Doctor Who 4:11 (BIG Spoilers)

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OH MY GOD

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BAD WOLF. What a blindingly timed broadside. BAD WOLF! Rose Tyler is back and she knows what BAD WOLF is really about! After all this time RTD is going to retcon his failure of series 1 and tie everything together. The theories are going to be true – nothing that we’ve seen is what we’ve thought it was, and clearly not Donna.

The Doctor and Donna are enjoying an interplanetary holiday, when Donna chances upon a fortune teller. She gives in to the hard sell but is caught by an ambush. The attacker transmutes history by preventing the Doctor’s Christmas Special first meeting with Donna. A beetle attached to her back (which she can’t see) makes it happen, and it leads immediately to the Doctor’s death. With no Doctor, Martha dies in the events surrounding ‘Smith and Jones‘, London dies when the Titanic crashes into it, Sarah Jane dies, as does Torchwood. But as England and Earth head towards dictatorship and disaster, they’re watched over by Rose Tyler for reasons she refuses to reveal to Donna, whom she visits and revisits. Eventually she reveals all, well almost all, and Donna realises what’s been done to her, but Rose also reveals the power reading from the beetle is nothing compared with the power coming from Donna; she’s far more than she appears to be. But to restore the prime reality she has to go back in time and rectify the minute change which led to the change in history, and restore the Doctor. Only thing is she has to sacrifice herself in the process, and whilst Rose never reveals her identity to her (or UNIT which she commands), she whispers two words as a message to the Doctor. And when reality is fixed she reveals them: BAD WOLF! And then the repeated meme of series 1 returns, visible everywhere and completely out of control. The Tardis responds with the cloister bell, showing the end of reality itself is at hand. To be continued…

A masterstroke of timing. The big reveal of ‘Parting of the Ways‘ never adequately explained Bad Wolf. With Rose warning of the oncoming Darkness, we now have an explanation of what happened when Gwyneth saw ‘The Darkness, the Big Bad Wolf’ in Rose’s mind. In ‘The Fires of Pompeii‘, when Donna’s mind was read, it was clearly showing the future – the same appears now to have happened with Rose in series 1. It also means that when the Doctor’s mind was read in Pompeii, it too was showing the future, so the future involves the Medusa Cascade. Now how does the Doctor’s sealing the time rift at the Medusa Casdade fit with what might yet come? Who/what is the Darkness and who/what was Bad Wolf all along? For that matter who took the Master’s signet ring and why?

Next week we have every single companion returning, we have a fully-fledged Torchwood crossover, we have Rose Tyler with a very big gun, and we can only hope that Davros (Bad Wolf?) makes his presence felt. He appears to have been manipulating events since before series 1, so it’s about time. The implication is that we needed a Little Red Riding Hood after all to trigger Bad Wolf into action. And the current companion with huge independent power she isn’t even aware of has red hair. Coincidence? Not this time. RTD’s finale is beautifully timed, and we can only hope that the expectations he’s set up this time can finally be adequately met. What a way to bow out!

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18 responses to “Doctor Who 4:11 (BIG Spoilers)

  1. I’m pleased, and surprised, at the amount of stuff the BBC managed to keep quiet about this years final four episodes. It has added a lot to the intrigue and expectation.

    Bad Wolf… well, I remember a conversation we had after series 1 when it didn’t feel like it was finished with. There were mentions of Bad Wolf and the approaching darkness through series 2 as well, and a couple in 3 I think. Certainly the Toclafane were afraid of the darkness coming across the stars in last years finale. Were there not also mentions of the darkness approaching in Torchwood?

    Remember as well that in series 1, the Bad Wolf corporation which was, potentially, the point from where Rose got the name, was run by the Dalek Emperor in order to build up the Dalek fleet. There was the controller, though she was a front for this. In that case, we were going back to somewhere we’d been before during the series, but again with a very different outcome to what the Doctor thought it should have been.

    Would sealing the rift at the Medusa Cascade have been the end of the Time War?

