Derek Jacobi’s War Master and the Ood return for Doctor Who spinoff audio dramas

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Master of CallousSir Derek Jacobi will return in December 2018 with the start of a second series of “War Master” Doctor Who spinoff audio dramas from Big Finish Productions.

The War Master: The Master of Callous brings back the Doctor’s greatest foe in new four-part adventures furthering his exploits in the Time War, with releases stretching into December 2019.

Big Finish cast Jacobi last year in a set of four adventures for the critically acclaimed audio series The War Master: Only the Good.

“Derek Jacobi was amazing in the first series of The War Master,” said Big Finish executive producer Jason Haigh-Ellery. “His Master appears at first to be a supportive and friendly Time Lord who wants to help those around him – but there is an underlying malevolent desire for carnage. Derek’s Master’s ruthless desire to win his own game at all costs makes this the Hannibal Lecter regeneration (a part Derek auditioned for) and is truly terrifying.”

Jacobi appeared on screen as the Master only once, briefly late in the third season of 21st century Doctor Who. “Utopia” in 2007 cast Jacobi alongside David Tennant, Freema Agyeman and John Barrowman as Professor Yana, a secret identity of the Master following the Time War. In a few fleeting minutes, his incarnation of the Doctor’s arch nemesis made an unforgettable impression.

Derek Jacobi as the War Master


The new audio series, Master of Callous, stars not only Jacobi’s Master but also another 21st century Doctor Who character, the tentacle-faced Ood:

On the mining colony Callous, Elliot King struggles to meet the demands of its governor, Teremon. The odds are stacked against him, and his options are running low. The world that once promised dreams now offers only despair.

A wild Ood stalks the forests, carrying an antiquated phone. The caller promises much – he claims he can change the world – but he always speaks a devastating truth.

He is the Master and the Ood will obey him… but to what end?

  1. “Call for the Dead” by James Goss
  2. “The Glittering Prize” by James Goss
  3. “The Persistence of Dreams” by Guy Adams 
  4. “Sins of the Father” by Guy Adams

“As we travel further with the Master through the Time War, there are epic implications as well as very personal stories,” said Nicholas Briggs, Big Finish executive producer and script editor of the series. “There’s a distinctly dark and mystical feel to some of the episodes, but ultimately we discover that the Master laid some truly dastardly plans before it all started, and that his warped ambition knows no bounds.

“It’s been such a pleasure script editing this series. Working closely with producer Scott Handcock, my aim has been to create a balance of the epic and the deeply personal.”

The War Master: Only the GoodHandcock, producer and director of The War Master series, added: “Even before we finished recording The War Master: Only The Good, Derek had told us how much he wanted to come back, and another series of brand-new adventures for the War Master got an instant green light!

“We’ve some really exciting stories in store over the next three box sets, kicking off with The Master of Callous by James Goss and Guy Adams, which also features the return of the subservient Ood. It’s a grand four part masterplan, and I can’t wait for people to hear it come December!”

In addition to Big Finish audios, Adams has written for Doctor Who spinoffs Torchwood and Class. Goss’ credits include animation projects like Scream of the Shalka, a now-unofficial tale starring Richard E. Grant as an alternate Ninth Doctor and Jacobi as a robotic Master confined to the Doctor’s TARDIS …

The Master of Callous kicks off the next set of adventures in December 2018. Series three, The War Master: Rage of the Time Lords will follow in July 2019 written by Tim Foley and David Llewellyn, and series four, The War Master: Anti-Genesis written by Nicholas Briggs and Alan Barnes will complete the saga in December 2019.

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