Oh Crap / Doctor Who
Given the stakes that are often at play in a series like this, pretty much everything and anything with enough of a brain to go Oh, Crap!
, has done so at one point or another. Here's a few such moments.
- A whole crapload of the show's Oh, Crap! moments can be brought to mind by one simple word. "EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EX-TER-MI-NAAAATE!!!"
- The Doctor has Oh, Crap! moments often enough that the TARDIS has a standard signal for them, the Cloister Bell. But only for very special Oh, Crap! moments. The TARDIS rings it when she detects that the universe is coming to an end.
- Or if she detects an imminent collision, or she's in danger of exploding. But those don't happen as often.
- Jamaica, in "The Smugglers", has been tricked into letting Thete and Kewper overpower him. Then he realizes Pike is going to kill him for his failure.
Captain! I beg thee! NO
- An Oh, Crap! moment from the Second Doctor is in "The Power of the Daleks" when he realizes that Lesterson has reactivated a dormant Dalek.
The Doctor: What have you done, Lesterson?!
- In "The Macra Terror", the Macra freak out when the Doctor has the Pilot on his side and is about to use the gas from their lifeline to blow them all to Kingdom Come.
- In part six of "The Enemy of the World", Giles Kent and Ramón Salamander are going into the so-called "records room", and Kent thinks Salamander is demonstrating Obfuscating Stupidity as regards an explosives room they had devised long before their falling-out. Kent reminds him of this room and then Salamander reveals that he is not Salamander but the Doctor. Kent is understandably perturbed — the Doctor is not supposed to know of their past connection.
- In "Inferno", the Third Doctor gets one whern he is about to leave UNIT with the TARDIS console. Before he goes, he tells off Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart in no uncertain terms. Then, he rematerializes... in the garbage heap next door, realizing that an irate Brig is within earshot...
- Another Dalek example, from "Day of the Daleks". It turns out that Jo (who's been captured) wasn't working on her own:
Controller: The girl referred to a companion in her own time zone. She called him... "the Doctor".
Dalek: Doc-tor? Did you say "Doc-tor"?!
- In "Invasion of the Dinosaurs", Grover and Whitaker have one when they realize that not only have their Chosen Few balked on learning what's really happening, but the Doctor has well and truly put the kibosh on their plans, and they and they alone are going back into the past.
- From "Robot": "You let Sarah go somewhere with Kettlewell?"
- "The Invasion of Time" is the definitive Classic Who example. After four episodes, the Vardans have been expelled from Gallifrey through copious amounts of mind-trickery; the Doctor, supremely smug with his success, addresses the cheering crowd with a victory speech. Puzzled at why the cheering abruptly stops, he turns around... and standing behind him is a Sontaran battle squad, who have been playing the Vardans for patsies, and have taken advantage of the weakened Gallifrey defences to stroll in and claim the place for themselves. Tom Baker's boggle-eyes were MADE for moments like this.
- In "The Ultimate Foe" when the Master reveals that the Valeyard is actually the embodiment of the Doctor's dark side, taken from a point after his twelfth incarnation. The look on the Doctor's face shows he knows full well what he's capable of—and this is long before the final events of the Time War.
- "Remembrance of the Daleks":
- The Doctor is always good for one of these. At the end of the first episode of the serial, in which the Doctor and Ace flee from a Dalek by going up the stairs, because Daleks can't climb stairs. Except, no, this one can.
- And just before that:
Ace: The operator?
The Doctor: Yes, the Daleks usually leave an operator on station in case of any malfunctions.
Ace: . . . and that would be another Dalek?
The Doctor: Yes . . .
- Mr. Parsonsnote just has time for a Big "NO!" when the Imperial Daleks kill him as a security risk.
- Mr. Ratcliffe has one when the Daleks reveal that they had played him like a violin and they never had any intention of sharing power with him.
- Doctor Who New Adventures time — The Dying Days apparently kills off the Doctor within the first third of the story. Then the villain of the piece has been tricked into ranting about his plans by the Doctor's companion despite knowing full well that doing so would offend his "honour" to the point of him executing her on the spot. She gets ready for the chop when a quiet voice says "it ends now", it's a full blown "oh crap" and "hell yeah" moment - as eventually the speaker reveals themselves, and you guessed it, it's the Doctor. Who is happily aboard the villain's ship and is merrily messing with everyone's plans. The stunned silence on everyone's behalf speaks volumes.
