The Zygon Inversion

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    Craig @craig


    Part two. Last week’s episode threw a lot of balls up in the air. This episode does a fantastic job of catching them all. It’s an amazing piece of work and Peter Harness (along with Moffat this time) should be congratulated. Any doubts about Harness following last year’s “Kill The Moon” should be banished now.

    With Zygons everywhere and UNIT neutralised only the Doctor stands in their way. But how do you stop a war? And what can the Doctor do to save his friends?

    Capaldi and Coleman are both amazing, at their best, and are given some wonderful scenes to shine. Capaldi, especially, finally gets his ‘Doctor moment’. Some are already saying this is the best episode of the series, perhaps even the best piece of TV this year. It’s proper, classic Doctor Who and a real treat.

    iusedtobethedoctorrs99 @iusedtobethedoctor

    was anyone else disgusted by the “no british” sign as kate stewart entered the village, i know dr who has a history of being political, but that was a bit off considering where its made

    Craig @craig

    @iusedtobethedoctor You’re commenting on the wrong episode (they do have similar titles). Try this one:


    Excuse me while I dance a little jig.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip


    You’re entitled. ūüôā


    I am beginning to think that Clara’s fate is to be forgotten by the Doctor. Call it the Inverse Donna.

    PhaseShift @phaseshift
    Time Lord

    I thought that was a nice conclusion to the two parter. Slowing down the pace slightly from the globe trotting first part really worked, and the face off in The Black Archive nicely bookended the initial references to Day of The Doctor.

    It’s tempting to say Capaldi owned it for the power of that final confrontation, but that would be a huge disservice to Jenna Coleman who I thought worked incredibly well as Clara and Bonnie, especially their ‘mind battle/interrogation’ scene.

    Really enjoyed Ingrid Oliver in this too. Osgood definitely feels more fleshed out after this. The Doctor’s “I’m a big fan” feels well earned.

    Lots to ponder on. The Doctor has had “a month from hell”. I’m presuming this is a compressed month from his time perspective. A month for him in which he tried to contact Clara 120 odd times. Hmmmmm.

    Juniperfish @juniperfish

    Well – that was super.

    Peter Capaldi’s great speech over the two boxes caused a random fly to get into my eye.

    And the part when the Doctor said he’d already had to go through this fourteen times, erasing human and Zygon memories each time give me legitimate chills – the power and the burden of being a Time Lord.¬† How fragile peace is. And what a very volatile situation he’s got going on on his beloved earth. Part of his penance for the Time War, I know (as the Zygon’s planet was destroyed in it).

    The Zygons still have to disguise themselves as humans to avoid xenophobia, and although clearly some are happy with their assimilation, the conundrum that they are required to live by subterfuge rather than contribute as themselves remains – a complexity at the heart of multiculturalism.

    I am more than happy to have politically and morally complex stories like this, reminiscent of some in the Old Who back catalog, back on the cards.

    Jenna Coleman as Zygella (she does look a little bit like a young Nigella) packed a glittering, furious punch with those eyes – some excellent acting.

    It does seem the Doctor doesn’t quite trust her – why did he make her step inside the TARDIS before he spoke to Osgood at the last?

    Osgood’s arc was fantastic – her chosen hybrid identity definitely deserves the Doctor’s fandom (a really sweet touch, and something of an apology methinks, for her earliest depiction and her death a la Missy).

    A glimpse of Hartnell’s face on a safe in the Black Archive? A further sign that we are heading, the long way round, for Gallifrey?

    Tarot card-wise, I rather thought of Osgood as “The Lovers” this week, because the card is also known as “The Twins” in some decks, being ruled by the star-sign Gemini.


    Hillforest @hillforest

    Well, he wasn’t a zygon‚Ķlost a 50p bet with a fellow fan but‚Ķ‚Ķbut but but, the best episode of an amazing series , and the ‘stand off’ speech?? Made Stonehenge seem like posh school boy bragging

    the (great) guy from bleeding cool has interesting theory about Clara’s departure and the doctor back tracking through her life‚Ķthe worst month he’s ever had‚Ķ

    obviously, time will tell

    osgood1066 @osgood1066

    I think this was an amazing close off to an amazing episode!! I loved the use of foreshadowing Clara’s death because we all know it is coming. I was a tiny bit nervous in the lead up to the episode as I didn’t want the amazing first part to be ruined by a horrendous second but as watching I was astounded by the complete awesomeness of this episode.

    so let’s start with the cliff-hangers of last episode, The Doctor and Oswold in trouble. I loved the way Clara used the psychic link between her and the zygon form of her to try to stop the RPG but sadly it didn’t stop it just delayed the explosion of WOW! However of course The Doctor survived and with amazing British style. But we all knew this would happen (not the British bit but that was cool as last episode we saw a sign saying no British) The Doctor can’t die just out of the blue (get it blue) in the middle of a season/ series because 1 Steven Moffatt doesn’t have the right to end Doctor who (at least I don’t think so) and 2 that is just plain CRAP! Also this is basically the same cliff-hanger as The Magician’s Apprentice and Under the Lake but just tweaked. But sadly the ending didn’t come down to hybrids like we all wanted it to for the 3rd time this series but i’ll save that for later.

