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Professor Yana: Every human knows of Utopia. Where have you been?
The Doctor: Bit of a hermit.
Professor Yana: A... a hermit? With, uh, friends?
The Doctor: Hermits United. We meet up every 10 years, swap stories about caves.
The TARDIS lands in Cardiff to refuel, and the Doctor picks up a hitchhiker: Captain Jack Harkness, lately of Torchwood, who is not going to let the Doctor get away twice. The hand-in-a-jar that Jack's been carrying around in Torchwood turns out to be the Doctor's old hand, which Jack's been using as a "Doctor detector". With a dramatic cry of "DOOOOCTOOOOOOOOOOOOOOR!", Jack leaps onto the TARDIS as it's disappering. It turns out that the TARDIS does not like Jack ever since he Came Back Wrong, and rejects him, hurling through time and space in an attempt to shake him off. Jack ends up dead when the TARDIS lands on a lonely dark planet trillions of years in the future. But everyone except Martha knows that death is pretty temporary for Captain Jack.
Once everyone's all caught up, the Doctor lays it out: they're at the ass-end of time, right at the heat death of the universe. The stars have all burned out. Humanity, they learn, have all congregated together in this planet's Elaborate Underground Base, where they've been lured by vague promises of shuttle service to Utopia.
The only one who knows anything about how to get to Utopia is kindly old Professor Yana, who is played by Sir Derek fucking Jacobi. If you'd told people, back when the old show was cancelled in '89, that not only would Doctor Who return, but they'd get people like Sir Derek Jacobi to play the Master, well. They'd probably punch you out for taunting them or something. So, when and if you get a time machine, it's probably just as well if you don't do this.
Anyway. Sir Derek's plan is to load everyone onto these enormous rockets and send them to Utopia, but the rockets aren't actually in working order. They need someone to enter a chamber filled with deadly radiation to reset some switches. Sounds like a job for someone immortal! Jack takes off a few layers of clothing for good measure before starting.
And it works! The evacuation starts; the rockets are boarded by the last dregs of humanity, hoping for something, anything better than a slow death in the night. Everyone congratulates each other on a job well done... and then Martha notices that Professor Yana has a pocket watch. And it looks just like the Doctor's watch. Which can be used as a receptacle for Essence Of Time Lord.
The Doctor goes into full-on Oh Crap mode and dashes back to try to stop Yana from opening the watch, but he's too late: Yana reveals himself to be a very evil bastard and gets shot by his sweet assistant Chantho. Which doesn't deter him, because he is the Master...
Who promptly regenerates into John Simm, steals the TARDIS and leaves our heroes stranded in the umpteen-billionth century with savages beating down the doors.
- Actor Allusion: Though not widely known, this isn't the first time that Sir Derek Jacobi has played this character -- a flash video of Scream of the Shalka has that honor.
- After the End
- Alternative Character Interpretation: Is the Doctor yelling at Martha because he's overwhelmed and impatient, and is trying to figure out how to save the human race AND deal with another Time Lord? Or is he panicking because he knows exactly who's in Yana's watch?
- Possible Fridge Brilliance: Out of all the Time Lords, there's precisely two who would have the smarts and creativity to figure out a way of surviving the Time War, and one of them is the Doctor himself...
- Big Creepy-Crawlies: Chantho, a nice giant insect alien. Jack Harkness thinks she's kind of cute.
- Big No
- Bond Villain Stupidity: Averted by the Master: "Anyway. Why don't we stop and have a nice little chat while I tell you all my plans and you can work out a way to stop me. I DON'T think!"
- Chekhov's Gun: The fob watch makes an especially powerful one, as its appearance earlier in this series was adapted from a Seventh Doctor novel -- fans who'd read the novel would actually be less likely to think of its appearance in Family of Blood to be foreshadowing for the series' climax.
- Contest Winner Cameo: The kid with a speaking role is a Blue Peter competition winner. His character gets turned into a Toclafane offscreen.
- Continuity Nod: The Doctor notes upon refueling that somebody's opened up the Rift since he was last there. The finale of the first season of Torchwood had this.
- Which is why Jack is running full tilt towards the TARDIS. He heard the dematerlisation at the end of that episode.
- Jack brings the Doctor's old severed hand from "The Christmas Invasion" with him. The Master steals it along with the TARDIS.
