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Zygon Appearances Talk

The Zygons were a race of metamorphic humanoids. They originated from the planet Zygor, but often tried to migrate away from it. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers)


Zygons were solidly built humanoids with large, cone-shaped heads. Their heads, arms and torsos were covered in suckers, and they had deeply inset faces. Zygons had maroon blood and spoke in a gurgling whisper. They were stronger than humans (TV: Terror of the Zygons) and longer-lived, with an average lifespan of seven hundred to one thousand years old. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers) They also had an earthy, iron odour and the ability to sting people with venomous barbs on their palms. These stings could stun, maim or kill. They left large welts on the affected area. (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Loch Ness Monster, Sting of the Zygons)

They also had the ability to transform members of other species into Zygons, with the side effect of creating a telepathic link between the new Zygon and the one that induced the change. After she was converted into such a human-Zygon hybrid, (HOMEVID: Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough) Lor Anderson began to emit highly unusual pheromones which allowed Stacey Facade to trace her across London with ease after Lor tried to get away from Stacey. (HOMEVID: Lauren Anderson)

They had venom sacs located in their tongues. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Young Zygons were called hatchlings and were slimy and pale with shorter limbs. Hatchlings were mute, but much faster than adults. (PROSE: Sting of the Zygons)

A Zygon is easily hypnotised. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors)

Zygons had a deeply ingrained fear of fire. (PROSE: Doctor Who and the Loch Ness Monster) They could be easily hypnotised by a clock's swinging pendulum. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors)

Zygons were hermaphrodites. At the start of their lives, they had an almost white colour and were more feminine and graceful, without suckers. They became orange-coloured, were covered in suckers and became more stocky and masculine in appearance after being sterilised. The greatest rank a Zygon could attain was "warrior engineer". To become a warrior engineer, a Zygon must undergo sterilisation, a process which makes them more aggressive and single-minded. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers)

Zygons were able to produce electricity bolts from their hands that could stun humans or other Zygons or disintegrate them into piles of hair and skin. (TV: The Zygon Invasion) It seemed unable to have any effect on Time Lords, however, when used on the Twelfth Doctor, he was slightly phased, but otherwise unharmed. (TV: The Zygon Inversion)


Zygon technology was partly biological, with an organic look. This was exemplified by the Skarasen, a large, cybernetically enhanced creature from their homeworld. Zygons were also known to depend upon the lactic fluid of the Skarasen for their survival. (TV: Terror of the Zygons) Their use of organic ships was well known. (PROSE: Alien Bodies)

One of the most important Zygon achievements was their use of body-prints. Usually, the Zygons would capture a specimen, such as a human, and put them in a special receptacle. A Zygon could then take the form of this specimen, mimicking both voice and appearance. This body-print needed to be renewed every two hours, while the prisoners were kept alive but unconscious. (TV: Terror of the Zygons) However, in some circumstances they were able to adopt the shape of the specimen without keeping them in a receptacle, although they still needed the specimen alive. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) At some point they gained the ability to keep the shape of a deceased specimen, as long as they did not need any more information from them. They also gained the ability to forge a telepathic link with another being and take the form of a someone from their memory. (TV: The Zygon Invasion)

Though they generally took the forms of humanoids, they could also mimic creatures of diverse sizes and shapes, such as dogs, cattle and horses. (PROSE: Sting of the Zygons, TV: The Day of the Doctor) A Zygon who was unable to transform was known as a Zynog. (AUDIO: Death in Blackpool) If a Zygon was killed while disguised, it would remain in that form as a corpse. (HOMEVID: Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough)

To control the Skarasen, the Zygons used Trilanic activators. Zygons frequently used molecular dispersal to get rid of corpses. Their ships tracked the life-signs of the Zygons and would bring the corpse back to the ship if a Zygon was killed. (TV: Terror of the Zygons, PROSE: Sting of the Zygons) They also made use of a type of nerve gas to render humans unconscious. (TV: Terror of the Zygons) Another Zygon discovery was called the "amber sleep", which was a type of suspended animation. (PROSE: Sting of the Zygons)

Zygons used hologram shells to mimic clothes when shapeshifting, but they could not mimic functional objects like inhalers. (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor)


