The Doctor’s recent adventures with Yaz have had a specific motivation, as she tries to understand more about “the Division” – a shadowy Gallifreyan sect that supposedly stole her memories and buried her past. But what do we know so far about the organisation?
As Doctor Who: Flux comes to an end, here’s everything that we know so far about Division…
“You’ve got a job?” “Sort of – not one you apply for. Not one you can ever leave.”
The revelation that the Doctor once “worked” for a shadowy organisation was one of many big reveals in ‘Fugitive of the Judoon’ – of course, the main reveal being that the Doctor may have had a past she doesn’t remember!
The “Fugitive Doctor” was living on Earth, disguised via Chameleon Arch as a human named Ruth Clayton – hiding from forces unknown, represented by a ruthless Gallifreyan called Gat. The Fugitive Doctor’s companion “Lee” was struck down by Gat before he could reveal the truth – and Gat, in turn, accidentally vaporised herself with a backfiring rifle before the Doctor could learn any more about her hidden past.
At this point, however, the only direct reference to “Division” by name was a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it namedrop from the Judoon Captain…
Surprised and trapped by the Master, the Doctor learned through the Matrix – the sum of all Time Lord knowledge and consciousness – that she had previously lived a whole life unknown to and hidden from her.
A Shobogan explorer and scientist, known as Tecteun, discovered a child on one of her journeys. The child was alone, next to an interdimensional gateway, and Tecteun took her home to Gallifrey – where she discovered the child could miraculously regenerate their body at the point of death.
After years of experiments and forced regenerations on the child, Tecteun harnessed the genetic ability to regenerate; and created an elevated form of Gallifreyan known as the Time Lords.
Buried and redacted alongside these memories was a conversation between Tecteun, the child and a Time Lord called Solpado – in which they discussed the need for a sect or “Division” of Time Lords, who could contravene the sworn oath never to interfere in temporal events.
These memories were initially disguised in the Matrix as the life of an ordinary human from rural Ireland called Brendan – who at the end of his service with the Garda, underwent a process that looked very similar to using a Chameleon Arch…
When we reunite with the Doctor and Yaz in The Halloween Apocalypse, the Doctor has been frantically searching for answers for what she learned in the Matrix – all while keeping Yaz out of the loop. Their skirmish with the Lupari warlord Karvanista was actually an attempt to follow a lead, as Karvanista is the only known (living) Division operative that the Doctor can find.
Before the Doctor can get any real answers, the events of the Flux begin rampaging through the universe. And far away at the beginning of time, a Division prisoner known as Swarm, a Ravager, harnesses the life force of his captors to re-energise himself and escape, eager to face off against the one who imprisoned him – the Doctor!
In a last-ditch attempt to save her friends from the Ravagers, the Doctor throws herself into a time storm, scattered across different points in time. One of these points is from her own forgotten history – working as an operative for Division as the Fugitive Doctor, alongside three other figures represented in this memory by Yaz, Dan and Vinder.
Together, the four of them infiltrate the Temple of Atropos, apprehend a past version of Swarm and Azure, and reinstate the Mouri – entities capable of controlling time – in the Temple, stopping the uncontrollable flow of time and bringing the Dark Times to an end. At one point during the operation, the illusion lifts, revealing that one of the Doctor’s Division allies was none other than Karvanista – but does he remember?
Elsewhere in the Time Storm, the Doctor confronts a mysterious older woman, who tells her the Flux was created and placed to destroy “this universe” – and that the Doctor is to blame!
The Doctor quickly learns that Karvanista wasn’t the only non-Time Lord operative of the Division. When confronting the consciousness of a Weeping Angel, occupying the mind of a human known as Claire Brown, the Doctor learns that the Angel is hiding from an extraction squad of other Angels, working for the Division.
As the squad closes in, the rogue Angel agrees to release Claire if the Doctor can get it to safety – that is, until it makes a “better trade”, selling the Doctor out to the other Angels. As she is converted into an Angel herself, the Doctor hears the words “You are recalled – to Division”…
The Doctor is released in the same place where she met the woman in the time storm – a place she quickly learns is the operating centre of Division. The woman explains the scale and reach of Division over time; describing it as colossal and magnificent in its mission to influence events across time and space.
The hub of Division exists in a space between dimensions, preparing to move to the next one as the Flux annihilates “Universe One” – which was done, as it turns out, to rid it of the interference and influence of the Doctor.
And who is this mysterious woman overseeing Division? None other than Tecteun, the Doctor’s adoptive Gallifreyan “mother” – who has kept the Doctor’s lost memories in a familiar-looking fob watch! However, their tense and conflicted reunion is cut short by the Ravagers – who have made their way to Division via a psycho-temporal bridge linking Swarm to the Doctor. Before anyone can act, Swarm reduces Tecteun to dust – leaving Division unmanned and the universe shrinking further and further…
Find out what happens next in The Vanquishers, premiering Sunday December 5th.