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Doctor Who Magazine (1979) - #337
Panini UK

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Cover Date: December 10 2003
Cover Price: UK £ 3.40

Issue Tagline: None.

Format: Color; Magazine

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Reprinted/Collected in:
Doctor Who Graphic Novel (2004) GN 07

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Multiple Stories in this Issue

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The Land of Happy Endings

Scott Gray

Martin Geraghty

Faz Choudhury
David A Roach

Daryl Joyce
Adrian Salmon - 'Ade Salmon'

Roger Langridge

Clayton Hickman

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An image for The Doctor (Doctor Who)(08) exists The Doctor (Doctor Who)(08)
An image for John and Gillian exists John and Gillian
An image for Pobla exists Pobla
An image for Wargonn exists Wargonn

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Dr. Who, John and Gillian land on the planet Darbodia to discover its inhabitants are all drab and devoid of inspiration. Painters can't think of anything to paint, conversation has all but stopped, and even the pallor of the inhabitants' skin is grey and lifeless. Trying to spark the planets' imagination, Dr. Who pulls some fireworks from his medical doctor's bag and literally injects some color into the proceedings.

The inhabitants respond to this sudden infusion of excitement.

Deep in the city's bowels, a mysterious figure recognizes that the citizens' imaginations are returning to them. He sends his killer robots out to quash the mental "rebellion". Gillian is captured by one and spirited away.

Dr. Who, John, and their new friend Pobla stave off the remaining robots, then begin their search for GIllian. The hunt eventually brings them to the lair of Wargonn, the evil mastermind who's been holding the planet's collective imagination hostage by enslaving creatures known as Figments.

Figments, it turns out, are literal representations of the populace's creativity—actual creatures who are, in Pobala's words, "friendly creatures of imagination (who) are made out of thought and give all Darbodians their dreams".

The scientist Wargonn has been hiding them in order to preserve peace in society. He believes that ideas are dangerous in the hands of anyone but the most intelligent members of society. In a misguided effort to prevent society from becoming chaotic, he has thus imprisoned all the Figments.

While talking to Dr. Who about the situation, Wargonn becomes curious about the medical bag. He asks to see what's inside. As he's peering over the lip of the bag, John sneaks up behind him and pushes him inside. The bag can accommodate Wargon because, like the TARDIS, it's "bigger on the inside".

Now trapped like the Figments, Dr. Who makes a deal with Wargonn. He says that Wargonn can either stay inside forever or release the figments. Wargonn hastily agrees, returning live on Darbodia to normal.

Dr. Who, John and Gillian then depart the newly creative world. Perhaps exhausted from the adventure, Dr. Who goes to sleep in a big chair in the TARDIS control room.

The Eighth Doctor, meanwhile, awakens on the "real" TARDIS. Unlike Dr. Who, the Doctor is quite alone. He muses over how simply the problem in his dream was solved, and knows that the world his "grandchildren" exist in can never fully be emulated in the "real" universe. Melancholic over the distinction between fantasy and reality, he scans the lonely TARDIS interior to see his doctor's bag on the floor in front of the TARDIS console. He half-smiles to himself as he realizes that his life, largely, is about trying to make sure, like Dr. Who, that all crises come to a happy ending.

Roach and Salmon are specifically credited for their work on the last page only. This story is comprised of two very different artistic styles. The bulk of the work is reminiscent of, and specifically dedicated to, the work of Neville Main, one of the principle TV Comic illustrators. In the last page, where the Doctor awakens from a dream, the art is in the then-typical Doctor Who Magazine style.

This story is notable for at least two significant continuity reasons. First, it suggests a period of time post-Izzy where the Eighth Doctor is clearly travelling alone. Second, and more importantly, it directly implies that the TV Comic era in Doctor Who comics history was, as far as the Doctor Who Magazine run was concerned, a dream. John and Gillian's familial relationship with the Doctor, always something of a continuity problem, was thus rendered "imaginary".
This story marks a brief return to the in-narrative use of the name "Dr. Who", which had been common in the 1960s and early 1970s, but had long since passed out of fashion in comics. Thus, during the main part of the narrative the central character is "Dr. Who", but after the perspective switches back out of the dream state, the main protagonist is "the Doctor".
This story reuses some elements from the Fourth Doctor story, "City of the Damned".

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