The Night Walkers was a story published in TV Comic featuring the Second Doctor. It is considered to be the conclusion of Season 6B. Published in three parts from 8-22 November 1969, it is the last TV Comic story to feature the Second Doctor and the very last adventure of this incarnation, loosely serving as a direct prelude to Spearhead from Space.
It is also the only story to feature and properly show the Second Doctor's regeneration, given that his last regular TV appearance didn't show him regenerating, and also uniquely the only time the Doctor has regenerated in a comic story as opposed to an on-screen episode.
The Doctor has become a celebrity in the early days of his Time Lord-imposed exile on Earth. He is a panellist on the game show Explain My Mystery. One of the callers, Mr. Glenlock-Hogan, a farmer, has a mystery, a strange case of scarecrows who walk at night, which stumps the Doctor. Intrigued, he goes to visit the farm for a weekend and explore the land at night so he can see the walking scarecrows for himself. When the Doctor does, the scarecrows call to him — "Step forward, Dr. Who!" — and reveal they are servants of the Time Lords, sent to begin the second phase of the Doctor's sentence: his change of appearance. The scarecrows capture the Doctor with an energy weapon and, as he is carried off, he calls out to the frightened farmer: "Fear no more, Hogan... After this dreadful night has passed your scarecrows will not walk again!"
With the captured Doctor in tow, the scarecrows head for the TARDIS, which stands in the field. Once inside, they force his regeneration and set the TARDIS controls to dematerialise. The scarecrows leave the TARDIS to land somewhere else on Earth, before becoming inanimate straw dummies once more. Glenlock-Hogan flees, saying "No human being will believe the account of what Oi've witnessed!"
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- Published six weeks before Spearhead from Space began, The Night Walkers is the only published comic strip to depict the actual moment of regeneration for a televised Doctor. Part three, published 22 November 1969, not only showed the end of the Second Doctor's life but also brought to a close the "third phase" of Second Doctor comic strips.
- Begun in the comic story Action in Exile, the era had given readers tales of a companion-less Second Doctor — who has somehow escaped having his appearance changed — enjoying his exile on Earth. Rather than living in UNIT obscurity, as the Third Doctor's televised exile showed, the Second Doctor's comic exile was one of fame and luxury in the Carlton Grange Hotel.
- The very last words spoken by the Second Doctor are; "Fear no more, Hogan... After this dreadful night has passed your scarecrows will not walk again!"
- The scarecrows were sent by the Time Lords as they sentenced the Doctor to exile. (TV: The War Games)
- The Second Doctor eventually finished his regeneration into the Third Doctor on board his TARDIS. (TV: Spearhead from Space)