Many years have passed since the Doctor's first visit to the Web Planet, and he finds a very different world from the one he knew; a world now embroiled in a bitter interplanetary war between the opposing factions of a divided race.


To restore peace, the Doctor must first resolve a deadly ideological conflict, solve the paradox of the nature of life on Vortis, and finally confront the Gods of Light themselves.


As the stakes are raised, can the Doctor contain the ancient terror that threatens to devastate an entire star system?







of the Gods







I should say for starters that I’ve always found The Web Planet to be insufferable, and as such poor old Christopher Bulis was always going to have a hard time winning me over with his sequel to it in print, Twilight of the Gods.


Even in its day The Web Planet was reviled by many as a “third rate kiddies pantomime”, and for me personally the comparatively poor production required me to stretch my disbelief too far. Regrettably, to a young man spoiled by contemporary special effects, the laughable offerings of the 1964 six-parter fell completely flat - but surely in print, Bulis wouldn’t face the same problem? One would think that the Menoptra and the Zarbi would be perfectly suited to this medium because one’s imagination would be given the opportunity to realise them far better than even the special effects of today ever could. One would think that.© Virgin 1996. No copyright infringement is intended.


However, Bulis’s prose simply doesn’t evoke anything other than the fuzzy-suited Menoptra and rickety Zarbi exactly as they appeared on television, and worse still, his plodding narrative even mirrors the languorous pace of Bill Strutton’s old six-parter. In fairness to the author, he has tried to jazz things up a bit by throwing a new alien race in the mix – the Rhumon – and having them fight out their own private little war on Vortis, but unfortunately they prove to be just another symptom rather than a cure, their two extremist factions (the far left and the far right) devoid of any sort of innovation.


Matters aren’t helped by an unusually sloppy portrayal of the TARDIS crew, which is captained by a badly-drawn second Doctor who seems perfectly capable of navigating his hitherto-uncontrollable type forty – and with remarkable, day-saving precision too. The final indignation comes when Bulis decides to reinterpret the Animus as yet another one of these ‘Great Old Ones’ torn from the pages of a Lovecraft tale.


I’d like to be able to say that Twilight of the Gods is worth a look just to appreciate one or two of its aspects, but sadly I found it to be just as dreary and as torrid an affair as The Web Planet was, and this time around I couldn’t even laugh at the visual absurdities. This came as doubly disappointing given just how much I’d enjoyed Bulis’ immediately prior and infinitely superior UNIT-era offering, The Eye of the Giant, which I’d suggest you turn your attentions to instead if you’re thinking of tracking this one down.


Copyright © E.G. Wolverson 2006


E.G. Wolverson has asserted his right under the Copyright, Design

 and Patents Act 1988, to be identified as the author of this work.



This novel’s blurb places it between the television serials The Web of Fear and Fury from the Deep. Within this gap, we have placed it between the audio book The Emperor of Eternity and the novel The Dark Path. Whilst the audio books featuring Victoria were released later, both this novel and especially The Dark Path clearly build towards Victoria’s departure in Fury from the Deep.


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