|Total Running Time:||66 minutes|
|Guest Player(s):||Guillaume Babey|
|Previous Story:||Both Ends Burning|
|Following Story:||The Enemy of the Good|
Perfection is the second part of the eighth serial of season 2. It features the Doctor traveling solo - a first for the podcast. The episode is also notable for featuring appearances by several past Doctors - the War Doctor and Twelfth Doctor appear, as well as two other past Doctors and, making his debut, the previous Doctor.
The Doctor faces her past in the Labyrinth of the Sisterhood.
The Doctor arrives in the Labyrinth. She is confronted by the Great Mother of the Sisterhood of Karn who tells her that it is "time to remember." She claps her hands, and the Doctor finds herself in a hallway with a single door at the end.
She enters and finds herself in a chamber filled with goblets, with a pitcher of water on a plinth in the center of the room. She spies among the goblets the same goblet she drank out of when she regenerated into the War Doctor. She throws the goblet across the room, and upends the pitcher of water into her mouth.
She then finds herself in a hologram of the cave on Karn, in a moment shortly after she regenerated. There, a young War Doctor writes in his diary about a "great schism" that occurred between Rassilon and the Sisterhood of Karn. He writes, "should this terrible war end - and should I survive it - things be set right. This must be remembered. The Schism in our people must be healed."
The Doctor is returned to the cavern of chalices, where she sees a new door with a broken clock on the front, pointing to midnight. She moves the hands of the clock to point to between 8 and 9 o'clock, and the door clicks open. She then finds herself in a room with a sundial, and a symbol on the floor. Spying a beam of light, she angles the sundial to reflect light into the symbol on the floor. The image of the Twelfth Doctor begins to emanate from the symbol, and suddenly the space around her changes into the Capitol on Gallifrey.
The Twelfth Doctor writes in his diary - he is on Gallifrey now to save Clara, but recalls what happened between the Sisterhood and Rassilon. He writes about the Matrix, and the Sisterhood's belief that they were creating "a repository of knowledge," but how that vision was corrupted by Rassilon, who turned it into "a Matrix filled with trapped souls, plotting the future of the living."
The space again dissolves back into the cavern the Doctor was in previously, and an indentation of a door appears on the far wall. The Doctor is able to pull it open, revealing another cavern with water pouring down the walls. A figure stands at a podium in the center of the room, and beckons the Doctor to stand at another, similar podium next to it. As the Doctor gets closer, she finds the figure is Adric, a former companion of the Fifth Doctor.
Adric and the Doctor begin a debate - Adric poses the question of whether it is worth fighting back against death and entropy, and questions why the Doctor would do this. The Doctor responds that she must, that she has a duty to, that if a person can do something then they should, "Because who else is going to do it?"
An unseen audience applauds, and the Doctor sees a hologram of another Doctor, cradling the body of a dead companion that she doesn't recognize. This Doctor's diary entry asks, "Do I have the right to change my past?" and concludes that no, she does not, but ends wondering "how many more times am I going to do this? How much more can I take?"
The body of the companion disappears, and so too does the memory of who he was. He is erased from history entirely, and it is implied that this is how this Doctor dealt with the loss.
The Doctor moves onward into a room with soil on the ground and a sword resting in a stand in the center of the room. There is also a minotaur, who swipes at the Doctor, kocking her to the ground. The Doctor runs to the sword and finds there are vines wrapped around the hilt with an olive growing out of the base. She plucks the olive and throws it into the minotaur's mouth.
The scene then changes to a past Doctor's TARDIS console room. another past Doctor writes in his diary entry, pondering the nature of conflict and asking whether the Sisterhood and Rassilon talked. He also alludes to something inside the Matrix that is "getting stronger. And if it gets out, I don’t know that I’ll be able to stop it."
The past Doctor operates the TARDIS and it takes flight, leaving the present Doctor standing in front of another door. She opens it to find herself in the Undergallery, looking at a 3D painting of Gallifrey, with the past of Gallifrey laid over the top of the present. There is a cane leaning against the wall that she recognizes as belonging to her previous self. She takes the cane and uses it to smash the painting.
