In the Doctor Who episode "School Reunion", the Doctor explains what the Krillitanes are:

They're a composite race. Just like your culture is a mixture of traditions from all sorts of countries, people you've invaded or have been invaded by. You've got bits of Viking, bits of France, bits of whatever. The Krillitanes are the same. An amalgam of the races they've conquered. But they take physical aspects as well. They cherry pick the best bits from the people they destroy. That's why I didn't recognise them. The last time I saw Krillitanes, they looked just like us except they had really long necks.

(For reference, at this point, this Krillitanes are rather large and bat-like.)

I'm somewhat confused by the last line. As far as I can tell, the Krillitanes have not taken over humans in any substantial quantities (besides eating a few) - and those deaths appear to have happened after the Krillitanes arrived in their bat-like form.

Why did the Krillitanes look like humans? Does the Doctor just mean that they looked like humans relative to their current form, or is he saying that the looked almost exactly like humans?

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    We see plenty of species in Doctor Who that look practically humanoid, but are not human. The Time Lords, for example... Why could they not have taken over some of them? Commented Dec 6, 2015 at 22:42
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    The last time the Doctor saw them could be well in the future of this particular episode, after they'd had a chance to consume many humans and assimilate their features.
    – FreeMan
    Commented Dec 14, 2015 at 21:20

1 Answer 1


Extracting the exact meaning of The Doctor's statement is left to the viewer; we never get to see any near-human Krillitanes in context.

As to how they attained a human form in the first place: the human form is common throughout time and space, and predates and postdates humanity by billions of years. Throughout the runs of Doctor Who we have seen many species played by actors without any particularly alien makeup, who have no other particular connection to humanity. Presumably, enough of the Krillitane conquests were in this category to cause them to take on a similar appearance.

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