Of the many mysteries surrounding Michelle Gomez’s Missy in series eight of Doctor Who, the question of where she chose to hang out seemed pretty unimportant – but now it’s looking like the villainous Time Lady’s fancy garden hideout might prove to be a lot more significant than we had realised…
First appearing in Peter Capaldi’s debut episode Deep Breath, the garden in question (which Missy refers to as heaven) was spotted by eagle-eyed fans as being the same filming location from 2011 episode the Girl Who Waited, where Amy Pond (Karen Gillan) is imprisoned inside a futuristic hospital (below) that’s stuck in a time loop.
Spot the difference…
No big deal, though – Doctor Who reuses locations all the time. In that very episode, the interiors for the hospital were from the same building as another outer-space health centre in series two opener New Earth, and the garden itself has also been used in an episode of the Sarah-Jane adventures. So staging another scene in the garden was probably just a clever use of resources, we thought, a coincidence…
“Oh, there’s no coincidence in Doctor Who – everything’s connected,” Michelle Gomez corrected, speaking at Comic-con earlier this month. “And that’s what makes it really spooky, in a way. Yes, there’s a connection yet to be revealed.”
Colour us intrigued – what could the connection be? One theory from fans when Deep Breath aired was that the garden could be Missy’s Tardis, with the fountain acting as a central column – so was Amy actually inside the Tardis for that whole episode? Alternatively, it could be that Missy chose to decorate her Tardis to look like said garden, for reasons best known to herself (though that would be a bit weird, even for her).
Perhaps instead Missy was at the hospital looking for a weapon, and it wasn’t a Tardis at all – after all, the reason the planet was quarantined was because of a virus that only affects two-hearted individuals (like Matt Smith’s Doctor, who had to sit out most of the adventure). Could Missy have been preparing to engage in a bit of germ warfare against the Time Lords and/or the Doctor – despite the risk to herself?
The possibilities are endless – maybe Missy was there to track down the older, trapped and bitter Amy Pond (who she could then team up with); maybe she was there to enlist a few of the robot servants; maybe she just fancied popping in. Or maybe Michelle Gomez is just messing with us. All possible – and all there for us to debate for the next month and a half. Hooray!
In the rest of her interview with Erik Nagel, Gomez went on to discuss Missy’s role in the upcoming series nine, which will apparently be quite altered from the last time we saw her.
“Missy’s come back in a different dynamic, that’s all I can say,” she explained.
“There’s something a little different about her this season. What I can say about this series is that there’s a sort of grand electricity to it – it feels very charged – almost like, that sort of energy you get in LA with the tectonic plates going on. There’s something definitely in the air – it’s very adventurous.”
“It’s a lot of fun being the most evil woman in the universe.”
Doctor Who will return to BBC One on the 19th September