delivery. The ingredients are there, but it doesn’t surpass some of the other DW comics that are also coming out. Then again, it’s nice to see the Doctor traveling to location that’s not a space-ship in the far future and fighting some elemental creature. Since this is the first installment of a two-parter, there is potential for the next chapter to be more exciting.
Rating: Poor, Fair, Good, Great, Excellent
Disclosure: Publisher Titan Comics provided an advance review copy of this comic to Nothing But Comics without any payment between the site or publisher or agreement on the review’s content.