- In "A Fix with Sontarans", when the Doctor and Tegan see Jimmy Savile]] on the viewscreen. Of course, neither the screenwriter nor the actors knew the real reason Six and Tegan had the reaction they did...
- The Doctor's reaction to seeing Auton!Mickey's head melting, which will stop him from tracking the signal back to the Nestene Consciousness.
- When the Doctor sees that the Nestene Consciousness has brought the TARDIS down to its lair, and is going to activate all the Autons in London.
- "The End of the World": Lady Cassandra does this twice. The first time is when the Doctor exposes her as the villain, while she was in the middle of insulting the people she tried to kill behind their backs. The second time is when she realizes she's drying up without her moisturizing crew.
- "World War Three": The Slitheen at the climax, as a missile is about to hit 10 Downing Street.
- The actual reveal of the Dalek. For the Doctor, it's the first clue that the genocide that ended the Time War wasn't as complete as he thought it to be.
The Doctor: Look, I know Mr. Van Statten might think he's clever, but never mind him. I've come to help. I'm the Doctor.
Dalek: Doc . . . tor?
The Doctor: Impossible . . . !
Dalek: THE Doctor?!
(as the Dalek is revealed)
Dalek: EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE! EX-TER-MI-NAAAAAAAATE!
- When Rose believes they have escaped the Dalek by running up a flight of stairs. Adam mocks it and the soldier orders it to return to its cell. One word: "E-le-vate!"
- "Father's Day": The (Ninth) Doctor and Rose have just had a falling out, and he goes back to the TARDIS, to give both of them time to cool off. He opens up his little blue police box to find . . . it's a police box. Cue beat of sheer horror, followed by running back as fast as he can.
The Doctor: ROSE!
- "The Doctor Dances":
- The Doctor has a Crowning Moment of Awesome when he defeats a child-led zombie invasion by sending the child to his room. When the Doctor investigate a private hospital's records of the child's death, they uncover a recorded interview with him and a Room Full of Crazy zombie-child drawings. The Oh, Crap! moment? The realization that the taped interview ran out, and the child's voice is live, because the Doctor sent him to his room. This room.
- The moment with the typewriter. A small boy wants to do some typing, so he does. Nothing scary about that . . . until Nancy mentions the fact that he stopped typing a minute ago, but the typing was still going on. Not to mention that what was being typed was "Are you my mummy?" over and over.
- "Bad Wolf": The Doctor brings down the masking signal hiding the true force behind Satellite 5, revealing a Dalek ship. Then the camera pulls back to reveal dozens upon dozens of them. The Doctor's face says it all. And then it gets turned around in a Crowning Moment of Awesome, when the Doctor announces exactly what he's going to do about the situation:
'Cause this is what I'm going to do: I'm going to rescue her! I'm going to save Rose Tyler from the middle of the Dalek fleet! And then I'm going to save the Earth! And then, just to finish off, I'm going to wipe every last stinking
Dalek out of the sky! Dalek: But you have no weapons, no defences, no plan! The Doctor:
Yeah, and doesn't that just scare you to death
- "The Parting of the Ways": In the opening scene, it continues to go back and forth: first the Doctor confronts the Daleks: "I'm the Doctor, and if there's one thing I can do it's talk! I've got five billion languages and you've got no way of stopping me, so if anybody's gonna shut up, IT'S YOU!!" — and Daleks actually recoil. Then, seconds later, the God of All Daleks declares, "These words are blasphemy!" — the look on the Doctor's face as he realizes that the Daleks have found religion . . .
- "The Girl in the Fireplace": The Doctor is in Reinette's bedroom, and he realises that the clock's broken — so what's ticking?
- "Rise of the Cybermen": At the cliffhanger, the Doctor gets a good one when he realises the Cybermen aren't going to let them surrender.
- "Army of Ghosts": The Daleks manage to provoke this expression twice while having approximately ten seconds of screen time. First, the Doctor's face screams "Oh shit!" when the Cybermen tell him the Void Ship isn't theirs, then, when they actually appear, it's Rose's turn.
- The Doctor's recording is telling Sally and Larry about the Angels, but then the two realize neither is looking at the Angel that was outside.
- "Why's it pointing at the . . ." (lightbulb flickers) ". . . light?"
- "Utopia": For the Doctor, hearing this: You. Are. Not. Alone. (Along with every other character.)
- "Last of the Time Lords": The Master is unimpressed with Martha's speech until she ends with ". . . but with 15 satellites." The resulting "What?" could easily have been an "Oh shit" if this weren't a family show.
