Friday, November 6, 2015

Doctor Who 9.07: "The Zygon Invasion"

“I’m the peace. Human and Zygon.”
- Osgood

Finally we get back to plot points set up during the 50th Anniversary special. Alas it is not the “let’s find Galifrey” plotline. It’s the Zygon plotline. We see a recorded video of both Osgoods (it’s unclear which is which but that’s probably the point). It does make me wonder which one died thanks to Missy. Anyway, they explain that there is a peace treaty allowing 20 million Zygons living on Earth in disguise. If the peace treaty ever breaks down there is a protocol in place (the Osgood box). Well it seems there is a break down as Osgood (the remaining one) gets kidnapped by some Zygons. At UNIT Kate fears the worst when the encrypted locations of all the Zygons is hacked. Clara is missing in action as the Doctor goes to talk to the Zygon high command (who are going about as two seven-year-old girls). They claim they are handling things but I have a feeling they aren’t going to be solving much of anything.

As the Doctor heads to UNIT and he and Kate watch a video with Osgood claiming that all traitors will be killed, Clara heads home and sees some of her voice mails from the Doctor. She is clueless to what’s going on around her. She sees a neighbor boy on the stairs who claims he can’t find his parents. She heads into his apartment and his parents appear but they are acting super creepy. Yeah, either they are rogue Zygons or he is. I’m betting they are, though. Finally, she gets to UNIT and the Doctor is not happy about the situation. Kate says that they should just bomb the crap out of the rogue Zygons. After all, they did just assassinate the original high command on video. It seems these fringe Zygons are claiming they were sold and forced to assume human form.

The Doctor manages to talk Kate out of said bombing. He’s going to head to see about negotiating and saving Osgood while Kate heads to New Mexico to see if she can find out what’s going on there (Osgood was last pinged in New Mexico). Clara and one of the other UNIT people are supposed to stay in the UK and fight for the country but they end up in a lift that goes to some weird place (because of course there’s a lift in Clara’s apartment that’s al tricked out with Zygon tech). They somehow manage to get back to UNIT and do a little digging and find that there have been odd incidents all around London in elevators with people disappearing. It has to be related to what’s happening elsewhere.

The Doctor gets to the Middle East just as the military is about to launch a drone strike on the Zygon base. The soldier who is supposed to execute the strike can’t do it at the time because the Zygons that appear look like her family. How they knew to look like that is a mystery to me. But I’m kind of glad they did it because the Doctor has more time to try and save people. The lead soldier on the base explains that they think the facility is a training camp of some sort. So they’ve got that to explore, too.

In New Mexico Kate finds the sheriff’s station mostly empty except for a single deputy. She’s pretty freaked out and asks if Kate came alone or with back up. She also thinks Kate is a Zygon (although she doesn’t know that’s what they are called). Kate learns that the displaced Zygons headed there and for a while it was okay but then they started getting in fights and then sort of banded together in factions until one day one of them just turned into a full-on Zygon. Oh boy. And there’s lots of dead bodies lying all around. That can’t be good!

The Doctor and the military folks are heading to the compound and the strike is still on. The Doctor and the leader head around back while the rest of the team is supposed to be drawing the Zygons out to give them an in. It goes horribly awry when the Zygons appear as the soldiers’ family members. The soldiers get lured to their deaths and it turns out the soldiers were also Zygons. Very interesting. Lucky for the Doctor he finds Osgood. Too bad the soldiers are already bombing the hell out of the place and the two of them get stuck underground with a knocked out Zygon. Or maybe it’s a good thing so they can interrogate it. Well, the Zygon wants to take over the world. Good times.

Clara and her UNIT pal go down the elevator to the underground area and see that there are all kinds of pods. I have to admit I didn’t see this twist coming. Maybe I should have but I didn’t. The UNIT soldiers are all Zygons (the pods are full of human since you know, they don’t grow duplicates) and the get executed. The Clara we’ve been seeing is actually one of the rogue Zygons. It actually reminds me a little of the plot in “The Almost People” with Amy being a duplicate. We see the moment when Clara got nabbed (when she was checking on the little neighbor boy). The Doctor is not going to be happy about this betrayal. He’s going to have to fight like hell to stop all of this drama from going down.

In the end, Kate gets neutralized and fake Clara takes a freaking rocket launcher to the Doctor’s plane. While I like that they are picking up threads introduced in the 50th Anniversary special, this isn’t the one I’d have gone with, to be honest. I would have much preferred the search for Galifrey. Sure the Doctor doesn’t really want to be around his people but it would be much more interesting. And the Zygons just aren’t that gripping. And this is the second episode where they’ve referenced the “hybrid” (thank you Davros). I don’t really care about the hybrid. I just want good stories.

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