Fright Nights - The Doctor and the Vampires

Christopher Morley descends into the crypt to uncover the stories behind the Doctor's many encounters with vampires!

The bloodsuckers first blighted the Doctor in State Of Decay as his Fourth incarnation was thrust into the schemes of the Three Who Rule- Aukon, Camilla & Zargo.

They had been human astronauts, but were converted by the King Vampire- their ship became a castle, with Camilla & Zargo becoming King & Queen & Aukon serving as their counsel. Unhappily the Doctor & Romana's visit coincidences with the ' Time Of Arising'. Which means the King Vampire would rise again & conquer the universe...not good.

The Second Doctor also recounts an attack by one during World Game! His mission to stop the Players interfering in history occurs just after his meeting with his Eighth self in The Eight Doctors, during which his future self assists him in contacting the Time Lords to request their aid against the War Chief/Lords ( The War Games). As part of his mission he must impersonate Napoleon Bonaparte alongside temporary companion Lady Serena during the Battle of Waterloo- the stress of her death ( she's unable to regenerate after being shot through both of her hearts) turning his hair grey, leading into The Two Doctors. He describes the vampire that attacked him in Paris as ' very tall, skeletal, with glowing red eyes in a dead-white face' . No wonder he wishes he'd had an axe, a crucifix & a stake to hand at the time!

The Eighth Doctor is later called upon to give the Fourth an emergency blood transfusion after his younger self is attacked during the events of State Of Decay...

He'd probably thank God for the same if he'd been as lucky in Vampire Science, later on in his time-line.

This expands more on an implied war between the Vampires & Time Lords, which now takes as its battleground San Francisco in both 1976 & 1997. But even the vampires are split- some want to co-exist with humanity in a bid to find new ways to obtain blood, while others would sooner die.

Moving into audio territory we can also include Project Twilight, featuring the Sixth Doctor, & Project Lazarus, which includes Six plus his next self. Rounding off the loose trilogy is Project Destiny, then next up is Zagreus which tells us even more about the early days of the war as mentioned in Vampire Science....

A chapter of Gallifreyan history which ranks among the Dark Times, State Of Decay being the first time such a conflict is mentioned. The Doctor tells Romana the story of how it all began, as he had been told by a hermit in his younger years. Rassilon was known to have a hatred of the creatures & so foisted upon every Time Lord a duty to kill the King Vampire on sight if indeed he should be spotted. He'd been tracked across the known universe but the trail led nowhere, until the emergence of the Three Who Rule.

The New Adventures novel Blood Harvest would see the Seventh Doctor returning to the exact same spot. But what could possibly link it to Chicago in the late 1920s, and why have the Three Who Rule been cloned? Then there's its sequel Goth Opera- the first entry in the Virgin Missing Adventures series, featuring the Fifth Doctor.

The descendants of the Great Vampire are keen to ensure that their prophesied Messiah, Yarven ( who'd first appeared in Blood Harvest, hiding in the Seventh Doctor's TARDIS & then making his way into Chicago after he'd landed there) will rise. And they need the blood of a Time Lord. So begins their race to go on a ' recruitment drive', looking for fresh victims. It would appear Nyssa has already been bitten...

And of course there's the vampire-like Haemovores of The Curse Of Fenric...

The Seventh Doctor & Ace would encounter them at Maiden's Point during the Second World War while investigating Fenric, an evil entity which manages to escape a centuries-long confinement to wreak havoc. Three selves later the Tenth Doctor goes up against a Plasmavore in Smith & Jones. Rather cleverly they can copy the genetic make-up & internal structure of a victim just by sucking their blood, but that ability proves Florence Finnigan's downfall when she feeds on the Doctor!

But what of vampires that aren't quite vampires? The Eleventh Doctor gets to tackle that in The Vampires Of Venice as he sets about solving the mystery of the Saturnyn, fishy creatures with some vampire tendencies! Its 1580 & the plague is apparently rife. Signor Rosanna Calvieri & others of the species have been using perception filters to appear human, using the cover of a finishing school to draw in human girls whose blood can be drained & replaced with that of the invaders, creating new females with whom the males waiting underwater can breed. The city will be drowned, & the Saturnyn race can begin anew. Until the Doctor stops them, that is! Destroying Rosanna's perception filter, she commits suicide- throwing herself into the water to feed her children waiting in the deep.

All of which is just the latest few minutes in a long time spent in the shadow of the vampire!
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