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Laser screwdriver: Misc


Dr Who

Up to date as of January 31, 2010

From TARDIS Index File, the free Doctor Who reference.

The Master and his laser screwdriver.
Laser screwdriver
Type: Multi-functional laser weapon/tool
Created by: The Master
Appearances: DW: The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lords
"Laser screwdriver. Who'd have sonic?"
The Master

The laser screwdriver was a device used by The Master.


The laser screwdriver was larger and bulkier than the Doctor's sonic screwdriver and generally used as a weapon. It incorporated various technologies, namely a miniaturized system based on the age-regression technology developed by Professor Richard Lazarus.

Though he did not say so directly, it seems that the Master had funded Lazarus' research.

The laser screwdriver had "isomorphic controls" so only The Master could operate its functions as revealed when the Doctor attempted to shoot him with it (DW: Last of the Time Lords).

When a large trigger on the grip was pressed, the emitter would extend with a fierce click, and the triple-section tip would slide into place. Another button-push would release a highly lethal beam of bright yellow laser energy with a piercing whine, the force of which was enough to send a human being flying several feet. A single hit to the chest proved lethal to Captain Jack Harkness. A large dial integrated into the bottom of the handgrip, textured similarly to the "cracked porcelain" look of the Doctor's sonic screwdriver would activate another series of control settings.

The Master used this to activate the Laser Screwdriver's aging technology, copied and improved upon from Doctor Lazarus' previous attempts. Using a sample of the Doctor's genetic code, taken from his severed hand, the Master was able to forcibly advance the Doctor's age by approximately 700 years, leaving his foe nearly crippled and helpless with age and later still further to turn him into an aged creature. (DW: The Sound of Drums / Last of the Time Lords)

Behind the Scenes

  • Conceptual art released on the BBC website, as well as conversations with the cast and crew, reveal that the Laser Screwdriver was intended to be larger and more intimidating than the Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver, meant to be "shown off." This, as well as its lethal and dangerous settings, fit in line with the Master's portrayal as an antithesis of the Doctor.
  • A toy replica of the device was released, similar to the Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver. It does not feature a pen or any removable parts, save for the battery compartment. A single press of the trigger extends the spring-loaded tip and activates the laser sound effect, along with three bright yellow LED's. Holding the trigger for about one second activates the aging sound effect. The triple-ended tip does not extend further, as it does on the show. While slightly smaller than the on-screen prop, it does feature the crack-textured setting adjustment dial, with an integrated ratchet joint for further sound effects.
  • Fans of the original series noted that the Laser Screwdriver was a departure from the Master's other favored weapon, the Tissue Compression Eliminator. When questioned about this, the current series' cast and crew commented that the Master may have simply preferred to use something different for the element of surprise.
  • Russell T Davies has stated that he had considered having the Master say to the Doctor "My screwdriver's bigger than yours" but thought better of it.
  • Also to note is if the Laser Screwdriver is anything like the Sonic Screwdriver than it probably has far more functions than seen in the finale. One of these could be the TCE ability.

This article uses material from the "Laser screwdriver" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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