- "The Poison Sky": Although not exactly a traditional Oh Crap, General Staal and the Sontarans' reaction to Luke Rattigan's Heroic Sacrifice deserves a mention. The sheer confusion and disappointment at the realization that rather than dying "nobly" alongside one of the Sontarans' greatest enemies, they're going to be pointlessly wiped out by someone they considered beneath contempt, is nearly as close as such a Martyrdom Culture would come to a "Bloody hell, I'm going to die."
- "Forest of the Dead":
- The Doctor's reaction when he realizes that Other Dave has suddenly started repeating himself a lot.
- The Doctor has accrued such a reputation by now that many aliens see him as a mythological figure, causing many an Oh Crap when he introduces himself. Perhaps the greatest is that of the Vashta Nerada, made all the more impressive by the fact that they can express it whilst being a shadow on the floor. "Look me up." Indeed.
- Sweet holy hell, "Midnight". When the Doctor is taken over by the Midnight Creature and Sky is convincing the rest of the passengers to throw him to his death, confirming the Humans Are the Real Monsters that he's been trying desperately to avert all episode, the look on his face has to be seen to be believed. Super Bonus points to David Tennant for distilling all of the Doctor's thoughts into just his face, considering he was in a state of Mind Rape and couldn't move or speak in his own voice.
- Of course, part of the Mind Rape was that he couldn't really move his face either, so he was stuck with an Oh, Crap! expression the entire time. The fact that he's shaking like a leaf the entire time already hammers home how terrified he is, but it's the eyes that make the scene.
- "Turn Left":
- As Rose Tyler and Donna Noble get ready to send Donna back in time:
Rose: Good luck.
Donna: I'm ready.
Rose: One minute past ten.
Donna: 'Cause I understand now. You said I was gonna die, but... you mean this whole world. It's gonna blink out of existence. But that's not dying, 'cause a better world takes its place. The Doctor's world! And I'm still alive!
(Rose doesn't answer)
Donna: That's right. Isn't it? I don't die, if I change things, I don't die, that's . . . that's right, isn't it?
(Rose remains silent until . . .)
Rose: I'm sorry.
- Donna is exposed to an alternate reality in which she never met the Doctor, causing the events of "The Runaway Bride" to end with him dying and everything to be a dystopia. When she breaks free and returns to the normal reality the Doctor comments that she's brilliant and she suddenly remembers that a woman (Rose Tyler) from the other reality said that he had said that about her. Then she remembers what she said to her just before she "dies".
Donna: No, but she said it was all worlds. Every world. She said the Darkness is coming. Even here.
The Doctor: Who was she?
Donna: I don't know.
The Doctor: What did she look like?
Donna: She was . . . blonde.
The Doctor: What was her name?
Donna: I don't know.
The Doctor: Donna, what was her name?
Donna: But she told me to warn you. She said two words.
The Doctor: What two words? What were they? What did she say?
Donna: "Bad Wolf." What does it mean? Doctor, what is it? What's "Bad Wolf"?
- His face at the mention of the Arc Words is a look of sudden realization and an Oh Crap as he responds with;
The Doctor: It's the end of the universe.
- "The Stolen Earth":
- The look on just about everybody's face, (especially Captain Jack's) when they realize it's the Daleks, and they're coming this way!
- For her part, Sarah Jane actually wobbles as if her legs are about to give out. And then again when Davros reveals himself.
- The Doctor gets one too when he finds out in that not only is Davros still alive, he's made an new army of Daleks, numbering millions.
- And then there's the look on Davros' face when Dalek Caan says "No more". This is likely because Dalek Caan has done the one thing that Davros had specifically designed the Daleks to NEVER be capable of: Dalek Caan repented.
- Not to mention that that's exactly what Theta Sigma said the night before he supposedly immolated Gallifrey.
- "The Next Doctor":
(the Doctor is searching through a house)
The Doctor: There's one more thing I cannot figure. If this room's got infostamps, then maybe, just maybe, it's got something that needs infostamping . . . (he opens a door and finds a Cyberman) OK . . . (he closes it again) I think we should run.
- "The Waters of Mars": After the Doctor goes completely mental and ends up realising Adelaide has committed suicide to right the timeline, he gets a pretty epic one of these.
