"We shall simply have to start again. Go back to basics." There's a perfect opportunity here to contrast Gallifrey's having gone back to square one (ha) with Leela's more primitive upbringing (Time Lords have to use paper now, and all that sort of thing), or, failing that, contrasting them with the Shobogans or those in the Outlands to ask what really separates the two classes of people in times of crisis and desperation. As with paralleling Leela and sight/vision in Warfare, though, what seems to me a potentially very interesting move is sadly left under-explored (mind you, we do at least get Leela saying "I see nothing, yet it seems I see far more than you", cementing that parallel to Tiresias I drew a few posts back). Another problem: I don't think the story deals sufficiently with the huge blow that losing the Matrix would mean for the Time Lords. The political infighting is tense and bitter, yes, but it was tense and bitter anyway. As far as I can tell, the biggest inconvenience here is ... using communications devices is slightly more difficult. That's a bit of a damp squib.
Also unexpectedly improved is the character of Valyes, until now something of a dull bore but seen here weighed down by his duties as Acting President and the fact that he cannot access the Matrix. But Sutton is careful not to make him too sympathetic a figure, and he's still as bumbling as ever - in fact, one thing Sutton does get right in his take on Gallifrey, which I think some of the more earnest scripts of recent instalments have perhaps overlooked, is the (mostly) Williams-era piss-take of them, all squabbles about chains-of-command and the like. Take this exchange between Valyes and Narvin: "Oh, my dear chap, I do apologise! I thought you were an alien come to kill me!"/"I quite understand, sir, we all have days like that..." It's this same slightly cheeky spirit that gives us Colin Baker's cameo as Maxil - punchline to a long-running joke of him being on stage but staying out of the audience's earshot.
"She does not need my sympathies. She has Leela."
"Surely you'd want to go for the position [of President]?"/"I much prefer the sidelines. You can see everything from there."
"We all hold power for a finite amount of time only."
Lots of lovely retro sound effects on this one, and great pacing, editing, and sound design in general.
Nice nod to The Invisible Enemy's Professor Marius.
"I believe my condition is one of physical exhaustion, Valyes, not one of mental atrophy!"
Top bit of patronising: "Selective manipulation of the timelines is sometimes required. You may learn that one day when you have borne the responsibility for as long as we."
"Perhaps the age of the Time Lords has passed. Perhaps it is time for a new power to govern the web."
"No one ever said diplomacy was easy."/"Is that why you opted for the CIA?"/"Oh, I imagine so. That, and the less impractical robes."
I love this (Narvin is getting all the best lines): "Don't worry about me, Narvin, I'm fine."/"I know. So you wouldn't want me to patronise you by assuming otherwise."
"For heaven's sake, man, at least have backbone enough not to hide behind semantics!"/"That is politics, madam."