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Recap / Doctor Who S27 E13 "The Parting of the Ways"

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The Parting of the Ways
"Rose... Captain... this is the Emperor of the Daleks."
Written by Russell T Davies
Directed by Joe Ahearne
Production code: 1.13
Air date: 18 June 2005
Part 2 of 2

Emperor Dalek: You cannot hurt me. I am immortal.
Bad Wolf: You are tiny. I can see the whole of time and space, every single atom of your existence. And I divide them.

The one where we say adieu to someone fantastic only 13 episodes into the new series.

When we left our heroes, they were staring down an absolutely ridiculous number of Daleks. Who, in a twist that was done roughly 20 years before, turn out to be mutated humans who lost the games, trapped in their pepperpots forever.note 

The Doctor and Jack rig a force field out of Margaret the Slitheen's surfboard, and go fetch Rose.note  Jack tenderly kisses Rose and the Doctor goodbye on their lips, and goes off to stall the Daleks, knowing that he probably won't survive. note  The Doctor tricks Rose into going back into the TARDIS and sends her back to her own time to keep her safe. He activates a hologram recording that tells Rose to live a normal life, let the TARDIS die and experience all she can as a normal human girl.

Rose won't have any of it and, looking for a way back, notices the words "Bad Wolf" everywhere around her in cloudy grey London. For the first time, she realizes that it may not be a warning at all... it may be an inspiration. She talks Mickey and Jackie into helping her rip apart the heart of the TARDIS using the hook of a heavy duty tow truck to expose the ship's living telepathic core to her. While the TARDIS is incredibly temperamental, this time she and Rose want the same thing — to get back to the Doctor — so off goes the TARDIS, with Rose inside, in a flash of white light.

The Daleks approach the comms centre of the satellite as the Doctor is still preparing his wave attack, and they EX-TER-MI-NATE anyone they encounter — including Lynda and Jack. The Dalek Emperor tells the Doctor to make his choice. Will he be a killer like he was in the Time War, murdering every last human on Earth to destroy the Daleks? Or will he be a coward and let nature take its course? The Doctor realizes that he can't bear to repeat the actions he took during the Time War, and says that he'd be a coward, any day. Even if it means letting those mutated humans live on as Daleks forever. Even if it means he'll have to sacrifice himself.

Just as he's about to be murdered, Rose... no, sorry, Bad Wolf steps in, with time itself pulsing through her from the TARDIS corenote . As a catalyst for the Time Vortex, she's become a literal goddess from the machine, and with a single word she promptly kills every last Dalek she can find. On top of that, she scatters her name — and the name of the TV station — throughout time, space and parallel dimensions, as a sign to herself. Oh, and she revives Jack.

With all that, she collapses, and the Doctor, grinning, tells her... "I think you need a Doctor". He absorbs the full force of the Time Vortex from Rose's body by kissing her. It's a beautiful moment until it kills him. He blows the essence of the Heart back into the TARDIS, and then takes flight... without Jack. Jack hears the sound of the TARDIS as it vanishes, leaving the poor guy stranded in 200,100... From here, he'll be forced to go the long way 'round and star in Torchwood.

Rose wakes up unharmed from her ordeal, with some memories jumbled. However, Nine is starting to show an ominous glowing in his hand, and we realize something's wrong. He tells Rose that he had so many plans for her, like taking her to Barcelona. Not the Spanish city, but a planet of the same name where a breed of noseless dogs lives. Except that jolly rambling is interrupted by a jolt of hissing yellow energy thrashing inside of his chest. Though the Doctor's saved Rose, the Time Vortex energy he absorbed turned corrosive and it's making all his cells die. Fortunately, the Time Lords have a neat little trick, a way to cheat death. The downside? He has to change into a new man to live on. Knowing he's going to lose the aspects of this incarnation, the Ninth Doctor smiles at Rose as he bids her goodbye, telling her that she was "Fantastic... Absolutely fantastic! And you know what? So was I!" The Doctor is then consumed with a burst of flaming energy, regenerating into a new form portrayed by David Tennant. The Tenth Doctor tries to awkwardly introduce himself to a confused Rose, but interrupts himself when he realizes that he has brand new teeth, finding the sensation "weird". The Doctor takes a moment to try and remember what he was talking about, before realizing, "Oh, that's right! Barcelona."


