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Headscratchers / Doctor Who S35 E10 "Face the Raven"

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    Tattoo location 

  • If the tattoo is meant to show how long someone has to live, why put it on the back of their neck where they can't see it? Rigsy might have died without even noticing it.
    • Not quite a problem if you're living in the trap street society. You'd already know you were punished, and you'd be tortured with the added need to ask your friends and loved ones to check how much time you have left. You can't go anywhere with your neck exposed lest you'll feel everyone's gazes on you, as a constant reminder that you're on borrowed time. And even that might not work. However, Rigsy is an outsider whose memory was wiped with the Retcon drug. It is a miracle that he noticed, unless Ashildr/Me put a suggestion in his mind prior to the mind wipe where he would know to check the tattoo. It's also possible that his fiancée noticed it herself, although she isn't there when Rigsy makes the call. At this point, the Plot Hole was generated by the writer's need to have Clara be able to hide it, although why it wasn't put on her chest or stomach to that achieve effect is also another question.
    • Considering we don't know how Rigsy got home after his first encounter with the Street, it's entirely possible that Ashildr and some human-looking aliens dropped him off at his apartment, still addled by Retcon, and made sure to leave him in a room with mirrors so he'd notice.
    • It's very clearly stated that Rigsy's fiancée noticed it when she woke up that morning.
    • It's actually quite brilliant, when you think about it. You can't see it for yourself, you must always ask someone else to tell you the time, showing your mark, while you could have kept it secret if you could see it for yourself. Also, being on your back, only people behind you can see it, meaning you will always feel people staring and judging you but you won't actually see them.


    Stasis chamber 

  • Why wasn't the stasis chamber considered when Clara had less than 10 minutes to live? It's not even a guarantee that it would have worked, but to have it brought up as a non-viable option would have been worth a few seconds, and to really highlight how hopeless the situation is. As it is, it's a plot device that could have been a possible means to save Clara but got looked over.
    • Stopping time for Clara wouldn't stop the clock for the chronolock entity, though. All that would change would be that she'd be unconscious when she died.
    • So why not just pick up the raven's cage and drop it into stasis instead? Or otherwise trap the shade inside it? Surely it'd be worth a shot to at least have Clara try and lead it into the thing when it came for her.
    • The thing doesn't need the raven, it just needs a physical host to interact with the world. Get rid of the Raven and it will simply choose another one. As for why not imprisoning it in the stasis field, its described as being outside normal space and time, its possible nothing would actually contain it.

    Passing the chronolock back 

  • Clara got the chronolock passed to her from Rigby, why not just revert it back to him and let Ashildr/Me cancel it like she said she would? Clara seems to have gotten killed for no good reason.
    • The terms of Ashildr's deal to spare Rigsy seem to have been specifically for him, alone. Alternately, the terms under which the chronolock administers justice may make a special exemption that allows a pardon if a convict is declared innocent, but that wouldn't help someone who was never accused of a crime to begin with.
    • Ashildr clearely states that now she's cut off the deal since someone else has been involved. That wouldn't change if Clara gave it back to Rigsy (or anyone else), it'd only have meant that he would have been the one to die. And Clara would have never agreed to let anyone else die in her place.
    • Also note the explanation for what happens when the chronolock is accepted is stated as "the death is locked in" which sees to imply that once been accepted it can't be passed to anyone else.
    • In the original script, Rigsy tells Clara to pass it back to him and Ashildr tells him that she can't.


  • The "normalcy" of the inhabitants of the Trap Street is projected psychically by the worms in the lamps, which cause people to see their surroundings in terms of what they consider normal. This would obviously cause 21st Century humans to see the inhabitants as human... but would The Doctor react to the psychic projection in the same way? Maybe he could always see all the inhabitants as they really are, given that his idea of "normal" is quite a bit wider than that of the inhabitant of London.
    • It's possible that being in London he expects to see humans. Also, Ashildr distracted him for a moment which allowed him to see a Cyberman, given every time the Doctor has met a Cyberman they've been remorseless killing machines his brain might not consider a peaceful Cyberman "normal".
    • The Lurkworms may not construct a separate illusion for each individual, but a single consensus-reality that's plausible to all witnesses. Seeing the inhabitants as a bunch of humans is a reasonable compromise between the expectations of the Street's residents, who know they're on a human planet, and human trespassers, who aren't expecting to see aliens at all.
    • It's also possible that everyone sees members of their own species. The Cybermen see Cybermen, the Sontarans see Sontarans, etc. Might be for the best, since some of the species present are not known for playing well with others, and even though they know it's an illusion, it might help them cope. Of course, that means the Doctor is seeing Time Lords, but they are basically indistinguishable from humans.