Zygons were divided into clans, each with a different culture. (AUDIO: The Zygon Who Fell to Earth) Zygon warlords fought in elaborate shape-shifting duels using the bodies of other creatures held captive. (COMIC: Rest and Re-Creation) A Zygon High Command organised Operation Double on Earth with the Unified Intelligence Taskforce before being violently overthrown and replaced by a faction of radical Zygons called Truth or Consequences which sought to usurp humanity. (TV: The Zygon Invasion) Zygon Queens ruled over individual planets. (PROSE: Lords and Masters)

Zygons measured distance in remars. (TV: Terror of the Zygons, PROSE: Sting of the Zygons)

Zygons were rather fond of board games and worshipped a deity called Kaatu. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers)

Zygons would sometimes use Hydrorcs as henchmen. (GAME: The Edge of Time)


Early history[[edit]]

The Alliance of Races. (COMIC: Gangland)

The Zygons joined Rassilon in the Alliance of Races against the Hyperions. (COMIC: The Hyperion Empire) After the Hyperions were defeated, the Alliance then went on to purge the universe of other threats to universal harmony, one of those threats being Count D'if of the Cybock Imperium. (COMIC: Gangland)

Loss of Zygor[[edit]]

According to one account, the Zygons were originally at war with the Xaranti. During this war, both the Zygon homeworld, Zygor, and the Xaranti home planets were destroyed. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers) Another account given by the Zygon Broton in the 20th century said his world was destroyed in a "recent catastrophe". (TV: Terror of the Zygons) Another account given by Elizabeth I in 1562 states that their planet burnt in the first days of the Last Great Time War. (TV: The Day of the Doctor) Most accounts indeed agreed the planet was lost to the Time War. (TV: The Day of the Doctor, PROSE: The Day of the Doctor, The Whoniverse)

Refugees created a refugee fleet, and the ship on Earth was contacted. (TV: Terror of the Zygons)

2nd century[[edit]]

In 102, the Zygons were among the races who joined the Pandorica Alliance at Stonehenge. They came to Stonehenge and helped imprison the Eleventh Doctor in the Pandorica to "save" the universe. (TV: The Pandorica Opens)

Before the 12th century[[edit]]

At some point before the 12th century, a Zygon ship was damaged and forced to land on Earth near Devil's Punchbowl in Scotland. They had a Skarasen with them which, though still an infant at that point, provided them with the lactic fluid they needed to survive. Over the next 400 years, people around the area turn up missing. (TV: Terror of the Zygons)

16th century[[edit]]

A rogue Zygon hive of the Under Wave was caught in a time eddy, (PROSE: The Day of the Doctor) and crash landed in 1562. They were investigated by the Tenth Doctor, with one of them impersonating Elizabeth I. After the real Elizabeth killed her impersonator, the Zygons implanted themselves into stasis cubes, planning to wait until Earth was more suitable for conquest. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

19th century[[edit]]

In the late 19th century, a Zygon became a member of a travelling freak show and later impersonated Queen Victoria. (AUDIO: The Barnacled Baby)

A Zygon ship was trapped under where the Savoy Hotel was. During the grand opening in 1890, Zygons replaced half the staff, but the Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond and Rory Williams stopped them. (TV: The Power of Three)

The Eighth Doctor, Sam Jones and George Litefoot encountered a group of Zygons in London in 1894. (PROSE: The Bodysnatchers)

20th century[[edit]]

Another ship from Zygor arrived on Earth in 1909. Though they had brought two Skarasen, their minds were damaged by the solar radiation during the destruction of Zygor. One was killed during repairs. Though the Zygons attempted to conquer Earth anyway, starvation and the Tenth Doctor forced them to abandon their plans. (PROSE: Sting of the Zygons)

In the 20th century, a Zygon spaceship landed in a Brentford quarry. The Zygons of Devil's Punchbowl decided to take over Earth and physically adapt it to an environment more suited to their species. UNIT and the Fourth Doctor stopped them, freeing the Skarasen. (TV: Terror of the Zygons)

In 1981, UNIT had to deal with over a hundred Zygons who survived a previous invasion. (PROSE: The King of Terror)

In 1984, the Eighth Doctor and Lucie Miller encountered a Zygon who was impersonating Lucie's aunt's husband, Trevor. After Patricia died, the Zygon assumed her form in her honour. (AUDIO: The Zygon Who Fell to Earth)

