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WHO Will Play The Master on the Capaldi Doctor Who?

WHO Will Play The Master on the Capaldi Doctor Who?

With speculation for the next season of Doctor Who beginning to gather like a timey-whimey storm, one of the biggest questions we haven’t been asking enough is: will we see the Master again? If Gallifrey is truly set to return due to the actions of the various Doctors in The Day of the Doctor, then it’s possible a new incarnation of the Master survived too. And while any true-Who fan would love to see John Simm return to the role, what if he didn’t?

Here are six dream-recastings of the Master.

6. Mackenzie Crook (Pirates of the Caribbean, The Office )

Most famous in the early 00’s as the super-annoying Gareth in the original version of The Office, Mackenzie Crook has a sort of uneasy, goofy vibe that seems like it would be right at home on Doctor Who. And when he wasn’t terrorizing Martin Freeman in The Office, he also played a bumbling pirate in Pirates of the Caribbean. He’s funny and aggressive, perfect for The Master!

5. Dan Stevens (Downton Abbey)

Known to most as Downton’s resident nice guy and heir-to-everything-even-though-he-doesn’t-want-it, Dan Stevens is a solid and charming actor. I originally even wanted him to play the Doctor last year before Capaldi was announced! Why then would this charming do-gooder make a good choice for the Master? Well, in most ways the Master is the flipped dark side of the Doctor. If someone would make a good Doctor, and has the acting chops, I think traditional “nice guy” might make for an even scarier Master!

4. Simon Pegg (The World’s End, Star Trek, Spaced, Doctor Who)

Sure, sure, nerd-champion and all-around great guy Simon Pegg has ALREADY been on an episode of Doctor Who, but that was way back in 2005 when he played “the Editor.” He’s already been a baddie on Who with an article before his name, so why not give him another go? Plus, there’s been more than enough of a precedent of actors previously being on Doctor Who in small roles, and then being recast in bigger ones. From Martha, to Amy Pond, to the newest Doctor himself, this has all happened before, and it should happen again, with Simon Pegg.

3. Michael Fassbender (X-Men First Class, Prometheus)

Obviously this is a giant outlier here, as Michael Fassbender is probably too famous to consider even a reoccurring role on Doctor Who. But, when you reflect on his turns as both the villainous Magneto and David from Prometheus, the calm, self-justified antagonism of those performances rings super strong. Could the Master be as calmly calculating and at the same time, containing a ton of Fassbender-rage?

2. Judi Dench (Skyfall, Philomena)

Who says the Master has to be another dude? If the Doctor can’t regenerate into a woman just yet, what about the Master? The gravitas someone like Judi Dench could bring to the part would not only be exciting for Who fans but for television in general. Plus, it seems like the intensity of Peter Capaldi might only be rivaled by someone who is perhaps a better actor than he is. Plus, Dench is closer to being a similar age as Capaldi, making their squaring off as Master versus Doctor all the more compelling.

1. Cumberbatch (Sherlock, Star Trek Into Darkness)

Well, we all know who this guy is, so do we need to really enumerate why Cumberbatch would make such a great version of The Master? Think about him saying “I AM KHAN” in Star Trek Into Darkness and you’re basically done. Cumberbatch has shown his ability to play a cruel character (Star Trek) and a crazy character (Sherlock.) In combining the savant like genius with the evil-power hungry thing, The Master could be Cumberbatch’s best role yet.


Who would you love to see in the role of a new version of The Master?

Tags: tv, doctor who, bbc, the master, peter capaldi

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About the Author
Ryan Britt

Ryan Britt is the author of Luke Skywalker Can't Read and Other Geeky Truths, forthcoming from Plume (Penguin) Books on 11.24.15. He's written for The New York Times, Electric Literature, The Awl, VICE Motherboard, Clarkesworld Magazine, and is a consulting editor for Story Magazine. He lives in New York City.

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