    Now time for the the cliff-hanger of Kate Stewart dying. Sadly I saw this one coming as soon as we didn’t see her die but some people didn’t expect it and to them I say, “Told you so. HAHA” but on a serious note this was pretty much the same as the Doctor/ Osgood death cliff-hanger and I know this was for effect of everyone dying and everything is basically over but come on Steven Moffatt! You made Kate Stewart cleverer than the plain UNIT person, just like her Dad so why would you expect us to believe she would watch a zygon transform and take 10 seconds to kill her, when she has a gun in her pocket.

    Now let talk about the episode. I loved the fact the William Hartnell painting was the location of the safe and some of the different accessories that Osgood weared like the scarf and my favourite the BOW TIE!! One of my favourite parts of the episode was the moments when Clara took control of zygon Clara and sent the messages etc but I loved my favourite part was the ending when zygon Clara took form of Osgood and they set off to do what the original pair did. This also concludes many things like which Osgood was slain by Missy which was the zygon form as from my knowledge, zygons can’t copy zygons and even though they were the same I loved the human one better. (species bias) but it also let us figure out why the doctor wanted to know about which form she was because if she was the zygon form the gas would of killed her and for this reason I believe the boxes weren’t empty!! However my least favourite part was when The Doctor got really angry but that’s proberbly because I hate violence also it wasn’t Clara that made him stop it was Bad Wolf it/she/he was the reason The Doctor didn’t activate the Moment. But towards the end of the speech I realised the point of it and I was amazed by re-watching it also I love the fact he erased the memories like the 50th.¬† But¬† a part I didn’t get was the “worst month” part so maybe he travelled in time until he got it right further improving my theory on the fact there is something in the box? What do you think?

    Now the next episode looks dark again like under the lake and before the flood which I am not pleased about because I loved the outside feel about it however it could work out in it’s favour also I wondered why the episode was called Sleep No More when looking through the titles but we saw the reason why in the trailer. But this episode gives me the feel that it will be like a David Tennant episode called Waters Of Mars because of a human doing something and it creating a new monster and in this case it looks like a hybrid. (duh duh duh)

    That’s all from me folks I have been Osgood1066, over and out.

    soundworld @soundworld

    Wow – just amazing.¬† CapaldiDoc’s speech was breath-taking, a blistering performance.¬† As was Coleman’s portrayal of Clara-Bonnie.¬† Zygella – ha!

    Loved the quick wee gags too – ‘London, what a dump’.

    Time to let it all sink in now.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip


    we all know it is coming

    I think it’s already happened. The worst month of his life?

    bendubz11 @bendubz11

    would it explain to you my feelings on that episode if i say I’m tempted to watch it again immediately? Truly sublime

    osgood1066 @osgood1066

    <span class=”useratname”>@bluesqueakpip</span>


    maybe? Actually that’s very good, maybe Clara is dead or he was referring to the other Clara’s that have died when¬†for example ¬†the Victorian Clara?????? Who knows. Well Steven Moffatt. But we don’t ūüôĀ

    SirClockFace @sirclockface

    An absolutely superb episode. Capaldi’s speech as many of you have said was phenomenal and shows off his true acting capability.

    After this episode I am well and truly in love with Osgood and would have loved to see her travel with the Doctor (please let her be the next companion) but I will have to wait till her next episode


    I have just had to explain to someone on Twitter the significance of the Hughie Green accent.

    For the benefit the OZCanMericans he was our “Take the money or open the box” dude.


    Oh yeah and:

    Five rounds. Rapid.



    This also concludes many things like which Osgood was slain by Missy which was the zygon form as from my knowledge, zygons can’t copy zygons

    Between the denouement and the epilogue there was planet of time for the Osgoods to perform a switcheroo and Osgood was very clear in being determinedly unclear which was which. Gotcha.

    We will no when it no longer matters…


    Edit: Sorry. That’s got a bit scattergun hasn’t it. I’ll shut up now.

    daleksek707 @daleksek707

    At the end of the episode, the two osgoods pretend to use the inhaler. Does this mean they’re both Zygons

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Still formulating and wanting a rewatch or two but can I just say that Peter Harness totally failed to drop the ball there. And Capaldi has definitely had his defining Doctor moment now. And it was a cracker.

    That’s three for three cracking pieces from Harness now.

    Spider @spider

    Wow. THAT speech. I think the fly that got in the eye of @juniperfish may have got to me too – in both eyes, multiple times (I name them … the time flies!). Have we ever seen 12 more emotional than he was here? And in fact now I think about it¬† through most of this episode?

    I had been very skeptical about Osgood coming back, as I feared it would be a ‘oh-the-fans-like-her-she-cant-die’. But the way it has been done these two episodes I really like. Felt it fleshed out her character a lot more, loved she got a good amount of time to interact with the Doctor in a pseudo-companion role here.

    At first I felt the reference to ‘fifteen times’ almost throwaway comedy line completely undermined the drama and emotion we had just seen, aas it left me a be deflated as in oh, you’ve done this many times already. But then reading the view from @juniperfish made me think differently on this, about how frustrating and burdensome it must be to have HAD to do that fifteen times.

