The Doctor Falls

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    Craig @craig

    The Doctor Falls - Doctor Who

    Part two, and the series finalé. Once again this is written by Steven Moffat and directed by Rachel Talalay.

    Bill has been turned into a Modasian Cyberman and the Doctor now has two Masters to deal with (well, a Missy and a Master). In addition he must stand against an army of Cybermen to protect a tiny band of humans from destruction.

    This is not as action-packed as the ‘Next Time’ trailer may have suggested and is not a big, wham-bam finalé. Instead it’s quite sombre, once again taking its time to tell the story (have I said that every week now? I think I may have).

    It’s not quite as good as “World Enough and Time”, but then that was basically fantastic. However it does have some great moments.

    Thank you all for your contributions to the site during this series. It’s been great to hear old voices and new. It’s you that make this, in my opinion, a special place on the net.

    Now, is it too early to be counting down the sleeps till Christmas?

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    Arghh was it my sky signal or was there a problem with the sound at the end of the episode


    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Did anyone else think that Heather was going to be 13?



    I think I may have squeed a bit.

    “You do the right thing because it is the right thing to do”

    wolfweed @wolfweed


    Apparently it was the BBC1 HD signal…


    TDF fact file

    Nyan @madalyne11

    He doesn’t want to change.

    Nyan @madalyne11

    Also, my reception was fine. xD lol

    Nick @nick


    No I didn’t, but it is a good possibility but I need to rewatch and freeze frame the regen scene in the Tardis. I thought there was something about the hair. I do think that Moff nicely left Bill/Heather open for Chibnall to use in S11 (if he wants).

    I really enjoyed that even if it turned out to be more sentimental then I expected (Blood Bath, indeed – I thought Christmas resolution). Moff is definitely an softy. Heather/Bill resolution for Bill was a surprise (I didnt see that happening quite like that), although I did think the Pilot left a door open to something.  Likewise the resolution of Nardole and the Ship/Cyberman is left as an open question. Will the Doctor remember and act ?

    The Missy/Master end nicely left open, alongside an explana.tion for why multi-Doctor/Master stories dont leave any past memories.

    A nice surprise ending. It seems D1 doesn’t want to go either.

    Craig @craig

    After show, with Moffat and Rachel Talalay.

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Did Missy put something into the Doctor’s hand?

    Devilishrobby @devilishrobby

    Ah had to do a crash download from iplayer and just rewatched the last 10 minutes and yes I have to admit I was tempted to do a fanboy sqeee at the end both for Bill going off with the pilot and the appearance of the 1st Dr.


    Nyan @madalyne11

    I agree with Nick, Moffat did possibly leave options for S11 which I think is wonderful. I am really happy the way this series finale went. I had some doubts but I believe most of them were put aside. In everything, there will always be good points to the episodes and bad points, but I think the end really was quite impressive. I am strongly looking forward to the next series.

    I do however think a lot of people assumed that Bill was only staying for one series. Now, however, I do not know. We will have to wait and see what comes next.


    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Maybe Missy put the Master’s ring into the Doctor’s hand (Knowing that she was likely to die twice). The Master can be brought back from his ring (At least, he was before)…….




    Did anyone else think that Heather was going to be 13?

    Me too – and I really wouldn’t object to Stephanie Hyam being in more. She has an other-wordly quality that suits Who.

    bendubz11 @bendubz11

    That was incredible. Loved the storytelling, so many people’s futures left open for the future whilst tying off their current storylines. Definitely reckon it’s a good shout on the Master’s ring @wolfweed, there’s no way Missy would leave herself without a Plan B for if it all goes Pete Tong. The way they tied off the story of Bill/Heather was awesome, just brilliant.

    I think tomorrow I may have to watch WEaT and TDF back-to-back, reckon they can only get better when watched together.

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    As advertised on the Fan Show – By VG934

    Nick @nick


    re the ring. I couldn’t tell, but the focus on the hand holding does suggest something might have been handed over.

