9.1. The Magician's Apprentice / The Witch's Familiar

Series 9 - 2015 - 2016

Writer: Steven Moffat
Produced by: Peter Benentt
Director: Hettie MacDonald
Music: Murray Gold


In the middle of a battlefield a soldier spots what looks like a young boy fleeing the area. He goes to help the boy and finds that they have both wandered into a hand mine-field. One attaches itself to the soldier's ankle. In a instant the hand mine drags the soldier underground. Scared the boy cries for help, and a sonic screwdriver lands at his feet. The sonic screwdriver enables the boy to talks to a strange man who is just outside the mine field. The man asks the boy for his name. When the boy replies "Davros" the man disappears, leaving the boy to his fate.

An entity called Colony Sarff has been sent on a quest by Davros to look for the Doctor. It tries numerous places including the Maldovarium, a space bar full of aliens species that the Doctor has encountered, and the Shadow Proclamation. No-one seems to know where the Doctor is. When Sarff visits the planet Karn he meets Ohila, head of the Sisterhood of Karn. The Doctor is on Karn, listening to the message that Sarff gives: "Davros knows. Davros remembers."

Sarff returns to Davros to say the Doctor cannot be found. Davros tells Sarff that in order to seek the Doctor he must first seeks his friends.

On Earth Clara is teaching an English lesson when she notices that a plane has frozen in mid air. Moments later Mr Dunlop enters to tell her she has an important telephone call. The call is a summons from UNIT. In UNIT HQ, in the Tower of London, Kate tells Clara that all the planes have stopped. The planes have more that just stopped as none of the planes can be contacted. At first an attack is suspected, but Clara realises that usually an attack or invasion is not advertised, and that it is probably someone trying to get their attention.

A message comes through on the Doctor Channel. The message is from Missy asking to meet Clara, even suggesting security arrangements. Clara agrees to the meeting with Missy, and doesn't rise to Missy's taunts about her deceased boyfriend. Missy has a confession dial from the Doctor, and that would only be provided on the eve of his death. Missy can't find the Doctor either, and hopes that Clara can. Using UNIT resources Clara is able to find a disturbance in time that is not related to an event - it is just a farewell party.

Once the Doctor is located Missy attaches a vortex manipulator to Clara's wrist that is slaved to her own and transports them to the Doctor's location. They arrive at a castle in Essex, 1138. Missy tells Clara to look for the slightest anachronism. That's when the Doctor enters the stage riding a tank and playing an electric guitar, making jokes, and introducing new words into the English language. The Doctor introduces the crowd to Clara, and to the wicked-stepmother Missy.

When Bors, a friend of the Doctor in 1138, starts to choke the Doctor thinks he has swallowed a marble again. Instead it is a snake that forms part of Colony Sarff. Sarff turns into a multitude of snakes and the crowd disappears. When Sarff gives the Doctor his message and returns the sonic screwdriver the Doctor becomes shameful. The Doctor allows Sarff to transport him to a ship to take him to Davros, and Missy and Clara go with him

Since the choking Bors has been infected with Dalek nanites and is under their control. After the Doctor, Clara, Missy, and Sarff disappears he hunts for, and finds, the Doctor's TARDIS which is then teleported by the Daleks.

The Doctor, Clara, and Missy are taken to a structure, which could be a hospital, floating in space. Clara and Missy are left in a cell whilst the Doctor is taken to Davros. As he leaves the Doctor mentions gravity to Missy. Missy tells Clara that the gravity is perfect. If it was a space station it should feel different. To prove it Missy opens the airlock, which should suck them both into space. Instead they are able to walk outside onto ground. They are on an invisible planet. Once Clara and Missy start to synchronise with the atmosphere the planet, and a city, is revealed. It is the city of the Daleks on Skaro. A Dalek on the surface finds Clara and Missy and takes them to High Command.

Inside the Doctor is taken to Davros, who is dying. Davros plays the Doctor old clips from previous meetings, including one when the Doctor was on Skaro talking about killing a child if you knew the child would grow up to be a dictator. From inside Davros's room the Doctor can see Clara and Missy on a screen. He watches as Missy tries to bargain with the Daleks by telling them she can let them have access to the TARDIS. Instead of agreeing a Dalek fires and Missy disappears in a flash. Left alone in a room of Daleks Clara starts to run but is also shot by a Dalek and disappears in a flash. With Missy and Clara exterminated the Daleks then start destroying the TARDIS, and the Doctor watches as this too disappears.

When she awakes Clara finds herself hanging upside down. Missy talks about a past adventure with the Doctor, who has a teleporter that is out of power, who is fighting invisible androids. Missy asks Clara to consider how the Doctor would get put of the situation. The teleporter came from the androids so uses their power. At the exact moment they fire the Doctor uses the power to recharge the teleporter and to teleport away. Clara then realises that is how Missy escaped after the attack of the Cybermen, and how they both escaped from the Daleks.

