The return of The Master has been one of the many recent triumphs of Doctor Who. And with this, the final single DVD release of season three of the show, the three concluding episodes deliver John Simm’s majestic take on one of the Doctor’s deadliest and oldest enemies.
These three episodes also see Torchwood’s Captain Jack Harkness rejoining the Tardis, and along with the Doctor and Martha, there’s a mighty battle to be fought.
It all starts with “Utopia”, one of the very finest episodes of Doctor Who’s third season. This is a clever, slow-burning tale, with Derek Jacobi guest-starring, and it features a final ten minutes so good it’s enough to make Who fans weep. Things continue with some style in “The Sound Of Drums”, where The Master really comes into his own, replete with a devastating cliffhanger to set up the season finale. And ironically, it’s that finale, “The Last Of The Time Lords”, that’s the weakest of the three here, a slightly muddled–but still very enjoyable–wrapping up of a very strong series.
The skill of these three episodes is how cleanly they interweave with the subtle building blocks that have been put in place for them over the duration of Doctor Who’s run. And with an ending the bodes well for the 2007 Christmas special too, this DVD is further proof of just what strong shape Doctor Who is in. Cracking stuff. —Jon Foster