    Bluesqueakpip @bluesqueakpip

    @nick and @wolfweed

    The entire thing about the dematerialisation circuit was basically establishing that Missy does have some vague memories of things s/he thought were really important to remember.

    Personally, I’d reckon that getting shot in the back by your earlier self was something s/he might consider important… so there’s undoubtedly a Plan B. Which might be why both the Master and Missy were laughing their socks off. 😀

    tommo @tommo

    So, after carefully putting back my exploded mind i thought i’d leave a comment on my favourite Who forum.

    Loved the whole Cyber-Bill narrative and the wonderful way human emotional sub-plots are inter-woven in a way only Who can do.

    No.1 returns. The Crimbo episode is going to be ‘2 doctors’ scenario then it seems. What a way to send/welcome another Doc under a fresh tenure.

    Will Capaldi regenerate at the beginning so the episode is an intro to the new Doctor or will they delay it EVEN more. I assume the Xmas episode will be Moff’s last one?

    My only, slight, miniscule, tiny gripe would be the way the last 3 regenerations, for me, have been too drawn out imho. I find that it starts to lose it’s grip a bit. Not complaining though. As i said, it blew my mind. It usually does.

    I realise it’s an epic TV event and they wish to build tension but sometimes less is more…?  I stand by Ecclestone into Tennant as the best AG regeneration yet in terms of perfect pacing. We’ll see….

    Who is it going to be….?

    Merry Christmas 🙂



    Peter @peter

    Ok – Am I missing something here ? The Doctor set the control for the Cyberman to only attack people with 2 hearts. Now since that wasn’t turned back, why would the Cybermen be a threat to humans anymore ???

    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    Well I seem to have something in my eye. Sniff.

    That was great. There was maybe some stuff that didn’t quite work, maybe just a few too many things left hanging but the good more than outweighed the misjudged. Capaldi has never been better than he was tonight. I really, really don’t want him to go and I really like the idea of a Doctor refusing to go gentle into that good night.

    But I think I’m going to need another rewatch before cogent thought forms itself.

    (but @wolfweed @bluesqueakpip — I think Missy definitely did plan ahead and the ring idea is not unlikely. It would have been fun to see Simm regenerate into Gomez, but maybe there’s also another trick awaiting its reveal there too.)

    Nick @nick


    I assume he changed the software reference to 1 or 2 hearts

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    @peter – He didn’t switch the parameters, he expanded them…


    Thou dost protesteth too much…

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    2 girls kiss, riffing off the comic (2005)…….



    Peter @peter

    I just watched it again on iplayer. At 8:42 the Doctor clearly states he switched it from 1 to 2 Hearts – no mention of expanding it to both. Take another look 👀

    Mudlark @mudlark

    First impressions, though I feel a need to watch that again a s a p.

    This may not have been quite as good, technically speaking, as World Enough and Time, but in many ways I found it more emotionally gripping. Perhaps that response was coloured by the knowledge that this was Moffat’s and Capaldi’s penultimate episode, but I don’t think that was the whole of it.

    Capaldi was, in extremis, brilliant, and Michele Gomez no less so, conveying with subtlety the ambiguity of Missy’s wavering between the on-the-brink-of-redemption former friend of the Doctor and the attraction of her former self in the form of the Simm Master – and Simm here showed what he could have made of the Master had he not been pushed into that OTT performance.  Maybe, as @bluesqueakpip says, there is a plan B and s/he will somehow survive to be the bane of the future Doctor’s lives, but at the moment it appears Missy and the Simm Master are condemned to a paradoxical existence, with Simm Master regenerating into Missy, only for them to kill each other and recycle in an endless loop.  Even if, as @wolfweed suggests, Missy passed her ring to the Doctor, it is difficult to see how that cycle could be broken.

    Bill’s plight was beautifully conveyed by showing her as she saw herself whenever the story centred on her, and only revealing her as a cyberman when the viewpoint was that of another character. Her fate approximated to what Tolkien, in On Fairy Stories termed a ‘eucatastrophe’ – a sudden turn from what seemed like certain tragedy to hope. She is released from her cyberisation to roam the universe with Pilot Heather like Clara with Me, but with the option of being restored to human form – which leaves things open for next season.

