Doctor Who in Comics: 1964-2011

 This review first appeared on the Kids in Museums site in 2011 in the days before I had a blog. I thought I’d re-publish it over here so no one misses out. It was such a fantastic exhibition, it’s such a shame it was only a temporary exhibition. 

Kids in Museums volunteer, Jack Shoulder has fun exploring everyone’s favourite doctor in comic book form in a new exhibition at the Cartoon Museum…

A Doctor Who Comic
A Doctor Who Comic

Doctor Who and comic books, a match made in geek heaven. So imagine my surprise to learn that everyone’s favourite British superhero (and he is a superhero, with cool gadgets, sidekick and powers) is not just the central character in the UK’s longest running science fiction adventure, but also the world’s longest running comic hero based on a TV programme.

As a volunteer at the Cartoon Museum, I was lucky enough to be a part of the opening night’s festivities. I donned my best bow-tie as well as a new addition to my wardrobe, a fez. Suitably dressed, I hoped the guests would enjoy my nod to the latest incarnation of the Doctor played by Matt Smith.

A little Doctor Who cosplay: the 11th Doctor
A little Doctor Who cosplay: the 11th Doctor

Instead, most of them asked why I was dressed as Tommy Cooper.

Oh well, on with the show.

Dr Who has been part of the comic book crowd for 47 years now, and from 1989 until 2005 it was the only way that fans could enjoy his exploits. One of these stories proved so popular that it was re-written for the TV, and viewers were treated to the episode called ‘Blink’, with its terrifying Weeping Angels. The Cartoon Museum displays the original art work for the original story.

Not only does the exhibition cover the fascinating plots and some astonishing artwork but also the interesting publication history of the Doctor. My favourite fact of the night? Doctor Who comics used to be published by Marvel Comics, who also brought us Captain America and Spider-Man*.

This is definitely one for the boys, with Dads explaining about the previous Doctors and how Daleks shouldn’t fly, while sons can just get on with enjoying the show. Admission for under 18s is free, so hop in your TARDIS and check it out.

Doctor Who in Comics: 1964-2011 is on at the Cartoon Museum until 30th October 2011.

It was a really, really good exhibition. If you would like to see more Doctor Who stuff then you’ll like this visit to the Doctor Who Museum.

*Just imagine how incredible a Doctor Who/Avengers crossover would be.


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