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Doctor Which?

This story debuted with either the Second or Third Doctor, then was reprinted with the Fourth Doctor. It may have had different companions in the reprint, as well. From an in-universe point of view, it's unclear which Doctor lived through these events.


The Duellists was the only Second Doctor TV Comic story retouched as a Fourth Doctor story. As a result, it can be said to detail the only encounter between the Fourth Doctor and the Quarks. It's also notable as one of relatively few stories set in the first half of the 21st century which are not "modern day" stories.


In 2044, a group of English gentlemen colonised Hekton and set up a society of Regency gentry. Unfortunately, they became fond of duelling and cruel sports — such as pursuing a hapless manservant on horseback with a pack of dogs, which is what Richard and Clive are doing when the TARDIS materialises, startling the horses. Doctor Who finds himself threatened and taken to their mansion for their amusement. Richard sets the first test: the Doctor must snatch three ball bearings from a table before Clive brings an axe down on his hand. The Doctor cheats by using a magnet, which the gentlemen applaud, but the real test will be to face Clive in a duel with pistols at dawn. However, as the duel is about to begin, the Quarks are watching and waiting to kill the Doctor if Clive fails.

The duel goes ahead. Clive fires and misses. The Doctor shoots but only to disarm his opponent. The Quarks then open fire, but Doctor Who evades their shots too, hiding in the woods. With the regency rogues and the Quarks at each others throats, the Doctor sneaks back to the TARDIS, but a Quark is waiting for him. His death is but a moment away.

The Doctor's death is delayed by the intervention of Richard and Clive, who capture both him and the Quark and return them to the mansion. There they are forced to fight with whips on a board above a fire. They claim the winner will go free, but the Doctor has his doubts. The Doctor unbalances but does not destroy the Quark and Richard decides to finish them both off with his pistol, but the Doctor uses the whip to disarm him and then to swing himself out of the mansion through a window. The manhunt is on!

The Doctor eludes his hunters for a while, but soon has a skirmish with Richard. He knocks the man to the ground and steals his horse. When he comes across the Quark ship he realises he can use it to find the TARDIS in the dark, but the gentry are waiting for him outside the ship. The Doctor fires all the engines and the noise causes the horses to stampede. The Doctor lands and slips away in the TARDIS.



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  • The Quarks were directed to kill the Doctor back in COMIC: Invasion of the Quarks, which is set in 1968 - presumably the order was never cancelled.