Saturday, 1 November 2014

An Old Foe Returns in a New Form

Tonight saw the amazing return of iconic Doctor Who villain, and my personal all-time favourite, The Master.  However, a lot of people found this reappearance surprising, and in some cases disturbing, as he is now a she.

It would appear that during The Masters last regeneration he transformed into a woman, now calling herself The Mistress, or Missy for short.  Played by the brilliant Michelle Gomez, Missy has been making appearances during the series since Peter Capaldi’s first episode ‘Deep Breath’.  Many quick minded fans, myself included, put together the connection from her name and went into the episode hoping eagerly for the reveal we were given.

The series has toyed with the idea that Galliferyans (remember guys, Time Lord/Lady is a title not the name of the race) can also change gender when they regenerate, even stating very clearly in the 2011 episode ‘The Doctors Wife’ that it is a possibility.  This episode, however, makes the first time in the series that we have actually seen it in the flesh.

There were many reactions to the reveal on the internet, particularly Twitter, some very pleased with the revelation, some a little less so.

A huge range of reactions from the fans.  I even chuckled a little at the Brian Blessed one.

For all those people who are complaining that The Master is now a woman and are quitting the series.  Good.  The rest of us don’t want you.  If a character that belongs to a species that changes their bodies when they’re dying becoming female disturbs you then there’s something wrong with you.  One value this show fosters is that no matter what species people are, what their outward appearance is they're still people with decent personalities and people you can care about, a message that we should all adopt in the real world.  What if it was a black Master, or Asian?  Would that be terrible then too?  What happens eventually when the Doctor changes gender?

One of the best moments of the show in years.
Oh, we all know that that day is coming.  Fans have been clamouring for it for a long time now.  And that’s probably what this is about.  Yes, it’s some brilliant storytelling and one of the best things they’ve done to the character in decades, but it’s very clearly a test run to see how people react.  A female Doctor is coming one day, though hopefully not for a while because Capaldi is brilliant.

At the end of the day who cares if the Master is a man or a woman?  As long as she’s good in the role, and so far she’s been absolutely brilliant and I want loads more of her, it shouldn’t matter at all.



  1. Saw this on GallifreyBase:

    "Being male and being female is more than just having lady bits or men bits. If I got kidnapped and drugged and my body changed form into a woman's body I think I would still consider myself a man despite what my body looked like." - Galahad, Gallifrey Base Forum

    ...brilliant explanation of what trans is from someone who isn't. Totally made my day.

  2. That's a good reaction to it yeah. The Masters outward appearance might have changed and she is going to have slightly different personality traits bit its still the same character that we all know and love.

  3. I'm hoping we see more of Michelle Gomez as The Mistress (have to use the new name) after the next episode. She's been fantastic so far, and I'd love to see her up against The Doctor next season.

    I think this will finally open up the possibility of there being a female Doctor as well.

    And Brian Blessed as The Rani. I'd watch that in a second.

  4. I hope that we get leads more of her in the finale, plus her being used again in the future. I would hate to see her used like John Simms, used for two stories then gone. The Master/The Mistress is one of the best Doctor Who villains ever and we need more of her.