    Trap Street and Zygons 

  • Why do the Trap Street residents look down on the truce-locked Zygons? Yes, the Zygons have to hide who they are in public, sort of, but they have their privacy, and the whole world, and not all misdeeds are responded to with imminent death.
    • If the residents didn't dislike having to hide their nature, they wouldn't be on the Trap Street. There are plenty of aliens living undercover on Earth besides Zygons; goodness knows, the Doctor's encountered hundreds of them over the years. Mayor Me's refugee camp is specifically for the aliens who either don't want to blend in or aren't capable of doing so.
    • In terms of the storytelling, it was also necessary to keep the Zygons separate so that the Doctor could use them as a threat against Trap Street.
    • Sour grapes, probably: the Trap Street's refugees aren't able to leave it and must live under threat of the Raven, and the Zygons don't. Naturally the Street-residents are going to resent the Zygons for their comparative freedom, and dis them whenever they can.

    Forgiving Bonnie 

  • How was the Doctor so quick to forgive Bonnie, who could've killed Clara, but not Ashildr? Is Clara really so much more special to him than everyone else that he would call in UNIT, the Daleks, and the Cybermen? Yes, when Amy was taken he called in his allies, but here he's threatening someone who he twice aided with even his other greatest enemies. Someone who he knows is immortal, but with a finite memory, so he is actually suggesting he have his enemies torture her for the known remainder of time, while she may at some point forget what the cause of this even was.
    • This is the second time that Ashildr put the lives of others at risk and foolishly made ill-advised deals with parties that she knew very little about. Finite memory or not, you'd think the last time would've made enough of an impression on her. Plus, her aim was to trap the Doctor by using his friends and his concern for them against him. Bonnie messed with him only once and she ultimately spared Clara's life, earning the Doctor's forgiveness. Ashildr helping to cause Clara's death, the method she used, and no guarantee that she won't do it again mean she's going to be on the Doctor's bad side for a very long time.
    • That assumes that he'll ever forgive her. There's no indication he's any closer to releasing the Family of Blood from their eternal suffering!
    • Moreover, wanting to cause Clara's death is very different from actually succeeding.
    • The forgiveness is also a direct response to Bonnie making statements that invite such a response. At no point does Ashildr ask for forgiveness. Also, as noted, Bonnie did not kill Clara. She didn't even put a mark on her. Had she killed Clara or injured her, the Doctor's response may well have been different.
    • The Doctor's state of mind can be traced to all of Ashildr's actions in the episode. She manipulated an innocent party into coming to the street, framed him for murder and put a death sentence on him to lure him into a trap, had desperate people executed to keep the peace through fear, planned on sending him off to his death (she might not know the confession dial only triggers on his death but that only mildly mitigates the blow), and got Clara killed for a vaguely defined promise of peace that probably will never come. He's probably thinking that he should have just let her die to begin with. Also, she's not immortal at all; she can never age but he makes it clear she can still die if injured enough, so he's just threatening her with death. And the destruction of everything she's ever cared about for good measure.
    • Ashildr's actions, considering the Doctor's kindnesses to her, are disgustingly ungrateful! Yes, she's functionally immortal with all the sorrows that come with it, but the Doctor saved her village when SHE provoked the Mire, and saved HER life when he really didn't HAVE to. He understood her suffering as well as he could, and tried to help in a variety of ways — he left her the second medkit, he kept tabs on her over the centuries as she eventually did him, helped steer her from the path of becoming a complete sociopath, and gave her a new meaning and purpose to life in "The Woman Who Lived". And still she thought so little of him that she was willing to betray him to whoever dangled a carrot in front of her. This whole experience has reminded the Doctor that No Good Deed Goes Unpunished, and given him reason to believe that his whole identity as the Doctor is an idealistic sham that does no actual good in the end and leaves him suffering, as she leaves him completely bereft by handing him over to his enemies possibly to be killed with not so much as an "I'm sorry" or "Thank you" for the good he did.
    • Also, consider each villain's way of thinking:
      1. The Doctor understands Bonnie's reasoning, having been through similar experiences in the Last Great Time War. He can see that she and the other rebels are chafing under an unfair system that's just the best that can be managed at the time, and her gut anger means that she can't see the big picture. She's not targeting the Doctor, Clara, etc. for personal reasons; they're just on the wrong side and impersonating Clara is the quickest way to sabotage UNIT and get the Osgood Box. And she's so convinced of her rightness that she'd risk herself and her whole kind going down in a blaze.
