Fanboy Comics Interviews Nick Abadzis of ‘Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor’

The following is an interview with Nick Abadzis, writer of Titan Comics' Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor comic book series, the first volume of which will be hitting shelves later this month. In this interview, Fanboy Comics Managing Editor Barbra Dillon chats with Abadzis about what piqued his interest in working on the series, whether Whovians and those new to the franchise will be easily able to jump into the series, and - most importantly - which Doctor is *his* Doctor!


Barbra J. Dillon, Fanboy Comics Managing Editor: Titan Comics will soon be releasing the hard back of your work on Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor Volume One – Revolutions of Terror. What initially intrigued you about taking on this series in the comic book medium?

Nick Abadzis: Doctor Who is about the most flexible storytelling format imaginable, and I'm a lifelong fan, plus comics is my language - it's what I do. I love Doctor Who and I love comics, and I've been collecting Doctor Who comics since I first learned to read, so being invited to write them was a dream come true.

BD: What can you tell us about the additional members of the creative team working on the series, and how would you describe your creative process in working together?

NA: I'm very lucky to have Elena Casagrande and Arianna Florean on the visual side of things. Andrew James, our editor, coordinates us, and his input is extremely valuable. We literally wouldn't work without him; he's our glue. But, Elena's incredible . . . I'm an artist myself, so I know how tricky it can get, taking a script and interpreting it visually. I give her rough panel layouts for each page, so she can see how I'm imagining each page will "flow." Sometimes, she uses these layouts, sometimes, she doesn't; we're very fluid about that, but, basically, she takes my ideas and makes them sing. It always comes out better than I imagined. Arianna is the cherry on top - her comprehension and instincts for mood and tone are synchronous with Elena, plus she, too, is an artist in her own right, so you've got three of us, all pushing for the best possible result on the finished page.

At this point, we've developed kind of a sixth sense with how we all work - I've just seen Elena's finished inks for the first couple of pages for issue #11, and they're just so, so good. Working with this team is just a lovely experience.

BD: Do you feel that the comic book series, and specifically the first volume, provides a solid jumping-on point for readers unfamiliar with the TV series, while also providing additional mysteries and adventures for seasoned viewers?

NA: It does. I write the comics so that anyone, familiar with Doctor Who or not, can pick them up and enjoy them. My first instruction to myself is always just to write something both accessible and intriguing - a good comic, a good story. You don't necessarily have to know Doctor Who to pick it up and enjoy it, but, of course, if you do, you find another whole layer of meaning that I weave in. Doctor Who is part of my DNA; I grew up watching it and reading it, so I trust myself to add details that a longtime fan will enjoy, because I enjoy that sort of stuff myself. Equally, I think it's important just to write good comics, so that stipulation feeds into it, too.

BD: Do you have a certain number of issues in mind for the series, and are there any upcoming storylines that you are able to share?

NA: At this point, I'm finishing up the storyline that will conclude our first fifteen issues, and I'm on board for the following year, so another fifteen. Our "season finale" will introduce a new "big bad," a being who doesn't have any direct history with the Doctor but who has very understandable motivations for wanting to trip up our favorite Time Lord. He's not even a villain precisely, he's someone who has had the weight of the universe dumped on his shoulders and needs some help. In his own bizarre way, he asks the Doctor for help, but the Doctor can't give him the kind of help he needs. From these misunderstandings, drama ensues. There'll be a lot fun to be had, but a lot of heartache, too.

BD: Are there any other projects on which you are currently working that you are able to share with our readers?

NA: As well as Doctor Who, I'm also currently working on a project for First Second books, who published my graphic novel, LAIKA. It's called Pigs Might Fly, and yes, it's about flying pigs. Pigs who build aircrafts. I can't really say much more about it than that at this point, but, rest assured, it isn't simplistic! Like I hope all my work is, it's about far more than it appears to be on the surface.

I'm not drawing this one, though - the art is being created by a supremely talented gentleman called Jerel Dye who draws in a style not unlike my own, except better. I love his work, he's incredible, and it's being colored by the very talented Laurel Leake. We'll have a Tumblr blog up soon previewing some of the fabulous imagery Jerel's drawing, but, for the time being, you can stay tuned to my Twitter feed or Tumblr for updates.

BD: Being that we focus on all things “geek” at Fanboy Comics, would you care to geek out with us about the comic books and/or graphic novels that you are currently following?

NA: Right now, I am really into Aama by Frederik Peeters; I just read Volume II. He's a Swiss artist whose work really reminds me of the great and much-missed master of European comics, Moebius. This series by Peeters gives me the same kind of vibe I got when I read Moebius & Jodorowsky's Incal series for the first time. If you enjoy finely wrought, highly detailed, and convincing SF worlds, you can't go wrong with this one. I'm also really enjoying Dan Slott and Mike Allred's take on the Silver Surfer.

BD: On behalf of our Whovian readers, I would be remiss if I didn’t ask: Who is *your* Doctor?

NA: You have to ask that question! Well, I grew up with Jon Pertwee and Tom Baker - I can recall the regeneration from 3 into 4 - but I'd have to say that Tom Baker is "my" Doctor, as he impacted upon me so completely as a child. I wore long scarves to school and ate jelly babies, drew my own fourth Doctor comics, that sort of thing. I adored him as the Doctor. I do love them all, though. I include Peter Cushing in that statement. These days, I'm absolutely enthralled by Capaldi as the 12th Doctor, and it is probably entirely obvious that I love the tenth, too. David Tennant succeeded in capturing my imagination in a similar way as an adult as Tom Baker did as a child.

BD: Lastly, what would you like to tell fans who want to learn more about Revolutions of Terror and your body of work?

NA: I hope you enjoy the stories I tell! If do you enjoy Revolutions of Terror, there are plenty more, and you can follow me on Twitter and Tumblr for news, drawings, updates, and cool stuff.

Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor Volume 1: Revolutions of Terror hits comic book stores in the US/Canada on March 25 and then book stores in the US/Canada the week after on March 31.

For more information, please visit Titan Comics here.

Last modified on Monday, 30 March 2015 15:13

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