With the second half of Season 7 slowly making its way toward us, as well as the start of the 50th-anniversary celebrations coming into focus, all eyes are on the threats The Doctor and new companion Clara Oswin Oswald will face starting on March 30. The big buzz has been around the return of series staples like the Cybermen under the writing of Neil Gaiman, and another old Second Doctor race, the Ice Warriors (Martians previously mentioned in "Waters of Mars").
In addition to old foes, Entertainment Weekly revealed a previously unknown draconian enemy, and the trailer for this second half shows terrifying eyeless figures that call to mind The Mouth of Sauron. Since 2005, the creators of Doctor Who have introduced plenty of new threats that rival titans like The Master, the Daleks and other famous villains. Today we see how they stand up and what their odds are of becoming regular foes themselves.
5. Silents: The creatures called Silents (The Silence is actually the name of their religious order) play deeply into American pop conspiracies like Men in Black and government mind control. As such, they are a somewhat uniquely American villainous race that orchestrated much of the plot of Seasons 5 and 6 through their manipulations. Their abilities to make people forget their existence, as well as an almost stereotypical alien look, create that perfect combination of laughable and unnerving that makes the Daleks so effective.
Odds of coming back: Let's go with 75 percent. They were so dominant in the first two seasons of the Eleventh Doctor that it's hard to imagine that he won't see them one last time before his end. Whether they have the oomph to carry into Twelve remains to be seen.
4. The Family of Blood: Monsters that work through possession are a dime a dozen across Classic Who and New Who because, well, it's a lot cheaper than paying someone to design a new alien race. Few played it up as well as The Family of Blood, though. They pursued the Tenth Doctor across early 20th-century England, where he masqueraded as a human to escape from them. After taking over the bodies of four townspeople, they waged a brutal siege that not only made for some of the tensest moments of Season 3, but also gave the show a wonderful chance to expound on armed conflict in the way only Doctor Who can.
Odds of coming back: The Family of Blood is unique in that The Doctor went straight up Biblical on them upon confronting them, leaving each of them in eternal personal hells. The voice-over by Son of Mine at the end suggests that even if they escaped, they would never cross The Doctor again, but it's a fact that a door has been left open. I'll give it 50 percent.
3. The Empty Child: The Ninth Doctor's attempt to save London in the Blitz from a mysterious child in a gas mask is simply the best story in his entire run. The Empty Child became an iconic threat in a single appearance, spreading his bizarre plague to anyone he touched and threatening the world with total conversion. You have to be impressed when someone can take the phrase "Are you my mummy?" and use it to make your skin crawl.
Odds of coming back: It's highly unlikely. "The Doctor Dances" is defined by its super happy ending in which everyone lives, including The Empty Child, who's restored to life as Jamie. Still, with all the timey-wimey shenanigans surrounding London in the Blitz, it's possible that someone infected with Empty Child-corrupted nanogenes could be sucked into another time and story.
2. Weeping Angels: "Blink" is acclaimed as one of the best new Who episodes for good reason, and while "Time of Angels" and "Angels Take Manhattan" don't live up to the legacy, they are still solid entries. The red-light/green-light trick remains extremely unnerving, and the writers always seem to find new ways of mixing up the action so it doesn't turn into a stale trick. Plus, every Whovian flinches at statues now, and that's proof of a good monster.
Odds of coming Back: 100 percent. The Angels are the only new monsters to spread across two modern Doctors. There is no chance they won't return.
1. The Midnight entity: There may honestly be no more terrifying creation in the history of Doctor Who than the unnamed, unexplained force that possesses tourists traveling across the planet Midnight. What makes the thing so unnerving is how completely unaware The Doctor is of it and how powerless he is to fight it. In a weird corruption-by-the-One-Ring way, it inhabits a woman named Sky, then passes into The Doctor in a horrifyingly relentless process of slowly repeating his words until she overtakes his speech and thought, all the while utilizing the fear of his trapped travel mates to further its ends. Only a brutal self-sacrifice saves the day.
Odds of coming back: I'd say 25 percent. So far as we know, whatever the entity was it only inhabited Midnight, and as scary as the episode was, it's not the sort of thing that would have the same impact the second time around. It might be a good struggle for a companion, though.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.