    The Doctor, in his turn, faces what could be a final death combating seemingly insuperable odds ‘without hope, without witnesses, without reward’, because that is the essence of who he is. If he can save even a few children for however short a while, any sacrifice is justified.  But when he finds himself still alive in the Tardis he not only doesn’t want to go, he doesn’t want to change any more. It is undoubtedly to much to hope that, as a result, he regenerates into himself, and it probably would not work in the circumstances, but a girl can dream 🙂

    In the final scene, even though the rumours had led us to expect it, the appearance of the First Doctor out of the frosty mist came to me as a surprise at this point, and I confess that I punched the air. It even occurred to me to wonder if the regeneration sequence could come full circle and the thirteenth Doctor be the first; but that is just a flight of fantasy, I’m sure, and probably would not survive inspection in the light of day.

    For all that the episode was leading to the fall of the Doctor, the mood was leavened with some delightfully playful lines.  Missy: ‘I’m in two minds; fortunately the other one’s unconscious’; or, Master: ‘Is the future going to be all girls?  Doctor: ‘We can only hope’.




    JimTheFish @jimthefish
    Time Lord

    @wolfweed — good call. Seems to me that this episode had more than a few comic-related references. Cyber-Bill kept reminding me of Kroton and the reference to Planet 14 is an extremely geeky reference indeed….

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    @peter – It’s a bit of a conflicting statement:

    DOCTOR: …I only had time to change one detail  – a single number – 1 to a 2 – One heart to two hearts. I expanded the definition of humanity. Took ’em a while to update the net but here we go – Welcome to the menu!

    Now they think that we count as humans & they’re gunna fix that in a hurry!


    Mudlark @mudlark

    The question of the loss of 17 seconds on Floor 1056 remains open, but if anyone prefers not to see it as a continuity error, Missy and the Simm Master were not only together on the ship but touched several times – the last time fatally – and that alone could have caused a time distortion according to canon lore.

    Mudlark @mudlark

    @peter @wolfweed  I certainly took what the Doctor said to mean that he had expanded the definition of what constituted a human to include people with two hearts, not redefined it.

    For that matter, the people on the ship are Mondasians, so are terrestrial humans sufficiently similar, anatomically and genetically to appear the same to the cybermen tasked with identifying those suitable for conversion?  Note: I have never seen The Tenth Planet, so I’m unsure about such details.

    Incidentally, I thought the question of all the various discrepant accounts of the genesis of the cybermen was dealt with quite neatly by explaining it as convergent evolution – which might also account for why the Whoniverse is cluttered with remarkably humanoid species (I always had a soft spot for Alpha Centauri as the exception to that tendency)

    Serahni @serahni

    Going to watch it again tonight so still processing my thoughts but, overall, great episode.  Poor Bill but hooray for Heather!  The intrigue at the end makes Christmas seem such a long way away, very interested to see how the special turns out!

    Interestingly, we now seem to be at the Antarctic Snowcap Station following a Cyberman defeat, so it’s great to see the metal menaces get their time.  I love me some Daleks but the Cybermen were always so much more horrific to me given their origins.  They seem to be playing into what I said earlier about Thirteen mirroring the First in this new round of regenerations, and of course they set up reasons for why Thirteen doesn’t remember the meeting by explaining why Missy doesn’t remember Simm Master’s actions, (or does she?).  The Doctor has a history of meeting himself anyway, I wonder if they’re going to out-crotchety each other.  The battle of the grumpiest Doctor will be worth watching.

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    @serahni   I wonder if they’re going to out-crotchety each other.


    crotchety x2

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    JediJanine on twitter has all the deleted scenes from series 10 (from BBC America)…


    Here’s some of the music from TDF…

    lisa @lisa

    I just finished watching and it was a very  satisfying  episode but WEAT was definitely the

    absolute best of the season IMHO.