In December 1985, a Zygon landed in Antarctica, near UNIT Arctic base Skywatch-7. Several people stationed there were killed, but the survivors were able to drive the Zygon into the icy water where it perished. (COMIC: Skywatch-7)

Circa 1999, a Zygon invasion of Earth was prevented by UN military advisor Guy Dean. (AUDIO: Homeland)

21st century[[edit]]

The Zygon "Torlakh" in the early-21st century. (HOMEVID: Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough)

In the late-20th and early 21st centuries, the Zygons Torlakh and Kritakh were deployed on Earth, where they took the forms of Bob Calhoun and Michael Kirkwood respectively. They then began to go to nuclear power plants around the world, so that 70 years later the planet would be more suited to Zygons and they could hand the planet over to a Zygon invasion force. The plan backfired when Kritakh began to believe he was Michael Kirkwood, and began to see a psychiatrist about his dreams of being a Zygon. His doctor, Lauren Anderson, was turned into a Zygon by Torlakh, and she went to see him again. However, she decided to help Michael stop Torlakh. They put the real Bob Calhoun and Michael Kirkwood in the hospital, and Torlakh left to continue his life on the run. Lauren, however, also was forced to live on the run, when Torlakh killed many of her co-workers at the hospital. She left, but not until after she killed Torlakh while he was in her form. (HOMEVID: Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough)

In 2008, the Eighth Doctor and Lucie Miller again encountered the Zygon who was impersonating Patricia Ryder. (AUDIO: Death in Blackpool)

In 2013, the Zygons that were frozen in 1562 woke from their stasis cubes and infiltrated UNIT, gaining access to the technology in the Black Archive. To prevent them using the technology, Kate Stewart activated the countdown to a nuclear warhead beneath the Archive. Before the countdown reached zero, the Tenth, Eleventh and War Doctors temporarily erased the memories of the original Kate, Osgood and McGillop, as well as their Zygon impersonators causing them to forget which ones were human and which were Zygon. Both Kates cancelled the detonation, and the humans and Zygons were able to create a peace treaty between them whereupon the Zygons would live in secret on Earth. When no one was looking the Zygon copy of Osgood slipped the original's inhaler back to her. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)

Two years later, a rebel faction of Zygons, led by Bonnie, began to undermine the ceasefire. Bonnie had taken the form of Clara Oswald, and was determined to expose the 20 million Zygons living on Earth and find a land of their own, (TV: The Zygon Invasion) but this threat was defused by a contingency developed by the Twelfth Doctor involving two Osgood Boxes. With Bonnie taking the place of the Osgood who had been killed by Missy, the Zygon-human peace remained stable. (TV: The Zygon Inversion) In 2019, the Box knew there still was a large "shapeshifter community" present on Earth. (PROSE: Out of the Box)

22nd century[[edit]]

150 years after Kritakh and Torlakh were brought to Earth, the Zygon invasion force was still due to arrive on Earth. (HOMEVID: Zygon: When Being You Just Isn't Enough)

28th century[[edit]]

In 2765, Zygons attempted to melt Earth's polar ice caps but were stopped by INITEC's Vigilante laser defence satellites. (PROSE: Original Sin)

36th century[[edit]]

Circa the early 36th century, a group of Zygons on Ganta 4 infiltrated the New Eden colony so that they could use their spaceship to evade Earth security and invade humanity's homeworld. The plan was defeated by colonist Christopher Shaw, and the Zygons were all killed. (AUDIO: Absolution)

Undated events[[edit]]

On Shontaa, the Zygon warlords Anktra and Kestral fought a duel using a variety of host bodies. The Fourth Doctor and Leela ended the duel by freeing the host creatures which the Zygons were mimicking. (COMIC: Rest and Re-Creation)

The Tremas Master, using the power of the planet Siralos, transported some Zygons and other adversaries to the Doctor's TARDIS to stop the Graak from saving the imprisoned seven incarnations of the Doctor. (GAME: Destiny of the Doctors)

The Divine Empress had Zygons under her command. (PROSE: Genocide)

River Song once angered Zygons by greeting them with, "What's up, suckers?" (GAME: The Eternity Clock)

A yellow Zygon was present at Garage 10. (COMIC: The Ministry of Time)

The Ninth Doctor defeated a Zygon who took the form of Rose's grandmother. He then broke it's body-print technology. (PROSE: Little Rose Riding Hood)

Alternate timelines[[edit]]

