Doctor Who: The Only Good Dalek by Justin Richards
Art: Mike Collins
Of course anyone who’s familiar with the Doctor Who universe knows that there’s no such thing as a good Dalek. And that is what the Doctor bases all his choices on. Despite others trying to convince him that they can make Daleks good, the Doctor has written them all off as bad. Unlike earlier versions of himself.
(I do think it’s interesting how with most other villains the Doctor believes in some kind of redemption/reformation being possible, but not with the Daleks. In many ways, I feel that the Doctor needs a black and white villain for when the writers are being lazy, and it’s either the Daleks or the Cybermen.)
Overall, Richards’ writing and Collins’ art is very entertaining. The plot is very Doctor Who. Richards writes a great Doctor and a good Amy. He also creates compelling side characters like Jay. Who like all the best Doctor Who one-off characters is very memorable. Additionally, Richards does a wonderful job at sprinkling in references to older episodes without throwing the story off or sending the reader to Wikipedia.
While I’m not a super big fan of Collins’ shading, his art helped tell the story. The Doctor has a bit of subterfuge he must do, and Collins is very adept at drawing facial expressions beautifully. You can tell what else is going on by how the Doctor or Amy look.
I don’t know why the Doctor was so surprised that humans would have Daleks under lock and key (or so they think) somewhere. But I thought the storyline about the military wanting to reform and use those “good” Daleks to defeat the Daleks worked really well. It was believable in the bureaucratic government plot way.
Tranter as a brainwashed traitor fell nicely into a plot that was all about re-writing people’s brains. The humans were trying to do with the Daleks, and the Daleks had in turn created a spy for themselves. I felt the horror-style ending of “it’s not over yet” worked really well as poor Jay tried to get home. She just should’ve gone with the Doctor and Amy.
I love Professor Weston’s good Dalek. Because even though the Doctor has written off the Daleks as supremely bad, there is one. There is a good Dalek. A Dalek that sacrificed itself to save the humans from the other Daleks.
And on one final note, Daleks falling in lava is pretty hilarious. They need to do this on the show sometime.
Meet a nice Dalek yourself and buy Doctor Who: The Only Good Dalek.