- Martha mentions an earthquake a couple of years ago. The Doctor admits he had a bit of trouble with the Slitheen ("Boom Town")
- Going back to classic Who, before Professor Yana opens the watch and becomes the Master again, you can hear Ainley!Master laughing and some of Delgado!Master's lines from "The Daemons."
- Cool Old Guy: Professor Yana... at first.
- Dangerously Genre Savvy: "Why don't we stop and have a nice little chat while I tell you all my plans and you can work out a way to stop me, I don't think!"
- Disaster Scavengers: The average mob of Mad Max-style tattooed goons haunting the lands outside the base.
- Evil Counterpart: Inverted with Yana -- a thoroughly decent man who's only mildly annoyed his genius didn't get some recognition, as opposed to the egotistical, power-hungry and insane Master.
- Evil Is Hammy
- Fangs Are Evil
- Fun with Acronyms: You Are Not Alone
- Grand Theft Me: Of course, given that both parties are the same, it's played with mercilessly.
- Incoming Ham: Jack.
- And, of course, The Master. Twice.
- I Was Beaten by a Girl:
Master!Yana: Killed by an insect... a girl... how inappropriate.
- Just Between You and Me: Defied; see Dangerously Genre Savvy.
- Last Breath Bullet: Chantho. It doesn't stick.
- MacGuffin Location: Utopia.
- And the way the Master says it, so dripping with sarcasm... really, it should have been obvious who the Toclafane were.
- Medium Awareness: The futurekind apparently sense that the intro scene happened because they all raise their heads and declare "Humansss! Humans are coming!"
- Actually they soon come across and pursue a human from their own time, so it was him they sensed. Still perhaps a case of Leaning on the Fourth Wall.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: where to start? the Doctor, for not recognizing his old nemesis, Martha for getting Professor Yana to open the watch, Jack for latching onto the TARDIS and causing a huge chunk of the mess...
- To be fair to Martha, she had no idea who the Master was, and simply thought it was another Time Lord, and unsealing him would be a good thing.
- Negate Your Own Sacrifice: The launch can't be completed unless someone goes into a deadly-radiation-filled room to flip some switches. Good thing Jack is immortal...
- The Night That Never Ends: All the stars have burnt out a long time ago.
- Oh Crap: The Doctor's face, on realizing that whoever Yana is, he's not supposed to be able to really see the watch, and Martha just drew his attention to it.
- His subsequent panic implies that the Doctor knows perfectly well which Time Lord it is. When the two finally make eye contact, the Master coyly grins and the Doctor shows no surprise whatsoever, even naming his foe without hesitation.
- One-Scene Wonder: Jacobi's turn as the Master is less than five minutes long all together, and has only one body count. Many fans also consider it the best incarnation of the Master to date.
- One Word Title
- Pardon My Klingon: Apparently Chantho forgoing her Verbal Tic would be the equivalent of swearing.
- Red Herring: Yana appears to be 'reverting' to a primitive state like the others, but it's actually the Master's suppressed personality.
- Say My Name
- Screw Yourself: Jack's the only man Jack's ever going to be happy with.
- Stable Time Loop: Martha mentions what the Face of Boe's last words were while Jack is present. If he is indeed the Face (as he implies two episodes later), he now knows exactly the message he has to deliver, and what it means.
- Terrible Ticking: Professor Yana's "headache". Duh-duh-duh-dum, duh-duh-duh-dum...
- This Is Sparta: A whispered example, but no less awesome:
Professor Yana: I... am... The Master.
Chantho: Chan-I am happy drinking my own internal milk-tho.
Yana: Yes, well, that's quite enough information, thank you.
- Used Future
- Wham! Episode
- Wham! Line: One of the biggest in the whole series, and easily the biggest so far in the New Series.
Yana: I am The Master.
- What Do You Mean It's Not Awesome?: The Doctor and Jack running through the halls with their coats flapping.
- What about going into a room full of harmful radiation with nothing more than the clothes on your back, while having a chat with a friend about the good old times?
- Verbal Tic: Chantho can't say any sentences that don't begin and end with "Chan" and "Tho." Well, she could, but it'd be rude.
- Waistcoat of Style: Professor Yana - according to Doctor Who Magazine, RTD told the wardrobe department to "Hartnell him up".
- Wham! Line: "Even this thing never worked..."
- And shortly after, "Does it matter?" If only Martha had a better poker face.
- You Are Not Alone: Plot point!