More of an old-fashioned adventure this week, and bearing a resemblance to Season 4’s weak two-parter The Sontaran Stratagem/Poison Sky, but luckily this is better than that. It does seem to be a bit of an empty episode without many stakes though. We haven’t had The Doctor and Clara hanging out recently, so there’s distance between them, and the UNIT characters don’t have any relationship to anchor themselves.
Neither do they seem to have a proper relationship with The Doctor, they usually just defy him. Back in the day, there was either The Brigadier or former companion Martha to give a bit of leeway into the world of UNIT, at the moment it feels like there’s no heft behind the corporation.
The episode wasn’t bad though. It had some nice ideas and a decent story. I like the idea of the Zygons being peacefully integrated into human kind, and the subsequent breakdown of this peace treaty works well. Even though they’ve only been in the show twice, the Zygons are great villains, their shape shifting ability gives the show a perk, even if it’s annoying that there’s a multitude of shock “Oh I’m a Zygon really” reveals.
Still, it works well. I like their weird design.
There’s the usual nice camera work, music and performances. There’s just not enough Clara for what will be her final few episodes. Overall, it’s a solid, middle range episode, that does nothing original, but isn’t bad at all.
Rating: B- 6/10