Everyone knows the Daleks and the Cybermen, but Doctor Who has encountered some exceptionally bizarre aliens over the last 50 years that you may not be so familiar with. Here are 10 of the strangest.
10. The Ogri (The Stones of Blood, 4th Doctor)
If you thought the Weeping Angels were the first Doctor Who monsters to be made from stone, think again. These silicon-based life forms from Tau Ceti may look like harmless rocks, but they'll suck your blood dry if you give them half a chance. And you'll have to give them half a chance, because chasing people isn't really their strong suit.
9. Bok (The Daemons, 3rd Doctor)
If you thought the Ogri were the first Doctor Who monsters to be made from stone, well you'd still be wrong. Bok, an evil church gargoyle that stuck its tongue out at its victims as it killed them, got there first. Quick! Five rounds rapid!
8. The Ergon (Arc of Infinity, 5th Doctor)
You’re an exiled Time Lord trapped in an anti-matter universe and you need a henchman to perform some delicate tasks in our universe before you can return. So what kind of creature do you assign to undertake this mission? A giant chicken, you say? Yeah, don’t worry, I'm sure it will blend right in. See also: the Krafaysis, a race of invisible carnivorous turkeys.
7. Frobisher (Various adventures, 6th Doctor)
Frobisher was a shape-shifting Whifferdill who travelled with the Doctor disguised as a talking penguin. Although Frobisher has only appeared in the Doctor's comic book spin-off adventures, now that technology has finally caught up with the writers' imaginations, surely it's only a matter of time before we see him on television. Please?
6. Morbius (The Brain of Morbius, 4th Doctor)
An evil renegade Time Lord who only survived summary execution by sticking his brain in a goldfish bowl and attaching it to a hodgepodge of mutilated alien body parts. The end result would have turned Frankenstein’s Monster's stomach.
5. The Abzorbaloff (Love & Monsters, 10th Doctor)
Designed by a Blue Peter competition winner and vividly brought to life by the comedian Peter Kay, the Abzorbaloff consumed its victims into its body fat until they literally ended up talking out of their murderer's backside. The runner up in the Blue Peter competition was a monster made out of footballs, but this was deemed to be too weird, even for Doctor Who.
4. The Nucleus of the Swarm (The Invisible Enemy, 4th Doctor)
When the Doctor cloned and shrank himself so he could enter his own body and confront a deadly alien virus lodged in his head, the last thing he expected to find squatting in the centre of his brain was a giant prawn. Although to be fair to the writers, I don't think they saw that coming either.
3. Alpha Centauri (The Curse of Peladon/The Monster of Peladon, 3rd Doctor)
Wikipedia describes Alpha Centauri as “a hermaphroditic hexapod… It is tall, green, has one large blue eye, six arms and a high-pitched voice, wears a long yellow cape and walks with a nervous gait.” What Wikipedia doesn't tell you is that Alpha Centauri looks like a courgette wrapped in a shower curtain. See also: Erato, the Vervoids and the Ogron Eater for more monstrous ‘amusing vegetable’ fun. Or is it just me?
2. The Midnight Entity (Midnight, 10th Doctor)
A monster so bizarre it doesn't even have a name. This non-corporeal blighter liked to mess with people's heads, preferring to use paranoia as its weapon of choice instead of ray guns and explosives. Impossible to see, difficult to fight, and unavailable to buy as an action figure.
1. Kandyman (The Happiness Patrol, 7th Doctor)
Kandyman was a psychotic killer robot that turned its victims into confectionery. And if that were not disturbing enough, the mechanical, sweet-toothed Sweeney Todd was the spitting-double of liquorice mascot Bertie Bassett. Honest!
Neil Perryman is the author of Adventures with the Wife in Space: Living with Doctor Who (Faber & Faber), which tells the true story of what happens when a man persuades his long-suffering wife to watch every single episode of Doctor Who with him.