      2. Ashildr does keep the diverse population of the trap street in line, but clearly there's need on the street she could be finding a way to address — it's just easier to kill off anyone who's driven to crime to help themselves or others. Execution by quantum shade means a cruel, painful death. Where Bonnie never considered the suffering of individuals, Ashildr sees them suffer all the time at her hand and doesn't care; she is living comfortably. When she is approached by a (can't stress this enough!) unknown and likely untrustworthy enemy of the Doctor to trap and hand over someone whom she knows personally has done a great deal of good, downsides and all, she lets her grudge over his saving her life take hold — manipulating him, handing him over, and hoping for the best with that "peace" thing. If it went awry, would she go down with the ship the way Bonnie would? Age might also be a factor: She could have used her knowledge and experience of centuries to become a benevolent, wise ruler, but didn't.
    • BUT Ashildr didn't plan to kill Clara (or Rigsy for that matter). She had no idea that Clara would be foolish enough to take the lock on herself, and if there had been a way to save her she would have used it. Also, she doesn't actually remember any of the things that should make her want to not act this way - reading about an experience isn't going to have as much of an impact as what you remember, and right now she's focused on the street.
    • Assuming she has no idea Clara might do such a thing is a bit much, if you consider she's probably seen plenty of condemned Street residents' loved ones begging to take the mark from the raven's designated targets, over the generations. How certain can she be that Clara doesn't do that sort of thing all the time? The last time they met, Clara got herself abducted by the Mire because she tried to intervene, despite the Doctor telling her to stay under cover; if Me actually has kept tabs on the Doctor, she's surely learned that Clara takes crazy risks by now.
    • Finally, the Doctor gives second chances but rarely thirds, and Ashildr has thoroughly squandered his rescue of her in "The Woman Who Lived" with her actions. Given that she still hands him over to his enemy (see below) and never does anything to earn his forgiveness in the denouement of this season, she really is lucky to get the happy ending she does.
    • Re: forgiveness. This was established earlier in the season in "The Zygon Inversion". If the Doctor is willing to forgive Bonnie, he will forgive Ashildr. "Hell Bent" never gets into this, though it's clear by the end that Clara, at least, has made peace with Ashildr. Which means if the issue were to arise, the Doctor will do, based upon that, if nothing else, so long as Ashildr proves to be a good companion to Doctor!Clara. Until such time as this is addressed further (if it's addressed further), there is nothing on screen to indicate whether or not the Doctor has forgiven Ashildr. There is certainly no justification for him doing so immediately after Clara's death, especially as the plot against him had yet to play out. But given the events of "Hell Bent", odds of forgiveness are probably high. This assumes the Doctor actually remembers enough details of these events to warrant it.
  • "I know that face." That's why he forgave Bonnie.
  • Bonnie was a frustrated teenager having a hissy-fit. She and her fellow rebels were too young to know any better. Ashildr, OTOH, has lived for centuries and should have more common sense than that.

    Transferring the tattoo 
  • Why was Clara so insistent on taking over the quantum shade/chronolock tattoo personally? With the help of the TARDIS they could have easily found a dying terminally ill or wounded person somewhere somewhen (assuming the tattoo is locked to a person's individual timeline and time-traveling does not meddle with the countdown, which comments by the doctor that it can find you across time and space seem to be implying) who wanted to suffer no longer and passed the chronolock on to them and no named character would have had to die at all. Hell, even without time-traveling they should have been able to find such people in a hospice in London somewhere in the time they had left since finding out it could be passed on to someone who agreed willingly. But for inexplicable reasons, that possibility is never brought up by anyone.
    • Because they can't leave the street without its inhabitants trying to erase their memories, and they can't fly the TARDIS without the Doctor — and the Doctor would never just let someone else die when he firmly believes he can save everyone. Likewise Clara wouldn't let somebody else die because she's too much like the Doctor.
    • Finding a terminally ill suffering person who wants euthanasia and granting it to them is not "letting someone else die" at all. Neither the Doctor nor Clara want people to suffer painfully and pointlessly at the end of their lives. The memory erasing by the means of the retcon drug et al. is only ever threatened, but it's never actually shown how it would be implemented against a Time Lord so we have to take Ashildir's word on it being a insurmountable deterrent to the Doctor.
    • It might not work against a Time Lord, but the Trap Street residents demonstrated when the trio first arrived they can hold people in place, so if they attempted to leave there's no doubt they would be stopped since Ashildir's trap won't work if the Doctor leaves and she has a cover story of why she won't let him leave yet.
    • Finding a terminally ill person who wants euthanasia may be possible. Finding one who wants it so badly, they'll willingly accept a death that's agonizing enough to intimidate Cybermen? Not so easy.

