The Spear of Destiny by Marcus Sedgwick

The Doctor and Jo’s investigation into a mysterious spear leads them from a museum heist to Viking-era Sweden.

Much like last month’s release, this is a strong story, and the author has written the characters voices with authenticity; but there are a couple of niggles for the long term fan that could easily have been ironed out.

The Brigadier (appearing only in a brief cameo here) has the Doctor investigating some mysterious time disturbances centred around an ancient spear. The Doctor then contacts the High Council of Time Lords to seek permission to intervene! This is the biggest misstep in the story; the Doctor would only begrudgingly work on their behalf and usually without tacit orders. The Doctor contacting them should be remain a last resort in the direst emergency. And what would he have done if they’d withheld permission? just let it go?

I liked that Odin and Thor appear in this story, but as mighty warriors who were mythologised later as the Norse Gods, rather than aliens mistakes for deities, like the Jagaroth or the Osirans. Having set up the idea that God myths originate from great leaders and teachers, the Doctor later talking factually about Jesus finally sees him debunk one of our biggest superstations. This is in keeping with the Pertwee era ideology of rational, scientific explanations for everything. It still seems strange to see the Doctor mention Jesus and it’s a name this Doctor in particular would have struggled with.

A cracking story, well-told and peppered with Third Doctor language (“my dear”) and moments of charm.

Not read The Spear of Destiny yet? Download now from Amazon:

Doctor Who: The Spear of Destiny: Third Doctor: 50th Anniversary (Doctor Who Digital)

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