    Felt Clara was probably put to the sidelines a lot here, but it was necessary in order to give Kate, Osgood, the Doctor and of course Bonnie center stage. But when we did get Clara thought it was very, very good. The nightmarish being trapped in the flat was very well done, but even then Clara was Clara and was able to take control. At first viewing she was very subdued during the scene in the black archive, but I suppose is that a point where she realises she is a bit out of her depth, or that her interfering would just make things worse?

    The bit that jars with me slightly at the moment is the final scene in the TARDIS between the Doctor and Clara. I can’t quite put my finger on what but if felt very off – like Clara and the Doctor, considering all they have gone through are actually disconnecting more and more?¬† It’s sort of like Clara is¬† becoming more what she considers ‘Doctorish’ and brushing over things, whereas he is becoming less like that. A role reversal from series 8 as it were.¬† Not sure where that thought is going, will have to ponder more.

    Off for a second watch, going to arm myself with a flyswat in case more time flies attack during the Doctor’s speech.


    Hillforest @hillforest

    ps Рthought the mire helmet seemed an important background feature…

    Craig @craig

    “I’m a very big fan.”

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip


    as from my knowledge, zygons can’t copy zygons

    Having just rewatched The Zygon Invasion – Zygons can now take the image of a loved one from someone’s mind. Therefore, if the Osgood in this episode was a Zygon, she still carried the image of the human Osgood in her mind – so another Zygon could copy that image.

    Whichever Osgood it was that died, that loved one was the image copied – because we saw whichever Osgood it was that lived, sobbing in front of her sister’s grave.

    Anonymous @

    Okay, I did it: I just became a traitor and watched in on ABC catch up TV because I just couldn’t wait. And thank god: because for me, it was no dust in my eye: I had a good sob. That speech (and the accent¬† -read you explanation @pedant above!) was utterly outstanding 3/4 of the way thru and then it became …something more….that point at which an actor totally takes on that character, that place wherein you’re not sure exactly what you’re watching? A little masterpiece unfold, a perfect Mozart Sonata, every line and every phrase acoustically perfect, every motif,¬†a gem of a metaphor.

    It made me think of people (a bit like myself) who don’t always fit. Yes, we go to school, and athletics and work and then the pub in an effort to ‘fit’ but we really don’t fit in all that well. We’re just a little ‘off’ from front and centre. I’m not sure why, but that episode reminded me and gave me¬†–¬†those of us who don’t particularly fit in any place, some hope. Just a jot and that was really nice.

    Absolutely awesome.

    Cracking. And may I say “Five Rounds Rapid” Whoo-ee!

    As they were walking down the road away from the ‘police’ if definitely had early 70’s air to it. Something quite from the past and I loved that too.

    Anonymous @

    Now, I clearly need a re-watch with subtitles (which won’t arrive for another 5 hours or so) regarding the “month” of “hell” -I haven’t pickup up on that.

    Also, I’m not sure about the 100-something missed calls from the Doctor to Clara at the beginning of the Zygon Invasion -was that relevant to something coming -rather than something in that particular episode.

    I must also side with those who think something is still ‘off’ with Clara as she steps into the Tardis -she says very little. This is a quiet Clara -does she know something is different? That the Doctor is wondering/watching her in an unusual way?

    I believe he said “let me be the judge of Time” to her “it’s been 5 minutes” -the reason she said that is something I clearly missed. I need a re-watch or else a helpful prod from a fellow member to explain that to me -using signs and gestures if necessary.


    Lots to ponder on. The Doctor has had ‚Äúa month from hell‚ÄĚ. I‚Äôm presuming this is a compressed month from his time perspective. A month for him in which he tried to contact Clara 120 odd times. Hmmmmm.

    Yes, exactly: that amount of calls didn’t have anything to do with the Zygon Invasion, then? A separate story building up from his statement ‘let me be the judge of time’.

    @spider I agree:

    The bit that jars with me slightly at the moment is the final scene in the TARDIS between the Doctor and Clara. I can’t quite put my finger on what but if felt very off 

    @pedant “that she’ll be forgotten by the doctor” How awful -yes, an inverse Donna. To be forgotten by him -after all that she’s done to save him time and again. I suppose like Santa/Father Christmas one can still believe in the power of what has happened. Like a doing an anonymous service, I suppose. For a human that’s difficult. For a while, the Doctor had been removed by Clara from all the Daleks memory/images -possibly from rogue planets also. To have Clara removed/forgotten would provide¬†an interesting symmetry.

    “this is the Day the Doctor forgot me”.

    But no, I hope not. I get the impression something else -equally terrible will happen and he’ll remember but be unable to re-write it. Perhaps to do so would be to unwrite himself, as it were, and be back in his ‘time’ splintered by the GI. Never to live and never to have helped -we’d have The Titantic (from Voyage of the Damned) falling on earth and all the events of Turn Left actually happening.

    Ozitenor @ozitenor

    Truly magnificent performances and writing. That speech. Breathtaking, poignant … and perhaps the very best in a long tradition of fabulous monologues over the past¬†50 years. Who can forget, however much stumbled through, Hartnell’s incredible speech that kicked off this tradition.

