The Daily Mail’s Doctor Who newspaper strip that never was

Doctor Who newspaper strip sample by Tim Quinn and Steve Parkhouse

Doctor Who newspaper strip sample by Tim Quinn and Steve Parkhouse

Doctor Who newspaper strip sample by Tim Quinn and Steve Parkhouse

During the success of the new Doctor Who when it returned in 2005, I spoke with the Daily Mail, who were keen to run a daily strip of the Doctor.

The right folk at the BBC agreed and I asked Steve Parkhouse to come on board as illustrator. The first story written and three day’s worth drawn when the BBC had an about-turn when a committee decided that what with the launching of their Doctor Who Adventures, plus the ongoing strip in Doctor Who Magazine, a daily strip would only confuse readers.

Personally I can’t imagine that the readers of Adventures also read the Daily Mail but what do I know. And so another mighty project binned. I think I see a theme developing here…

Doctor Who fans will recall this wasn’t the first attempt to get a newspaper strip based on the show off the ground. Back in the 1990s, John Freeman (he of this parish), then editor of DWM, pitched a strip drawn by Gerry Dolan to the Daily Express, who’d shown interest during a meeting at an Angouleme Festival, but the show’s declining ratings and apparent cancellation dampened their ardour.

The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Explorer (previously known as Star Trek Magazine) and more. 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 "Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies" for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.



Categories: British Comics - Newspaper Strips, Doctor Who, Featured News, Other Worlds, Television

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