The Silence vs. The Kantrofarri [Doctor Who: Steven Moffat Monster Tournament – 1.10]

Doctor Who has generated lots of frightening monsters and creatures over its many years of existence. But out of all the writers who have ever contributed to the series, no one has invented quite so many such baddies as Steven Moffat…for the simple reason that nobody else has written as many stories (although to be fair, other writers have written more episodes).

(Daily Doctor Who #50)

For no other reason but that it’s fun, we’re going to figure out which of Moffat’s many monstrous creations is the very best, according to a strict scientific process of having a few people vote on them.

The winner of each bout will be decided on a best of seven votes, according to whatever standard that they want (though in general, it’s a contest about which one is more popular or well liked, not which one would win in a fight). The judges, like last time will be Ben McClure (myself), Johanna McClure (my 16 year old daughter), Laurelle McClure (my 14 year old daughter), Joshua McDonald (my friend from college) and Jeremiah McDonald (Josh’s brother–see his website here).

You can read a bit more about each of us in the post for the first bout of this competition, here.

The last two votes will be drawn from a poll I will / have put upon Facebook. The monster which gets the most votes on that poll will be awarded two points.

So…

The Steven Moffat Monstrous Creation Tournament – Round 1, Bout 10

(The way I am “seeding” these early rounds is simply by having the earliest appearing creature go against the last appearing creature, and then working my way inward.)

The contestants:

The Silence

(The Impossible Astronaut / Day of the Moon, from Season Six, and beyond)

Eventually revealed to be priests who for some reason wanted you to forget that you had confessed things in the religious order also known as the Silence, the actual race known as the Silence were powerful humanoids who had the ability to be instantly forgotten by anyone not looking directly at them. They could also fire powerful electrical blasts which could completely destroy an enemy. They appeared to be led by Madame Kovarian in an elaborate plan to steal Amy & Rory’s child and fashion her into a weapon engineered to kill the Doctor, but eventually they turned on Madame Kovarian herself, showing an even more devious agenda.

The Kantrofarri

(Last Christmas, the Christmas special from 2014, after Season Eight)

Perhaps better known as the Dream Crabs, the Kantrofarri would wrap themselves around a victim’s head and pacify them by placing them in an extended dream state while they slowly liquified their brains. The Doctor encountered one which used his memories to trace and attack Clara, as well as other people in her vicinity, putting them all in a shared simulation of an Arctic research station.

Now, as you’ll see, this battle is the closest we’ve had so far. For fun, I’m going to mix up the order that we present the votes.

OK, Ready, Steady…go!

The Facebook Poll:

The Silence (55 votes) over The Kantrofarri (3 votes)

Comments: An overwhelming majority! One comment said, Not wild about either of these, but The Silence were far more significant overall.

Ben’s vote:

The Silence

Comment: I actually really liked the Katrofarria and the episode they were in. But the Silence are not only my favorite Steven Moffat monster, they are my favorite monster from the revived Doctor Who overall, and possibly my favorite Doctor Who villain of all time (especially if I can ignore the lame “explanation” for them given in Time of the Doctor), so they’re always going to win my vote.

Laurelle’s vote:

The Silence

Comments: Oh, those were two good ones.  I like the Silence better.  There are lots of things in stories that put you into a nice dream and then slowly kill you.  It’s an interesting idea but not a very original one.   Whereas the Silence, the idea of a monster that you only can remember when you’re looking at it—I hadn’t seen that before, so that was cool.  I’m going to choose them even though they have kind of a lame explanation later on.

Jeremiah’s vote:

The Silence

Comments: I like them both, but I’ll take Silence. They’re very strong in the two part series six opener. Though the Dream Crabs make for one of the stronger Christmas episodes.

Josh’s vote:

The Silence

Comments: Impossible Astronaut/Day of the Moon is among my favorite New Who stories. The Silence are introduced as one of the show’s more interestingly, genuinely creepy monsters, and had a very satisfying Doctor-outsmarts-his-enemies conclusion. As with the Weeping Angels, they lose some coolness factor the more Moffat brought them back and tried to explain them. But they still stand out as one of his best creations.

Johanna’s vote:

The Kantrofarri

Comments: So, the thing is the Silence are going to win this thing hugely.  And they’re probably cooler and better in general, but I want to vote for Dream Crabs because here’s a little crab that sucks you into your nightmare dream and you’re going to meet Santa, and I think that’s funny.  So I’m voting for the Dream Crabs. 

The Winner

The Silence

And Johanna prevents the Silence from joining the Empty Child, the Vashta Narada, the Weeping Angels and the Veil as monsters that win by shutout. They still move forward though, to the next round!

Next up: The Headless Monks vs. A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

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