A five-thousand year old pyramid pops up overnight, slap bang on the precipice of the world’s three biggest armies. What could possibly go wrong?
Don’t let that mouthful of an episode title put you off. From the very first seconds, it’s clear that Pyramid is something special. The events of Extremis loom large, recounted in a truly unique “previously…” sequence that blurs past and present. But whereas Extremis was Series 10’s answer to Heaven Sent, Pyramid is its answer to The Zygon Invasion/Inversion. Rather apt really, seeing as it’s also co-written by Peter Harness and Steven Moffat.
So, long story short, there’s a pyramid that wasn’t there yesterday and the world is now in panic mode. The Doctor gets called in to help, Bill’s date with Penny goes wrong (again!), and three armies are at loggerheads. Those meddlesome Monks are back, finally ready to take over the Earth. They know every facet of human history and could enslave us in an instant. But first, they need our consent. Say wha-?
It’s true, the Monks’ plan (or, dare we say it, “pyramid scheme”) does sound a bit daft at first. But it’s actually rather twisted, turning the tired old ‘power of love’ trope on its head in a satisfyingly sinister way. We also generally see a lot more of the Monks and what they’re capable of. Let’s just say humanity has every right to be afraid.
Overall, Pyramid is a tense, zippy episode with high stakes and big drama. There are a few plot conveniences and leaps in logic, but it’s easily a highlight in Series 10’s already impressive run. It’s also a more straightforward story than Extremis – but it’s still just as dark, and certainly just as good.
And, perhaps best of all, it sets up The Lie of the Land with a cliffhanger and ‘Next Time’ trailer that will leave you impatiently screaming at your TV for a whole week to come…
- The fictional country, Turmezistan, makes a return from Series 9’s Zygon two-parter.
- The name of a Series 1 episode gets said aloud. And no, it’s not the one that’s already in the title.
- The Doctor is still the President of Earth, a role he previously adopted in Death in Heaven and The Zygon Invasion/The Zygon Inversion. And he’s not the only president to get a mention, either: listen carefully for a subtle quip about Donald Trump.
“THE END OF YOUR LIFE HAS ALREADY BEGUN.”
“IS IT OKAY IF I GET AN UBER?”
“we will take this world. we will rule its people. but only when we are asked.”