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New season of Doctor Who starts Sept. 19

Whovian Sunday BBC America has released the following statement regarding the upcoming ninth season of Doctor Who:

"Having the time of their lives, the Doctor and Clara embark on reckless adventures in all of space and time in the new season of BBC AMERICA’s Doctor Who starting Saturday, September 19, 9:00pm ET. The hit time travel series returns with a two-parter, The Magician’s Apprentice and The Witch’s Familiar, written by lead writer and showrunner Steven Moffat and directed by Hettie Macdonald (director of award-winning Doctor Who episode Blink with Carey Mulligan). In Peter Capaldi’s second season at the helm of the TARDIS, the series sees the Doctor and Clara Oswald (Jenna Coleman) going on a journey that takes them to deadly alien planets, creepy underwater bases, Viking villages, a global Zygon uprising, and through hidden alien dens, to the very end of time itself. Meeting monsters old and new, the Doctor will come face to face with Missy (Michelle Gomez), a city of Daleks, deadly mercenaries called the Mire, terrifying ghosts and more. Previously announced and taking up a guest role in the new season will be Maisie Williams, having already achieved global success for her role as Arya Stark in Game of Thrones. Michelle Gomez (Missy) returns to plague the Doctor and Clara in the season opener, and UNIT are back with Jemma Redgrave (Kate Stewart) and Ingrid Oliver (Osgood) returning following their popular entrance last season. Also confirmed as guest cast in the new season are Reece Shearsmith, Rebecca Front, Rufus Hound, Paul Kaye, Elaine Tan, Neet Mohan, Bethany Black, Paul Courtenay Hyu, Joivan Wade and Sophie Stone. The new season has been written by lead writer Steven Moffat, Toby Whithouse, Jamie Mathieson, Peter Harness, Mark Gatiss, and new writers to Doctor Who – Sarah Dollard and Catherine Tregenna; directed by Hettie Macdonald, Daniel O’Hara, Ed Bazalgette, Daniel Nettheim, Justin Molotnikov, Rachel Talalay; and produced by Tracie Simpson, Derek Ritchie, Nikki Wilson and Peter Bennett. Doctor Who is a BBC Cymru Wales production for BBC One, co-produced with BBC AMERICA."

Judging by the this description, it would appear that the Zygons are on their way to becoming the new Daleks. Of course the Daleks will make an appearance too. And the Master, now Missy, will return. And the Mire?

The Zygons first debuted in the episode Teror of the Zygons, which aired during the Tom Baker era. I always thought these shape-changing aliens had potential, and it was nice to see them return nearly half a century later in Time of the Doctor. But will the show wring every conceivable scenario out of them like it has with the Doctor's other enemies?

As for the Daleks, I guess it just wouldn't be Doctor Who without them. But how far can they go with them? They nearly destroyed the Doctor's homeworld, have at times been rendered sympathetic and are pretty much played out. It's like the wooden cyberman that appeared in Day of the Doctor; these are signs that the show may need to take a break from the Daleks while other ideas are developed.

The Master's gender switch always puzzled me. Why not just bring back the Rani, who was essentially a female version of the Master and a great enemy for the Doctor?

The Mire sound vaguely interesting. New villains like the Weeping Angels and the Silence have fared well on the program.

Further details can be found at BBC America's online press room.

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