When she does so, she sees a hologram of the previous Doctor, writing in his diary. He states that "our history has come back to haunt us. And I mean that literally, yesterday has overthrown today to change tomorrow. And sadly, there’s nothing I can do to stop it." He also states that he has a plan, but that he "[knows] too much" - that the only way his plan will succeed is if he doesn't know he's doing it. It is implied that he erased his own memory, and established the labyrinth to help him remember "once I'm ready. Once I'm... you."
The previous Doctor finishes writing and runs towards an opening. When he's gone, the current Doctor walks towards the painting, which transforms into the interior door of her TARDIS.
As she approaches, an arm pulls her through the door. She finds herself back on the Capitol on Gallifrey, in the room where she was being tortured at the beginning of Active Decay. She sees Kalan, Maxil and Rassilon standing over her - they reveal that they have tracked Roman's signal in the time vortex. Rassilon states that he and his new Keeper "will have plenty of time to complete the Perfector." It is revealed that the Doctor was tortured for months on end, all condensed into the space of one week.
A fourth figure steps out of the shadows - it's Travis. He says: "All is going according to my... revised Matrix projections. Soon, we can perfect... everything."
The Doctor finds herself back in the Labyrinth, where she is visited by Susan. Susan congratulates her, describing her as "at last, a Sister." She asks if the Doctor is ready to stand. After the Doctor replies in the affirmative, Susan reveals one last fact:
"Oh, Doctor. One last thing. That companion you lost, all those years ago. The man who's name you couldn't remember. His name was Gunther."
She snaps her fingers.
- The Doctor - Riley Silverman
- Travis - Dan Peck (credited, but does not appear)
- Carrie - Kate Lê (credited, but does not appear)
- The Twelfth Doctor - Guillaume Babey
- The Doctor of Loss - Elisa Melendez
- The Doctor of Peace - Mikey Neumann
- The Previous Doctor - Joseph Scrimshaw
- Susan, Engineer - Michael Nixon
- The War Doctor, The Great Mother, Adric, Game Master - Ben Paddon
- Editing and Sound Design - Ben Paddon
- Theme music arrangement - Drew Krassowski
- Additional music - Luke Baldridge
- Story - Michael Nixon, Ben Paddon
- The Great Mother
- The War Doctor
- Twelfth Doctor
- The Doctor of Loss
- The Doctor of Peace
- The Previous Doctor
- A Minotaur
- The War Doctor's diary entry was written immediately after his regeneration in The Night of the Doctor.
- The Twelfth Doctor's diary entry was written during the events of Hell Bent.
- The 3D painting of Gallifrey is found in a viewing room described by the GM as the Undergallery. (The Day of the Doctor)
- Although represented as a holographic projection, the previous Doctor makes his first appearance in this episode.
- The previous Doctor was alluded to in The Handheld War, where it is implied Roman assisted in his plan. He is alluded to again in Getaway - he was the one being tortured on the parallel Gallifrey before our Doctor took his place. The cane resting against the wall in the recreation of the Undergallery is implied to be the same broken cane the Doctor saw in that timeline.
- This episode also marks the first appearance of the War Doctor and the Twelfth Doctor on the show, as well as the debut of two other Doctors, ostensibly from a time after the BBC series but before that of the podcast.
- It is revealed at the end of the episode that Gunther, the Doctor's cat, is named after a lost, forgotten companion.
- This is the first episode of the podcast not to be edited by David King. Instead, Ben Paddon edited this episode. Initially, this was an exercise to teach themself how to use Adobe Audition and was not planned to be the released version of the episode.
- This is also the first episode of the podcast with a paid advertisement at the top of the show. This episode was sponsored by Encounter Party!
- Ben Paddon voices the War Doctor in this episode. He has previous used this voice for Lorem the Wise, a character in the Dungeons & Dragons YouTube series Hot Quest, where he serves as DM.
- In a panel at PAX West, Paddon specifically cites making Hot Quest as a project that gave him the confidence to branch out with character voices in The Game of Rassilon, leading to his appearance as the War Doctor.
- Guillaume Babey, Elisa Melendez, Mikey Neumann and Joseph Scrimshaw all recorded their appearances after the main episode was recorded.
- The names for Melendez' and Neumann's Doctor come from the Season 2 Credits, which were released on the podcast feed on December 4th, 2020.
- Joseph Scrimshaw makes his debut on the show proper. Previously, Joseph played as Peri and the First Doctor in live shows at Gallifrey One.