TV ReviewsDoctor Who (2005) Season 10 Episode 8: The Lie of the Land Review

Keith NoakesJune 3, 2017

If you would like to read my review of the last episode, click here.

Synopsis: Earth is invaded and Bill is living alone in occupied Britain. The Doctor appears to be on the side of the enemy, flooding the airwaves with fake news. Bill and Nardole embark on a deadly mission to rescue the Doctor and lead the resistance against the new regime, whatever the cost. (IMDB)

Writer: Toby Whithouse 

Director: Wayne Yip

Rating: TV-PG

Running Time: 45mins

Now this episode is the last of a three episode arc involving a mysterious race of alien monks. In the last episode, Bill seemingly gave up the Earth so she can save the Doctor and this episode started off by showing the repercussions of this. The world is now a dictatorship run by the supreme monk overlords. The monks have managed to infiltrate human history thus convincing the masses that they’ve always been here, even though they’ve only been there for months. That was how they have gotten control since nobody has known anything different but Bill wasn’t quite falling for it as she started to question whether this new reality was true while seeing glimpses of her experiences with the Doctor.

As mentioned, months have gone by, leaving Bill alone. To cope, she was having conversations with her imaginary mother. Most of the episode was told by Bill as a story to her mother. Nardole then showed up and filled us in on what has happened since he was infected with the bacteria at the end of the last episode. He obviously didn’t die, not being human. After some recovery time, he set out to find the Doctor and he did. During this time, the Doctor had been recording propaganda videos supporting the Monks. He had been doing so on a prison boat.

Bill and Nardole went to the boat to try and save them and when they found the Doctor, he appeared to be someone completely different, claiming to be now working with the monks. Bill had a great moment when she became terrified by whom he had become and shot him, triggering a fake regeneration. Fortunately, this was just a test to see if Bill had been brainwashed which she wasn’t. He had been spending months on the boat, hashing out a plan to stop the monks and deprogramming some soldiers.

Now at the end of Episode 6, the Doctor had asked Missy for help with what was to come. She didn’t appear in the last episode but she made an appearance here, although a shorter one than what most would have expected. She recounted her experience with the monks, revealing that she had defeated them before. She didn’t quite make it easy for them even though she had been trying to change her evil ways. She eventually helped them to figure out that Bill was their psychic link and that the statues they’ve placed around the world were transmitters of the fake history. The simplest solution would be for Bill to die, however, that wasn’t going to happen.

The Doctor devised another plan to break into the monk headquarters and replace the monk fake history with the Doctor’s own brainwaves. So Bill, Nardole, the Doctor, and his army set forth for the headquarters which was another pyramid. It was pretty uneventful other than Nardole showing off his nerve pinch. The found a monk connected to their memory machine but when the Doctor tried to hook himself in, he was not powerful enough to fight back against the monk.

Bill and the Doctor had an emotional moment when seeing what had happened to the Doctor, Bill decided to sacrifice herself by hooking herself up to the machine. Her memories started to appear on the screen but it wasn’t working until her memories of her mother began to show up. These memories were so pure that the monks couldn’t fight back.

Afterwards, Bill and the Doctor had another great moment when he explained to her why humans were worth saving. Then he and Missy had another great moment where Missy began to feel remorse for what she had done which the Doctor thought was good.

Overall, this was an excellent episode with a compelling story that should have lasted longer (this should have been the 3 episode arc) but I understand why it didn’t. It was exciting to watch and featured great performances that continued to showcase the chemistry between the main cast. I just wish we could’ve gotten more Missy here.

Score: 9.5/10

If you liked this, please read my other reviews here and don’t forget to follow me on Twitter, follow me on Instagram, and also like me on Facebook.


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