    Now to Bonkerising:

    I have a bonkers theory about Osgood and which is which. I have been stuck on the inhalers for a weeks now, and I think it crystallized for me tonight. Osgood has an interesting way she uses it. She cups it in her hand, palm holding the bottom, fingers on top to press the button. It’s something I notice in people who use inhalers that are a little awkward about it or embarrassed. They cup their hands as if to hide it. Osgood does this. And in the final scene tonight, as the two Osgoods walk away and each take a puff, only one cups the inhaler this way, while the other holds the inhaler thumb on bottom, fingers on top – the more conventional way. To me, this signals that “broken glasses” Osgood is the original one. It’s her under the desk in the prologue to Zygon Invasion cupping the inhaler the same way as she uses it, and it’s her at the end, dressed the same, using the inhaler the same way. The new Osgood (Zygella Osgood!) doesn’t copy this idiosyncrasy.

    Now, I totally admit the possibility that Human Osgood may have been killed by Missy and these are both Zygons using the new method of cloning, and I am reading WAY too much into the slightest of details. But, I like my bonkers theory and I am sticking with it!

    As for Clara, it is becoming more and more evident that the day she was trapped in the Dalek by Missy (perhaps only a calendar month prior in the Whoniverse) and the day that the Doctor said to her “I am so sorry” with that great sense of finality, is the last time the Doctor really was with “Clara” as he knows and loves her. Just like Flesh Amy, these past story arcs have continually had the Doctor looking at Clara with that sense of “you are not actually *my* Clara and I am trying to figure out how I am going to fix this”. 2 weeks ago it was “I am not going anywhere” and the Doctor’s long ominous stare; this week it was “you thought I was dead for a moment … it’s been a month from hell … it’s only been 5 minutes … I’ll be the judge of time” (forgive my sloppy paraphrase). ¬†Obviously something is not right, and it is more and more certain that this Clara is not really Clara. Conveniently, the current Zygon technology only needs the memory of Clara to make Zygella/Bonnie and not the original.

    Friends/Enemies/Hybrids … There is one gigantic crash course of storylines about to happen and I can’t wait!

    winston @winston

    I just watched and all I can say is “WOW”¬† I¬† just can’t get over how wonderfully written , acted, and directed this show can be. The tears were flowing during the Doctors speech as I felt his pain and frustration , his hope that we can be better, his faith in humans and Zygons alike. What an actor.

    Jenna  as Bonnie/Clara  acted both parts perfectly. It was eery to see Clara trapped in the pod but creating a safe place in her mind just like when she was trapped in the Dalek and making souffles. Clara is one heck of a strong willed person.

    @pedant Thanks for explaining who Hughie Green is. You saved me from having to Google him.

    @craig    Me too!

    @purofilion¬†¬†¬†¬†I think the conversation on the Tardis¬† goes like this….Clara¬† asks the Doctor if he thought she was dead and he says yes. She¬† then asks how that was for him and he answers it was a month of hell. Then she says it was only five minutes and he replies with the “let me be the judge of time” remark.¬†I hope I’m right but I need a rewatch or two.

    lisa @lisa

    Very interesting. The Doctor again manages to pull off an everybody lives happily
    ever after except for maybe Clara? I suppose having to negotiate with Bonnie who is
    in so many ways Clara’s alter ego must have felt aggravating for him. I do like the
    way Jenna played Bonnie but I can’t imagine that the Doctor did. Maybe that was the aggravation
    he was letting go of with Clara in the Tardis? Well done Doctor speech that
    cane from his guts. But I have to admit that my favorite bit was the exchange between Clara
    and Bonnie in the ‘dream’ connection. I guess the idea that the Doctor was trying to save
    humans from knowing about Zygons blending in with us says a lot about us and all the problems
    we have with differences. So that was a sad message but still all the same it was a clever
    idea with how they used the 2 boxes.

    If he had to wipe everyone’s memories 14 times and that included Clara then I wonder what
    we didn’t get to see about that in the first 14 tries?

    • This reply was modified 5 years, 5 months ago by  lisa.
    Anonymous @


    Okay, I did it: I just became a traitor and watched in on ABC catch up TV because I just couldn’t wait.


    I’ll say something more intelligent later, but for now:

    – Brilliant.
    – Peter Capaldi, my god. Everything about how the choice was boiled down, and the revelation that the scenario had been played through 15 times before.
    – Jenna Coleman. Bonnie didn’t feel like ‘evil Clara’, she felt like a different character.
    – We got the portrayal of the good Zygon.
    – “Imbecile’s gas”

    Anonymous @


    I think it’s already happened. The worst month of his life?

    Agreed. There have been hints before, but this is getting pretty strong.

    Carrieanne @carrieanne

    Clara seems to be in another consciousness many times since she began. ¬†The dream crabs from Christmas she was in layers of consciousness. ¬†Also when the great intelligence uploaded her in Bells of St John. ¬†Not sure if I’d consider being encased in the dalek as a change in consciousness per se, but still trapped mentally. I think the arc is way longer than this season. ¬†Clara is the impossible girl. ¬†Maybe we get to learn why she is? ¬†I don’t think they wrapped it up in Time of the Doctor. This season does sort of have a reversed order, in other words we’re seeing it backwards? ¬†After this episode I feel like we are headed for a brilliant finale! And then River Song…..


