Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor #3 continues our new journey through time and space with the Doctor and Alice as they can visit one of her mother’s musical heroes. An interesting choice as the question comes up as to whether this forgettable singer whose talent seems to be that of disappearing in a crowded room is really the colossal talent who brought passion, creativity and meaning to her mother’s life.
Now I want to say that this was a good adventure that the Doctor and Alice went on this time around, though sadly that was not entirely the case here. Was the issue bad? Most certainly not. It was well written and very down to Earth in terms of capturing true talent and the appreciation for it. Though this isn’t a story that you feel all too excited reading. It doesn’t need action or something over-the-top, but it needs something to keep you engaged and much of the story came off dry. Maybe it’s because the Doctor and Alice are of an older mindset where they are more mature in how they handle things, or maybe it’s just the plot, though somewhere in this issue the delivery wasn’t there you keep you as engaged as you should be. We know someone out there in the Bayou is stalking bluesmen through the swamps of Mississippi, offering them talent beyond imagining, worlds at their feet in exchange for their souls. Though just knowing that is not enough when we are only aware of what happens when they make the deal. It would be nice to know what more goes on during that transaction.
With that said, things do pick up near the end when you see how capable Alice is a companion. Most need some sort of motivation or push to be able to figure things out without the Doctor, and yet Alice is quick on her feet to know what to do to help the Doctor when he found himself in trouble. It wasn’t just Alice either, but the rest that were involved aside from the Doctor that stepped up and that was what picked up your attention near the end.
While the story leaves you a bit wanting, the interior art manages to pick up where it is slacking. What I liked about this issue visually is that while Simon Fraser’s style leans more towards the simplistic side, you don’t lose out on those basic emotions and expressions he captures which set the tone for the story. He’s very good at showing the sincerity of characters like Alice, or the disappointed looks from John.
Doctor Who: The Eleventh Doctor #3 was going somewhere with this story, even laid down the foundation for a larger mystery to uncover at the end, though as I said before the execution needed work. Especially when we have ended two issues now that left us with more questions than answers. Maybe everything is leading up to a bigger picture, but that remains to be seen or clear.