- File Size: 1988 KB
- Print Length: 52 pages
- Publisher: BBC Children's Books (February 23, 2013)
- Publication Date: February 23, 2013
- Sold by: PEN UK
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00B54TZAG
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #600,200 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Doctor Who: The Nameless City: Second Doctor (Doctor Who 50th Anniversary E-Shorts Book 2) Kindle Edition
|Length: 52 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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|Age Level: 7 and up|
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Top Customer Reviews
Referred to as the "cosmic hobo," here the Second Doctor appears to be more whimsical than his predecessor, very suggestive of the childlike wonder Matt Smith is capable of bringing to the role as Eleven. Within the pages of Scott's story the Second Doctor is joined by long-time companion Jamie McCrimmon (played by Frazer Hines on-screen), an eighteenth-century Scotsman and one of the Doctor's longest-serving companions, appearing in well over one hundred episodes. I LOVE the idea of the Doctor having a long-term companion from a historical time period relative to whenever the show aired. The creative possibilities for introducing an eighteenth- or nineteenth-century native to not only future worlds but the twenty-first century and its people and technology are endless! It's an avenue I dearly hope the showrunners for New-Who consider, as I think it could breathe fresh life into this dearly-loved series.
More so than in the case of Colfer's First Doctor story, I feel as though Scott has succeeded in writing a story that hits the right balance of appealing to New-Who fans while avoiding the temptation to project the show's later mythology onto one of the Doctor's first incarnations. This story very much feels as though it could be an episode of the show, different enough in tone and style to distinguish it from the reigns of Nine, Ten, and Eleven whom I know fairly well. *wink* The Archons were suitably creepy villains, and I loved the glimpse of the unnamed Master, operating in the shadows. If the Doctor and Jamie's on-screen relationship is half as interesting as I found it play out in this story, I definitely need to make time to become better acquainted with Patrick Troughton's Doctor. Very enjoyable!
Well, let's start with a summary. The Second Doctor and his current companion and friend, Jamie McCrimmon, are currently stuck in London during the late 1960s because the TARDIS has apparently broken down. The Doctor ends up sending Jamie out to find materials to repair the TARDIS, but while he's out, he saves an old man from being mugged. As gratitude for saving him, the old man gives Jamie one of his books, entitled the Necronomicon, which Jamie plans to give to the Doctor as a present. However, when Jamie presents the Necronomicon to the Doctor, the book immediately takes control of the TARDIS, and causes it to materialize on a distant dead planet. At first, it appears to be deserted, but the Doctor and Jamie quickly learn that they are not alone on this planet. Ultimately, the race is on as the Doctor needs to fix the TARDIS and leave this planet, before whatever lives here gets its hands on the TARDIS.
So, yeah, mountain of text summary aside, why exactly do I think that this story is an improvement over the last one? Well, first things first, the story actually has BUILDUP! Yeah, all the buildup that I felt was missing from the first story is actually present in this story. Like for example, in the last story, I felt that, while the Soul Pirates were good ideas for villains, they didn't have a lot of buildup, and as a result, did not have as much weight as other villains. However, in this story not only are the creatures, that you learn are known as the Archons, given proper buildup, but they're actually very nice villains too. Like for example, the beginning prologue of the story is meant to apparently be the last remaining record that the TARDIS has of these creatures, and we're not really told much about them beyond that they once ruled the universe, they were great conquerors, and now they're practically gone. It's very mysterious, very ambiguous, and it leaves you curious and wanting more. That is actual buildup, and the more the story builds up the Archons, the more creepy they become. Heck, the Archons aren't really described to us completely 'till the Doctor actually confronts them, which does add to the mystery factor they possess, and as a result, I feel the story benefits greatly.
Plus, since the story has proper buildup, we're not thrown into the situation while the Doctor is in the process of solving it, we're brought in when Jamie is looking for materials to repair the TARDIS. So, when the actual crisis does occur, it's as much a mystery to the main characters as it is to us, allowing us to follow their exploits without being confused.
Next up on our list of improvements, the characterization. In the first story, I felt that the characterization of the First Doctor was off and could easily have been worked on. Here, I honestly feel that the characterization of the Second Doctor and Jamie does feel more natural. Now, I will not state that I have a firm grasp of the Second Doctor's personality, as I've only seen 2 serials with him; "Tomb of the Cybermen" and "The War Games." However, while those are the only serials in the Second Doctor era I have under my belt, the characters I see in this eBook don't really clash too much with what I've seen in those stories; the Doctor still feels like a cosmic hobo who loves to explore, and Jamie still feels like a strong young Scotsman with a strong friendship with the Doctor. Nothing I see in this eBook goes against what was established in those serials, and while I do think that I need to watch more serials with Patrick Troughtan to get a better grasp on his character, everything in this eBook still feels natural, and I think it works well.
Next, like the first story, the writing style here is very well done, and flows naturally. Everything is described in perfect detail, and nothing feels out of place. For example, when the TARDIS arrives on the dead planet, the planet itself is described rather nicely, giving a rather creepy, dystopian feel to the planet, which adds to the atmosphere rather nicely. This writing style never falters at any point in the eBook, and combined with a naturally flowing story, I think it works well in the end.
However, while I do feel this story has a bit of good things in it, does it have problems? Unfortunately, yes, it does. Namely, it has one flaw that does hamper the experience; we aren't given a lot of answers. For example (SPOILERS), remember the old man that gave Jamie the Necronomicon? Well, it's actually revealed that the Doctor knows this man, and that the old man made a deal with Archons to bring the Doctor there so they could get his TARDIS. However, the only problem with that is, we don't know who this man is. To my knowledge, he has never appeared in the series once, and once this book's over, we don't know anything else about him. He only appears once to give Jamie the book, and then vanishes, never to return. Plus, while I still stand by that I think the Archons are good villains, and used perfectly, we don't learn a lot about their history. I don't wish to spoil more than I already have, but we ultimately do learn the connection between the Archons and the Time Lords, and even what happened to the Archons. However, we don't learn about what the Archon race was like before they died out, and it does feel like a plot thread that is left untied.
However, in the end, I actually think this story is pretty good. The pacing is done nicely, the villains are given proper weight and buildup, the writing style is done nicely, and the characterization is very well done. My only problem with it is that I think it could have answered more questions, and could have explained a few things more. But, in the end, I felt that this story was well worth my money, and I'd recommend this story to anyone that's curious. If you get the chance, give it a read, I promise you won't be disappointed.
The story itself is so much fun. I mean, second doctor + The Necronomicon, what more do you want? The setting is beautiful and the monsters are interesting. You even get some interesting info about supposed 'Time Lord Technology'.
The only thing that can be a bit distracting is Jamie being a bit...out of character. If you take this as a season 6b story where Jamie has been with the doctor for a while, it makes a bit more sense with how well he can read and look things up in newspapers etc. His speech is a bit off too, but it's not bad enough to make this any less enjoyable. If it is bothering you, I recommend just sort of fixed it in your head as you go...at least that's what I did.
Either way, this was amazing and I definitely recommend it to second doctor fans!