    Anyway… I thought Turn Left was a fantastic episode, Catherine Tate should by now have proved all her doubters wrong, and if that didn’t do it, then I have to wonder what would.

    One other thing that I’m not sure is significant, have we seen the Tardis lit all red before? I didn’t think we had until Steve reminded me last night – the paradox machine. The time before that when we heard the cloister bell, it looked normal.

  2. achk! I read tthe spoiler, now i have to wait weeks to even understand!!! heh oh well it’s not like I was just going to skip this post for the next month.

    … but I won’t talk about it!

  3. wait… are they going to undo the Maters death and bring him back? gah i hope not that thread should truly die already

  4. Oh God you’re right that was never explained, either, along with whoever it really was that pushed the Tardis into Rose’s parallel universe. It isn’t a retcon at all – it’s been a grand story arc after all.

    I’ve just read a rather spoilery website, which has ideas which all fit precisely together. So the Earth is stolen by Davros next week, and he’s presumably nobbled the Shadow Proclamation somehow in order to get away with it. He’s been stealing planets for a long time (which has been referred to often) – I wonder which other planet which appears no longer to exist might be in the collection…

    It doesn’t answer who/what Bad Wolf actually is, although it theorises the Doctor might get trapped in the Medusa Cascade, requiring Donna to go ‘Bad Wolf’ like Rose, who might well have been manipulated after all into killing the Dalek Emperor in series 1. Davros after all would want to cut down on his potential rivals. It is noticeable now though that we have room for ‘the Darkness/Big Bad Wolf’ as Gwyneth saw (which turned ou

    You’re right too – conclusions since series 1 haven’t been at almost any time what they were supposed to be. I think they’ve been subtly manipulated since the start. The site I saw suggests next week we’ll find out how because the secret of Eight regenerating into Nine will be revealed. Somehow I suspect his memories of killing the Daleks and Time Lords won’t be as accurate as he believes…

  5. I’ve heard a rumour that John Simm has done some very brief acting for the two part finale, but what it amounts to is anyone’s guess. My suspicions are:

    – a flashback to the events of series 3, perhaps explaining why the Toclafane were indeed so scared;
    – the restoration of Gallifrey will in some way restore the Master’s body and he’ll be imprisoned there (was his essence stored in the ring?);

    As others have said though, I really hope that RTD doesn’t try to bite off more than he can chew! He already has a hell of a lot to do in two episodes! Bad Wolf suggests lessons are being learned – hopefully the biggie from series 3 is as well.

  6. I enjoy story arc’s and have always enjoyed the fact that Dr. Who writers keep things in canon for the most part. But it would be nice for them to kill off a couple of the old villains and start some new threads. I mean how many times can the Master regenerate!! but it’ll be interesting if it is indeed Davros (who by all rights should be dead 4 times over at least) Still I have been predicting the return of Gallifrey for awhile, and it stands to reason that if the Dr’s memories have been altered or if he’s been living in an alternate reality since the Time War that we could see a return of the Time Lords. However they better make them bad ass! and not pushovers just walk around with weird hats on

    Question Weren’t he toclafane simply scared of the end of the universe? Trying to travel to a place where others might still exist?

  7. I remember that did come up in series 1 – the very strong possibility that the entire ‘prime’ reality in which the Doctor is currently adventuring was itself a parallel universe into which he’d been shunted after the Time War. History keeps being wrong – well, that would be right because it’s not the Earth he knows, which is why there’s no sign whatsoever of Gallifrey.

    It looks a little much now though. Having seen the first of the teaser trailers for Saturday, it’s now 100% clear that it is indeed Davros, and that he’s been stealing planets, one of which looks likely to be Gallifrey and I’m wondering if it’s the Shadow Proclamation which has kept it invisible from the Doctor.

    I think the Master isn’t the point here – he himself is another dupe in all likelihood, although I haven’t figured the ring out. If Harriet Jones has it, what motivation would she/the Master have to ally with Davros and/or the Daleks? You’re right though, it’s been a failing in the franchise that there’s been this overreliance on classic villains, when RTD said at the start that this was going to be all-new. Ah well, Steven Moffat’s track record for new continuity is unmatched, so I’m not really worried from 2010 onwards.