- "The End of Time":
- "The Eleventh Hour": Latest on the alien "Oh, crap, it's him" list is the Atraxi. After the 11th Doctor dresses them down for planning to destroy the Earth just to get an escaped prisoner, he asks them if they think the planet is under protection. Flash to a hologram showing Cybermen, Daleks, the numerous other aliens who have tried to conquer or destroy the Earth, and then a sequence showing every incarnation of the Doctor, ending with the latest walking through the hologram with a cheerful "Hello. I'm the Doctor." The Atraxi leave very quickly. Even more impressive with this is that the Atraxi are giant EYEBALLS, and still manage a complete and total "oh crap" expression.
- "Victory of the Daleks": The look on the Doctor's face says it all when the Daleks stop their Obfuscating Stupidity.
- "The Time of Angels": Whilst hunting a Weeping Angel in a six-story temple full of statues, it dawns on the Doctor that . . .
The Doctor: If [the race that built this place] had two heads, then why don't the statues?
- "Amy's Choice": The Doctor, Amy and Rory get one when they see on the TARDIS' monitor that they're drifting towards a cold star.
- Amy and Rory get another one later when the Doctor tells them he's going to blow up the TARDIS.
- "The Pandorica Opens":
- When the Doctor realizes that Stonehenge is broadcasting throughout the universe that the Pandorica is opening, and just who might be coming to their exact location (Daleks, Cybermen, etc.) His reaction: "Oh . . ."
- River gets a great escalating Oh, Crap! moment when her scanner shows the ten thousand-plus battleships in orbit around Earth. Alex Kingston does a terrific job of showing the rising Oh Crap-ness of the situation.
- River has another one when she realizes (from investigating Amy's bedroom) that the whole scenario in 102 A.D. is a trap for the Doctor, constructed from bits and pieces of Amy's past.
- The Doctor's reaction when River tells him the date she's been dragged to: the 26th of June 2010, otherwise known as the date the TARDIS explodes. The look on his face, and the way his voice softens for an instant as he tells her to "Get out of there now," is a suitable indicator of how real shit just got.
- The Doctor, on realising that the Eldritch Abomination the Pandorica was made to contain was him.
- "The Big Bang": River Song manages to give A GODDAMN DALEK an Oh, Crap! moment, and it's terrifying. To elaborate: in the Daleks have made the rather stupid mistake of shooting the Doctor. River assumes him dead, but the half-resurrected Dalek's guns aren't at full power. River encounters the Dalek responsible, levels her gun at him and coolly promises to shoot him right through the eyestalk. The Dalek remarks that she is an associate of the Doctor; records indicate she will show mercy. Cue River giving the Dalek the evil eye and growling, "I'm River Song. Check your records again."
River: Say it again.
River: One. More. Time.
- You can tell the Dalek's fear is going up with each iteration of "Mercy", despite being mostly monotonous. It goes from "Oh, Crap!" to "Please don't kill me!" to "DEAR DAVROS I'M GONNA DIE!!!"
- Turns out there's a very good reason for why it was so afraid. Series 6 reveals that River is the person history records as (supposedly) doing the one thing they never could: Kill the Doctor!
- "The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe": A more humourous one happens when Madge's interrogator Droxil confidently states that she won't use her gun. She then replies "Oh really? Well, I'm looking for my children!". His expression is priceless.
- "The Impossible Astronaut":
- There's a great one that's mostly played for laughs:
The Doctor: (reclining at the president's desk) Fellas, the guns? Really? I just walked into the highest security office in the United States, parked a big blue box on the rug. You think you can just shoot me?
River: (bursting out of the TARDIS, screaming) They're Americans!
The Doctor: (suddenly very frightened) Don't shoot! Definitely no shooting!
- Amy and the Doctor get a shared one in the cliffhanger ending. Canton is unconscious, and a familiar, ominous astronaut is slowly approaching. Amy, recognising the space suit as that worn by the killer of the future Doctor in 2011, grabs Canton's revolver and gets ready to shoot, hoping to prevent the Doctor's demise. But while she's facing the other way to load the gun, the spaceman lifts its visor to reveal the pleading face of a little girl, which Amy doesn't notice until it's too late. Screaming, she whirls around and fires a single shot. Both her and the Doctor's faces when they realise what has happened embody the heck out of this trope.
- "Day of the Moon":
- There are multiple Oh, Crap! moments involving the Silence: Any time someone's hand starts blinking red, indicating that they've seen a Silent but can't remember it; and the black tally marks on the characters' arms, which serve the same purpose. Amy gets a particularly effective one when she's looking for the little girl in the orphanage. She catches a glimpse of her reflection in a window, only to find that suddenly there are tally marks ALL OVER HER FACE. Then she slowly looks up . . .
