‘There’s something wrong with the spider eco-system in South Yorkshire,’ says the Doctor. Surely, an immortal line. But she’s right. There’s something very wrong. Very wrong indeed. Damn big ass spiders, that’s what! (I hate spiders.) And they’re over-running Sheffield. Wrapping people in webs to be eaten later. (This’ll scare adults and kids alike, trust me.)
And that’s not the worst of it. The spiders have been created by illegal toxic-waste dumping under the latest Trump hotel. Okay, it’s not Trump himself, but someone who is entirely in his mould. And he’s the monster that created them. In fact, he’s more of a monster than the spiders are.
It’s not the subtlest political satire. But it works all the same. This episode, ‘Arachnids in the UK’ (a pun on the Sex Pistols’ Anarchy in the UK album title), is very much a standalone episode, but that doesn’t mean it’s a lesser episode. There is a lot that is very touching in this episode: about what enobles us as humans, about what we have in common, about what things transcend race, and about what lives beyond each of us as individuals. When the different sub-plots are considered in relationship to each other… maybe the satire and poignancy are entirely subtle after all. Maybe this is actually a wonderful episode. I would certainly recommend it. Give it a chance and let it mulch… like the toxic waste under Trump’s latest project. I score it 8.5 out of 10.