  • Actor Allusion: The penultimate chapter of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was titled "The Parting of the Ways". David Tennant played Barty Crouch Jr. in the film adaptation (although that didn't come until after this episode aired) and this ends up being his first appearance as The Doctor.
  • Agent Scully: Rodrick is stubbornly adamant when he hears Jack announce that the Daleks are invading, replying that they disappeared thousands of years ago, and choosing to wait on floor zero for exterior help along with most of the other civilians. It doesn't end well for any of them.
  • Air-Vent Passageway: The Daleks are mentioned to fly through the ventilation shafts while traversing the Gamestation. Of course, they also arranged for its initial construction in the first place, so the place having vents big enough for them to fit shouldn't be surprising.
  • All for Nothing: The fact that the Daleks are still around means that the Doctor committed genocide in the Time War to achieve nothing.
  • Apocalypse How: At the very least, the Dalek fleet's attack on Earth during the episode causes a Class 2, firebombing entire continents to the point that they're reshaped seemingly within seconds. The Doctor's plan to unleash a Delta Wave threatens to kill every living creature with a centralized nervous system within the wave's range (which covers the entire Earth), but the Doctor also states that there are intergalactic colonies beyond reach through which the human race as a whole will survive.
  • Arc Words: The meaning of "Bad Wolf" is finally explained. It doesn't have any inherent meaning, but was scattered across time and space by Bad Wolf to show normal Rose the way back to the Doctor.
  • Asshole Victim: Rodrick, killed by the Daleks, will not be missed by anyone.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Using the Time Vortex effectively turns you into a god, but is invariably fatal, precluding any routine use of it. The Doctor is forced to absorb the energy in order to prevent it from killing Rose, and the energy causes him to regenerate.
  • Badass Boast:
    • The Doctor gets one:
      "Do you know what they call me, in the ancient legends of the Dalek homeworld? 'The Oncoming Storm'. You may have removed all your emotions, but I bet that deep down in your DNA there's one spark left, and that's fear. Doesn't it just burn when you face me."
    • Bad Wolf gets one when Rose absorbs the Time Vortex and returns to rescue the Doctor:
      Bad Wolf: I looked into the TARDIS and the TARDIS looked into me. I am the Bad Wolf. I create myself. I take the words... I scatter them, in time and space. A message, to lead myself here. I want you safe, my Doctor. Protected from the false god.
      Dalek Emperor: You cannot hurt me, I am immortal!
      Bad Wolf: You are tiny. I can see the whole of time and space, every single atom of your existence. And I divide them. Everything must come to dust. All things ... everything dies. The Time War ends.
  • Back from the Dead: Jack, courtesy of Bad Wolf reviving him.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: The TARDIS's heart apparently has the power to burn a Timelord alive from the inside and disintegrate the Daleks without any trouble. The Doctor piloted her in the Time War - without shields, as this episode reveals! See why Daleks crap themselves at her presence? Like the Doctor, the TARDIS can be dangerous and just won't die.note 
  • Big Bad: The Dalek Emperor.
  • Big Damn Heroes:
    • Mickey and Rose have tried to reactivate the TARDIS, to no avail. Cue Jackie, with a friggen tow truck (she knew a guy who owed her some favours). That manages to do it.
    • Bad Wolf arriving on the Gamestation to rescue the Doctor.
    • The fact that the TARDIS, A) manages to run into missiles, under a forcefield, without exploding, B) lands in style on the Dalek Ship, and C) flies back to the future with Rose, having been torn open, classifies her in it too.
  • The Big Damn Kiss: Jack kissing both Rose and the Doctor goodbye — this was the first time that the Doctor had an on-screen kiss with a man (he previously had one in the novels), and only his second on-screen kiss ever. The Doctor and Rose later have one at the end when he pulls the Time Vortex out of her and saves her.
  • Big "SHUT UP!": "I think you're forgetting something. I'm the Doctor, and if there's one thing I can do, it's talk. I've got five billion languages and you haven't got one way of stopping me, so if anybody's going to shut up, IT'S YOU!!" [gives the Daleks a volcanic Death Glare; they back away in fear]
  • Bittersweet Ending: The Daleks are defeated, the Doctor regenerates, and Rose lives, but Jack's stuck on his own in the year 200,100, every secondary character has been killed, and Earth (which wasn't in great shape to begin with) has been firebombed, with no word as to whether anyone on the planet is alive.
  • Breaking Speech: For a Dalek, the Emperor is terrifyingly good at this; constantly taunting the Doctor about his Morton's Fork. If he can break the Doctor's spirit then he will not activate the weapon.
