Just As I Thought

Anthony Ainley

Anthony Ainley, the second actor to portray Dr. Who’s arch enemy “The Master” has died — apparently. It seems that it was difficult to confirm his passing because he was “very much a private man.”
I enjoyed Ainley’s portrayal of the Master — the Moriarty to the Doctor’s Holmes. He had a wonderful over-the-top wide-eyed and sinister grin. He was a perfect match for Tom Baker (the 4th Doctor) who was, himself, so far over the top. Ainley’s portrayal changed over the years depending on the lead actor in the series, and by the end of the original television run, paired against Sylvester McCoy, the Master had become more subtle and, in many ways, more dangerous and mysterious, like the Doctor himself.
But I think what I’ll remember most, however inappropriate, is what a hunk Ainley was. Way back in the mists of time, when I edited a Dr. Who newsletter, the actor himself sent a batch of photos of himself. One was of filming on location for a story, dressed in his Master costume. The other, which I’ll have to dig out and scan, was a personal photo of him standing on a beach toting a canoe, bare-chested. Let’s just say that he could have been on the British “Baywatch” and leave it at that.

1 comment

  • I do hope you find the bare-chested photo, I for one would love to see it… and I know a few other people who would love to drool over it too!!

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