    Doctor and the tattoo 

  • Why doesn't the Doctor volunteer to take the chronolock off of Clara? She might not be able to return it to Rigsy, but nothing said it couldn't still be transferred to a new person — just that someone had to take it. The Doctor likely would have survived the raven by regenerating, or just using his energy to revitalize his current self, but instead he chooses to let Clara die and thus willingly moves towards becoming consumed by Unstoppable Rage. It seems out of character for someone who all season was willing to do anything to save her or avenge her death if need be (a article argues it makes Clara's sacrifice more significant, to say she was a better Doctor than the Doctor himself by making the sacrifice, but still...). Was he confused by the process in the heat of the moment? Would a quantum shade not have worked on him and thus have to be transferred again? Or...does he know more about the whole plot to capture him than he's letting on? Did he know it would kill him for good — and thus open the confession dial, which apparently contains some kind of Dark Secret it's best not to let the universe know about right now? This might be related to his willingly giving up his TARDIS key (also broached in the article). In that case, it's a Sadistic Choice and his actions make more sense. (It wouldn't be surprising if "Heaven Sent" reveals that indeed there was more to the crisis than meets the eye.)
    • There is also the question of whether Clara would have accepted to give it to him. Given her frame of mind, she likely would not have wanted the Doctor to die in her place. After all, she had a hard enough time to accept this regeneration, so she may not have wanted to go through it again with the added bonus of survivor's guilt. And that's counting on the regeneration to trigger - we have been shown more than once that there are ways to permanently kill a Time Lord, and Clara may not have wanted to take the risk of the Shade being one of them.
    • Most likely, he was going to offer to take it, but Clara cut him off from that by saying that she already knew everything he wanted to say.
    • That's not what he was going to say. In the context of the scene, he was going to say "I love you" or equivalent. The scene was written as a parallel to Rose and Ten's goodbye in "Doomsday" where the Doctor was also prevented from saying it.
    • Or it can only be transferred once, so the Doctor wouldn't have been able to take it from Clara even if they'd both been willing.
    • This is explained in the episode. It doesn't just require someone to accept it. It requires the current owner to voluntarily give it up. Even if she could (the script implies it can only be transferred once), Clara was not willing to give it up to the Doctor at that point because she was determined to accept responsibility for her actions and regardless of whether you believe she just saw the Doctor as her best friend, or as the great love of her life, either way she wasn't going to sacrifice him for a mistake she made. Keep in mind that the series has established many times in 52 years that regeneration is not a guarantee and most recently, "Before the Flood" reminded us that the Doctor can die permanently. The damage done by the raven could be of the sort to prevent regeneration. Consider that the Doctor is already familiar with the quantum shade when he arrives on Trap Street. If he was immune as a Time Lord he could have taken the tattoo off Rigsy right then and there, if not back in the TARDIS.

    Ashildr not recognising the Doctor 

  • When Ashildr first appears she doesn't recognize the Doctor, asking, "Who are you?" and saying something about her infinite life/finite memory. Which is ridiculous, because not only he is arguably the most important person she's ever known, but she actively conspired to bring him to the trap street! And, indeed, moments later she's talking about him like she does know exactly who he is and nobody says anything about how weird her temporary amnesia was.
    • She recognized him, she just pretended ignorance to conceal her agenda. The Doctor probably assumed that either she was taunting him for staying away from her so long (again!), or her overloaded memory needed jogging.
    • This observation is based upon an error. At no point in the episode does Ashildr ever ask who the Doctor is. She recognizes him and Clara right away. What she forgets (or chooses to forget) is her real name.

