The week before the finale is quite possibly my favourite week of the year as a Doctor Who fan. If you’re like me, you’ll have spent the last few days absorbing all the information you can after Saturday’s phenomenal World Enough and Time, while trying to avoid major spoilers at all costs. Peter Capaldi and Steven Moffat are now just two episodes away from departing the show after a whirlwind final season for the pair. So what could happen in Saturday’s finale? Here are three very different theories that could unfold.

Simulation
Season three’s two parter, Human Nature/Family of Blood sewed the seeds for the finale, introducing us to the chameleon arch and fob watch that Time Lords use to disguise themselves. Could season ten have gone down a similar path in building up a finale? The Lie of the Land and particularly Extremis contained some unusual ideas that we’ve rarely seen in Doctor Who before. Firstly, the Doctor colluding with the enemy. In The Lie of the Land, the Doctor appears to be on side with the Monks, to Bill’s (and the general audience’s shock), before revealing it was all part of his grand plan. Was this plan much larger than it seemed though? Could the Doctor have infiltrated the Monks to investigate how they created such a realistic simulated reality, in a bid to emulate something similar? Extremis was entirely set in a simulated reality, something not even the Doctor worked out until the end of the plot. Something like this would surely trick Missy too, at least for a while. Rather than throwing his greatest adversary into battle with his two close friends for real, has the Doctor created a simulation, merely to test Missy? It would explain how John Simm’s Master has escaped the Time Lords and Rasillon, seemingly unscathed, as well as providing a valid restoration of Bill. To some, this might seem like a cheap way of saving the companion, but to plant the same concept in a season twice, tricking the audience on both occasions would be a very Steven Moffat-esque way to resolve the apparent mess the Doctor finds himself in. It was the first three-part story of the Moffat era, so was it given as much time to develop because of the way it will set up Saturday’s finale?

Double Master regeneration

Could we see both John Simm and Michelle Gomez regenerate in the finale? It’s certainly possible. Assuming Missy has “turned good”, maybe she will be the catalyst of her past incarnation’s demise. As a parting “gift”, could Simm’s Master in turn fire a fatal shot at Missy, starting her regeneration? It’s looking like Michelle Gomez will be leaving the show with Capaldi and Moffat, so there’s every chance this could be her last appearance. My only doubt was Missy’s admission to Simm’s Master that she couldn’t remember being on the spaceship before – surely if she killed herself she would remember? However, that could be a clever ploy to wrong foot the Master, if she is on the Doctor’s side. The Master has historically clung to survival at all costs, so how ironic it would be to see the character responsible for using up two of its own regenerations in the same episode.

Missy has known the Doctor is dying all season

There has been something unusual about the Doctor and Missy’s relationship throughout season ten. Missy has made no attempt to escape the vault, hijack the TARDIS, or bring death and destruction to the Doctor’s life (that we’ve seen). Missy asking the Doctor if he was alright in Empress of Mars, seemed a little strange, so could she know the twelfth Doctor is nearing the end of his life? There have been plenty of instances this season where the Doctor’s death could’ve started. His sacrifice to Bill in Oxygen that led to him going blind; fiddling with the machine that was supposed to execute Missy in Extremis; and appearing to be shot before starting to regenerate in The Lie of the Land. We know from the tenth and eleventh Doctors that regeneration can be a long process. The pre-titles sequence in World Enough and Time showed the twelfth Doctor seemingly at the end of that process and about to change into a new man(/woman). His cry of “No!” could easily have been a sign of frustration at not being able to hold back the regeneration for as long as he would have liked. If he is dying, it would certainly explain why Missy has been so reluctant to cause havoc so far. It would also go some way to explaining why the Doctor has been a little more reckless in the second half of the season compared to the first. Steven Moffat teased that this regeneration will be different from all of the others, so could it be the most drawn out change the Doctor’s gone through to date?

These are just three of the infinite number of ways that Steven Moffat could finish off season ten. What do you think will happen? Do you like any of these ideas, or do you have any of your own? Let me know in the comments below. I will be reviewing World Enough and Time and The Doctor Falls, this weekend. Enjoy the finale!

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