  • Break the Cutie: Poor Lynda-with-a-Y, who watches as nothing slows the Daleks down for very long, and gets to hear them exterminating everyone on Floor 0 one-by-one. Then they come for her.
  • Brick Joke: Just before he goes, Nine mentions going to Barcelona (not the city, the planet Barcelona). Apparently they have dogs with no noses. Then he regenerates. The second thing Ten mentions? Barcelona.
  • Broken Aesop: The Doctor declines to destroy Earth to destroy the Daleks, claiming that it's the morally better choice to not wipe out humanity with the Daleks. However, the Daleks have just attacked Earth with such force they have distorted continents, meaning they have probably wiped out at least nearly all humanity and any survivors will soon be either killed, enslaved or turned into Daleks, which is clearly a Fate Worse than Death, the Dalek Emperor even saying humanity will be harvested. The Doctor even points out that humanity won't be wiped out with Earth as they have spread to other worlds by now, "You're the only Daleks in existence. The whole universe is in danger if I let you live." But the Daleks surviving means they'll attack other worlds, giving humanity even less of a chance. It's only a literal Deus ex Machina that saves possibly the Universe from the Daleks. Overall the Doctor's decision, considering he may well be the only non-Dalek in range of the Delta Wave and the Daleks are about to exterminate him anyway, looks quite odd. It is suggested that his actions are based on his overwhelming guilt at having destroyed the Time Lords in order to also destroy the Daleks, he's too broken and demoralised to essentially make the same decision once again with Earth, and that he's just looking for any thin shred of hope that will justify him not doing so.
  • But What About the Astronauts?: The Doctor justifies considering using the Delta Wave to kill everyone on Earth as well as the Daleks by pointing out that there are human colonies out there, so the human race will survive in some shape or form.
  • The Caligula: The Daleks hiding in space for hundreds of years has left them mad. The Dalek Emperor is even more bonkers (or at least appears more so) than the rest.
  • Call-Back: To "Genesis of the Daleks", with the Doctor having the power to destroy the Daleks but going through a moral dilemma, before ultimately refusing to go through with it.
  • Captain Obvious:
    [Daleks fire missiles at the TARDIS, after Rose says she can't predict what the Doctor's going to do]
    Rose: You can't! The TARDIS doesn't have any defences, you're gonna kill 'im!
    Dalek: You have predicted correctly.
  • Chekhov's Gun: The Heart of the TARDIS and the extrapolator from "Boom Town" reappear, the former especially being crucial to the plot.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: The Anne-Droid briefly reappears to "disqualify" three Daleks. In fact, it's the only time before Bad Wolf shows up that any Daleks die at all. Then again, her "disintegrator" was earlier revealed to be a teleport to the Dalek mothership so they probably survived (minus some dignity) unless the teleport has some problem with transporting Dalek casing.
  • Clingy Jealous Girl: Rose, as shown subtly by the way she looks at Lynda when she shakes the Doctor's hand and gets in a line to the Doctor before her. Mr TARDIS Reviews picked this up in his review of the episode and points out how odd it is, as the shooting scripts don't mention this at all.
  • Conservation of Ninjutsu: Largely averted, tragically. Rose herself asks how they'll be able to stop half a million Daleks when they could barely deal with one, and indeed, the Daleks, as mentioned below, completely kerb-stomp humanity.
  • Contagious Heroism: Jack tells the Doctor he was much better off as a coward. Given what happens to him later on...
  • Continuity Nod: The guards use ballistic bullets that can blast a Dalek wide open. Sadly, they've upgraded.
  • Crucified Hero Shot:
    • Jack strikes this pose before the Daleks kill him. Then he gets resurrected.
    • The Doctor, starting a New Series tradition, does this when he regenerates.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Inasmuch as a Dalek can be sarcastic, one manages to be this.
    Dalek: Launch missiles!
    Rose: You can't! The TARDIS doesn't have any defences, you're gonna kill 'im!
    Dalek: You have predicted correctly.
  • Death Glare: The Doctor gives a spectacular one to the Daleks.
  • Death of the Hypotenuse: The Doctor invites Lynda aboard the TARDIS. Rose, who's been in love with him for most of the series, isn't at all impressed by this development. Fortunately for Rose's peace of mind, Lynda doesn't make it to the end of the episode.
  • Declaration of Protection: Bad Wolf, to the Doctor.
    Bad Wolf: I want you safe. My Doctor. Protected from the false god.
  • Defiant to the End: Jack used up every bullet from the rifle, and switched to his handgun until that ran out of bullets. Facing his death, he does a "Bring It" posture before being killed.
  • Deus ex Machina:
