Friday, March 3, 2023

Friday Creature Feature - Ood

When you think of Doctor Who aliens and villains, Daleks are likely the first to come to mind. But seeing as I've already written about them and their inaugural appearance, we're going to talk about a different alien.

Who are they?

Less common (and less villainous--sort of) than the Daleks, we have the Ood. In the oversimplified sense, they have the temperment of house-elves with a squid for a face. They live to serve and they love it. Biologically they're kind of programmed to be trusting; natural, un-altered Ood are born with their brains on the outside of their body. And with the help of their telepathic connection, they’re able to transmit thoughts between them and sometimes with other species. However, under certain conditions, like in the case of repressed anger or possession, the Ood can become feral. Their eyes turn red and they start attacking, electrocuting people with their telepathic communication devices. 

The Impossible Planet

The Ood had their debut in the two-part Tenth Doctor story featuring one of the many supposed creatures behind the “myth” of a devil. And the monster the Doctor finds in the “Satan Pit”…. Aptly named. That’s all I’ll say about that. But this demon/monster was able to hijack the telepathic instincts of the Ood, so to speak. Those red-eyed Ood coming after you... yikes.

Planet of the Ood

In another Tenth Doctor story, the Doctor and Donna visit a planet that basically manufactures/breeds Ood for the slave trade. Not exactly the most humane conditions for these creatures born to serve. This time the Ood population went red-eyed and crazy, but not because of any demon. It was because of their own vices. After being abused for so long, it's very understandable to hold some hostile feelings. But because of the Doctor and Donna, the Ood were liberated and able to sing their song... which eventually guided the Tenth Doctor into his regeneration.

Ood Sigma

After “Planet of the Ood”, we’ve only seen sporadic appearances of the Ood. One of the more significant of these appearances involved an Ood designated with the Greek letter Sigma. Ood Sigma was among the Ood that masterminded the liberation of the Ood when the Doctor and Donna visited their planet. When the Ood started having visions of the Master, 100 years after their liberation, Ood Sigma called the Doctor back to warn him. Later, after the Doctor was fatally wounded by radiation poisoning, Ood Sigma and his friends sang the Doctor comfort as he regenerated into the Eleventh Doctor.


Decades before the concept of an Ood was dreamed up, the First Doctor encountered some similar aliens. As I recently watched "The Sensorites" I kept having Ood come to mind while meeting these telepathic aliens. Come to find out, from the Doctor Who wiki, the Ood and the Sensorites come from the same star system. Unlike the Ood, the Sensorites are not inherently benevolent. Most were kind to the Doctor and his friends, but there were a few with a plot to take power.

As I work my way through Classic Who, let me know if there are any creatures or characters you want me to highlight. Next Doctor Who post: Who is Susan Foreman?

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