    CountScarlioni @countscarlioni

    Great stuff! I thought that was the episode of the season by a long way and suspect that in five years time we’ll look back on Inversion of the Zygons¬† as a classic. Jenna Coleman was terrific as Bonnie and I agree with everyone about the stunning power of Capaldi’s performance. In the scene in the Black Archive he soared. The Doctor spends so much of his time wearing various disguises, but here was the Doctor completely unmasked.

    @hillforest ¬† Yes. Mire helmet highlighted in the Black Archive. Maybe a reminder that there were three mire helmets pulled off the Mire in The Girl Who Died¬†and so three medical `repair kits’. The Doctor used one on Ashildr, Ashildr/Lady Me used one on Sam Swift, so one is still unused and presumably still in the Doctor’s pocket.

    More hints (especially the exchange between the Doctor and Clara at the end of the episode) that Clara is fated to die. This only strengthens my suspicion that that end has become just a bit too obvious and there must be some sort of twist in store.


    And, empty box(es)! Amidst the wreckage of so many failed interpretations and bonkers theories that crash, it was heartening to have the theory of the empty box stay aloft.



    jphamlore @jphamlore

    Fantastic finish.   And it was logical:  The first episode stated there had to be two Osgoods so a second one had to be found.

    The Doctor apparently already achieved his objective of seizing control of the Black Archive.

    On a darker note, it is clear the Doctor is actively trying to kill off as many soldiers as he can each episode.¬† I guess he figures if they’re willing to die for their country, he’ll give them their wish.¬† It does not seem for example that he bothered to get anyone else from the plane into a parachute other than Osgood.

    The Doctor I argue is still tarot card of The Devil.

    Two figures chained to the box, Adam and Eve, with tails signifying their part animal nature but with human faces, a higher possibility for the future.

    From the preview for the next episode, this is another example of how I think the show is trying to say dreams can do all sorts of things, from time and space travel to apparently creating monsters.  That is because I believe the Time Lords fate is to be in another dimension where they can only be accessed through something like dreams or hallucinations or visions.  They are going to be the gods of the ancient astronauts, similar to the theories of Graham Hancock.

    jphamlore @jphamlore

    The Doctor put a lot of emotion into his speech against war, a lot of his own personal history.¬† He was quite believable.¬† Then again, so was Davros in The Witch’s Familiar.

    This will be interesting if Moffat decides to show this Capaldi version of the Doctor as more calculating, more alien, more dangerous than we can imagine.

    The prophesy I suspect says the hybrid will be a threat to devastate the universe.¬† This is a danger on the order of what the Time Lords did to the universe in the Time War.¬† All else must be subsumed to stopping the worst of this prophesy.¬† All else.¬† And the Doctor knows, he has known since the First Doctor, that humans are one half of the equation of this hybrid.¬† The Master has known as well.¬† That’s why both the Doctor and the Master spend so much time on Earth.¬†¬† Look at the exchange between the Doctor and Osgood in The Zygon Inversion.¬† The truth is the Doctor, and Missy, hate much of Earth and humans.

    I speculate the Doctor’s concern for preserving the Zygons as hidden among humans is a pretext.¬† What he really wants is to embed another species among humans to if possible spoil the possible use of humans as part of this hybrid scheme.¬† Because somewhere deep down he knows the truth:¬† The hybrid is humans as hosts for Time Lord souls, vessels from which the Time Lords can once again rule space and time.

    Starla @starla

    I wouldn’t say this story was casualty free… we didn’t get resolution on what happened to Jac (sp?) and the soldiers, and as other have mentioned there was the pilot of the plane, potential crew and captured zygon on board that seem to have perished. ūüėē

    I really liked this episode, however one other part I was unsure about was the part where Bonnie zaps the zygon-human dude in the housing estate and he turns zygon in front of a group of young men… who just stare blankly, ¬†no reaction! ¬†Are they supposed to be zygons? It wasn’t clear. Maybe that was purposeful, disaffected youth exist in our society, regardless of whether they are zygon or human.

    Having said that, I loved most of the episode… definitely noticed the Mire helmet. That was put there for a reason!

    @purofilion @Supernumerary ¬†Unlike you, I can never wait until Sunday night… I watch on abc iview every week, over breaky. Zero patience here. Plus I’m usually putting kids to bed at 7.30 so it’s a terrible time to be watching tv. ūüėä

    Anonymous @


    those dudes were already zygons and part of the splinter group -I had to ask someone else this and that was their determination.

    Also, tiny point but as Bonnie walks past herself in the mirror -I didn’t see it the first time – we saw the real Clara with her PJs on -cute.

    Yes, I had TOTALLY forgotten about Jac and we’re assuming she perished as did the Zygon who ‘wanted the world’ and the pilot -that was it on board or was there one other – person?

    I believe there could have been 100s of traitors (normal happy zygons murdered in the name of T or Consequences) as well as a dozen or more humans.

    My SO said “hmm, I’m not really interested in it. It didn’t do much for me”.

