Big Finish Folly, Part 85 – Project Twilight, by Cavan Scott & Mark Wright
Sarf Lundun. Gangsters, mobsters, vampires and a bloke wearing polycarbide armour. The Doctor is up to his throat in trouble this time…
The Forge is Big Finish’s long-running occasional Torchwood-style dirty-tricks department and this story is a fundamental part of Big Finish’s chronology going forwards. We’ve actually seen a few references to The Forge previously – a passing line in Cryptobiosis, a motif or two in The Gathering – but this is the first time, at least chronologically, that the Doctor has actually encountered Nimrod and The Forge.
And a confusing, cluttered deal it is too. I’ve never been a big fan of vampires (sorry, Vlad), especially since the glitterfest that was the whole Twilight/Twiglet saga. Buffy was far more fun. Doctor Who doesn’t tend to need vampires (although State of Decay was a fine tale in lots of ways), so their presence in this story has to be explained through nano-viruses. But a lot of the running time is taken up with various fits of anger – Reggie, Amelia, Evelyn, The Doctor – all angry at themselves and other people, with Nimrod sliding through the episodes like Blade. The plot involves WW1 test subjects trying to inflict their vampirism on the world, with the Doctor inadvertently helping, while The Forge, in the form of Nimrod, tries to stop them.
The only thing achieved is the infection of unfortunate supporting character Cassie, who has previously been beaten to a pulp by wannabe-Winstone Reggie Mead. This will be rather important, later on… but frustratingly, not just yet.
There’s too much future-plot to set up, really, and a heck of a lot to do in just 90 minutes. Taken on its own, it certainly isn’t one of the best Who adventures I’ve heard.