    And we still haven’t found out what Bad Wolf really was all about yet…;)

  8. well I am three weeks behind you so theres tons of nuance I have missed. However I am going to guess that the shadow proclamation is in fact a pact made between the time lords and a few other of the “truly ancient” beings in the universe however if the time lords truly were destroyed than the pact may very well be null and void.
    It’s already been shown that Time Lords can be hidden from one another, however the several of the species they encountered like the Sontarans have referenced the Time War, so it seems to have happened at least. Hmmm Actually you know it could have been the reverse it’s the time lords that are trapped in an alternate dimension ever since the time war and Davros is trying to populate a new dimension. thus his need to steal planets. That would explain things better

  9. It would indeed. It wouldn’t surprise me much if the pocket dimension he’s hiding the planets in is Rose’s new home, hence her knowing about the approaching Darkness first. That then suggests that whoever forced the Tardis there in the first place probably wasn’t Davros, but someone who needed Rose to be there in the first place. Hmm just like for the killing of the Emperor Dalek. So Bad Wolf may still not be a person, it may be someone who even now hasn’t shown their hand.

  10. Like Donna! unless they’ve covered that already. It doesn’t explain how the Dr didn’t notice this when he tried to send a message to Rose last time. Or why Rose didn’t notice this when she consumed the time vortex. That part doesn’t make much sense at all.

    Often we forget that the Tardis is sentient, and goes where it goes for multiple reasons. One could even say that the reason the DR spends so much time on earth isn’t because he enjoys it over all places but because the Tardis loves humanity. But I think that might be going to deep into the mythology.

  11. I really do think the darkness is important. In the episode of Torchwood “They Keep Killing Susie” right at the end Susie says “There’s something moving in the dark, it’s coming Jack Harkness it’s coming for you” and of course we all know Jack is in the next to episodes. Also, when Susie was alive again she said something about there is nothing after death, but your not alone in the darkness. And then when Owen was resurrected he always said the was something waiting in the darkness. I know people may be all “oh thats Torchwood not Dr Who” but we know there is a TRUE crossover this time, although I think it looks like the Doctor and the Torchwood team are seperate, the episode just shows what they both are going through, from the trailers. And then there was the Toclafane who were afraid of the darkness coming across the stars, which is what Rose said. Maybe Davros is the darkness, it’s metaphorical, and coming across the stars, and all the stars going out is showing all the planets he has taken over, gaining speed now the time is right, “The 21st Century is when it all changes”. But then we had the planet Midnight, which is an actual planet, in darkness to life because the light was so dangerous, but how can we know there was no life if no one can look at it for extended periods of time? The being that posessed Skye could have been the thing that was waiting in the darkness after death.

    Or maybe the darkness is the Shadow Proclamation, you know, a group of shadows creating a mass darkness blocking out the stars and planets, effectivley destroying them from the eye.

    I really don’t understand the Medusa Cascade. It just isn’t saying anything to me, I know all the references and stuff I just can’t link it! Unless you get mythology/The Fires of Pompeii but a) Pompeii was a real event (just not the prophecy bit) and b)correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t Medusa ancient Greek, not Roman? The fact that I don’t get it probably means it is incredibly important.

    Oh and the Bad Wolf, I really do think it is simply a message that Rose left wherever she went, just as she said, to remind herself of the end of the universe. Because anytimes Bad Wolf has been mentioned if the Doctor hadn’t done something it would have effectivley lead to the end of the universe – but not really only the end of human life, and we’re not the universe so that blasts that one before it was even developed (sorry I have a habit of answering my own questions). But maybe it is simply a message, to tell the Doctor Rose is back, becuse he doesn’t know, or didn’t until Donna told him Bad Wolf, and Donna probably wouldn’t have realised that the woman was Rose, or not until it was too late anyway, because her memory of the parallel universe was too murky. If it had been clear combined with her knowledge fo the actual universe all would have become clear, which begs the question, WHY IS IT NOT ALL CLEAR FOR US?

