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ShowDoctor Who / Series III / Episode 12
First Broadcast2007/09/08 - 19:30 (Link: ABC Details)
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Next EpisodeThe Sound Of Drums

An absolute cracker of an episode that sees the return of two characters: Captain Jack Harkness and The Master. This is the first part of a trilogy to end Series III and it is brilliant. So much good stuff: why the Doctor never returned for Jack; tie-ins with Torchwood; the end of the Universe; the meaning of the Face of Boe's final words; and the return of the Doctor's nemesis.

We begin with the Doctor recharging the TARDIS in Cardiff. Then we see Jack Harkness emerge from Torchwood and run for the TARDIS. The Doctor, somewhat callously it appears, tries to leave without him. Then the TARDIS gets into trouble and heads for the end of time with Jack clinging to the outside. They arrive. Jack is dead, but re-animates a-la Torchwood. Later, the Doctor explains that he didn't leave Jack behind, he ran away. Rose went too far when she re-animated Jack, she made him immortal, a fixed point in time and space that should never happen. The Doctor could sense this.

Then we meet Professor Yana - an odd name that turns out to be an acronym for "You Are Not Alone" - the Face of Boe's final words. His work on the rocket is, according to the Doctor, a work of genius. He suffers from the sound of drums in his head. He keeps staring at the TARDIS. As the Doctor and Jack discuss Jack's death and so on, words keep reverberating in Yana's head: TARDIS, daleks, Time Lord and so on. Martha discovers he has a fob watch just like the Doctor's in The Family of Blood. In a climactic finish, Yana realises who he is, that his disguise was so perfect, he'd forgotten it was a disguise. He is the Master.

He traps the Doctor and tries to leave. Yana's assistant shoots him, but he regenerates. He leaves the Doctor, Jack and Martha behind at the end of the Universe, with the FutureKind out to get them.

Wow, what an episode. Gripping and with so many good ideas.

As I sensed in Gridlock there is another Time Lord still alive. And the Master was the obvious choice. Will he turn out to be the mysterious Mr. Saxon?

So many other questions to resolve. Why did the Master hide? In fact, how is he even alive.? And how can he regenerate - he's already used at least 12. Did he have his own Chameleon Ark (fob watch) or did he somehow come across the Doctor's? Why did the Doctor apologise to him? How did he come to choose Yana as a name? As usual, time will tell.