    Filtering the Janus 
  • Every other creature in the trap street is masked by the worm filter; why aren't the Janus? Even after knowing the true nature of the other inhabitants, they all appear human apart from minor flickers, but both Janus have clearly visible second faces throughout.
    • Possibly the Janus are unable to disguise themselves for some reason. It would explain why Anah felt it necessary to play a Sweet Polly Oliver with her child, rather than simply conceal her own species and the girl's outright.
    • It may not have been necessary because, save for the second face, the Januses look human. The filter was only used for species like the Sontarans and Cybermen who could not pass as human.

     Why doesn't the Doctor use regeneration energy on Clara? 
  • We know from "The Witch's Familiar" that he can voluntarily transfer it to others if need be. Clara's body is intact; if he wanted to he could give up a life's worth of energy for her, and she'd be right as rain, and he could be delivered to his enemies knowing he has one last good deed to be proud of. Why doesn't he even consider it?
    • Perhaps doing that (or resurrecting her by any other means) would just cause the raven to come back and kill her again. Depends just how far it takes "you can't cheat it".
    • What was said above and Ashildr does say that the spectre "was promised a soul" - granted we have very varying ways how the show has dealt with souls in the past, but usually losing your soul is the one way to become deader than dead.
    • There is also no indication that regeneration energy transfer would actually work on someone who is dead. Previously it was used to cure the Doctor of poisoning and fix River's wrist, plus it was used to revive Davros. But in none of those occasions was the person actually deceased. If the Doctor were able to, there is no guarantee that Clara would not find herself in the same state as Owen Harper did after he was revived in Torchwood. Which was not the same situation as Clara finds herself in "Hell Bent" where she is in a state of time-locked life, not death with consciousness.
      • If the Doctor were able to revive people using regeneration energy, he'd have done it by now with other people - including Ashildr in "The Girl Who Died."

     Whatever Happened to Clara Oswald? 
  • So who's going to be informing Coal Hill School, not to mention Clara's family, of her death? Amy and Rory were at least able to send their adopted son to Rory's father to explain, whereas Clara has nobody. Rigsy has never met Clara's family, so why should they believe a stranger (who probably couldn't find a way to plausibly explain just how she died)? Even with her memorial painted on the TARDIS, there are still going to be lots of questions.
    • Rigsy doesn't have to tell them the details; he can claim he and Clara had planned to meet for some reason (really early application to Coal Hill for his daughter, maybe?), and he'd found her lying on the pavement when he got there. Her cause of death won't be anything that would suggest foul play, so he can call the police and explain that he'd tried to wake her up, then realized she was gone. Most likely, she'll be written up as a cerebral aneurysm or something.
    • Ashildr may drop a veiled word to UNIT about Clara's death, so word will get around to her off-the-record friends there, too. UNIT could, therefore, prevent any odd questions from being asked regarding how Clara died.
    • But only the Doctor will be able to break the news to poor Jane Austen....
    • Also the possibility that no one ever finds out and she just becomes a missing person is real too. Rigsy might not necessarily know much about Clara's personal life. She could just be buried in the same place where all the other residents of the street are. Though coming to think of it Ashildr would know about Clara's workplace and family since she was keeping tabs on her. It would be very easy to believe that out of respect and remorse Ashildr makes sure Clara gets back to her family.
    • The original script has a scene just after Clara dies where the Doctor insists that Me allow Rigsy to take Clara's body and tell her family and friends that she's dead, which requires her to agree to not use the Retcon on him this time. A remnant of this is in the final episode, as Rigsy, clearly with memories intact, is seen away from the trap street, painting his mural on the TARDIS. Although the scene where the Doctor instructs Danny appears not to have been filmed, a further deleted scene included on the DVD shows Rigsy reuniting with his wife and grieving over Clara, confirming his memories of her were retained.
    • As of "Hell Bent", it's likely that Clara herself was able to return to arrange things, quietly taking her own body away for anonymous burial, quitting her job at Coal Hill School, and telling her family that she needed a fresh start and would be traveling the world, keeping in touch by phone. She may even stop in for Christmas every year; after all, Ashildr's had four-and-a-half billion years to practice at using age-makeup. It is extremely likely that, in order to allow the Doctor's memory wipe to succeed, she would at minimum contact UNIT so that they are aware of the situation.
    • A memorial display at Coal Hill, seen in the pilot of Class, includes an entry for "Oswald, C.", right after one for "Pink, R.D.". So it's confirmed that Clara's death is on record.

