Top 5 Things The Master Might Have Done After The End of Time

The dust may have settled on Series 8 but there’s no shortage of pressing issues to discuss. Is the new Doctor a good man? Is Danny really gone for good? How come we didn’t know before that there was a chicken inside the moon? (Okay, okay, I should just leave it, I know…) But surely one of the most fun things to speculate on is what happened to the Master between the conclusion of The End of Time and his reappearance with a (dramatically) changed appearance as Missy, serving tea to dead folk? Join us as we explore just what he/she was up to in the intervening years!

1. Went Back Into Hell

Anthony Ainley as the Master in Destiny of the DoctorsThe last we saw of the Master in The End of Time was him sacrificing himself to foil Rassilon’s plan to escape the time lock and restore Gallifrey. Presumably he ended up back on his home world, at that moment being ravaged by the Time War. It’s fair to say that big chief Rassilon and the other top Time Lords wouldn’t have been best pleased, but in the midst of all that chaos would there have been an opportunity to escape? The Master had certainly got out of some pretty tight spots before – maybe he quickly donned a rubber mask and slipped away, cackling as he did so? Or perhaps he came out the winner of his struggle with Rassilon, killing the old boy and going on to assume the presidency?

2. Cooked Up Dastardly Plans

Perhaps the Master didn’t stick around when he got back to Gallifrey. Recognising he most definitely was not among friends there, maybe he stole a TARDIS and made a swift exit. Hell, there’s a whole universe out there to explore – no need to stick around in one place. Gallifrey was, of course, time locked and inaccessible (a bit like Scunthorpe) until the Doctors came together to restore it in The Day of the Doctor but, being an ingenious sort, could the Master have found a means to get away, thus freeing himself to get up to all kinds of mischief on other worlds? And the Doctor wouldn’t have been there to stop him!


3. Had The Drums Removed

Okay, that sounds flippant but there’s a serious point here. The John Simm version of the Master was plagued by the drumming in his head, and in The End of Time this is revealed to have been planted there by Rassilon as a signal to ultimately enable Gallifrey to escape the Time War (do keep up). This cast the character in a rather more sympathetic light than before, as a desperate man driven to do terrible things because of the Time Lords’ malign influence – mad rather than bad. By the time we meet Missy this doesn’t seem to be a problem any more, though she could hardly be described as well-balanced. Perhaps the Master had some kind of treatment to get rid of the noise that plagued him? Do they have counselling on Gallifrey?

4. Lived The Quiet Life


You know what, maybe the Master decided to take things easy after the events of The End of Time. He couldn’t be blamed if he did – things most certainly had not gone well for him and to cap it all he discovered he’d basically been used as a means for Rassilon to get what he wanted. The Master has form when it comes to disappearing for extended periods and in Utopia we see him living a very different sort of life as a kindly old professor at the edge of the universe. Maybe he just laid low for a while, content to wait for his opportunity and recharge his batteries? No, I can’t see it either…

5. Became A Monk

The Master posed as Reverend Magister in The DaemonsSick of the drumming, shouting, disguises and failed attempts at universal domination, the Master opted for a quiet life, joining a monastery for contemplation and reflection upon the dastardly deeds of his previous lives. There’s no way our other favourite Time Lord can be all bad, not with all of those times he and the Doctor have found themselves teaming up. Of course, had he spent time in a monastery, there is no doubt that the Master would only have got bored eventually, unseating the abbot and taking over…

And the One Thing S/He Actually Did…


In the midst of all this speculation the one thing we most definitely can say is that at some point the Master changed gender (and then thought it might be nice to celebrate the Doctor’s birthday by giving him an army of Cybermen. As you do). The series had established in recent years that Time Lords can change sex when they regenerate, but is this what happened? Did the Master become Missy not by regeneration but another heinous act of body theft, a la Tremas and Eric Roberts? There’s surely a great bit of fan-fiction to be written to fill in this gap, which sees the Master using his considerable charm and dancing skills to woo a good-hearted Scottish lady who is so delighted to have finally met the right one. Only it all ends horribly, in a dreadful moment of realisation that this is a man really only interested in one thing…

But enough of what we think! You’ve read our (not entirely serious) theories but what do you reckon the Master was up to before he was Missy? Let us know!

