Doctor Who comics villain Beep the Meep headed to TV screens?

Blurry photographs from a location shoot of the 60th anniversary Doctor Who story, of what appear to be cuddly but deadly comics villain Beep the Meep, and the Wrarth Warriors from “The Star Beast“, one of the earliest Doctor Who Weekly strips, have dropped online this week.

Doctor Who - Beep the Meep
Beep the Meep. Art by Dave Gibbons

One of the most popular Doctor Who comic strip villains of all time, Beep the Meep was the creation of Pat Mills and Dave Gibbons, making his debut in “Doctor Who and the Star Beast” in Doctor Who Weekly Issues 19 – 26, and reprinted most recently in the Panini Comics collection, The Iron Legion. (Although Pat Mills and John Wagner are jointly credited in the comics as writers, they in fact alternated on scripts).

“Beep the Meep predated the Gremlins as a furry bundle of fun with a heart of pure evil,” enthuses downthetubes contributor Tim Robins. “By far the most successful strip to channel the dark humour of 2000AD, ‘Star Beast’ really sold the comic to me.”

Is this a Wrarth warrior on set during recording of a scene for Doctor Who's 60th anniversary story? It certainly seems so, when compared to their appearance in "The Star Beast"...
Is this a Wrarth warrior on set during recording of a scene for Doctor Who’s 60th anniversary story? It certainly seems so, when compared to their appearance in “The Star Beast”… Montage via Marcus Bryan

Needless to say, fan speculation about this appearance, including on YouTube and Twitter (a blurry picture of the alleged “Beep” here, for example), is pretty rampant, and of course there are those hoping it might also lead to more comic strip characters transferring to TV screens – Frobisher the Penguin, companion to the Sixth Doctor in Doctor Who Magazine, in particular.

(Let’s not forget Abslom Daak – Dalek Killer, created by Steve Moore and Steve Dillon, made a tongue in cheek onscreen cameo in the Season 8 story, “Time Heist”, so there’s already precedent for this kind of thing).

Doctor Who comic character Abslom Daak made an onscreen appearance in the Season 8 story, "Time Heist"
Doctor Who comic character Abslom Daak made an onscreen appearance in the Season 8 story, “Time Heist”

If this is not some monumental wind up on the part of series producer Russell T. Davies, a longtime fan of Doctor Who Magazine, then it’s great to hear another Doctor Who comic character will be appearing on our TV screens, although whether this may prove to be some weird dream sequence or alternate reality remains to be seen, given speculation aplenty about the 60th anniversary story.

Doctor Who - Big Finish - The Ratings War

However this wonderful Who tidbit turns out, it certainly won’t hurt sales of The Iron Legion collection, and audio drama producers Big Finish were quick off the mark in response, promoting the chance to listen to their Sixth Doctor story, “The Ratings War”, featuring Beep, for free, with Toby Longworth voicing Beep the Meep.

In the story, Beep the Meep is back – and he’s found a new channel for his aggression! A brand new series is about to make television history, but can the Doctor prevent his furry foe from turning a docu-drama into a crisis, or will the fluffy-wuffy animals get it in the neck? The first shots in the ratings war have been fired, and the next one is aimed at your head…

Doctor Who: The Comic Strip Adaptations Volume One

Back in 2019, Big Finish released two classic Doctor Who comics strips as audio adaptations, starring Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor and Rhianne Starbuck as companion Sharon, as Doctor Who WeeklyThe Comic Strips Adaptations Volume One, featuring “The Iron Legion” and “Star Beast”. No further adaptations have followed.

Doctor Who: The Iron Legion
Doctor Who: The Iron Legion – the comic strip collection

Doctor Who: The Iron Legion is available to order from AmazonUK (Affiliate Link)

Join the Doctor, that immortal traveller in time and space, on five of his wildest and wittiest comic strip adventures: “The Iron Legion,” “City of the Damned,” “The Star Beast,” “The Dogs of Doom,” “The Time Witch.”

Featuring work from the award-winning Dave Gibbons (Watchmen), Pat Mills, and John Wagner (Judge DreddStrontium Dog), and Steve Moore (Abslom Daak), this special collection celebrates forty years of the Doctor Who comic strip.

• The Comic Strip Adaptations Volume One is available as a five-disc CD box set from Big Finish here | Buy it from AmazonUK (Affiliate Link)

Listen to the Big Finish Sixth Doctor story, “The Ratings War”, featuring Beep, for free

With thanks to Tim Robins

The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

Categories: British Comics, Comics, Doctor Who, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News, Other Worlds, Television

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4 replies

  1. Thanks for the montage credit. Really hope this isn’t a huge prank

  2. Brilliant 🙂 Would an expensive but marvellous prank:) Hoping this is legit and RTD is cleverly mining the rich history of Who much like Dave Filoni is doing for Star Wars over on Disney+. Other than the Abslom Daak Easter Egg, I can think of 2 stories with direct roots in DWM strips (the Shakespeare episode and the Lodger).

    • You’re forgetting Sally Sparrow!

      Blink (which introduced the Weeping Angels) began as a text story written by Stephen Moffat in one of the DWM annuals. Called “‘What I Did on my Christmas Holidays’ by Sally Sparrow”. No angels, but concepts and characters started there.

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