Doctor Who bid farewell to all three of its lead actors in tonight's centenary special, with John Bishop exiting the series as Dan Lewis alongside Mandip Gill as Yaz Khan and, of course, Jodie Whittaker as the Thirteenth Doctor.
Bishop was the first of the trio to take a final bow, appearing in a reduced role in The Power of the Doctor.
The episode's epic pre-titles sequence saw Bishop's character Dan – who first stepped aboard the TARDIS in 2021's six-part serial Flux – caught up in a clash with the nefarious CyberMasters, on top of a speeding bullet train on the edges of a distant galaxy.
During the confrontation, Dan was struck by one of the monsters' laser blasts, shattering the visor of his protective spacesuit and leaving him in danger of suffocating – worse still, the blast knocked him off-balance and he comes within inches of falling away into oblivion, only saved by Yaz grabbing his ankle.
Though the Doctor subsequently returns Dan home expecting to collect him again in 24 hours, he's clearly been left shaken by his near-death experience and tells his friends that he wants to remain on Earth.
"I was one hand away from flying off into space and suffocating – I don't want to push me luck any further," Dan explains.
"I mean, all this... all this is amazing, and I've had the most incredible time. But it's not my life – and my life's far from perfect, but I need to get back to it. I need to attack it. And I can now, 'cause I've been with you."
Stepping off of the TARDIS one last time, Dan realises that the first problem he'll need to "attack" on his return to civilian life will be finding a new home, with only an empty space where his house used to be. (In case you'd forgotten, Dan's house was collapsed by Karvanista in his debut episode, The Halloween Apocalypse.)
This isn't quite the last we see of Dan, however – Bishop returns for another brief sequence near episode's end, as it's revealed he's somehow come into contact with another former TARDIS traveller, Graham O'Brien (Bradley Walsh), who has set up something of a support group for friends of the Doctor.
"I’m glad I’m not on the verge of being exterminated anymore," Dan tells the group, which includes a number of classic Doctor Who companions. "But I do miss her."
Following transmission of The Power of the Doctor, Doctor Who is entering a bold new era for its 60th anniversary and beyond under returning showrunner Russell T Davies.
Read more about Doctor Who:
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- Doctor Who’s Sacha Dhawan “overwhelmed” at getting to play the Doctor
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