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This Might Be The Most Polarizing Episode Of Doctor Who

The 2000s revival of the beloved British sci-fi series "Doctor Who" inspired a whole new generation of Whovians when it first premiered in 2005. The concept is deceptively simple: a Gallifreyan alien known only as the Doctor uses a TARDIS machine, disguised as an old police box, to take companions on journeys across space and time. Every episode is often strikingly different from the last, moving from horror, to space heist, to near fantasy, and the Doctor has now been played by thirteen actors since 1963 because they can regenerate their body — the latest incarnation of the character being played by Jodie Whittaker.

The series has invited backlash, however, especially over some of the stranger storylines, such as the idea in one Season 8 episode that the dead can feel their bodies being cremated (BBC). A Season 2 episode, though, may be the most divisive of the bunch, with some fans in favor of it and some strongly against the weird creature designs and implications of the story.

Love and Monsters has a wild ending that grossed out Reddit fans

In a 2021 Reddit post, u/u/hi_i_am_kai wrote on the r/doctorwho subreddit: "I unapologetically love the much-hated 'Love and Monsters' episode." The Season 2 episode has always been controversial because of how it depicts "fans" coming together to talk about their experiences with the Doctor, but the Reddit user wrote about how they thought the group's bonding was "all very fun, kinda campy, but also rather sweet." For them, "a lot of humour and heart" made up for any other narrative shortcomings with the "Doctor Who" installment.

Other Redditors largely agreed. One commenter summed up the discourse with, "This episode was genuinely excellent up until the final five minutes." "Love and Monsters" has a fairly consistent tone, but the twist ending involving a hideous, people-absorbing alien originally designed by a child in a contest (via YouTube) is pretty gross, and feels out of place with the rest of the script.

The episode also ends on a sex joke that has an "implied sexual relationship between a man and a concrete [slab]", as u/TheHLRViper put it. It's a shame, as some of what "Love and Monsters" says about fandom and the need to socialize is powerful, but the last few minutes left a bitter taste for many fans.