Do I trust the Master to really stop the Axos and not just be out for himself? Of course not.
But the Doctor can be a little too full of himself enough that seeing him not quite succeed doesn’t bother me too much.
Yes, the Master’s plan doesn’t quite stop the Axos, but there is enough chaos and confusion there for Jo and the Doctor to barely get away. And Axos can reverse the whatever it was the Master was doing, meaning the power plant will probably explode unless the Doctor can do something about it.
He says he can, but he needs the Master’s help.
The Brigadier isn’t too keen on that, and American Bill really isn’t too keen on that, but this is an emergency, and the Earth could be completely wiped clean of all life. Sure, we’ve seen this before, but we have to see it again because this is always the case, and I don’t see Batman hanging around nearby. Batman probably has some Anti-Axos Spray in his utility belt. Always bet on Batman.
I’d say always bet on the Doctor, but then once he and the Master are alone in the Doctor’s TARDIS, he makes a rather unusual offer: he suggests the two join forces, fix the Doctor’s TARDIS, and flee the Earth while they still had the chance. And the Master agrees.
So, when the time comes, the Doctor outright tells the Brigadier, Jo, and the rest that he’s leaving with the Master because why should he stick around and die with them? Coming from most other Doctors, I might not be so inclined to believe that, but the Third Doctor has wanted to get off Earth for so long, that is almost seems plausible.
It isn’t, and I get the impression the people of UNIT know the Doctor well enough to realize it’s a trick.
See, the Doctor doesn’t take his TARDIS far. He simply takes himself and the Master to the inside of the Axos ship and offers to use both his and the Master’s TARDIS (which looks like a door in the middle of the room) to give the Axos time travel abilities so long as they promise to take out the Time Lords. The Master and the Axos go along with this, and I am sure by now the home viewer knows this is all some kind of trick, so let’s see how it turns out.
See, the Doctor doesn’t give them time travel. Well, he does. He just sends them to one place, a time loop, and they get stuck there. The Master (probably) flees since he’s in at least the next two serials, and the time loop manages to pull all the Axon monsters away from the Doctor’s human friends, allowing them to make a run for it before the power plant blows up. Since it never comes up, I am guessing they quickly realized the Doctor made all the monsters literally disappear, and when the Doctor does return to the deserted power plant room and sees everything about to overload, he zaps himself away again.
Only to come right back after the explosion went off. Jo and the Brigadier are glad to see him…or at least Jo is. It’s sometimes hard to tell with the Brigadier.
Why did the Doctor come back? He wasn’t trying to, but it looks like the Time Lords programmed his TARDIS to always return to Earth, so he’s stuck there like some sort of cosmic yo-yo.
And while I don’t dislike the Third Doctor, it sure is hard to feel bad for him at times like this.