Poor old Colin Baker – a potentially great Doctor sabotaged by a combination of circumstances and individuals who had neither his, nor the show`s best interests at heart. His performance in Twin is fantastic and as an actor, he gets to do some great scenes. Shame it`s all stuff that simply doesn`t fit the character of the Doctor.
But on the plus side it’s got Maurice Denham in it and some cracking makeup for the Jacondans. Personally, I always wanted to see them alongside the Argolin, I think they would have looked great together. To be fair to Colin, he gives a great performance in a terrible story and Pirates of the Caribbean fans will spot that Hugo Lang is a much thinner and younger descendant of Joshamee Gibbs…
Amongst John Nathan-Turner`s more bizarre decisions was placing Colin`s first story at the end of Season 21. Not only did that rob the show of the resultant publicity that comes from the build-up to a new Doctor, but putting it at the end of the run seems to fly in the face of budgetary logic – season end, no money left = cheap story. Not the best way to introduce a new Doctor. Great shame and sadly, a taste of things to come.
Back in 2009 when I first did this Fan Edit, I wanted to achieve two things: first, reduce the amount of screen time the twins have to an absolute minimum. That’s another bizarre decision – okay they`re twins, but they don`t have to be identical or played by actual twins, John! Second, to edit out all the nasty/cowardly/shouty/unstable bits that they had Colin do. Don`t get me wrong, great performance luv. It`s just in the wrong show. This first version came out at just under 50 minutes and it was one of the earliest Fan Edits I ever did. In fact I think it was #3. And, looking back at it recently, it showed.
In a way the loss of MegaUpload is a blessing in disguise. If it weren’t for the site going down the tubes I wouldn’t have had to re-upload all my stuff to Rapidshare which in turn means I wouldn’t have had the notion of re-watching some of my early work. Of course the danger is that you will see things you want to change – the old “I wouldn`t do it like that now” routine. As I watched it again, this story was full of moments like that. I`ve learned a lot since doing the first edit of this story three years ago and I wasn’t all that impressed with it when I saw it again. I knew I could do a much better job now and so I decided to go right back to the beginning and start all over again, using the original 2009 edit as a guide track.
The first major difference in the new version is that I`ve included a reprise of the regeneration from the previous story. It`s slightly different from the TX version and I won’t spoil it for you here but I think you’ll like what I’ve done with it. It`s now a great start to a New Doctor that makes you look forward to what comes next, something that sadly cannot be said about the original! To give you an idea of the work involved, and it how it all cut together, here`s a screengrab of the editing of this sequence –
I always thought it strange that Colin`s era started without the same sort of recap that Peter`s did so it`s here now. It also makes a bit more sense of Colin`s first TARDIS scene with Peri, which now comes straight after the credits. In the 2009 version the initial scene with Azmael arriving on the Freighter came first but with the regeneration at the top of the show now that no longer worked.
The other big difference is that I`ve used a lot more additional sound cues to help cover the joins between scenes. That was one of the major problems with the 2009 version, you could tell where a scene had been cut out as there was no music cue covering it.
Twin is one of the few JNT stories with no Isolated Music Track on the DVD so for this updated version I`ve used cues from the next story Attack of the Cidermen, mainly because they`re by the same composer, Malcolm Clarke.
This was the first FE where I used the now familiar version of the Theme Music. I was really proud of it at the time as it`s a mix of the Howell & Derbyshire mk2 versions, meaning the former had to be pitch-shifted down to fit. I really liked it and I think this combination of the two works much better than the original Howell version.
Comparing the two versions, I`m as pleased with this one as I am embarrassed by the old one. It just goes to show what an additional three years of experience can do. Okay so it was one of the earliest FE`s I did but can I please just ask, if you`re one of the 192 people who downloaded the old version, can you please bin it and download this lovely new version instead? Apart from anything else, it`s a full ten minutes shorter!