    Good grief Missy!   You turned your back on the Master!  What a dummy !

    Still your going out on a high note.

    Of course I will watch again and get thru all these comments and even peek at Reddit.

    As always I’m curious to read everyone’s  stuff  and  see what’s been  picked up.

    I wonder if I freeze the regeneration scene in  Antarctica will I make out the next Doctors face?

    He definitely had a young hand.   So my first bonkers theory for next season is that

    Missy regenerates into a even younger woman and becomes his companion?  That could be fun.


    winston @winston

    I thought that episode was crazy good! There was a feeling like the Magnificent Seven of brave strangers come to help a village fight an evil force after their children.  Nardole the computer genius ,amoung other talents, shone as a hero from start to finish in this and he lives to fight another day. I will really miss him.

    Bill also gets to be a hero and although willing to die beside the Doctor to save the children and herself she is released from her cyber-prison to go off with the Pilot Heather. Heather says she can make Bill human again if she wants and can even be home for tea. She is a pretty powerful alien. So Bill is safe for now.

    Missy after switching sides a few times also has an chance for redemption and she chooses it without reward and without witness but that chance is lost when the Master kills her. Will the Doctor ever know that she chose to stand with him or will we be the only ones who know? I found her ending the most tragic because of that.

    Everything Peter Doctor did was wonderful tonight. He broke my heart at times, I actually shouted at the TV when the cyberman was blasting him. The scene where he tries to convince the Missy and Master to stay will be with me for awhile and his words should be set in stone as words for all people to live by. The scene in the Tardis when many of his companions called out to him and he woke up repeating past Doctors will have to be rewatched again and again as I geek out. There was just so much happenning, I need to mull it over.

    Anyway, I really liked it, can you tell?

    Bilbo Baggins @bilbobaggins

    Watching a Cyberman crying for the Doctor on the battlfield was heartbreaking!

    GlasgowBoy @glasgowboy

    I watched the Lego Batman Movie straight after this and , honestly, it made more sense. I’m glad so many enjoyed it but I thought it was a poor finale, especially after last week’s episode which was excellent.

    Legiticus88 @legiticus88

    At least he got to see a “Sky on Fire” one last time.

    CountScarlioni @countscarlioni

    Wonderful, great stuff from all the principals, with PC and Michelle Gomez flying. It’ll take a second viewing and more to get to grips with TDF. An immediate thought is that there was something of a `Western’ feel to this one, just as there was to Rachel Talalay’s treatment of Hell Bent, although in a different way.  Here the Doctor is the sheriff doing the right thing. When the law has broken down he’ll stand and fight and won’t be driven out of town even though he can see the enormous odds he’s up against. Shades of Gary Cooper seeking help against the arrival of the bad guys in High Noon in the brilliant, and brilliantly delivered speech, when the Doctor implores Missy to stand with him.

    Fanboy SM is throwing lots of gifts to the fans as he departs, with the First Doctor the best of the lot. I also loved that the Doctor again shouted out Tom Baker’s first line about “Sontarans perverting the course of human history,” as he did after he came round from the bang on the head in Listen. Definitely echoes too of the regeneration in Logopolis, and the Second Doctor’s “No, no, no!” And tears very much to the fore again. The scene with Bill bent over what she believes is the dead Doctor reminded me very much of Sara Jane and the Third Doctor; “A tear Sarah Jane…” No doubt I’ve missed a lot of stuff too; following @jimthefish‘s point above to Planet 14, I had fun digging around to find what this referred to. Amazing and terrific that such an obscure reference was in. It doesn’t detract from a casual viewer’s experience and makes the fans happy.

    @wolfweed  Great spot on the ring!

    CountScarlioni @countscarlioni

    Oops. I should have watched Rachel Talalay on the Aftershow before posting above on the western feel to the episode, and not after…

    Missy @missy

    Watching tonight.  Tissues by my side. This series has flown by much too fast.

    So much eating going on.  I meant to mention that, but Crystal beat me to it.

