The Zygon Inversion – New Who Season 9 Episode 8 Review

Not sure why I even need to say this, but spoilers, lots of them, stupid amounts of details.  Here we go again.

This episode starts with Clara having some sort of dream in the Zygon pod where she can see Bonnie shooting at the Doctor’s plane.  She tries to throw off the aim but the plane is hit and blows up.

Next we see Bonnie touch a man in the temple and his arm starts to look like a Zygon’s.  Then he completely turns, asks people for help and runs.  Meanwhile, Bonnie records it all.  She then calls someone, said she changed the first one and is going to UNIT to retrieve the Osgood Box.

Clara replays the explosion and sees there were survivors.  Flash to Osgood and the Doctor.  Pointless scene to show they’re alive.  However, Clara has learned she has a little control over Bonnie’s body, enough to send the Doctor a quick text to say she’s awake in there.  And there are little things, like Bonnie walking by a mirror and Clara being reflected back.  She’s trying to take over.  But meanwhile Bonnie is looking for the Osgood Box.

The Doctor calls Bonnie and asks some questions of Clara, which she blinked the answers to.  This prompts Bonnie to visit Clara to try and probe her mind about the Osgood Box.  It really just gives Clara a chance to poke around some.  Clara is able to make Bonnie lose her shape.  Apparently because they are linked, they can’t lie to each other due to increases in things like pulse.  Bonnie thinks this will get her the information she wants.  So she starts asking questions about the location, and Clara tells her.  She also tells her how to access it and that the box contains a button that will unmask all Zygons for up to an hour.  That would cause mass panic and a war… Exactly what Bonnie wants.

The Doctor and Osgood find the Zygon that was forced to changed.  He’s terrified, doesn’t want a fight and just wants to live in peace.  Then he kills himself.  Moments later, “Kate” appears with a couple of Zygons wrapped up as UNIT.  The Doctor plays along.

Bonnie takes Clara’s pod with her to the Black Archives to grab the Osgood Box.  When she arrives, she finds 2 boxes, a blue one and a red one.  On a phone call to the Doctor, he says that one box normalizes all the Zygons while the other destroys them.  Bonnie opens Clara’s pod and removes her to use as a hostage.  So the Doctor says it’s the blue box that normalizes.  But there’s 2 buttons inside.  One says “Truth”, the other “Consequences”.  So she opens the red box and sees the same setup.  Bonnie demands they bring the Doctor to her.  When the Zygons advance, Kate shoots them both.  Turns out, Kate is actually Kate.  She’d shot the imposter in New Mexico to escape.

Now for the chat.  The Doctor reveals that the red box contains the nerve gas, which will turn the Zygons inside out.  The blue one will turn them to their true form.  Two boxes, one to protect each side.  Two Osgoods, to police and protect the ceasefire.  Kate had agreed to that and to having her memory wiped of the knowledge of it, so that’s what the Doctor had done.

For now, the Doctors group joins Clara and Bonnie’s group.  Kate stands at the red box, Bonnie the blue.  The Doctor tells Kate that one of her buttons releases the nerve gas while the other detonates the nuclear warhead under the black archives.  If you didn’t care about survival you could just push them at the same time, right?  He tells Bonnie that one of her buttons will unmask the Zygons while the other will “lock” them in the form they’re in, making it so they’re in human form forever.

On a side note, I’m really loving that shade of Bonnie’s lipstick 🙂

So the Doctor finally asks Bonnie what she actually wants, and the answer is war.  So there’s a lot of talking, about how war is bad basically, but we get some insight that the Doctor has done some very terrible things (for those who didn’t know) and that it haunts him.  Kate closes her box, while Bonnie realizes that both boxes are empty with a couple buttons that don’t do anything.  They say they can’t just forget the boxes are empty, but the Doctor informs them that they’ve said that the last 15 times… and then he wipes their memories.  Well, everyone’s but Bonnie’s.  She has to live with it so she doesn’t repeat her mistake.

