Daleks, Weeping Angels and The Silence
Doctor Who scared the daylights out of me as a kid. I watched Tom Baker in his scarf of many colors trying to defeat the latest evil until I couldn’t stand it, and ran from the living room. Watch those old episodes now and you may think they’re tame, but if you were only seven years old and the Daleks started yelling “Exterminate!” then you’d have nightmares for a month, too. Possibly, those memories would stick with you, and you’d barely be convinced to watch the new series even though you were all grown up. I reluctantly agreed to give them a try, but the second the music started and the swirly-whirly (timey-wimey) vortex appeared I broke into a cold sweat. I was ready for the worst but, no longer being seven, I fell in love with The Doctor and have watched every episode since.
Let’s be clear. This is still one of the scariest series on television. I don’t mean the slash and gore kind of scary that only gives you nightmares for a night or two. I mean the kind of scary that, despite obviously plastic aliens who are nothing more than men in suits, sticks with you for good. The kind that, months later when you’re alone in the house and it’s terribly quiet, makes you get up and turn on a few lights and the TV and maybe even gets you to pick up the phone and call someone. Like your Mom. That is the scary that is Doctor Who and after just one episode of season six, I have a new monster to add to my list of things that keep me up at night and make me sleep with the light on…The Silence.
In nothing more than a few glimpses and one horrible scene in the bathroom where the mouthless face suddenly gets stretchy and has a mouth and blows someone up, these guys have jumped to the top of my list. Originally this spot was held by the Daleks. Although their most intimidating features are a toilet plunger and a skinny whisk, their chorus of “Exterminate!” sends me running every time. The only thing that downgraded their ferocity was their recent change from steampunk metallic creatures of doom to rainbow bright Skittles. I just cannot muster fear over a whisk wielding Skittle. Then the Daleks were completely outdone by The Weeping Angels.
The angels make it nearly impossible for me to pass a cemetery without thinking “Don’t Blink!”. There’s one local cemetery with a traffic light in front of it and if I have to stop I keep looking in my rear view mirror expecting to see that what I thought was mere decoration is, in fact, a Weeping Angel that has snuck into my backseat and is about to end me. It’s only a TV show, sure, but it doesn’t hurt to be cautious, so I’ve found an alternate route around this cemetery and it’s deadly traffic light. Hey, there was a giant, hidden maze full of Weeping Angels in one episode and I do not want to be the one to discover their hidden existence in my little neighborhood. Also, I have never seen a Police Box anywhere in town, so I can’t rely on The Doctor to save me. If you know what’s good for you, then you’ll avoid cemeteries.
Now, the Weeping Angels are passing the torch to The Silence. The man-in-plastic suit rule is in full affect but these guys are scary! After seeing a whole nest of the things, the second you turn away they are forgotten, not gone, just completely forgotten. How many times have you climbed the stairs up from your basement and gotten the heebie jeebies? Or what about walking in from your car late at night and feeling like you’re being watched? Or even tiptoeing around your own house in the wee hours of the morning when the sun isn’t quite up? All those times you’ve felt something was there, it was The Silence. In just one episode they have me looking over my shoulder. I may be past my childhood fears, but these guys are nightmare scary. I can avoid
Skittles Daleks, and Weeping Angels, but there is no defense against The Silence. Leave me a comment on what you think of this latest monster to grace the Doctor Who universe. In the meantime, I’m going to go call my Mom.