You may wish to consult Time Bomb (disambiguation) for other, similarly-named pages.

Time Bomb! was the second story in the pages of Death's Head (1988) to cross over with Doctor Who Magazine. Unusually for stories involving the character of Death's Head, it was not written by Simon Furman, but rather another DWM veteran, Steve Parkhouse.

The story is notable for the fact that it knits together characters that were never before associated. In particular, it depicted a meeting between Josiah W. Dogbolter and his robot assistant Hob — two characters from the Sixth Doctor's DWM run — with Death's Head, who hadn't appeared in DWM until the Seventh Doctor's era. More significantly, it unmistakably showed the Doctor's TARDIS on top of the iconic Four Freedoms Plaza, home of the Fantastic Four, thereby making the Doctor a character in the mainstream Marvel universe.

The story was vague in its conclusion on whether Hob and Dogbolter had survived the confrontation, or if they had been been killed in the final frame. The comic series The Incomplete Death's Head would serve as a sequel to the story; showing Hob, splintered across all of time and space by the blast, searching across archives of Head's life for any sign of where Dogbolter might have ended up. Stories like COMIC: The Stockbridge Showdown would answer the mystery simply by ignoring it, and instead showing the two characters living up to the same status quo expected before the release of the story.

Summary[edit | edit source]

Josiah W. Dogbolter, head of Intra-Venus, Inc., hires Death's Head to kill the Doctor, and gives the mercenary a new time machine-in-a-backpack that his company is developing. He spins through time, stopping off in various historical spots, like the Battle of the Somme. Eventually he discovers the Seventh Doctor, who lets the robot into the TARDIS.

The unlikely duo soon discover that Dogbolter had dealt them both a bad hand. Attached to the time machine is a nuclear weapon, which Dogbolter can activate remotely. The Doctor thus transports to the Intra-Venus headquarters and helps Death's Head take off the time machine. They dump it right on top of Dogbolter's base and take off in the TARDIS. A mushroom cloud expands over the horizon, apparently indicating the Dogbolter's demise.

After that's done, the TARDIS materialises elsewhere, and the Doctor drops off Death's Head on the top of another building. The Time Lord tries to explain to the robot the necessity of self-improvement, and how that's a quality that organics will always have over mechanical beings. The plea seems to fall on deaf ears, however, and the Doctor returns to the TARDIS for another adventure. As he does it becomes apparent that this isn't just any old building.

The Doctor has in fact landed on top of the Four Freedoms Plaza, its distinctive number 4 heralding only one thing: Death's Head is about to come face to face with the Fantastic Four.

Characters[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  • Dogbolter once again has images of previous incarnations of the Doctor he has encountered (the Fifth Doctor and Sixth Doctor) as well as the current one. Dogbolter wants revenge on "that pipsqueak Doctor".
  • Thetford's parish records record a sighting of Death's Head as "the Horned One".
  • The Doctor tells a joke during his pantomime about Napoleon.
  • Dave tells the Doctor that next year the panto will be Aladdin.
  • Dogbolter and Death's Head identify the Doctor as a Gallifreyan. Death's Head also calls him a Time Lord.
  • Intra-Venus HQ is unstaffed on Sundays.

Notes[edit | edit source]

The original cover to Death's Head #8

  • As with the previous crossover with Doctor Who Magazine, none of the recurring characters in Death's Head appeared, including Keepsake's vulture, the only recurring character in the series from Doctor Who Magazine. Unlike the previous crossover, which built heavily upon the title character of Keepsake and made use of the city Death's Head lived in, only two pages are actually set in Los Angeles and remain entirely within the confines of Death's Head's office.
    • Furthermore, the year of 8162 is not mentioned in this issue, but Death's Head refers to having no ability to return to 8162 in COMIC: Clobberin' Time!.
  • The two pages the Doctor and Death's Head spend on the Baxter Building are not dated in this issue. The next issue specifies 1989 but because of Marvel Comics "sliding timescale", the more relevant statement made in that issue is that Franklin Richards is five years old.
  • The cover depicts a meeting of Dogbolter and Death's Head, which does not actually happen within the comic.

Reprints[edit | edit source]

Continuity[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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