    I watched the Q&A with Steven and Pearl finally.

    It has to be said, Mr. Moffat is a born comic. I burst out laughing when he said that when he would stand up when writing something exciting, because he couldn’t sit down and write something so exciting.




    MissRori @missrori

    My heart is so full right now I wish I had another!  😀

    I was one of those who figured Heather would be the means of saving Bill, and it was beautiful how it was handled.  And the sweet sorrow that the Doctor doesn’t know…there was such tenderness in his interactions with Cyber!Bill.  I wonder…Maybe he has a perception filter too, for those he cares about?  Like with old Clara in “Last Christmas “?  Worth thinking.

    Poor old Missy — evil truly does destroy itself in the end.  Until next time… 😉

    I didn’t expect Nardole to get a bittersweet end, but he earned it.  I wish him and Hazlan the best.

    The Twelfth Doctor doesn’t want to go; he’s so tired, and tired of changing….If I had as noble a soul as he showed tonight…I wouldn’t want to change either.  I’m going to miss him even more now…

    …when the time comes that is.  Not since Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon will a meeting of Grumpy Old Men be so anticipated! 😉

    And maybe Twelve will get his stars after all…


    MissRori @missrori

    Oh — while I was annoyed by BBC America’s ad breaks and Comcast continuing to cut off recordings before the show actually ends (had to DVR “Orphan Black” to catch the full ending), it was sweet to show that deleted scene from “The Pilot”.

    DonnaWho @donnawho

    I am again, like I was with the Tenth Doctor’s Regeneration, upset by the Doctor’s unwillingness to undergo the historical, essential and adventurous transformation.  We have been assured – since childhood I might add – that it is not like dying, that regeneration leaves us with the beloved Doctor we all love, with a different outer shell and new set of idiosyncrasies.  Then we get this from Peter Capaldi, whilst still suppressing our discomfiture over the similar, emotional reticence of David Tenant.  We need to feel that the Doctor isn’t dying.  We need reassuring at the end of a Doctor’s cycle, that it is the beginning of a new chapter, not the end of a book.  Feeling upset, uncomfortable and disappointed.

    DonnaWho @donnawho

    Tommo – hear, hear! Eccleston to Tennant was the best, because it was bitter-sweet, not just bitter – “I don’t want to go!” “I don’t want to change, ever again!”

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Party’s over, folks. Party’s over…….



    wolfweed @wolfweed

    Whovian Leap on twitter points out that 12 + 1 = 13


    Serahni @serahni

    This may end up a double post because, oddly enough, I edited my original to fix a mistake and it disappeared.  The thread still lists it as being the last update, but I do not see it.  Apologies if this goes up twice!


    @donnawho I can see where you’re coming from but I’m not sure I agree that’s what I want from Doctor Who. I have always been aware that he changes, always been prepared for those changes and the way they’ll affect his demeanor and, at time, choices. Many times I welcomed the changes because they’re what has kept the series going, the idea that you can recreate a character with the same fundamental motivation but so many different methods for getting there. Historically, the Doctor’s regenerations seem quite haphazard and come with the risk of lost information or, at least, lost interpretation. For a man who assumed he was going to die, I can imagine this incarnation has a few questions he’d like answered before he potentially forgets to ask them.

    More than that, I feel like this incarnation is mirroring Bill’s earlier lamentation about not wanting to go on unless it’s as himself. Perhaps, at this point in time with no further information to go on, it might just seem like selfish egomania but part of me wonders if The Doctor has not been a shade closer to the darkness this season and whether he is simply worried that he is headed somewhere he’d rather not go. Are we not in Valeyard territory by now according to lore? Was the whole point of the redemption of Missy to muddy the waters between good guy/bad guy? Without further context, I wouldn’t want to be too hasty about assuming his reluctance to regenerate has anything to do with personal attachment because it might very well be that he simply fears an incoming storm.

    Nick @nick


    Peter is number 14 though

    wolfweed @wolfweed

    @nick  Okay – 14 + 1 = 15


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