Doctor Who Makes a Major Change to Its Timeline

This month, Doctor Who kicks off its multimedia crossover event Time Lord Victorious. The project includes a new Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious comic book story titled "Defender of the Daleks." As the title implies, the plot involves the Doctor (specifically, the Tenth Doctor) coming to the aid of his sworn enemies, the Daleks. But the first issue of "Defender of the Daleks" reveals that something isn't right in the Doctor's timeline. SPOILERS for Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious #1 -- written by Jody Houser from a story by James Goss, with art by Roberta Ingranata and colors by Enrica Eren Angiolini -- part one of "Defender of the Daleks" follow.

Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious #1 picks up where Houser's Doctor Who: The Thirteenth Doctor comics left off. That four-part series saw the Thirteenth Doctor teaming up with the Tenth Doctor while the Tenth Doctor and Martha Jones were stuck in 1969, as seen in the television episode "Blink."

The two Doctors managed to resolve the crisis at hand, but fans of Doctor Who know that any time the Doctor crosses paths with their past or future self, they end up a little hazy on the details. It's a side effect of the time paradox inherent in two versions of the same being from two different points in their timeline coming to exist simultaneously in the same space. It's also a handy plot device that explains why the Doctor never knows about their future despite these occasional meetings with their future selves.

Thus, it isn't surprising that readers find the Doctor a little confused about what has taken place recently. It's less clear why he's traveling alone, and even the Doctor doesn't know where or when he is after falling through a time vortex.

What is clear is that the Dalek Emperor would like to meet with the Doctor. The Daleks pursue the Doctor from planet to planet until he agrees to go with them to Skaro. During the journey, the Doctor is stunned to learn that the Daleks do not know about the Time War.

The Time War was the war between Gallifrey and Skaro -- the Time Lords and the Daleks -- that only concluded when the Doctor took drastic measures to end the conflict. His guilt over fighting in the time war informed the portrayals of the Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Doctors. The Daleks no longer remembering the Time War explains why they're willing to work with the Doctor. But why does the Doctor still remember? And what happened to cause such a drastic change in the timeline?

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The Doctor sets that mystery aside and allies with his old foes to stop a new threat from the Dark Times. However, one expects that it is a question that will need answering soon.

Doctor Who: Time Lord Victorious #1 is on sale now.