Well it finally happened, one of the most anticipated episodes of Doctor Who aired on Saturday night! This was also one of my most anticipated episodes because we were promised that when Clara needed The Doctor most, he would do something shocking and it would forever change his relationship with Clara. It marks the debut of Peter Harness as a writer on Doctor Who and also the debut of Paul Wilmshurst as a director on Doctor Who.
*WARNING MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD*
A quick summary, The Doctor takes Courtney Woods (Ellis George) and Clara to the moon in 2049, and they end up on a space shuttle crash landing on the moon. The Doctor meets a female astronaut Captain named Lundvik and two other astronauts who have been sent to destroy the moon with nuclear bombs, because the moon is a threat to earth. The moon has caused high tides that have wiped out a significant amount of the human population and Lundvik and her men do not know why that is. Lundvik mentions to The Doctor about a Mexican research team who colonized on the moon, but they eventually lost contact with them. The Doctor decides to find this colony along with Clara, Lundvik and Courtney and soon discovers based on the research team’s findings that the moon’s mass has increased by over 1,000 tons, and that the moon is falling to pieces.
The Doctor, Courtney, Lundvik and Clara encounter spider-like creatures at the Mexican colony. Two astronauts are killed by the spider-like creatures, but Courtney manages to kill one with some disinfectant spray. This revelation makes The Doctor realize that the spider-like creatures are in fact giant germs!
Lundvik warns that if the moon is breaking apart, that they will all be dead in less than an hour. The Doctor agrees, but then decides to find out what is going on with the moon and discovers water, which is in fact amniotic fluid! Which means there is something alive on the moon! The Doctor jumps into the fluid, leaving Clara and Lundvik to keep Courtney safe who is on The TARDIS, scared at her encounter with one of the spider germs.
The moon starts to crack and The TARDIS falls into a chasm! Clara and Lundvik are worried about Courtney, when The Doctor returns!
Clara tells The Doctor what happened to The TARDIS and The Doctor tells Clara The TARDIS is fine. The Doctor uses his sonic screwdriver on Clara’s phone to locate Courtney through pictures she posted to TUMBLR haha. He transmits a signal to a TV in the base to show Clara that Courtney is safe. The Doctor says he scanned the moon and shows everyone what he discovered, inside the moon is a creature ready to hatch, which means the moon is an egg! This is why the moon has been breaking apart and there was amniotic fluid, instead of water on the moon! The Doctor also realizes that the spider-like creatures are just bacteria living on the egg. The Doctor theorizes that the egg has been around for 100,000,000 years and is now ready to hatch!
Captain Lundvik asks The Doctor how to kill the creature, troubling both Courtney, Clara and The Doctor. Clara says they cannot consider killing the creature, even though it is killing people on earth. Lundkvik disagrees and Clara looks to The Doctor for help on what they should do. The Doctor says it is not up to him, it is up to Clara and Lundvik, which upsets Clara.
Clara says she needs The Doctor’s help, but he says this isn’t his call to make because whatever future humanity has depends on the choice Clara and Lundvik make. Clara asks for The Doctor’s help and he pretty much tells her that it’s time to grow up and that she has to make this decision on her own.
Courtney exits The TARDIS which has just landed in the colony station thanks to instructions from The Doctor. The Doctor refuses to help and shocks Clara by leaving in his TARDIS! The Doctor is forcing Clara, Lundvik, and Courtney to decide whether to kill the creature with the 100 plus nuclear bombs they have or to let it live.
Lundvik receives a video transmission from a man at Ground Control and Clara asks to send a message to Earth, she tells them about the terrible choice they have to make and that if they want Clara and the rest of them to kill the creature to turn their lights off. Lundvik decides to set a timer to detonate the nuclear bombs believing it is the right choice. Clara looks through a window with binoculars to see that all of earth is going dark, indicating they want Clara, Lundvik and Courtney to kill the creature.
Clara and Courtney both move to stop the bomb timer and successfully abort the detonation sequence, when suddenly The Doctor arrives in his TARDIS! He takes Clara, Lundvik and Courtney to a beach on Earth to see in the sky the moment when the egg hatches and the creature ends up flying away not harming the earth. When the creature leaves it lays another egg, replacing the old moon and creating a new moon, which won’t hatch for another 100,000,000 years, meaning humanity is safe!
The Doctor leaves Lundkvik on Earth and takes The TARDIS back to Coal Hill in present day to drop Courtney off at school. Clara decides to stay when The Doctor starts to fly The TARDIS, but Clara pulls a lever to land it again. Clara asks The Doctor what he knew about the events of what they just experienced and The Doctor mentions how he doesn’t know how every event is going to turn out before it happens. Clara knows he is lying and threatens to smack him if he doesn’t tell her what he knew. The Doctor says that he knew that creatures don’t destroy their own nests and that he knew Clara would make the right choice and then he smiles at her, which Clara doesn’t appreciate.
Clara calls The Doctor out on his b.s. and he says it wasn’t his choice to make. The Doctor jokes about how he made Courtney the most important person because she was the first woman on the moon and she will eventually become President. Clara is sick of The Doctor talking and tells him to shut up and he swears to Clara he didn’t know what was going to happen and asks if Clara thinks he is lying. Clara isn’t sure and says The Doctor was patronizing her and Courtney saying that “…you’re big enough to go to the shops now toddle along.”
The Doctor says he was allowing Clara to make a choice about her own future and that was his way of respecting her. Clara begins to cry and says she did not feel respected and instead felt scared, abandoned and pressured to make an impossible choice. Clara says that The Doctor thinks he is so much better than tiny humans and that he breathes our air, walks on our earth and walks on our moon so it then becomes his earth and moon, meaning he can help humans, especially her. The Doctor says he was helping and Clara says leaving her was not helping. Clara tells The Doctor to leave her and go very far away…wow!
Clara leaves The TARDIS crying and The Doctor leaves Coal Hill and his TARDIS de-materializes. Clara goes to her classroom and Danny Pink(Samuel Anderson) meets her and he realizes The Doctor finally pushed her too far. The episode ends with Clara at home admiring the moon outside her window,
I really enjoyed this episode and thought it was interesting to see Clara Oswald faced with a moral dilemma. Courtney Woods (Ellis George) wasn’t annoying like I expected her to be, which was good and she actually proved to be a quite vulnerable (seeing as how before this adventure she didn’t seem to be fazed by anything) character when faced with a life-threatening situation. Hermione Norris was great in her guest role as Captain Lundvik and proved to be another strong female character similar to Adelaide Brooks from The Waters of Mars. Peter Capaldi was amazing in this episode and showed how his Doctor can be very cold and heartless.
I liked seeing The Doctor trying to get Clara to make the right decision, but going about it the wrong way. This incarnation of The Doctor is so alien that he isn’t even aware of how he treats people, completely oblivious to the fact that he scared Clara and made her lose trust and faith in The Doctor. I honestly was expecting something more, considering we were promised that The Doctor was going to shock Clara when she desperately needs his help. Now after re-watching the episode I liked the way it turned out with The Doctor seemingly abandoning Clara when she needs him most. It is the ultimate betrayal and yet The Doctor doesn’t see it that way. I have no idea how this is going to play out this season, but I am very much looking forward to it. Kill The Moon was a great episode, filled with creepy moments and shocking moments that ended up making the episode that much more enjoyable. The ending alone makes this episode one of the best in the season and that’s why I am giving it a 10/10!