We’re fast approaching the premiere of the new season of Doctor Who. A new era begins on August 23 with Peter Capaldi taking up the role of the heroic Time Lord now that Matt Smith, the Eleventh Doctor, has left. People are eagerly discussing what can be expected in the life of the Twelfth Doctor and what villains may return. But there are possibilities beyond the obvious choices such as Daleks. There as several baddies from the classic Doctor Who series that have yet to appear in the modern era and would be great to see.
Look past the break for a list of just some of the classic era villain we’d love to see return.
A former classmate of the Doctor and the Master, the woman known only as the Rani basically viewed the entire universe as a place ripe with test subjects. If a race had to die for her to attain forbidden knowledge, so be it. Sadly, Rani actor Kate O’Mara passed away before she was to return to the role in the official Doctor Who audio dramas from Big Finish. But this December, Siobhan Redwood will debut as another incarnation of the mad scientist in the audio adventure The Rani Elite, starring Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor.
The Master sometimes tampered with history to increase his power or unleash chaos that suited his desires. The Monk did it out of interest, and perhaps for a little profit. The first other Time Lord we ever met in Doctor Who, the Monk was aptly labeled a time meddler. He fought the First Doctor twice, once while allied with the Daleks. Since then, he’s appeared in various tie-in media and helped bring tragedy into the life of the Eighth Doctor in his official audio dramas. It would be interesting what mischief he got up to in the modern series.
The Draconians only appeared once in the classic series but left a lasting impression and were the favorite Doctor Who aliens of Jon Pertwee. They’ve been mentioned several times in the new series, allied with Earth against the Dalek Empire and were also the first race to refer to the Doctor as the “Oncoming Storm.” Modeled after feudal Japan, Draconians were noble, articulate beings with a high sense of honor and duty. They were also pretty classist and sexist, so seeing the Doctor challenge these beliefs could make for really good social commentary in the modern day.
Anthony Stewart Head digs Doctor Who. He’s played a Time Lord in the flash animation adventure Death Comes to Time, a near-immortal villain who fought the Doctor in several audio dramas, a space pirate who fought David Tennant’s incarnation in the animated adventure The Infinite Quest, and the cunning Mr. Finch in the live-action TV episode “School Reunion.” Finch seemingly died in an explosion, but you could easily say he escaped at the last minute and still lives. Or cast Head as a new villain entirely, maybe even as the Master. I don’t care how you do it. Bring Tony Head back to Who, people!
Remember Q from Star Trek? Now imagine him more less of a trickster and more evil. During the First Doctor’s tenure, we met the Celestial Toymaker, a cosmic immortal who could control matter. The Toymaker enjoys kidnapping people and forcing them to play bizarre games. If you lose, you become a living toy, part of his collection. When the Doctor was a young man living on Gallifrey, the Toymaker challenged him and lost. Then in the classic series, the hero beat him yet again. The game-obsessed villain must still be angry from that, hoping for a rematch.
In modern Doctor Who, we’ve seen ladies who drink blood through straws and vampires who turned out to really be sexy fish in holograms. But in the classic series days, we saw REAL vampires. Vampires who wore paint, ruled planets, and knew the Time Lords as “the Ancient Enemies.” In “State of Decay,” we learned that the original Time Lords, led by Rassilon, fought a war with the Great Vampires that was so terrible and violent that it led to Gallifrey swearing off violence from then on (except until the Daleks changed their minds). Considering their link to the Doctor’s past (TARDISes even come equipped with vampire protocols), it would be great to see such fearsome villains of horror fantasy finally return.
Yes, THAT Morgaine LeFay. The lady who fought King Arthur alongside her son Mordred, who wielded great magic and often threatened Camelot. When she showed up in the Seventh Doctor adventure “Battlefield,” she was eager to kill the Time Lord. Why? Because from her perspective, they had fought many times before . . . when he was called Merlin.
That’s right. The Seventh Doctor found out that in his personal future, he would spend some time in Camelot (which might have existed in a parallel universe) and become the legendary wizard Merlin. Now it’s that by this time those events already happened. Then again, maybe the Twelfth or Thirteenth Doctor will wind up becoming Merlin. In which case, we could see the Doctor meet a younger Morgaine LeFay for the first time . . . AGAIN!
THE BLACK GUARDIAN
The Time Lords knew of the Guardians, beings who embodied fundamental forces and whose power could stop TARDISes in mid-flight by sheer will. The White Guardian once sent the Fourth Doctor on a quest to find the Key to Time, a tesseract of near-infinite power. That quest brought the hero into conflict with the Black Guardian, embodiment of chaos. Though he can only act through agents, the Black Guardian found ways to trouble the Fourth Doctor and years later focused his efforts on destroying the Fifth Doctor. He failed, but he must still be out there, perhaps in a new form.
One of the founders of Time Lord society, Omega was thought to have died during the initial experiments that created Gallifrey’s time travel technology. The Doctor later discovered he was alive, transformed into the god-like ruler of an anti-matter realm. He was seemingly destroyed, only to appear again later as an energy being intent on finding new life in a body cloned from the Doctor’s DNA. He then seemed to die again, only to reappear in the audio dramas of Big Finish. Can an energy being truly die? What if he’s just been waiting for another opportunity to steal the Doctor’s DNA and become tangible again?
A lot of people thought we were going to see this guy in modern Doctor Who by now. Introduced during the Sixth Doctor’s final TV stories, the Valeyard was a mysterious and cold-hearted Time Lord, a cunning manipulator of great intelligence. The Master then revealed that the Valeyard was the physical incarnation of the Doctor’s dark thoughts and impulses, a villainous double intent on becoming a fully realized living being and replacing the hero entirely.
According to the Master, the Valeyard was somehow created in a possible future “between” the Doctor’s twelfth or thirteenth regeneration. Depending on how you’re counting, that means he already should have appeared during Matt Smith’s timeline and hasn’t (possibly because the 11th Doctor changed his future a couple of times) or that he’ll soon emerge during Capaldi’s tenure as the Doctor. In 2013’s “The Name of the Doctor,” the Great Intelligence did say that the Valeyard was still present in the Doctor’s future.
Hey, since the Valeyard is supposed to be an evil twin of the Doctor, wouldn’t it be fun if he had a familiar face? Behold our casting choice: DAVID TENNANT!
You’re welcome, Internet! YOU ARE WELCOME.
Alan Sizzler Kistler (@SizzlerKistler) is an actor and writers who moonlights as a comic book historian and geek consultant. He is the author of Doctor Who: A History.