Dirk Gently's Holistic Wiki

Francis Cardenas is a character in the television series Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency.

Otherwise known as Project Moloch, Francis is a Project Blackwing subject, a man that has been in a coma for a long time and may possess great power.


Early life[]

One night in the 1950s (since little bitty pretty one was playing on the radio it might have been 1957) an infant boy arrived on the boat The Infant, Male, Pollock, Francis, which dropped out of the sky outside the town Bergsberg, Montana.[1] A local couple, Marina and Hector Cardenas, found the boy and took him in, raising him along their son Arnold in the Cardenas house. The boy was named Francis after the boat.

The boy exhibited strange powers, in that his dreams while asleep became reality. Among the things he created were the house within the house pocket dimension in the Cardenas house, the air gun, the Purple People Eater.

In 1966, Francis had a nightmare that created the Purple People Eater, which killed an animal and attacked Hector, before Marina could soothe the sleeping Francis enough that he made the Purple People Eater go away (possibly moving it into the house pocket dimension, though that could have another time).[2]

Catastrophe of 1967[]

One night in 1967, Francis saw his mother leaving the house, and found his father murdered on the kitchen floor, next to a broken flower vase and the scissors he had been murdered with. Standing in the door, he fell asleep; with his powers he made the corpse and scissors disappear, putting Hector's body inside a tree nearby and the scissors into the house pocket dimension. His mother and her new car she was driving away in were launched into to sky, eventually ending up in a treetop.[3]

Francis was left alone with his brother. One morning the boy saw Arnold talking to government agents outside the house. He fled into the mural room and laid down on the murphy bed, intending to create his fantasy world and flee. When the agents came in and grabbed him, the boy struggled and then had a seizure, making the electric lights flicker and go out. He had exerted his power to new heights, an act of creation that made Wendimoor real as a whole world; this created an electromagnetic pulse that affected a miles-wide radius around Bergsberg, an event that came to be named "The '67". This exertion caused the boy to fall into a coma. Afterwards, Project Black Book took the comatose boy with them, and seized and fenced off the Cardenas house.[4]

Governmental project[]

In the government's care, the boy received the code name "Project Moloch", was was kept first by Project Black Book[3] and after that by Project Blackwing under Scott Riggins. He stayed comatose all this time.[5]

He was referred to by Friedkin as "the most powerful subject that Riggins ever brought in".[5]

Young Dirk Gently was allowed to visit him and used to talk to him, considering Francis his friend and assistant.[5]

After Blackwing shut down he was transferred several times, and spent time in a normal hospital. When Blackwing was reinstated under Friedkin, Francis was brought back in; during transfer to the Blackwing facility he suffered a stroke.[5][3]

Season 2 (The Middle of Everywhere)[]

Francis was placed in a room in the Project Blackwing facility's East Wing.[6] About two months later, Blackwing's new supervisor Hugo Friedkin inspected Project Francis, but was highly disappointed by its 'boring' nature, going so far as to slap him. Later he put Dirk Gently into Francis' cell to observe interaction between Blackwing subjects. Dirk proceeded to talk to Francis, telling him of his adventures and his friends he'd made recently in the outside world.[5]

Over the next days Francis continued unchanged, until the facility was invaded by Kellum Knights, and Ken Adams ordered him secured.[4] Francis was taken from his cell by Dirk Gently and Mona Wilder, who brought him to the portal to Wendimoor in Project Incubus' cell, where Dirk carried him through.[6]

In Wendimoor, in the ruins of the Pool of the Empty Throne, Francis woke up and reverted to the child-like appearance he had been in 1967, Francis once more, wearing a crown and his hospital gown. Taking his place as ruler of the land, he began using his powers to fix everything. Francis banished Suzie Boreton to the train in the sky. Then he sent the dimensional travelers back to Bergsberg: Todd Brotzman with a new car, the last thing he created in "the old world"; the Rowdy 3, giving them back their van; Amanda Brotzman, telling her she had things to do in "the other world"; Dirk and Mona, after telling them of their shared nature as tools to fix the universe; the lonely Beast he sent to the other world too. Then, now wearing an orange tunic, he met Bart Curlish among the corpses of the Kellum Army she had slain; he offered her to stay, but Bart asked to be sent back. Francis then restored all of Wendimoor and its inhabitants back to life and health, and was welcomed among his subjects.[6]


Francis is an older man with grey hair. He has been comatose for a long time. Young Francis has shoulder-length dark hair and dark eyes.

He is an anomalous entity, described as a "reality editor"[4]. While asleep, he can alter reality and bring things into being, both inanimate and animate; his dreams and nightmares become reality.[2][3]

The greatest use of his ability was the creation of the dimension Wendimoor, modelled after his imaginary fantasy world, an exertion that caused him to slip into a coma. While comatose he was aware of the world in a limited fashion, but he could not create anything new nor change things.[6] When he was brought into Wendimoor 50 years later he immediately awoke from his comatose state, looking like his child self, and could again use his powers. Additionally, he appeared to have greater control over his reality editing ability, being able to use it while awake and intentionally, effortlessly editing/fixing Wendimoor as well as some things in the regular world of Bergsberg and transporting people between worlds, all with a snap of his fingers.[6]

Behind the scenes[]

  • Project Moloch is portrayed by actor Robert Corness. Young Francis is portrayed by actor Dylan Schombing.
  • His Blackwing code name is "Project Moloch"; the name stems from a mythical figure. His Blackwing project symbol is a circle, with two interlocking circles inside.