    And then theres the hole that is the whole thing, ever since series one is an parallel universe the Doctor had created around him after the time war, which would explain why we would be to learn more about the time war. And parallel universes have been created around a set of circumstances twice in this series. Thats too complicated for me to think of right now.

    I shall leave this rubbish where it is and see if anyone can make any sense of my drabble.

  12. weve all seen the judoon in the trailers..and i think that they are the shadow proclomation and are coming for the daleks or summet to do wiv tht..im not sure but none of u hav mentioned anythin to do wiv the judoon so i jus thought id say them..btw bridget..nice thinkin

  13. The Cascade is probably how Rose returns. The Doctor sealed the other rift trapping her in the parrell universe, and the daleks and the cybermen in the void.

    For a short time, Rose could see all of time and space, Everything that is, everthing that was, and everything that could be. She would have known about her posssible “stranding” and arranged a failsafe allowing her to return through another rift, possibly the Medusa Cascade.

    Since the phrase “Bad Wolf” has reappeared, I can only assume that this is Rose during her time as when she had absorbed the Vortex. She could have then existed, exsists, will exist, at anywhere, any time, any place. The words were scattered through time to lead her back to the moment when she ended the time war. In this way, technically, she would not need to return from Earth2 simply because in one form she was already here. Perhaps this Rose is “lost” still trying to find her way back to that moment.

  14. ‘BAd Wlf’ is surely the FDenris Wolf that destroys the universes in the Norse Ragnarok?

  15. I was originally inclined to think not, but I wonder if you’ve caught a central plot point here.

    The Doctor could easily stand in as Thor – the protector of Earth. The Norse Gods could easily be the Time Lords, who knew their time was at an end because it was prophesied (and prophesy IS something we’ve heard mention of). The Master is Loki, which would explain mention of his possible passing appearance today or next week. Thor/Doctor will die, but the get out clause will be the hand – Ten will re-form from it, and he may know it’s needed for just that purpose. Bad Wolf for him this time meant the end of the universe – Ragnarok. So does that make Rose Bad Wolf/Fenrir whether she wants to be or not? It would mean that Rose is the Master’s daughter. Hmm. Bet that would piss poor old dead Pete off…;)

    So is Davros the Midgard Serpent or Surtur? Being the Midgard Serpent and a stalking horse for a far more dangerous villain would be a nice twist, and this whole scenario isn’t out of the question. Normally if something is good enough for Stan Lee to use, it works pretty well for RTD too…

    Just looking at more of the Ragnarok legend, the stars even burn out and vanish from the sky, plunging the Earth into darkness (there’s that word again). If this is true, I expect to see the Master appearing this week, as the darkness will free Loki (from the ring I suppose). But who does Donna represent and who would be Odin?

  16. Not sure if anyone has mentioned it but in episode 12 Donna is wearing a large silver ring that is generally kept out of focus but they make a point of showing it … it pretty much looks like he Master’s ring… incidentally she hasn’t worn a ring in any other episodes this season so it might be a clue plus Dalek Kahn (or whatever is name) when talking about the Dr says ‘he is the three-fold man’ – are we going to see a new regeneration, a possible appearance of master taking a regeneration for himself and also a possible growth of the David tennant Dr from his own hand?

  17. @ Alistair – I did see it, but I’m not convinced it’s the Master’s. I think that’s a red herring and the Master will reappear in the specials. However your interpretation is the only one that’s tried to make sense of the ‘three-fold man’ – 10 incarnations, possibly splitting in half on Saturday – where’s the three unless this regeneration was manipulated for someone else’s gain?

    Oh hang on if the regeneration energy gets stolen by the hand, maybe the ring follows suit…?

  18. lory broadhead

    what i would like to know if donna had a bug on her back this whole time why did the doctor not notice it but it wads referenced in so many shows. or was just part of the reality for herself and not him.

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