A Creature perfectly evolved to hide vs. Colony Sarff [Doctor Who: Steven Moffat Monster Tournament – 2.3]

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 #103)

We are now in Round 2 of this series, in which 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.


The Steven Moffat Monstrous Creation Tournament – Round 2, Bout 3

(The way I am “seeding” this second round of the competition is listing all of the winners in the order of what percentage of the vote they took in their Facebook poll during round 1. If there was a tie, then I looked at who had the most actual votes. In the one case where there was still a tie I made a judgment call of which order they went in. Then I will put the top vote-getter against the lowest vote-getter, and so on. Because there were 15 winners from Round 1–an odd number–then the top winner gets a free pass this round. That would be the Vashta Narada, who got a whopping 97% of the vote.)

The contestants:

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

(Introduced in Listen, from Season Eight)

Percentage taken in the Facebook vote in Round 1: 92%, a solid victory over the Headless Monks.

Unique on this list because it is not certain, in-universe, that this creature actually exists. The Doctor only postulates that if such a creature did exist, there would be no way to be certain of it, no way to be certain that it is not in the room with you or hiding under your bed. The Doctor becomes intermittently obsessed with this being, but never knows for sure if it is real or his imagination.

Colony Sarff

(Introduced in The Eleventh Hour, from Season Five)

Prisoner Zero was a shape-shifting interdimensional alien who had escaped imprisonment by the Atraxi and hidden on earth–specifically Amy Pond’s house in Leadworth. It resembled at times a floating snake made of energy, and also a series of comatose patients in the local hospital. Prisoner Zero’s original crime was never specified, but it was bad enough that the Atraxi were willing to destroy the whole planet to make sure it never escaped–something that Prisoner Zero seemed quite willing to allow happen.

Percentage taken in the Facebook vote in Round 1: only 17%, actually losing to the Star-Whale. However, on the strength of our other votes, Colony Sarff still pulled out a victory. However, I made a mistake with Round 2–he should have fought in the first bout, against the Weeping Angels. Will that make a difference? Let’s see!

OK, Ready, Steady…go!

Jeremiah’s vote:

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

I still love the ambiguity.

Josh’s vote:

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

Comment: It’s rare for Doctor Who to leave unresolved questions at the end of an episode, especially concerning the episode’s main monster. Usually the Doctor is the smartest one in the room and generally knowledgeable about whatever is going on, so I appreciate when the show throws a little curve ball and leaves us with questions even the Doctor can’t answer.

Ben’s vote

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

Comments: I have a hard time with this one. I like the idea of the Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide, but unlike Jeremiah and Josh, I don’t love the ambiguity. It shifts the point of the episode off the Creature and onto the Doctor’s potential irrationality and the origin of his fears. I actually quite enjoy that, but it makes me less interested in the Creature itself (less interested than if we knew it existed, even if we never saw it). On the other hand, Colony Sarff is a creepy idea with a creepy look, but isn’t something I legitimately like. Ugh, I’ll go with the Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide, simply on the basis that if I heard that one of these monsters was going to be the focus of an upcoming episode, that’s the one I’d rather watch.

Johanna’s vote:

Colony Sarff

Comments: Both of these were potentially interesting, I guess, and cool under the right circumstances…which neither of these actually were. I guess I’m going to go with Colony Sarff because it looked pretty cool–it was visually pretty awesome.

Laurelle’s vote:

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

Comments: A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide is an interesting idea in a good episode. Of course we never see it because it is perfectly evolved to hide, and it might not exist. The other guy, Colony Sarff, is an okay henchman in a good episode. So which is more interesting? Colony Sarff is barely memorable. Like, what did he do again? Barely nothing. So the answer is pretty clear to me.

The Facebook Poll:

Colony Sarff (11 votes) over A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide (5 votes)

Comments: Someone joked that they had to vote for Colony Sarff because we didn’t see much of the other things at all.

The Winner

A Creature that is perfectly evolved to hide

(Not actually the creature…but it’s hard to come up with photos of this one)

Strangely, Colony Sarff won in the first round even though it lost the Facebook poll. This time, it lost even though it won the Facebook poll.

Next up: The Empty Child vs. The Veil

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