     Why does Ashildr leave the Doctor to his fate? 
  • So, Ashildr's plan has captured the Doctor for his enemies, but also inadvertently killed Clara — leaving him bereft and enraged, possibly for all eternity. If she's so remorseful about what's happened and afraid of what he might do to her without his Morality Chain, why doesn't she at least try and make amends by setting him free of the teleport bracelet — or just not activating it — and asking his forgiveness? Or why doesn't she raise the alarm with UNIT, etc. that the Doctor is missing so a rescue mission can be launched?
    • Dialogue straight from the episode: "I made a deal to protect the street. ... I do as they tell me, and the street is safe." That's why.
    • Still, she could have raised the alarm afterward...even if there weren't anyone who could track him down. No wonder the Doctor never forgives her onscreen!
      • Raised the alarm with whom? We have no idea what she did immediately after the Doctor was transported. Who would she contact? We also don't know the extent of the agreement she made with the Time Lords. She also ends the episode in clear fear of the Doctor - for all we know her priority after the Doctor left was to get the residents out of there and somewhere the Doctor couldn't find them.

     Why didn't the Doctor destroy the quantum shade — or even better, convince it not to kill Clara? 
  • In Series 9 especially words are a great "weapon" of his. If Ashildr can't break the contract anymore thanks to Clara taking on the chronolock, and the quantum shade was promised a soul in the contract, and there's apparently no way to destroy it (otherwise the Doctor could just do that), why not speak to the shade with a heartfelt speech and convince it that it will be doing more harm than good by taking an innocent life? For that matter, why can't he do anything to save her from it? It's never said that the creature is indestructible.
    • There's no evidence that the quantum shade actually cares if its target is innocent or guilty, or what consequences its actions might have, only that its arrangement with the authorities of the Trap Street dictate its role as an executioner. It might have been just as content killing people for the Daleks as for a refugee camp's Mayor.
    • Also, who would he talk to if he could?
      • He would talk to the shade, of course — shout "Stop!" as it approached and perhaps throw himself in front of Clara to slow its progress.
      • Good luck getting a formless black smoke to stop because you scream at it loud enough. For that matter, would you expect that a creature which can chase you through time could be stopped by any physical presence?

     Thanks for nothing, Rigsy, Anahson and her mum! 
  • So Rigsy, Anahson and her mum know the Doctor has been teleported away to the hands of his enemies and his companion has been killed in a Senseless Sacrifice, all because the twosome was trying to help them. Why doesn't Rigsy at least alert UNIT to what's happened to the Doctor and Clara instead of just leaving the memorial on the abandoned TARDIS? If anyone might be able to track him down it would be them. Why don't Anahson and her mum try to get help, for that matter? One good turn deserves another. Perhaps post-"Hell Bent", after all he's gone through, the Doctor should finally start charging for his good deeds...
    • How would Rigsy know how to contact UNIT? What would Anna and her daughter be able to do? It was a situation that even the Doctor couldn't figure out how to solve, so what hope would there be for people like them to figure it out?
    • UNIT does not have the ability to track down the Doctor through time and space off-planet and never has. In fact that is the entire point of them allowing Missy to team up with Clara in "The Magician's Apprentice"! There is no indication that Rigsy is aware of UNIT anyway. And even if he was aware, we don't know his actions after the Doctor is teleported beyond the fact he painted the mural and (in the deleted scene) had a cry with his wife. We don't know what Ashildr did, either. And we don't know how long it was before Clara and future!Ashildr retrieved the TARDIS.
      • These are understandable explanations, but one of them still could have subdued Ashildr so the Doctor could at least escape and not be teleported. How hard is it to knock somebody unconscious with a blunt object?
      • What good would that do? The Doctor sacrificed his TARDIS key, the Doctor had the teleporter locked on him. He had nowhere to go, and no way to fight it. He had lost, and no amount of physical violence would change that. But, if he played the game a little bit longer, if he were to teleport, maybe he would have a chance to stop the person if he got closer to them...
      • Subdue the woman who's had eleven centuries to get in those 100,000 hours necessary to make her the best bare-handed fighter there's ever been? Good luck with that...

