The Zygon Invasion
Doctor Who, Series 9 Episode 7 of 12
By the Tripwire LiveBlog Team
Well, last week went a bit pear-shaped didn’t it? For our international readers I should explain that “pear-shaped” is not a good thing. Your liveblog team consists of Peter Mann and Jack Graves, plus assorted snarky passersby, and Mr Graves definitely indicated his displeasure with the direction of last week’s episode. It was pretty much a disgrace to TV, making little sense, and possessing plot holes you could drive the coach and horses that “Me” was trying to rob through. This week 20 million of the rubbery and shape shifting Zygons reappear, in what critics are already calling “a heavy-handed parallel about immigration.”
Anyhow, we’ll be here at 20.15 to liveblog the whole thing. Apparently Clara is in peril. Fancy!
Just catching a bit of ‘Halloween’ Strictly Come Dancing – more horrifying than anything Doctor Who has waiting for us. Just looking at Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly makes me think transhumanism is here – you be the judge:
Once on a time there were three Doctors and they stuck us with millions of Zygons. They’re irritating and sassy, and then they jump up on a table and shoot a smoke alarm with their sonic screwdrivers.
Now we have some found footage business with two identical women both named Osgood explaining the Zygon peace treaty. There’s a mystery box the Osgoods have to open if it all goes wrong. The Doctor made it.
Also one of the Osgoods dies at some point, but WHIIIIIICH ONE!?!?
Back in the present (or the past?) one of the two Osgoods is being shot in the head with a lightning bolt by a Zygon. She phones the Doctor. He’s playing the guitar in a very irritating fashion. Are they not tired of that yet? I am.
After the intro, children are going to school. The Doctor is wearing shades and leering at them. He calls Clara, but get her charming (‘charming’) voicemail message. He’s tracking Zygon kids. Except the children he’s talking to are probably not Zygons, it’ll be comedic.
Some military people in the place are doing Skype. They’re looking at a video of Zygons kidnapping the lady who got zapped in the head earlier. It’s all bad.
Turns out the children were actually Zygons. They say they’ll handle the situation. Doctor says that he will handle it. Someone drops an evil pinecone on the floor and red smoke comes out. Uh oh! The kids – who it turns out are the Zygon High Command, or Grand Poobahs, or something like that – are kidnapped by some Zygons, and they escape in a van.
UNIT call the Doctor and say they need help. The kidnapped lady is saying an ultimatum thing on the TV.
Meanwhile, Clara is being irritating and gets waylaid by a lost child. She takes him to his evil family. It’s sinister. The Doctor is calling himself Doctor Disco, a lot, and is saying blobby, a lot. I forgot to mention that earlier.
UNIT are explaining the situation to the Doctor, who set up the situation, so I’m guessing it’s for our benefit. UNIT are saying stuff about ‘radicalisation’ and ‘ham-handed metaphor’. Wait, the second one was something I said.
The Zygon Command Tumor has gone all wrong for some reason. The Doctor touches it up a bunch. There’s something wrong with it.
Everyone gets a videocall from Zygon ISIS. They have a black flag with white symbols on. They live in a place that end in -stan. They execute some ‘traitors’ on camera. The Doctor advises against bombing them because they’ll get RADICALISED. I’m not making any of this up.
The Doctor is getting on a plane to do some peace stuff. The government made some anti-Zygon nerve gas, but the Doctor stole it.
Clara and the military people go back to Clara’s house, for some fucking reason. The Evil Family (who incidentally appear to be of middle-eastern extraction, just to add Metaphor Points) are dragging a screaming child away in a bag. Yeah.
They get in the lift, but MYSTERIOUSLY VANISH!
Clara and Military Lady get in the lift (elevator if you’re from North America) after them, and mysterious goo is coming out of the lift’s control panel. Behind the control panel, a goopy control panel. Clara touches it, and the two are taken down to an underground tunnel.. OF TERROR!!!
Over in Generistan (which appears to share the climate, landscape, and sheep of Wales) the Doctor is turning up and getting salty about some anti-Zygon-ISIS drone strikes. The evil Colonel refuses to not do a drone strike. The drone operator refuses to do the drone strike, as the Zygons have turned into her family to freak her out. Incidentally, the camera angle and general movement seem to imply that the drone is just hovering in front of the house about 10 feet up, just like a real predator drone.