    I said “huh, but the speech: the awesomeness of it?”

    So, now I get another scoop of ice cream; ungrateful sod! How can there be better TV.

    Up next is the worst shite ever;¬† A Beautiful Lie which I really speed watched and thought “oh god, another ‘The Slap’ with loads of tedious slow mo ‘pretty vision’ and precious little substance”.

    Anywaaay, our loved ones are not always going to share the love of Who.

    Yes, I remember that by the time Boy Ilion was 5 he was in bed at 7 and not watching Who until 2006 and then we taped it to fast forward all the scary bits. By Smith’s time (even though he cried and cried when Tennant said “I don’t want to go” ) he was totally taken by it. And loves it. He credits his love of good telly to both @jimthefish and @pedant who both recommended Buffy (about which we ‘d never heard) and so now cannot watch the rubbish that passes for ‘good, must see¬†telly’ -with its unsubstantiated action and ridiculous plot holes.

    Still, glad you enjoyed it. ūüôā



    The truth is the Doctor, and Missy, hate much of Earth and humans.

    No, no, the Doctor doesn’t hate much of earth -you really think that? He positively loves humans!¬† He’s always going on about why he likes them -despite the pudding brain comments (which I’ve noticed have dispersed a bit this season). Certainly, Tennant and Smith loved them and I don’t see PC being any different.

    Anonymous @


    yes! You need a trophy -let’s call it the Dr Who Forum Bonkers Trophy for picking that the box would be empty! And that there would be two.

    In the first video, the Osgoods said “pay attention” I suspect they may have been referring to more than one issue -the last one being if there are two Osgoods there have to be two Osgood boxes.

    Because I’m a bit thick, was it¬†so that the Doctor had to go thru the speech 14 times before Bonnie finally changed her mind and also Kate¬† -being the first to take her hands away from the red box?

    I like that the Black Archive contains all sorts of space-age tech of its own.

    I think that adds something to it, actually. That it wasn’t as ‘easy’ as that -not that it seemed to be, really. The Doctor’s impassioned speech meant nothing until he spoke of the blood of the Time War and his surety of his involvement in that -of what he knew to be right and it was only Clara in his head which caused him to change his mind.

    @winston thank you for that -yes, you’re right. I shall watch it with subtitles as, frankly, there were a few bits, actually with PC, that I didn’t quite catch

    Mersey @mersey


    “I am beginning to think that Clara‚Äôs fate is to be forgotten by the Doctor. Call it the Inverse Donna.”

    Why do you think so? I’d read your comment before I watched the episode and I looked for some clues which can prove this idea but I did’t find anything specific. Clara plays both crucial and a little bit marginalized role in the episode. They were the usual hints that she may die but nothing that she’ll be forgotten. Nothing I could spot. Maybe there is something when Doctor asks her to leave him with Osgood alone. I thought that both she and he showed that they didn’t have that understanding they had had before.

    I enjoyed the episode though I had moments that I coudn’t distinguish whether we talk about fiction or reality. I was somewhat disappointed with the final solution. It was again like words win wars but I suppose it had to be like that to fullfill the message.

    But I love Doctor’s speech:

    “Of course I understand. Haven’t you called this a war, this funny little thing. This is not a war. I fought in a bigger war than you will ever know. I did worse things that you can ever imagine. When I close my eyes… I hear more screams than anyone could ever be able to count! And do you know what you do with all that pain? Shall I tell you where you put it? You hold it tight… till it burns your hand, and you say this… No-one else will ever have to live like this! No-one else will have to feel this pain! Not on my watch!”

    There were very appropriate words yesterday. I couldn’t sleep last night and I actually watched the movie about this war “Wojtek, the Bear that went to War”. I cried my eyes out. Really worth seeing.

    Juniperfish @juniperfish


    The hybrid is humans as hosts for Time Lord souls, vessels from which the Time Lords can once again rule space and time.

    Well that’s a bit chilling, before breakfast! Thing is, River is/ was already a human/ Time Lord hybrid and she was trained as an assassin, a weapon. So perhaps Davros’ prophecy was actually about River. And if River and the Doctor did, in fact, have kids…

    On the other hand, the Doctor infused a whole bunch of Daleks with his regeneration energy on Skaro, and Davros himself caught a dose. We didn’t see them all die, and of course they didn’t, Davros never dies. So, there’s a Time Lord/ dalek hybrid out there somewhere too.

    It does occur to me that if Clara IS the Doctor and River’s descendant (great granddaughter, whatever) she might now be both a human/ Time Lord hybrid AND a human/ Time Lord/ dalek hybrid, thanks to recent events on Skaro. The key to ending the remnants of the Time War or the key to starting it all over again?

    Anonymous @

    @mersey I think @pedant was having a pretty serious ‘I predict moment’ I like that actually. Donna can’t remember the Doctor and all her Doctor Donna adventures and now the Doctor could be put in the same position -remember our banner says “theories more insane than is actually happening” ūüôā

    I thought the speech was very agreeable and interesting, too. A real tear-jerker considering that war is never the answer to anything. I also liked @pedant s discussion regarding the concept of fundamental religion -this is a discussion that I’m often involved in as well.