We do a little wrap up and then the Doctor asks Osgood if she’d like to go in the TARDIS.  She turns him down and a second Osgood shows up.  Two were needed.  It seems like we kept the human one all along, assuming there’s still one human and one Zygon.  The second is Bonnie, now filling the empty space.  All is safe again.

It seems our Doctor is too attached to Clara.  I suspect the worst…

The Woman Who Lived – New Who Season 9 Episode 6 Review

Spoilers…

We open on what looks like a stagecoach robbery and flash over to the Doctor stepping out of the TARDIS tracking something.  This is the second part of the previous episode, so I’m expecting to see out “little girl” appear again.  Think she’ll be all grown up or still a child?

As usual, the Doctor mucks things up and accidentally lands in the middle of the robbery.  Whatever he was tracking was on the stagecoach, and he let it get away while arguing with the robber.  I noticed he said something about Clara being on holiday, so perhaps she’s not in this episode, which seems strange.  Anywho, the robber is our little Ashildr, and yes, she’s still a little girl.  Turns out she’s learned how to use a man’s voice when she wants, which is creepy…

She seemed disappointed that the Doctor didn’t come for her.  Maybe we’re setting up for our next companion?  Probably just for this episode… So we find out that Ashildr is 800 years old, and simply robs people for the excitement.  She has all kinds of money and a house with a servant.  Seems she’s bored, and a companion’s life *is* full of adventure.

And quite quickly, she actually asks to go.  Says she’s seen and done it all on Earth and can’t even remember most of it.  After all, she has a human brain and has lived much longer than a human ever should.  She’s pompous and arrogant but still sad.  She also knows way more about the Doctor than she should, and come comments lead me to believe she’d be willing to steal the TARDIS if given the opportunity.

She says she’ll help him find what he’s looking for and they’ll leave in an hour.  The Doctor reads her diaries to discover that she was once a wife, a mother.  She lost her love and her children and vowed to be alone to never suffer the pain again.  To avoid the heartbreak she hardened herself, much like many of us do.  Only things aren’t exactly as they seems.  Ashildr goes and visits her creature outside and eludes to some sort of plan.

Our duo goes to break into a house to find some artifact they’re both looking for, and we see the return of the sonic sunglasses.  Damn.  I was really hoping they were gone.  We also find she’s not used the second immortality charge.  Very quickly they find “The Eyes Of Hades”, which is a pretty ominous name.

They sneak out, only to get held up at gunpoint, then get out of that.  The Doctor discovers Ashildr’s “friend” Leandro.  Leandro was stuck on Earth and needs the amulet to escape.  They need to kill someone to make it work and Clayton the servant is the planned sacrifice.  The Doctor intervenes and gets himself captured while Ashildr decides to get her sacrifice at an execution instead.  Maybe there’s a bit of good left in her.

The Doctor talks (bribes) his way out of captivity and arrives just in time to start helping the condemned man entertain the crowd, then step in with his psychic paper and claim it’s a pardon.  It worked until Ashildr uses the amulet on him… so much for the good in her.  But the portal opens and it’s not an escape but an invasion.  Ashildr realizes she’s not as hard as she thought she was.

It’s hurtful, isn’t it?  It’s infuriating.  You think you don’t care, then you fall off the wagon.” – The Doctor

The only way to stop this, to close the portal, is to reverse the death of the man causing it.  Sam Swift, our condemned man… And we have an immortality charge which hasn’t been used.  Bingo.  So is he immortal now?  Is he not?  Who knows…

The Doctor chats with Ashildr and explains that he can’t take her because they need normal people around them to keep them grounded.  We even got a nod back to Captain Jack in the conversation.  They’re friends, and she plans to clean up the mess he keeps leaving behind.  I think it’s possible that this won’t be the last time we see her.

Sure enough, in the very next scene Clara comes to see the Doctor with a selfie from one of her students.  There, in the background, Ashildr.

This episode to me was mostly a reminder of who the Doctor is.  Who he turns people into, what he causes, and how people around him die.  There seemed to be a lot of foreshadowing to later episodes where we will perhaps see the demise of Clara and another appearance of Ashildr.  This entire episode basically felt like “something’s coming”.