    • A literal example with Rosenote , a mere human companion, opening the heart of the TARDIS (although with help from her mother and Mickey), to telepathically pilot it to the 2001st century to save the Doctor, absorbing the vast energies of the Time Vortex, emerging from the TARDIS as the "Bad Wolf" to save the Doctor from the Daleks. "The god out of the machine."
      • Possibly averted with the fact that the TARDIS is alive and just needed a reason to go back — Rose provides the alibi for her.
    • In fact, Rose's example above is another case of this: after obtaining godlike powers to stop the Daleks, she sends the words "Bad Wolf" back through time to make sure her past self will follow the same path. In short, her "Bad Wolf" incarnation created itself.
  • Decoy Protagonist: First-time viewers who haven't been spoiled could be forgiven for seeing the title, seeing Lynda's role in the story and thinking it means that she's going to replace Rose.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: When facing certain death from the Daleks, Captain Jack simply retorts "I kind of figured that."
  • Disintegrator Ray: The Anne-Droid that appears has had its faux ray upgraded to a real one, which it uses to destroy three Daleks.
  • Disposable Vagrant: The Emperor has spent centuries "harvesting" people he knew society would overlook. "The prisoners, the refugees, the dispossessed, they all came to us!"
  • Dying Vocal Change: The Anne-Droid briefly gets to deploy her catchphrase and disintegrator ray against the Daleks — before she's interrupted by getting her head shot off, causing her voice to electronically trail off as she finishes her sentence.
  • Early Instalment Weirdness: Compared to all the other regenerations of post-revival Who (minus that of the War Doctor), the Ninth Doctor's is different in that rather than just suddenly shifting from one face to the next (as with the Tenth to the Eleventh, or the Eleventh to the Twelfth), we see Christopher Eccleston's facial features change into David Tennant's, complete with his hair growing out.
    • Also, the regeneration happens during a regular episode; up until the Thirteen Doctor's swan song, they only happen during Christmas specialsnote .
  • Establishing Character Moment: The Tenth Doctor's first reaction is to be intrigued and confused by his new teeth and then offer to take Rose to the planet Barcelona (just as the Ninth Doctor had offered to her before regenerating).
  • "Everybody Dies" Ending: Virtually everyone on the station is slaughtered by the Daleks (who seem to sustain exactly four casualties before Bad Wolf unmakes them), and Captain Jack is the only one who seems to be restored to life. Only one person on the station doesn't die, and that's Rose. Granted, the Doctor and Jack don't stay dead. That's not even mentioning the off-screen deaths of potentially billions of humans on Earth, which the Daleks are bombing (we see entire continents distort from the blasts).
  • Evil Sounds Deep: The Dalek Emperor has a teeth-rattling voice.
    The Doctor: [to the Daleks] How did you survive the Time War?
    Dalek Emperor: They survived through ME!
  • Face Death with Dignity:
    • Jack goes out with a one-liner, arms spread.
    • The Doctor, surrounded by Daleks, just calmly accepts it, and closes his eyes. Cue Bad Wolf.
  • "Facing the Bullets" One-Liner:
    Dalek: Exterminate!
    Jack Harkness: I kind of figured that.
  • Final Battle: The episode ends in a battle between the controllers and contestants of the Game Station and the Daleks.
  • First-Episode Resurrection: Played with in Jack's case. It occurs at the end of a season, but defines much of his character on both his spinoff and the parent show from here on (though we don't learn it was permanent here).
  • Five Rounds Rapid: Played with when Captain Jack gives a group of volunteers under his command "bastic" bullets he is convinced will "blow a Dalek wide open". However, he fails to take into account the Daleks' new bullet-dissipating forcefields, which render the rounds useless. Bitterly lampshaded when a minor character despairingly declares "They're not working!" moments before she gets exterminated. However, at one point the bullets do work to blind one of the Daleks.
  • Foreshadowing: The Doctor hologram saying he's about to die, and he hopes it's a good death.
  • For the Evulz: The Daleks going to Floor 0 to wipe out the humans before they go to Floor 500.
  • Give Me a Reason: It's clear that the TARDIS doesn't want to leave the Doctor. There's no need for her to go back, and going back is a terrible idea... but it doesn't mean she doesn't want to go back. Then Rose comes along and, conveniently, gives her a reason to go back.
  • Glowing Eyes of Doom: Rose, when she absorbs the Time Vortex energy. When the Doctor takes it out of her, his eyes glow too.
  • A God Am I:
    • Bad Wolf believes so.
      The Doctor: It's not right! You can't control life and death!
      Bad Wolf: But I can.
    • Also the Dalek Emperor: "I reached into the Dirt and made new life. I am the God of all Daleks!" Later he even calls himself "God". That said, Bad Wolf refers to the Emperor as "The False God" and erases him and his armada from existence with all the effort of a few words.
