27 October 2015

DWO’s Spoiler-Free Preview of Episode 9.7: The Zygon Invasion;

2015 marks the 40th anniversary of the Zygons, who first appeared alongside the Fourth Doctor in 1975’s Terror Of The Zygons, the opener to the programme’s original 13th season. They’ve long been considered one of the best monsters to have appeared in Doctor Who, thanks in no small part to a gorgeous design, and were chosen to make their big return to the Doctor’s world as part of the programme’s 50th anniversary celebrations in 2013. Now they’re back to celebrate their own anniversary, and they’re going about it in style.

The Zygon Invasion, along with next week’s instalment The Zygon Inversion, is the latest in this year’s abundance of two-part stories, and it amply proves just why it needs the extra running time. The Zygons here aren’t simply confined to Scotland, or London, or Elizabethan England, but are taking up arms on a truly global scale, with our various heroes - among them, the return of the current ‘UNIT family’ of Kate Stewart and Osgood - are scattered from London, to Mexico, and beyond as they try to avert a ‘nightmare scenario’ of humans and Zygons failing to live alongside each other in perfect harmony.

The 50th anniversary special The Day Of The Doctor left us with something of a loose thread - a room full of Humans (who couldn’t remember that they were Humans) and Zygons (who, equally, couldn’t remember they were Zygons) trying to come up with a diplomatic way of sharing the Earth between them. In amongst rewriting the history of the Time War and beetling about between different time zones, three Doctors were able to manoeuvre the pieces into place for this peace treaty to be signed. This episode very much picks up on that thread and shows us where the story goes next.

It’s framed with some truly lovely direction from Daniel Nettheim, giving each location a unique feel, and told through a glorious script by writer Peter Harness. He's cooked up a story which takes this classic monster and reimagines it for the world of four decades later. Everything that was scary about the Zygons in 1975 has been pushed and twisted to make them one of the programmes scariest foes, with abilities that seem impossible to beat. Think about everyone you’ve ever loved, and then ask yourself if they’re really who you think they are?

Five things to look out for;

1) "This is Clara Oswald. I'm probably on the tube, or in outer space. Leave a message!"
2) Pray you never need The Osgood Box.
3)“You operate it by titivating the fronds…”
4) Truth or Consequences.
5) The Zygons have evolved.

[Sources: DWO, Will Brooks]

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