Last of the Timelords
30 June 2007
John Simm (The Master), John Barrowman (Captain Jack Harkness), Reggie Yates (Leo Jones) , Alexandra Moen (Lucy Saxon) [2-3], Elize du Toit (Sinister Woman) , Nichola McAuliffe (Vivien Rook) , Nicholas Gecks (Albert Drumfries) , Colin Stinton (President Arthur Winters) , Olivia Hill (BBC Newsreader) , Daniel Ming (Chinese Newsreader) , Lachele Carl (US Newsreader) , Sharon Osbourne (Herself) , McFly (themselves) , Ann Widdecombe (Herself) , Tom Ellis (Thomas Milligan) , Ellie Haddington (Professor Docherty) , Tom Golding (Lad) , Natasha Alexander (Woman) , Zoe Thorne, Gerard Logan, Johnnie Lyne-Pirkis (Toclafane voices) [2-3]
|Written by||Russell T. Davies|
|Directed by||Colin Teague|
|Produced by||Julie Garner and Phil Colinson|
A year after the appearance of the Toclafane, the human population is on the verge of extinction. Having escaped from the Valiant, Martha Jones has traveled the Earth, staying out of The Master’s detection through use of the TARDIS key acting as a perception filter and contacting groups of humans to find a special gun created by Torchwood and UNIT that can defeat The Master. She is led by Thomas Milligan, a former doctor, to Professor Docherty, and together the three are able to electrocute and capture a Toclafane.
They learn the Toclafane are humans from the far future, having become insane and cannibalising themselves after discovering nothing at The Sound Of Drums/Last of the Timelords.
The Master created a Paradox Machine with The Doctor’s TARDIS to bring the Toclafane back in time and avoid a temporal paradox. Martha and Thomas leave to find the last component of the gun, after which Docherty provides The Master with Martha’s location, desperate for any information on her own son.
- Utopia, The Sound of Drums and Last of the Time Lords have a combined running time of 2 hours 21 minutes. This makes it not only the longest continuous story of the revived series, but the longest since the Sixth Doctor’s The Trial of a Time Lord. It beats The End of Time by just six minutes (and this is only because Last of the Time Lords is 51 minutes long, six minutes longer than a standard episode).
- Additionally, if you include the full string of seven connected episodes (which begins with Captain Jack Harkness and End of Days, leads directly into Utopia, The Sound of Drums, and Last of the Time Lords, then finishes with Time Crash and Voyage of the Damned) the full running time comes to 5 hours 18 minutes, stopping just 37 minutes shy of The Trial of a Time Lord. If you consider Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang as a direct follow-up to Last of the Time Lords as well, the total rises to 6 hours 6 minutes, which would be the longest continuous story by merely 11 minutes.
- This is the only finale in the revived series that features a Doctor Rose Tyler has seen, but not Rose herself. (The Parting of the Ways, Doomsday, Journey’s End, The End of Time)
- The Master seems to be a Scissor Sisters fan. He’s singing along to “I Can’t Decide” from their Ta-Dah album on the flight deck of the Valiant. This segment is absent from the iTunes version of the episode (likely for music licensing reasons). The episode is also cut between the opening credits and the “One year later” subtitle on the iTunes version, for unknown reasons.
- The sound of The Master’s laugh can be heard while a finger with a red painted finger nail picks up the Master’s ring. The character who picked up the ring is seen in The End of Time.
- Since the programme’s revival, this is the only series finale so far not to feature the Daleks (discounting the 2009 Specials). By the same token, every finale up to this point since the series’ revival has involved either Daleks or the Master, but never both. Even the series 6 finale featured a cameo appearance from a Dalek. (The Wedding Of River Song). This was true until the series 7 finale (The Name of the Doctor) which didn’t have Daleks or The Master but had another classic series villain The Great Intelligence.
- The Doctor trying to redeem The Master and the funeral pyre at the end could be a reference to Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi. Additionally, The Master’s ring getting picked up by a laughing, unseen figure is reminiscent of the end of the film Flash Gordon.
- The Doctor states a desire to meet Agatha Christie, foreshadowing The Unicorn and the Wasp in which he follows through with this wish, with Donna Noble.The title Last of the Time Lords had previously been reported as a working title for one of the (ultimately aborted) big-screen adaptations of the series planned between 1989 and 2005; a poster showing the title Doctor Who: Last of the Time Lords even appeared in some film trade publications.
- Lucy, who was very loving towards her husband in The Sound of Drums, in this episode appeared to be very afraid of him, and she even had marks around her eye. According to the commentary this is because The Master’s power went to his head and he started to physically abuse her. Hence one of the reasons she joined in saying The Doctor’s name, and shot The Master after he was defeated.
- The iTunes version of this episode is 45 minutes long, same as a regular episode is, while the episode on DVD and the original broadcasting on BBC is 51 minutes and contains extra scenes.
- This was the final episode to give screen credit to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation for its help in co-funding the series; the CBC would continue its involvement in Series 4, but would not be credited on screen.
- The Toclafane’s origin is similar to that of the Somnus Foundation in Singularity. Singularity also featured technology that focused the collective psychic energy of humanity, like the satellites in this story.
- The episode features the surprise revelation that Jack was once known as the Face of Boe, suggesting that the character encountered in The End of the World, New Earth and Gridlock is in fact a future version of Jack Harkness. Writer Russell T Davies reportedly tried to backpedal from this in the DVD commentary, leading to speculation as to whether this is actually the case. However multiple interviews on DVD and in other media by producer Julie Gardner and actors David Tennant and John Barrowman have all indicated without ambiguity that Jack is destined to become the Face of Boe. According to Gardner during a panel presentation at the 2008 San Diego Comic Con, Barrowman wasn’t aware of the revelation until fairly late in production.
- at the scene where Jack reveals he was called the Face of Boe, several people can be seen in the background taking pictures at the location of the Torchwood lift.
- As with the last episodes of the previous two series, there is no “NEXT TIME” trailer at the end of the episode, merely a message that “Doctor Who will return in Voyage of the Damned”.