John Simms as the Master in his return in The Sound of Drums and Last of the Time Lords.

The Master is a recurring character in the science fiction television series Doctor Who and its associated spin-off works. He is a renegade alien Time Lord and the archenemy of the title character the Doctor.

The Master has been played by multiple actors since the character's introduction in 1971. Within the show, this is varyingly explained as the Master taking possession of other characters' bodies, or as a consequence of regeneration, a biological attribute allowing Time Lords to survive fatal injuries.

The role was originated by Roger Delgado. Delgado portrayed the Master from 1971 until his death in 1973 and from 1976 until the show's cancellation in 1989, the Master was portrayed by a succession of actors: Peter Pratt, Geoffrey Beevers and Anthony Ainley. Gordon Tipple and Eric Roberts then took on the role for the 1996 Doctor Who TV movie. Since the show's revival in 2005, the Master has been portrayed by Derek Jacobi, John Simm and Michelle Gomez.

The Master has also been just as common an enemy of The Surgeon as Meglos


Over the years, The Master's appearance has changed greatly:As an eight-year-old boy, the Master had dark hair and bright blue eyes.

Thirteenth incarnation


Roger Delgado as the Master (The Sea Devils, 1972)

The Master's thirteenth incarnation resembled a mature, elegant man, with a swarthy complexion, brown eyes, and mild streaks of grey in his hair. He had a goatee beard, which also had white skunk stripe.

He generally wore a black Cardin-Nehru jacket, with dark trousers, black leather boots and gloves, and a white cuff-linked shirt. On occasion, he would wear a suit, with either an orange, a grey or a blue tie.

While imprisoned on Fortress Island, the Master wore a black cape over a white turtle-neck jumper, with black trousers. He wore a naval officer's uniform while secretly infiltrating HMS Seaspite as a prisoner. During his return and subsequent escape from Fortress Island, he changed back into his black Nehru jacket and trousers.

Degenerated body


Peter Pratt as the Master (left) and Geoffrey Beevers (right) as the Master. (The Deadly Assassin, 1976 and The Keeper of Traken, 1981 respectively)

In The Deadly Asssasin and The Keeper of Traken, the Master having used up all his regenerations appeared as a hideous skeletal monster, he used a black cloak to hide his disfigurement until he could find a new body in Tremas.

"Tremas" incarnation


Anthony Ainley as The Master (The Five Doctors, 1983)

After the Master used the power of the Source to steal Tremas's body, the Trakenite's body was also rejuvenated, with his grey hair becoming a dark brown, and his white bushy beard turning into a black goatee beard.

After the Master stole his body, Tremas's robes inexplicably changed into a black velveteen high collared tunic with puffed sleeves and long tails, black trousers, dark leather boots, and black velvet gloves. The Master would also utilise a cloak with a large collar.

While stranded on Cheetah World, the Master opted to change his usual attire for a black coat with a white collar, with a white collared dark blue shirt and bow tie, black trousers and shoes, a silver waistcoat, and a belt with a dragon shaped buckle.



Eric Roberts as The Master (Doctor Who, 1996)

As a Deathworm Morphant, the Master resembled a snake. While within Bruce's body, the Master looked like a young American man, but his eyes appeared reptilian, forcing him to wear sunglasses to remain inconspicuous.

While searching the Doctor, the Master wore Bruce's leather jacket and dark pants. When his plan neared completion, the Master changed his into traditional extravagant Gallifreyan robes, citing that he "always dress[ed] for the occasion".

"Yana" incarnation


Derek Jacobi as the Master (Utopia, 2007) Jacobi also voiced the Master in the 40th anniversary special "Scream of the Shalka"

As Professor Yana, the Master looked like a elderly man with white hair and blue eyes. He wore a white stiff-collard shirt with a dark red waistcoat and a black cravat, and black trousers. In his waist coat, he housed a Chameleon Arch, disguised as an ordinary fob watch.

As "Harold Saxon"

In this incarnation, the Master was young, with light brown hair, and dark brown eyes. As "Harold Saxon", the Master would wear a black suit with a white shirt and black tie. While meeting President Arthur Coleman Winters, he wore a black coat with a crimson lined interior.


John Simm as the Master (The End of Time, 2010)

After his botched resurrection, the Master's hair was bleached light blond, and he gained some stubble. To remain inconspicuous, he wore a black hooded sweatshirt over a red t-shirt with dark combat trousers and black boots.

Due to the corruption of his life force, the Master's outer skin would fade away and reveal the translucent blue life energy encasing his body, exposing his skeleton and internal organs, with each fluctuation making an unsettling primal roar.


Missy you know who I am

Michelle Gomez as Missy (Dark Water, 2014)

In her female incarnation, the Mistress looked like a mature woman with pronounced cheek bones, and light blue eyes. Her black hair was wild and free, but held in place in an up-do. She also adopted a Scottish accent like the Twelfth Doctor.

Fashioning herself in Victorian-styled garb, Missy wore a starched collared blouse with cameo brooch made of Dark star alloy under her throat, along with a high waisted skirt that cut to ankle length, and a croak lengthen jacket which puffed up at the shoulders and dark lapels. She also wore black ankle boots with a sharp toe and tapered heels. Completing the ensemble was a black boater hat worn at a rakish angle, with an arrangement of black and red berries on the brim and a black veil over the top.

For further accessories, Missy wore a spiked bracelet on her left wrist, and carried around a black umbrella.

Missy varied the colours of her clothes, with the design coming in black, bottle green, ) a shade of dark orange, plum, and violet.


Strategy of a Surgeon

The Master, like Meglos is another recurring enemy of The Surgeon and has changed over the years, in his recent appearance Strategy of a Surgeon a new master appears. In his disguise as the sorcerer Azhar Namin he is described as:

"A tall Egyptian looking man with dark robes, a dark beard and who carried a staff."
But when he is attacked by the Surgeon, he becomes a totally new Master:
"An evil looking man who looked like a cross between Svengali and Rasputin, he had a thick beard and mustache, grey-ish hair, brown-ish eyes and wore the robes he wore as Azhar."
As the Master, he intends to take over the world using the Weeping Angels and unable to persuade the Surgeon to join him engages in a vicious fight with him where he meets his end after the Surgeon throws him out of a window of the Demerdash hospital.