The Weeping Angels vs. The Empty Child [Doctor Who: Steven Moffat Monster Tournament – Final]

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 #230)

We are now in the Final Bout of this series, in which for no other reason but that it’s fun, we’ve been figuring 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 has been 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 now 15 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 5

We started this competition with something like 30 different monstrous creations. My personal favorite was the Silence, but they got knocked out against the Weeping Angels in Round 4. So now we’re down to the final 2–one of which was pretty much a foregone conclusion, the other of which was always a contender.

The Weeping Angels

(Introduced in Blink, from Season Three)

Percentage taken in the Facebook vote in Round 4: 81%, defeating the Silence. They’ve also beaten the Handmines, the Sentient Oil and the Creature Perfectly Evolved to Hide.

Undoubtedly Steven Moffat’s most famous monster, the Weeping Angels are “the world’s oldest assassins.” They are unimaginably fast but “quantum locked”–when they are observed in any way, they freeze into stone. But as soon as you blink or they are otherwise hidden from sight, they swoop in and steal away your temporal energy. Victims of the Angels are then transported to some point back in time where they proceed to “live to death.”

The Empty Child

(From The Empty Child / The Doctor Dances, from Season One)

Technically, these are the Chula Nanogenes, or at least the creature that they created in their attempts to heal / resurrect the young boy Jamie, who had been killed in a London bombing in World War II. Young Jamie had been mistakenly created with a gas mask as part of his face, with no real consciousness except for a desire to identify his mummy. He was virtually unstoppable and would spread his physical and mental condition like a plague to anyone who touched him.

In the last Facebook vote, the Empty Child actually lost against the Vashta Narada, but still won the round overall Prior to that, they beat the Testimony, the Veil and the Clockwork Droids.

OK, Ready, Steady…go!

Jeremiah’s vote:

The Weeping Angels

I’m afraid the angels win. Empty child was the scariest New Who “monster” prior to the angels, but the angels took it.

Josh’s vote:

The Weeping Angels

Comment: So it comes down to this. The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances is one of the best NewWho stories … and so is Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone— much better, in my opinion, than Blink, and it did a good job of deepening the lore of the Weeping Angels. And even Angels Take Manhattan, for all its missteps and overreach, still came out strong. So the Angels get three solid stories to the Weeping Child’s one. And really, they are more engaging and ultimately more interesting. The Weeping Angels take this one.

Ben’s vote:

The Empty Child

Comments: It’s a bit obvious to vote for the Weeping Angels–I fully expected them to win the entire time, although I was hoping that somehow the Silence might prevail. I think the Angels are a great concept and definitely a scary visual, but there is something about the Empty Child which is so memorable and weird and bizarre and just plain clever, that I’m going to give it my vote. I think the fact that it came first also helps to cement it for me as a serious candidate for the ultimate Moffat monster creation.

Johanna’s vote:

The Weeping Angels

Comments: I don’t know. I just don’t know yet. They’re both just so terrifying. I,uh…can I abstain? (I’d rather you didn’t) I’m going to go with the Empty Child, because there less episodes about them that are really done. With the Weeping Angels, there was The Angels Take Manhattaan, which was really sad at the end, but the Statue of Liberty as a Weeping Angel was not a good move. But they’re both so good.

Laurelle’s vote:

The Weeping Angels

Comments: I don’t know! I guess I’ll choose the Weeping Angels. They had Blink, and The Angels Take Manhattan–that episode was so sad. This is a tough choice and I don’t want anyone to get out. But I’ll choose the Weeping Angels because of their shear amount of being good, while the Empty Child was only there once.

The Facebook Poll:

The Weeping Angels (23 votes) over The Silence (11 votes)

Comments: It’s actually one of the closer votes on Facebook–for a while they were even tied. One person who presumably voted for the Empty Child said they preferred it because unlike other gimmick monsters it didn’t overstay its welcome and ruin itself. But still, the votes for the Angels prevailed.

The Winner

The Weeping Angels

And that, as they say, is that! No big surprise with the final result, but it was fun getting there!


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