    All religion is fundamental -but that is my opinion. Etymology could be to blame but still -wrong thread!

    Up for a re-watch in, ooh, about 9 hours from now.

    Hopefully there’ll be no members of the Underbridge family to trouble us before then -or after!


    Mersey @mersey

    @purofilion @pedant

    I don’t think it’s a silly idea. I feel both Doctor and we need a fresh start. I expected something like that when Capaldi stepped in but it turned out differently.

    I’m sure that Doctor’s speech concerned Second World War. Yesterday at Royal Albert Hall the Festival of Remembrance took place and today people in Britain celebrate Remembrance Sunday.

    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    Absolutely loved this, and the last one.

    I’m not a Clara hater, I like her as a companion, I just like Coleman’s other characters a little better. Now the order is: Dalak Clara, Bonnie, Governess Clara, Companion Clara. It shows what a surprisingly subtle actor she really is.

    The Doctor slightly reassured me this week. The moment in the last episode when he was introducing himself with, I thought, a little too much relish as ‘President of the world’ to the response ‘yes, we know who you are’ (I didn’t imagine that did I?) was momentarily disturbing, giving what happened to Harriot Jones. But in the Unit room, here, I think we did get to see who he is. Discovering he didn’t wipe out the Timelords doesn’t make everything better. He was still the War Doctor, he still did plenty before that, he still made the decision to press the button. As long as there is a button, there is someone who will want to press it. (Corbyn aside…)

    Osgood was wonderful here, and really, I’d love to see both of them in the Tardis, but I think they’ve made it clear it’s not happening.

    and @hillforest, yes, centre screen as well, did the Doctor even notice it?


    @mersey @purofilion

    Difficult to pin down, but:

    “Once Clara’s in your head she never leaves”.

    ISTRM that we’ve been hit with that cluestick a couple of times.

    JimboMcMaster @jimbomcmaster

    The scene in the Black Archives was absolutely marvellous. One of my favourite moments I think I’ve ever seen in Doctor Who. Excellent writing and performance. Some really good observations about the stupidity of war, terrorism and cruelty. Its always worth hearing these things said out loud, even though very few us need convincing of them. Capaldi came across so sincere and passionate – his Doctor really is not cynical at all despite how he might sometimes seem. He really has hope for the little bits of thought, open-mindedness and rationality that are stowed away even in the minds of the most evil people (apart from the Daleks perhaps) and feels such frustration when those bits get put to one side in favour of cruelty, violence, selfishness, closed-mindedness and indifference to the suffering of others. I think this scene represents quite an important part of the Doctor – he doesn’t simply hate villains because of the bad things they do, he is¬†frustrated with them because he thinks they had it in them to make different choices than they have. I think if Capaldi’s Doctor is meant to be dark then that is where the darkness should lie – an exasperation and frustration with the evil people he meets on every adventure that is so intense that there’s no word in the English language for it (that I can think of anyway). I’m sure its something everyone must feel at some point.

    Anyway, that scene was definitely the best this season, likely to be Capaldi’s best moment, and,¬†although I’m still catching up with the Classic Series, almost certainly one of the best scenes of Doctor Who ever in my opinion.


    Mudlark @mudlark

    This, on first viewing yesterday evening, left me feeling more than a little breathless, and having to resist the urge to watch it again immediately.  Better to let it sink in overnight and leave it to the morning.

    We could scarcely have hoped for a better sequel to last week, ratcheting up to the culminating scene and a speech delivered with a power and subtlety which were mesmerising.     In principle it followed the pattern of the previous two-parters this season: a first episode which features incident, action and reaction in the forefront, and a second in which there is a shift to a more reflective mood in which the moral and philosophical issues and consequences are examined, but this time without any diminution of pace or intensity.

    The Doctor describes the stand-off in the Black Archive as a scale model of war, but what struck me were the parallels with the kind of reasoning behind the doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction, but without the risk that an accident, misjudgement or the actions of fanatics could trigger Armageddon.  A very Doctorish solution so long as the double bluff can be maintained.

    In his argument with and appeal to Bonnie¬†the Doctor exposes and dissects the flaws in the reasoning of all fanatics, not least young fanatics such as Bonnie,¬†who want to change the world according to their own narrow¬†ideology and limited perspective, blind to the ultimate consequences and careless of the suffering of those who do not share or cannot be forced to adopt¬†their views.¬† Revolutions, however idealistic their aims, tend to create only further problems and suffering.¬† The Doctor can make his passionate appeal because he has seen so much of this,¬†¬†knows only too painfully where it leads and has been faced with the ultimate decision: whether or not to commit genocide ‘in the¬†name of sanity peace’.¬†That appeal, both rational and emotional,¬†can work in this closed context – a microcosm of war – as, sadly, it would not in our current reality; so¬†he¬†can reach Kate through reason, albeit after 14 iterations, and he can reach Bonnie, eventually, because in replicating Clara physically and maintaining the mental link she has incorporated something of Clara within her – the friend inside an enemy.

