Spoiler Alert: “Dark Water” opened up a flood of thoughts on this series of Doctor Who, including a major revelation about Missy.
So, how about that latest episode of Doctor Who? After the disappointment of last week’s episode, this one kicked it into high gear as we start the finale. Before we get too deep into unpacking everything that happened, allow me to take some space to say some mostly spoiler-y things in all caps.
HOW DID I SERIOUSLY NOT PUT TWO AND TWO TOGETHER AND REALIZE THAT MISSY = MISTRESS = THE MASTER? I MEAN REALLY. IT’S BEEN STARING US IN THE FACE LITERALLY ALL SEASON AND I DIDN’T FIGURE IT OUT UNTIL THE FINAL MINUTES OF THIS EPISODE. SERIOUSLY WELL DONE, STEPHEN MOFFAT.
Okay, now that I think I have all the yelling out of my system, OMG OMG OMG I am ridiculously excited to have the Master back. This season has had some intricate plotting as we’ve warmed up to Capaldi’s Doctor, and I dare say there’s been some even more intricate plotting the past few seasons. One thing that seems to come up every time there’s a search for a new Doctor is “Why can’t the Doctor be a woman/person of color/non-human/magic hatstand”, which is all well and good, but there’s been something that’s held me back from agreeing with it. Even though the world’s changed in 50 years, there’s something about the character of the Doctor that feels like he needs to be a he, for whatever reason. “The Doctor’s Wife” opened up the idea that Timelords can change more than their faces during the regeneration process, but there still didn’t seem to be a precedent for why the Doctor, the main character of this show, should be one to change. And now, with the revelation that the Master’s done it, I wouldn’t be surprised if we have a Female Doctor soon. By doing this with the Doctor’s largest enemy, the door finally feels ready to open.
Besides that whole deal, let’s talk about how awesome this version of The
Master Mistress is. She and the Doctor seem to fit together so well (and that’s not just because of that great introduction they had, which in light of the revelation at the end of the episode takes on a whole different meaning. Her whole demented Mary Poppins thing is a fantastic turn for the character, and I really hope they give Michelle Gomez a chance to recur in this role and don’t just send her away at the end of next week’s series finale. I’ve been trying to figure out who Missy is all season and what’s going on, and now that it’s revealed itself I’m really impressed with the work Stephen Moffat has done all season.