- In the second part, the Doctor engineers the Silence to order their own genocide. Canton filmed a downed Silent saying "You should kill us all on sight" and splices it into the moon landing LIVE. The Doctor sums it up perfectly with "I think the word you're looking for right now is 'Oops'."
- Doubles as an Oh, Crap! moment for the Doctor too since he just pissed off the Silence.
- "A Good Man Goes to War":
- In answer to the question of whether Amy's child could have been conceived on the TARDIS, the Doctor gives the wonderful line "Rory wasn't even there at the beginning, then he was dead, then he didn't exist, then he was plastic, then I had to reboot the whole universe. Long story. So, technically, the first time they were on the TARDIS together in this version of reality was on their w . . . on their wedding night.".
- It's revealed that River Song is Amy's daughter, only from the future. Given what he and River got up to the last time they met, that Amy and Rory are standing right there when River tells him, and that Rory has a sword, it proves to be something of an Oh Crap moment for the Eleventh Doctor.
- "Let's Kill Hitler":
- "Night Terrors": The moment when the Doctor gets Alex to realize that George can't possibly be his son because Claire, his wife, can't have children. Cue look of horror on Alex's face — if he doesn't have a son, then who and WHAT is the child that's been living with him for ten years?
- "The Wedding of River Song":
- The Doctor can be heard speaking: "Imagine you were dying and a long way from home and in terrible pain. And just when you think it couldn't get any worse, you look up and see the face of the devil himself." And then we see who he's addressing: a Dalek. Who immediately starts screaming "EMERGENCY! EMERGENCY!"
- And those who had an Oh, Crap! over Ten going Time Lord Victorious will have an all-too-familiar reaction to Eleven's last words to the Dalek he kills, in the most cold sociopathic voice he has ever used: Hello . . . Dalek.
- A much more pleasant one comes when Madame Kovarian realises Amy is about to give full vent to her Mama Bear fury when the Doctor isn't there to stop her, and really is going to kill her.
50th Anniversary Specials
- "Dark Water": The Doctor and Clara both get this on realizing that the skeletons in the eponymous water are really Cybermen. But neither compare to the look on the Doctor's face when he learns that Missy is actually the Master.
- "The Magician's Apprentice": The Doctor has possibly his biggest Oh, Crap! moment to this point when he discovers that the kid he is currently trying to save from a minefield is actually Davros! He also has another two towards the end when he finds out Davros has brought him to Skaro, which has been completely rebuilt by the Daleks, and when Clara is about to be exterminated by the Daleks, which reduces him to begging Davros to save her.
- "Face the Raven"'s climax has one. As Clara's explaining that to protect Rigsy, she took on the chronolock, she suddenly realizes — and is helpfully reminded by Ashildr/Me — that "You can't cheat it altogether". This means that she MUST be executed within the next few minutes, much to her and the Doctor's horror.
- "Heaven Sent" has the most epic Oh, Crap! moment ever, courtesy of the Twelfth Doctor, which can make the previous Oh, Crap! moment look small in comparison. To clarify, the Doctor is teleported to an unknown location, which houses a creature he remembers back when he was young. When he arrives, he finds a skull of himself, as well as a word, written on the sand: "Bird". He finds several hints as to where he is supposed to go, finally reaching a wall extremely harder than diamond, which is blocking the way to Gallifrey, his home planet. At this point, he doesn't know what to do, but after remembering what was written on the floor when he arrived, he discovers that the word "Bird" is based on a section of a tale by the Brothers Grimm, entitled "The Shepherd's Boy", where a bird withers a diamond mountain over hundreds of years with its beak. This means that he must keep punching the wall with his bare fists until the creature kills him, and since Time Lords take longer than humans to die, he must make an agonising, bloody journey back to the teleporter, which actually contains a copy of him back from when he first arrived. In turn, he must provide energy for the teleporter to work and write the word down, essentially sacrificing himself, in order to create a long-lasting loop full of pain, death and suffering for the Doctor to keep punching the wall until it breaks. And do keep in mind that this ends up going to the four billion year mark, at least. The sheer scale of the whole plan sends the Doctor into a Heroic B.S.O.D., waiting to die, all while in his Mental World, he rants at a mental creation of Clara for having to endure this crap and being forced to find a way to win, when it is easy to lose. Luckily, Mind!Clara ends up getting him back on track.
- "Hell Bent" has Clara (it's a long story) experience such a moment when she learns exactly how long the Doctor was trapped in the cycle of events mentioned above.