    So the balance of the cease-fire is re-established, but it is still only a delicately balanced cease-fire, in which ‘the price of peace is eternal vigilance’,¬† unless or until the difference between human and Zygon ceases to matter and the Zygons in their natural form¬†cease to appear monstrous in our eyes.¬† But do the Zygons necessarily need or want to revert to their natural form?¬† Some¬† – a splinter group – wanted to be free to do so, even at the inevitable cost of triggering a war with their host species.¬† In the video which opened The Zygon Invasion, the Osgoods stated that the ability to copy other life forms was a defence mechanism, enabling them to embed themselves among other species,¬†which¬†suggests¬†a form of adaptability which goes well beyond temporary expedient and could, if necessary be permanent, perhaps consolidated by the original mental link to the¬†individual whose body print they adopted.¬†¬†¬†What the Osgoods achieved could be the norm, and this possibility is¬†reinforced by the attitude of the Zygon whom forces into reverting to his original form.¬† He was content living among the host species and did not want to change back.



    nerys @nerys


    I am beginning to think that Clara’s fate is to be forgotten by the Doctor. Call it the Inverse Donna.

    And yet the Doctor remarks on Clara making her way into one’s mind, seemingly in an unforgettable way. So it would certainly seem odd to go this route. Yet it’s not completely implausible, either.


    A glimpse of Hartnell’s face on a safe in the Black Archive? A further sign that we are heading, the long way round, for Gallifrey?

    I thought I’d just imagined that! Thanks for confirming that that is indeed what I saw.

    I was totally expecting some sort of big, quasi-apocalyptic showdown. It was wonderful to see this quieter, yet equally tense climax mirroring the art of negotiation.

    And yes, the reference at the end to time, with the Doctor insisting it had been a month. Still pondering the significance of that one.

    One little loose end: I keep wondering what happened to Kate’s Zygon copy. Or which version of Kate are we seeing?

    Mudlark @mudlark

    Some further thoughts, in no particular order.

    Bonnie, the commander of the rebel Zygon faction chooses to replicate Clara for obvious reasons, but clearly without realising initially that the link works both ways, and without fully understanding what Clara is or has become. So with something of Clara inside her head she¬†has rendered herself¬†vulnerable to rather more than the kind of manipulation which enables Clara to communicate with the Doctor.¬† The Doctor, once aware that she is not dead, realises this and that once ‘…in the mind of Clara Oswald, she may never find her way out.¬† Furthermore,¬†now it has been established that the mental link, if maintained, is reciprocal, the question of whether either Osgood is human or Zygon¬†may ultimately be¬†redundant.

    The call-backs to previous episodes were a nice touch.  In Under the Lake the Doctor said that he had jettisoned the memory of sign language in order to learn Morse code, and now Morse code becomes the means by which Clara- within-Bonnie is able to communicate directly with the Doctor.  Going further back, the experience of the dream crabs Last Christmas clearly helped Clara to establish the nature of her dream state within the Zygon pod so that, instead of being completely disorientated, she was able to assert her identity and fight back.

    There was one thing that bothered me about Kate, though.¬† There is no reason why she should not have survived that encounter in Truth or Consequences in the manner which she stated, given that¬†we¬†had already seen that she was armed and on her guard, but¬†if it was the original Kate who emerged from the encounter , how did she¬†come to know so much about the Zygon plot, including how to contact the commander of the rebels, what to report to her, and the location of Clara’s pod in the Zygon cavern?¬† That information could not have been in the files¬†in the Police Station which she read.¬† Perhaps there was more to that encounter than we were shown, and she was initially replicated by and thus obtained the information via the mental link to the Zygon before turning the tables in ‘five rounds rapid’ fashion.

    Miapatrick @miapatrick

    I meant to say as well- seeing Clara inside her own mind, fighting for control was a brilliant call back to Coleman’s first appearance.

    Re: Osgoods- for a moment Bonnie turning into another Osgood actually disturbed me. Partly because Bonnie had been quite insistent on her own name and identity. It made me think about Osgood as hybrid, because it wasn’t just human Osgood’s personality, she acquired the zygons confidence. So with this paring is there going to be any other change, or is Bonnie buried?

    nerys @nerys


    Jenna  as Bonnie/Clara  acted both parts perfectly. It was eery to see Clara trapped in the pod but creating a safe place in her mind just like when she was trapped in the Dalek and making souffles. Clara is one heck of a strong willed person.

    This was the only time I felt that Clara really acted like Clara. In the rest of the episode, we had Bonnie (who, as @supernumerary noted, was not simply “bad Clara” but an entirely different character), and then Clara, but a pale shadow of Clara. So I really am wondering what this means.


    As for Clara, it is becoming more and more evident that the day she was trapped in the Dalek by Missy (perhaps only a calendar month prior in the Whoniverse) and the day that the Doctor said to her ‚ÄúI am so sorry‚ÄĚ with that great sense of finality, is the last time the Doctor really was with ‚ÄúClara‚ÄĚ as he knows and loves her.

    This takes me back to my bonkers theory that Clara is still a Dalek. Or, at the very least, irreversibly changed.

    One other thing: Oswin wore bright red lipstick as part of her Carmen persona. I don’t think we’ve seen Clara wearing bright red lipstick till these past two episodes. Coincidence?

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