     Clara Oswald and the Worst Pep Talk Ever 
  • Clara's Final Speech to the Doctor is just setting him up to go crazy. She tells him not only that he's going to be alone, but that, effectively, he won't be capable of handling it ("you're very bad at [being alone]"). She continues by telling him he has to magically "Heal himself" and keep being a good person anyway, and that he has to suffer while everyone else — including people who deserve it — will get off without punishment/vengeance visited upon them. Wouldn't it have been better for her to tell him You Are Not Alone and that if he just holds on, people who care about him will be there? Made that last Anguished Declaration of Love so he knows she reciprocated his affections? If he'd gone into the Confession Dial with a mournful yet (more) positive attitude, full of hope and love, think of how much better things might have turned out!
    • Clara doesn't want her last words to Twelve to be a lie, and she has no way of knowing whether or not "people who care about him" will be there for him. Remember, she still believes that Gallifrey is permanently beyond reach when she gives that speech, and she know for a fact that most of the other people the Doctor cares deeply about - his wives, his former companions, his battle-comrades from the Time War and Trenzalore - are dead. She realizes she's quite literally the only loved one he's got in his life, and she speaks critically to him as much to deliberately bruise his feelings a little (the better to spur him into getting over her absence) as to comfort him and curtail his potential vengeful misbehavior.

     Why doesn't the Doctor whip up another modified Mire medkit and save Clara before he goes? 
  • He's seen it work on Ashildr — and Clara's a more suitable case for functional immortality anyway (especially given how things work out in "Hell Bent"). He probably remembers the tech at least and can whip a chip up. He can at least give her back her life before he's sent off to his fate...and then she might even be able to rescue him via the TARDIS! Plus, Ashildr giving him the time to save her before teleporting him would mend that burnt bridge right quick.
    • He very clearly only had the materials to make the kits which he gave to Ashildr; the invaders had gone some years prior, and took their technology with them. He couldn't even travel somewhere else since Ashildr took his TARDIS key away from him.
    • The Mire medical kit is able to repair any amount of damage to the body. From the way Ashildr and Twelve describe the quantum shade, it doesn't merely damage its victim's body: it rips the living soul right out of it. Not much chance that a bunch of brutal warmongers like the Mire have the technology to shield or repair souls rather than just flesh.

     Why doesn't the TARDIS do anything to help the Doctor? 
  • Why is it just sitting around for Rigsy to paint the memorial? It should be well aware that he's gone, so it could "invite" him or someone else inside so as to summon help from UNIT, etc.
    • The TARDIS has rarely, if ever, shown to be able to move of her own volition. Furthermore, as a being who can see all of time at once, she'll know that the Doctor will/has already/will have had has already come back to her, safe and sound.
    • The Doctor has been transported into his own Confession Dial. The Dial is Time Lord technology and intended to be private, so presumably it's equipped to keep out TARDISes that might otherwise trespass on a Matrix-bound Time Lord's posthumous meditations.
    • The previous time the TARDIS overlapped spatial and temporal locations with another TARDIS, she got stuck in an Interlock. It's entirely likely that overlapping with a Bigger on the Inside Confession Dial could cause the same problem.

     If the Doctor doesn't always listen to his companions, as he says in the next episode, why doesn't he subdue Ashildr as soon as Clara is dead? 
  • It would be an EPIC I Surrender, Suckers moment — he seems set to be teleported away, and then he knocks her unconscious or something similar — nothing she doesn't deserve for her treachery. Then he gets back to the TARDIS, pries that bracelet off (remember, there are hidden keys, not just the one on hand) and works on figuring out who's behind the plot to capture him. Instead, he lets himself be imprisoned and then starts formulating an even worse revenge/rescue plan. What gives?
    • So, the Doctor knocks out a little girl who couldn't physically restrain him anyway, then fights through her private alien security, making it through the potential dangerous crowd, runs through half of London, uses a suddenly-available key which the plot establishes he didn't have on-hand, pries off alien technology, and does all that before the bracelet could potentially suck him away anyway? The Doctor, genius that he is, has always displayed that he is a Science Hero and Guile Hero, not an Action Hero - at the very least, not one who can successfully fight hordes of aliens while unarmed.
      • And that's what would make it epic! Also, given how badly things go for him in the next few episodes, he probably would have been a lot better off becoming The Unfettered then. And he wouldn't have given up the key he had if he hadn't had a spare available, would he? (Probably one secreted on the TARDIS itself.)
    • He knows he can come back later to find Ashildr if necessary. What he doesn't know is how to find the bastards who put her up to capturing him, in the first place. He's not necessarily letting her off, he's just letting her send him on to confront the ones who engineered the whole scenario first.