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  1. lozpot says:

    Maybe he visited the Sisterhood of Karn and got that same option Doctor 8 got… I might not be as negative towards Missy if that was the case.

    • Semi-Evil Semi-Genius says:

      Why would that change your opinion?

      • lozpot says:

        I’m not going into sex changing regenerations, I’ve said enough, as has everyone else for the time being. But, needless to say I don’t agree with it. If it was a regeneration that was altered (Sisterhoood Of Karn) I can go along with that – but I still see no reason why the Master was changed into a she and doesn’t even go by his old name any more – just make a new character instead. But hey that’s me, after watching the show from 1974 you tend to get stuck in your ways.

  2. krumstets says:

    He realised the drumming was part of his gender dissonance and deep love for the Doctor .
    Knowing the Doctor wasn’t really into guys he found a way of regenerating again and this time chose to be a woman to increase his / her chances of getting off with the the old rogue ..
    Of course the gift of an army of Cybermen in an attempt to impress him failed and has now made Missy even angrier and more deranged than ever…..

  3. Dr Moo says:

    Let’s consider what we know about the Master at that point.
    1-Resurrected in the Time War with a new set of regenerations. Fled to the future. (Utopia)
    2-Regenerated deliberately into a younger form. (Utopia)
    3-Was shot down but refused to regenerate and he died. (The Sound Of Drums / Last Of The Timelords)
    4-Resurrected again, but not properly, which gave him a huge excess of energy. Used the energy to attack the Timelord High Council. Got dragged with them into the Time War. (The End Of Time)
    6-Reappeared as Missy. (Dark Water / Death In Heaven)

    My theory: When he got dragged back into the Time War he’d have regenerated there and then along with all the others he was with at that moment. Did any one of them have even a slightest bit of control over their regeneration? No, and I believe that it would have been extremely explosive for them all if we consider the scenario they were going into and it would have been all mixed up for everyone involved. In the resultant confusion he got given a female body. Therefore the female form he/she ended up with was a ‘mistake’ (for want of a better word) but due to his/her history of running out of regenerations he/she decided to stick with it. (Pronouns get confusing for that bit.)
    That’s what I think anyway. It makes sense, even if I do say so myself, and until the Moff decides to enlighten us further this is explanation that I shall be going with. Maybe more information will be granted unto us in series nine, I understand that Missy will be back for it.

    • Semi-Evil Semi-Genius says:

      I believe the Master didn’t care if he regenerated into a man/woman. The Master cares about survival and domination, no matter the form. And it may have been a subconscious will to change since we learned that the Master’s infatuation with the Doctor runs a bit deeper.
      Also, I don’t see why any of the Time Lords from the End of Time would regenerate at the end of that story. It merely seemed that their portal closed, and they would be trapped on Gallifrey with everyone else. I imagine the Master would’ve been put down by Rassilon and the rest, and have regenerated after.

      • Dr Moo says:

        I agree with you the the Master didn’t care but I don’t see him/her having any control or it would have happened before.
        No, they wouldn’t have needed to regenerate. It’s not like they were all being blasted with energy that would instantly kill them. It’s not like the Master was using up all he had left of it so that he’d have had to regenerate too. No, it’s not at all like that! 🙂

  4. I like to think he had his memory erased and was sent back in time by the Time Lords to become a police officer in 1973, but what do I know?

  5. Pantz says:

    In The End of Time, wasn’t the Master’s body dying making him unable to regenerate? I would say he went to Karn and drank from a regenerative chalice. Why the female one? I dunno….maybe to mess with the Doctor’s head? It seems to me that this is the method for Time Lords who want to change genders too. Doesn’t seem to be a naturally occurring process.

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