Inside Davros's room the Doctor threatens Davros. In High Command the Daleks detect Davros leaving his room, and over speakers can hear Davros telling the Daleks the Doctor is escaping. The Supreme Dalek orders all Daleks to locate the Doctor. The Supreme Daleks allows Davros to enter High Command. Only it's not Davros - it's the Doctor in Davros's chair. With the Daleks powerless to stop him the Doctor taunts them - even sitting drinking a cup of tea. Although the chair is fitted with a personal shield which repels Dalek fire it does not stop Colony Sarff agents, and the Doctor is captured by snakes.

To rescue the Doctor Missy and Clara enter the Dalek sewers. Only in Dalek sewers the walls are not coated with waste. They are coated with decaying Dalek matter. The Daleks can't die, so the matter in the sewers are the living remains of ageing Daleks. Missy needs to capture a Dalek, and in order to do so she uses Clara as bait. When the Daleks detect Clara one enters the sewer to investigate. Missy has a dark star alloy ring and she is able to puncture the Dalek shell. Once puncture the ageing Dalek sewer sludge attacks the Dalek. When the Dalek has been destroyed, and cleaned out, Missy tells Clara to get inside. The Dalek is thought controlled, and emotions control the weaponry. However when Clara says her name all that comes out is a Dalek.

With Clara inside a Dalek she and Missy are able to gain access to the city. When they come across another Dalek Clara can't come up with excuses quick enough to Missy talks and tells the Daleks to count the hearts. Missy and Clara are taken to High Command.

The Doctor finds himself in Davros's room again, with Davros back inside his chair. Davros tells Doctor of the device in the centre of the room that allows Davros to feed off the life force of every Dalek. Through the cables the Doctor could destroy all Daleks. Davros is curious to know if the Doctor could choose to destroy all Daleks in an act of genocide. Davros wants to know more about the Doctor, and especially the confession dial. What could be in the Doctor's confession. The Doctor seems more concerned that Davros may touch, or scratch, his sunglasses.

The Doctor surprises Davros by telling him that Gallifrey, and the Time Lords, is back. He doesn't know where, but it is back and safe from both of them. Davros surprises the Doctor when he says he wants to see the sunrise one more time with his own eyes. When the sunrise approaches Davros tells the Doctor he can no longer open his eyes. To help Davros the Doctor offers some regeneration energy. The Doctor grabs onto the cables. Once he does the device starts to sap more energy from him and into each Dalek.

In High Command all the Daleks halt and regeneration energy starts to emit from them. Missy starts to look for the Doctor with Dalek Clara following. Missy grabs a gun from an immobile Dalek, finds Davros's room, and destroys the equipment. On doing this the Doctor is freed but the Daleks reactivate, renewed. Davros's experiment has been a success, but the Doctor starts counting down. When he gets to the end the city starts shaking and explosions can be heard.

The Doctor tells Davros he knew what Davros was up to and let him do it. He was feeding regeneration energy into every single Dalek. Even those in the sewers.

As the Doctor runs he sees a lone Dalek. He asks it where Clara is, but all it does is insist it is a Dalek. Missy tells the Doctor that this is the Dalek that killed Clara, and offers the Doctor a Dalek gun. When the Dalek calls for mercy the Doctor pauses. Daleks should not know the word "mercy". The Doctor asks the Dalek to open it's casing, and Clara is revealed.

In High Command the Daleks, including the Supreme Dalek, are under attack from Dalek sludge. The Doctor and Clara stand where the TARDIS used to be. When the Daleks fire the Doctor and Clara are protected. Using is sonic glasses the Doctor is able to reassemble the TARDIS after the HADS (Hostile Action Displacement System) had been activated. On the surface the Doctor and Clara watch as the Dalek city is destroyed. Hopefully with Missy still inside.

The Doctor still has one question. How did the Daleks know of the concept of mercy? He still has the Dalek gun and travels back in time to when he abandoned the young Davros. Using the gun he fires at the hand mines and rescues the Davros, telling him that friends and enemies do not matter as long as there is mercy.

Regular Cast

  • Clara Oswald: Jenna Coleman

Guest Cast

  • Missy: Michelle Gomez
  • Colony Sarff: Jami Reid-Quarrell
  • Davros: Julian Bleach
  • Kate: Jemma Redgrave (1)
  • Jac: Jaye Griffiths (1)
  • Mike: Harki Bhambra (1)
  • Bors: Daniel Hoffmann-Gill (1)
  • Boy (Young Davros): Joey Price
  • Kanzo: Benjamin Cawley (1)
  • Mr Dunlop: Aaron Neil (1)
  • Ohila: Claire Higgins (1)
  • Voice of the Daleks: Nicholas Briggs
  • Shadow Architect: Kelly Hunter (1)
  • Alison: India Ria Amartefeifio (1)
  • Ryan: Dasharn Anderson (1)
  • Newsreaders: Stefan Adegbola (1), Shin-Fei Chen (1), Lucy Newman-Williams (1)
  • Daleks: Barnaby Edwards, Nicholas Pegg
  • Soldier: Jonathan Ojinnaka (1)

Original broadcast on the BBC

Channel Title Date Viewers Rating
BBC 1 (HD) 1. The Magician's Apprentice Saturday, September 19, 2015 7:40 PM - 8:30 PM 6.54M 84
BBC 1 (HD) 2. The Witch's Familiar Saturday, September 26, 2015 7:45 PM - 8:35 PM 5.71M 83

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