Over in New Mexico (or maybe Wales again) Blonde Military Lady is poking around. There are a lot of ISIS graffiti things. The town is deserted. She encounters an angry American cop lady. Generic WHO ARE YOU lines are exchanged.
Back with the Doctor there is discussion about a Zygon training camp. Everyone (the military-industrial complex) is putting helmets on and getting guns. I don’t know what’s happening really.
Clara and her UNIT people are looking at screens. Apparently there are evil underground lifts all over the place, including under the SCHOOL OF ASIAN AND ORIENTAL STUDIES DUN DUN DUUUN!
In New Mexico HEAVY HANDED AMERICAN RACISM METAPHOR is happening. Everyone there got all upset when the humanoid Zygons turned into a giant penis in the street. Vigilante violence followed.
Back with the Doctor (I really wish they’d stop cutting back and forward so much) they are raiding the Zygon camp (which looks like a Welsh church hall). A very American man is shouting for them to open the doors and come out. His mother comes out and is all OH JOHNNY! DON’T DO THIS JOHNNY!
The classic TELL ME SOMETHING ONLY MY MOM WOULD KNOW thing is going on. Everyone else’s mother and family comes out of the door. These soldiers are just really gullible. I don’t know why they don’t just shoot each other’s mothers. They all go inside with the Zygons, like goddamn idiots, and they all die.
The commander lady is super mad about this and shoots a door open. All the men are dead, turned into sparky piles of wool. There’s an evil map with all blocks on it.
The commander lady buggers off to order some bombings. The Doctor hears Osgood (the duplicate lady from the video earlier) shouting from somewhere. She’s under the floor. He finds her, then an evil genital wart appears! It’s a Zygon! The bombs fall and stun him.
In New Mexico there are bins full of dead people wool. That is all.
Clara and Military Lady are under the ground with tunnels. Clara HEAVILY FORESHADOWS THAT SHE WILL DIE AT SOME POINT. As will we all. That’s the end of that scene.
The Doctor is on the plane with Osgood. Osgood is dropping hints about HYBRIDS again, a theme in this series. Apparently now the Zygons can do whatever the hell they like and don’t really have any rules about how they can shapeshift anymore. How convenient.
Clara and the Military Lady are exploring the spooky tunnel. They find ZYGON PODS and state the obvious. They’re Zygon Pods. Not just pods, Zygon Pods.
On the plane, the stunned Zygon is taped to a chair with a single piece of duct tape. He tells the Doctor they want THE WORLD AHAHA! The Zygon does some serious Mighty-Boosh-level face acting.
In the pod zone they find Clara inside a pod. It takes a super long time for them to figure out that this means that the Clara they’ve been talking to is a Zygon. There’s a Zygon ambush. Everyone dies.
Cut back to when Clara returned the screamy kid to his evil parents. A Zygon comes out and zaps her head, but does it slowly enough that it just comes off as weird that Clara doesn’t try to get away. This is technically known (in plot terms) as ‘cheating’,
The Zygon on the plane is demanding rights and whatnot, and wants to live as a Zygon wherever he (it?) chooses. The Doctor drops a line about ‘benefits’. The Zygon says Doctor as DOK-TOR, to show he is evil.
In New Mexico it turns out the cop lady is a Zygon *sad trombone*. Zygon cop zaps Military Lady and takes her shape. She calls evil Zygon Clara on an evil Zygon phone that looks like a combination of a beetle and a dildo. This is evil Clara’s cue to go and blow up the Doctor’s plane with a rocket launcher.
That’s the end of the show, sorry folks. He’s dead forever. There’s no way he’ll get out of this one. RIP Doctor Who.
END OF PART 1
If my liveblog seems confusing and hard to follow, that’s because the show was confusing and hard to follow. The sum total of the plot development in this episode was “Zygons can shapeshift”. Also racism is bad, m’kay?! Least scary Halloween episode ever, but at least Strictly Come Dancing bought the horror…