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Tzim-Sha, also spelt T'zim-Sha, was a Stenza warrior who sought to become the leader of his people. He was nicknamed "Tim Shaw" by the Thirteenth Doctor, due to her mishearing his true name. He was continually referred to as Tim Shaw, such as when Yaz spoke about him on Desolation and when confronted by Team TARDIS on Ranskoor Av Kolos.


Hunting Karl Wright[]

Tzim-Sha (PROSE: The Secret in Vault 13) also spelt T'zim-Sha, (WC: Case File One) used a swarm of gathering coils in order to locate a trophy to take back to his planet, despite this being against his species' rules, so he could win the leadership of his people.

He came ahead in his pod, waiting inside for the coils to find his target before breaking out and killing Rahul, taking one of his teeth as a prize. He then began searching for the coils in order to learn where and who his target was. While searching for the coils, he encountered Dean, who threw salad at him, mocking his appearance. Annoyed at his actions, Tzim-Sha killed him and took one of his teeth as well.

Upon finding the coils, he was confronted by the Thirteenth Doctor, along with Ryan, Graham, Grace and Yasmin, who ordered he not hunt on Earth and flee back to his people. However, Tzim-Sha refused, threatening to kill the Doctor if she tried to stop him. He absorbed the data from the coils and then used a short-range teleport to reach his target, Karl Wright, at a construction site.

There, he killed the security guard and proceeded to climb up Karl's crane to reach him. However, the Doctor arrived with assistance and proceeded to convince Karl to leave his crane and climb towards her so he could jump to safety. However, Tzim-Sha caught up to them, grabbing Karl to take back with him. Not giving in, the Doctor leapt across, stating he couldn't leave as she had stolen the recall device from his pod that would allow him to return home and threatened to destroy it. Calling her bluff, Tzim-Sha detonated the DNA bombs his coil implanted in the Doctor and the others.

However the detonation affected him instead as the Doctor had transferred the bombs into the coil's data, meaning Tzim-Sha had downloaded them. With no choice, Tzim-Sha released Karl and got the recall device back, only to be kicked off the crane by Karl. However, Tzim-Sha was able to activate it and teleport away before he could hit the ground. (TV: The Woman Who Fell to Earth)

Exile on Ranskoor Av Kolos[]

As the recall device had been corrupted, the teleport instead banished him "halfway across the universe" to Ranskoor Av Kolos. He was unable to leave without dying, but Ux Andinio mistook him for their creator and thus helped him regain his health and strength, though he required a life support machine. Tzim-Sha was able to use the hive knowledge of the Stenza held within him combined with the Ux's dimensional engineering capabilities to build an army of SniperBots and other Stenza technology.

Over the centuries in his exile, Tzim-Sha combined all the knowledge of the Stenza with the abilities of the Ux to create a weapon capable of trapping entire planets in stasis. With this weapon, he trapped five different planets, committing genocide of all of the people on each one. This atrocity caused the Congress of the Nine Planets to send fleets of ships to Ranskoor Av Kolos to stop him, but they fell to Tzim-Sha's forces. Eventually, Greston Paltraki arrived with his crew and managed to steal one of the planets held in stasis, but his crew was captured in the process and made into Stenza trophies of which Tzim-Sha had around thirty.

Three thousand four hundred and seven years after Tzim-Sha first became trapped, in 5425, Team TARDIS picked up nine distress calls from Ranskoor Av Kolos and landed on the planet to investigate, meeting Paltraki whose mind had become muddled by the effects of the planet. Shortly after the Doctor gave Paltraki a neural balancer to help fix his mind, Tzim-Sha contacted Paltraki and demanded the return of the stolen planet, executing one of Paltraki's crew in front of him and threatening to brutally murder the rest if he didn't comply. The Doctor and her companions were left in shock at once again seeing their old enemy, having believed Tzim-Sha to have been sent back to his homeworld when they last met.

The Doctor, her companions and Paltraki set out to stop Tzim-Sha and his plans. The Doctor was brought in front of Tzim-Sha by Andinio where Tzim-Sha explained what had happened since they had last met and his motives. Tzim-Sha then had the Ux turn the weapon on Earth, intending to destroy the planet and the human race in retaliation for his previous defeat, ignoring the Doctor's warnings that the technology was not stable and using it on another planet could destroy everything. Tzim-Sha declared that he would target any planet that ever defied the Stenza and use his weapon on them.

As the Ux used the weapon on Earth, Tzim-Sha received a warning that Graham O'Brien and Ryan Sinclair were freeing his trophies and went to stop them personally. By the time he arrived, Graham had destroyed his army of SniperBots and the prisoners were free and on their way to Paltraki's ship. Though Graham had sworn to kill Tzim-Sha if he ever saw him again, he couldn't bring himself to pull the trigger. Instead, when Tzim-Sha threatened Ryan, Graham shot him in the foot, incapacitating him.

Tzim-Sha is imprisoned in his own stasis chamber. (TV: The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos)

After the Doctor was able to return the planets that had been stolen back to their proper places in space, and Tzim-Sha's plan was thwarted, Graham and Ryan decided that Tzim-Sha wasn't worth killing, stating that he instead deserved a taste of his own medicine. Graham and Ryan sentenced him to life imprisonment in a Stenza stasis chamber, once used for Tzim-Sha's trophies. The two ordered him to keep the name of Grace O'Brien in his mind as he contemplated eternity. The Ux subsequently sealed the building so that no one could ever reach Tzim-Sha and free him from his eternal prison. (TV: The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos)

Behind the scenes[]

This character's name was given several different ways by official sources. He was listed by his Doctor-given nickname "Tim Shaw" in the credits for The Woman Who Fell to Earth and in some BBC marketing elements. In at least BBC America, ABC iView and iPlayer closed captioning, the non-English variant is rendered as Tzim-Sha.

A Case File video about the Stenza also calls the character "Tim Shaw" but renders the real name with an apostrophe: T'zim-Sha. Because the font used in this Case File is all uppercase, however, even it doesn't settle whether the real name should be T'zim-Sha or T'Zim-Sha.

Finally, both the post-production script for The Woman Who Fell to Earth and the children's novel The Secret in Vault 13 confirmed Tzim-Sha as the spelling, which would later be used on television via the credits for The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos. This spelling is also reused for merchandising such as DWFC 151.