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The ‘Doctor Who’ First Look At John Simm’s The Master Features A Throwback To The Classic Series

Following the premiere episode of Doctor Who‘s 10th season, the BBC decided to unload a few Easter eggs on the audience. Chief among these was a short teaser for the second episode, “Smile,” in which humanity’s languages have apparently evolved into a robotic form of emoji-speak. Yet the real treat for longtime Doctor Who fans came in the form of another short teaser for the entire season, as it featured a brief first look at the return of John Simm’s villainous The Master.

Aside from confirming the actor’s return, the BBC hasn’t said much about what Simm will be doing, or where he’ll be doing it. However, seeing as how Doctor Who showrunner Steven Moffat revealed Simm would be appearing alongside Michelle Gomez’s Missy — a female regeneration of his character — it’s a good bet the pair will partner up against Peter Capaldi’s 12th Doctor in the episode “Extremis.” And judging by the fleeting glimpse the new teaser offered of The Master, it appears the character’s classic look from the original Doctor Who series is in vogue again…

No, not the evil Time Lord’s horribly burned visage from the 1976 four-episode arc “The Deadly Assassin,” which squared off with Tom Baker’s fan-favorite Fourth Doctor. The new look for Simm’s baddie shares more in common with Roger Delgado, whose goatee-faced look figured prominently from 1971 to 1973 during John Pertwee’s time as the Third Doctor during the early ’70s…


When Simm first appeared as The Master in 2007’s three-part conclusion to the third season, his regeneration abandoned the similar look sported by Derek Jacobi’s brief turn for a slick, clean-shaven face. (He was, after all, posing as a human politician.) Three years later, however, the faintest hint of a goatee reappeared on the character’s face for parts one and two of “The End of Time,” in which the improperly resurrected Master dueled one last time with David Tennant’s hugely popular 10th Doctor.

It’s a small touch, and the teaser’s brief glance only offers a few seconds’ worth of Simm’s fuller goatee before everything fades to black. Yet it’s nice to know that classic Doctor Who fans Capaldi and Moffat have found another way to honor their favorite parts of the original series. That, and tease viewers once again about the current Doctor’s forthcoming exit…

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