In an alternate timeline created by the Black Guardian where the First Doctor remained on Gallifrey, and became Lord President, the Zygons were one of many aliens that invaded Earth, and fought over the planet with other races against the Silurians and Sea Devils. This timeline was negated when the Seventh Doctor retrieved the Key to Time. (COMIC: Time & Time Again)

In an alternate dimension in which the Doctor's adventures existed as a fictional TV show called Doctor Who, a fan dressed as a Zygon was present at a Doctor Who convention which the Eleventh Doctor visited with Ally in 2013. (COMIC: The Girl Who Loved Doctor Who)


The Fourth Doctor knew that, if the Zygons managed to acquire a TARDIS Instruction Manual, they would bring forth a great wave of destruction upon the universe. (PROSE: The Pirate Planet)

When reunited with the Fifth Doctor, the Brigadier remembered the Zygons among the adversaries he had fought as head of UNIT. (TV: Mawdryn Undead) While helping Sarah Jane Smith defeat Mrs Wormwood, he once again listed Zygons as an enemy he had fought. (TV: Enemy of the Bane)

The Seventh Doctor used "the Zygon gambit with the Loch Ness Monster" as an example to Ace of the alien invasions that humans had managed to rationalise away or forget. (TV: Remembrance of the Daleks) The incident had also been covered up as an inflatable fake monster, with the organisers of the International Energy Conference claiming protesters had used it to draw attention to the impact North Sea Oil had on nature, specifically to the Loch Ness countryside. (PROSE: The Secret Lives of Monsters)

The Seventh Doctor said that when he felt depressed, he would make clay models of Zygons to cheer himself up. (PROSE: Human Nature)

In the video game Happy Deathday, played by Izzy Sinclair on the Time-Space Visualiser, a pair of Zygons were among a host of "every single enemy" that the Doctor had ever defeated, who were assembled by the Beige Guardian and pitted against the Doctor's first eight incarnations. (COMIC: Happy Deathday)

When the telepathic Emily Fairfax read the mind of the Hypothetical Gentleman, a Zygon was among the images she saw. (COMIC: Hypothetical Gentleman)

Following the 3W Institute Affair, Missy considered a "team up" with the Zygons, among others. (PROSE: The Secret Diary of the Master)

Mayor Me considered her hidden trap street, which had existed in London for at least a century prior to Operation Double, to be a more favourable way of housing aliens on Earth as opposed to the settling of the Zygons amongst humanity. Later, in a desperate gambit to prevent Clara Oswald from sacrificing herself, the Twelfth Doctor threatened Me to relinquish the Quantum Shade on Clara or he would expose her trap street and bring UNIT and the Zygons down on it. (TV: Face the Raven) The protection granted to Zygons on Earth was exploited by other shapeshifters such as Ballon, a Lorr, who posed as a Zygon in order to avoid detection by UNIT only to be captured by the Governors. (TV: The Metaphysical Engine, or What Quill Did)

According to the Thirteenth Doctor, her Granny Five claimed that Granny Two was a secret agent for the Zygons. (TV: It Takes You Away)

By the 67th century, the Zygons were recorded in the vid-briefing series Perils of the Constant Division. (TV: The Tsuranga Conundrum)

Behind the scenes[[edit]]

Doctor Who: Legacy[[edit]]

Zygons are used as both allies and enemies in the Doctor Who: Legacy mobile game. In addition, many enemies are created to be Zygons taking the form of an ally.

In the storyline, numerous Zygons are recruited to serve as reinforcements by time travelling Sontarans to stop the Doctors and their companions from interfering as they wage war throughout history. Fearing their imminent demise, they quickly launched ships with thousands of "brave warriors" directly at Sontar. In the chaos every Zygon warrior died save for five who used their body-print technology to infiltrate the Sontaran High Command and initiate a treaty between the two races, the Sontarans agreeing to shield the Zygons from the changes to time which were ripping the universe while the Zygons help prepare for a "glorious future where the Zygon and Sontaran empires control the universe together". Acting in the interests of survival, the Zygons accept the Eighth Doctor's assessment that they are mercenaries and demonstrate awareness of the fates of forces such as the Cybermen, the Nestene Consciousness and the Slitheen family.

After the Sontarans are overrun by the Saxon Master's Toclafane, the First Doctor reports that the Zygons have fled, vanishing into whatever population centres still existed in the timeline.

External links[[edit]]