They are two of the biggest sci-fi franchises around and IDW has finally brought them together… but is it good?
Years ago I was at a convention in Liverpool and Nicholas Courtney aka the Brigadier was asked a peculiar question by a member of the audience.
“Are the producers of Doctor Who going to sue Paramount for creating the Borg which are obviously Cybermen?” Well, it was along those lines but suing was definitely an option. I sat and thought what a weird thing to ask; after all anyone can create anything and there are always going to be similarities to something else because that’s what we fans do.
And here we are over twenty years later and we’re about to find out who is who and what cyborg is more deadly- the Cybermen or the Borg. And is it possible they are different branches of the same lineage?
IDW has devised a way to bring the Doctor to meet Captain Picard in the new 8 issue comic series Assimilation 2.
We open on the planet Delta IV and the Borg have launched an assimilation attack except this time there’s an additional shape in their ranks. Strange metal men that cry out “Resistance is futile!” while the 24th century Borg inject their victims for conversion. We cut to the Doctor, Amy and Rory doing their best Ben Hur impersonation as they deal with a nasty alien in ancient Egypt. On returning to the Tardis the Doctor is struck by a terrifying vision and sends the Tardis to the 24th century. Unfortunately they arrive in gangster filled San Francisco.
The first issue of any series is always a set up for the plot elements and here it flows like water.
The Borg/Cybermen attack raises more questions as the silver giants appear to be the spearhead of the invasion. One interesting plot point was as the survivors fled the doomed world, a Federation officer tells the Deltans they will soon have their home back. The Deltan asks what will be left? This is something the show never considered before. We the viewer assumed any world taken by the Borg remained consumed by the Borg but here the survivors and Federation officers believe the Deltans will be able to return home after the attack is done. Would you want to go back? Not sure I would.
J.K. Woodward’s art is quite simply breath-taking with all the Who regulars looking very smart. He captures their likenesses perfectly especially Matt Smith. The characterisations are also spot on with the Doctor simply leaping off the page at the reader in all of his incarnation’s fun loving madness and sharp quips.
The San Francisco setting is beautiful and contains a wonderful in joke for all Who fans across the world before we hit the cliffhanger.
Overall, a good start. The roller coaster is about to begin.