  • God-Emperor: The Dalek Emperor is the God of all Daleks!
  • Go Out with a Smile: The Ninth Doctor smiles brightly as he comforts Rose, seconds before he regenerates.
    The Doctor: Before I go, I just want to tell you, you were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. And you know what...? So was I!
  • Hand Wave: The Doctor's cryptic but sophisticated-sounding excuse when Rose suggests the obvious solution of going back in time and warning the humans in advance about the Daleks. It doesn't actually explain what would happen if you tried:
    The Doctor: As soon as the TARDIS lands in that second I become part of events. Stuck in the timeline.
    Rose: Yeah, I thought it'd be something like that.
  • Heroic BSoD:
    • After talking with the Emperor, we see the Doctor in the TARDIS, just leaning against the doors in despair as the Daleks scream at him.
    • Rose has one when she can't get back to the Doctor.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Several.
    • Jack's You Shall Not Pass! to buy time for the Doctor finish the Delta Wave.
    • Attempted by the Doctor to save Rose by sending her away in the TARDIS to stay behind and stop the Daleks. Subverted when she comes back as the Bad Wolf to save him.
    • The Doctor taking the Time Vortex into himself to save Rose causes his need to regenerate.
  • His Story Repeats Itself: This past season established the Ninth Doctor's backstory as having been forced to end the Last Great Time War by committing genocide against both the Daleks and the Time Lords, leaving him with massive trauma and guilt. When given the chance to wipe out the reborn Dalek Empire at the cost of destroying humanity too, he can't bring himself to do so, indicating how much he grew since he first met Rose.
  • Human Resources: The Dalek Emperor specifically extracted cells he deemed "worthy" from the humans he harvested and grew them into Dalek-Human hybrids.
  • If We Get Through This…: The two staff members. Then the Daleks kill them.
  • Improbable Hairstyle: The Tenth Doctor has obviously gelled hair right after regenerating from Nine's crew cut. Crosses over with Wakeup Makeup.
  • It Has Been an Honour: Played with.
    Ninth Doctor: I just wanna say you were fantastic... absolutely fantastic. And you know what? So was I.
  • It Only Works Once:
    • The Defabricator gun is able to destroy a Dalek in one hit, but in the process burns out. Fixing it will take Jack about a hundred years.
    • Rose's absorption of the Time Vortex to become the Bad Wolf nearly kills her, and does force the Doctor to regenerate after he takes the power out of her. With that kind of cost, it's clearly not a solution to be used all the time.
  • I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Mickey and Jackie still don't like the Doctor, but they'll help Rose get back to him all the same.
  • I Will Fight Some More Forever: Jack continues firing his pistol at the Daleks as he's backed into a corner. "Last man standing!" Finally, they've got him, and he spreads his arms in a "bring it" posture.
  • Kerb-Stomp Battle: Before Bad Wolf shows up, the Daleks suffer a grand total of three casualties. After Bad Wolf shows up, she vaporizes all of them in seconds.
  • Kick the Dog: The upper levels of the Game Station are the higher priority for the Daleks, as the Doctor is on the highest floor working on a plan that could destroy the Dalek army. The lowest level contains a number of unarmed civilians, with Jack believing that the Daleks would focus their efforts on seizing the upper levels and ignore the civilians. Before the Daleks ascend to the next level up, they make a short detour to the lowest floor simply to exterminate all the civilians.
  • Large Ham: Even by Dalek standards, the Emperor is incredibly bombastic.
  • Laser-Guided Karma: Rodrick, the guy who got Rose on the Dalek ship in the last episode, is killed by a Dalek.
  • Last Kiss: When Jack goes off to die, he kisses both the Doctor and Rose goodbye.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: At the time, the reveal of the Dalek Emperor was pretty surprising... obviously not so much over a decade later.
  • Layout of a Season: It ends with the regeneration of the Ninth Doctor into the Tenth Doctor and Captain Jack Harkness being left behind on the space station for reasons the Doctor wouldn't explain until the Series 3 finale.
  • Lip-Lock Sun-Block: The Big Damn Kiss between the Doctor and Bad Wolf blocks the light coming out of the TARDIS.
  • Literary Allusion Title: To both Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and the Johann von Goethe novel the phrase originally comes from. Also an Actor Allusion — the Harry Potter chapter is the last appearance of David Tennant in the films, while this episode is the first appearance of David Tennant in the series. note 
  • Love Triangle: The Doctor, Jack and Rose all kiss in this episode, so it is either this trope or Threesome Subtext.
  • Mauve Shirt: Lynda, whose death kicks off something of a trend — if the Doctor offers you a spot on the TARDIS while a crisis is still happening, get your affairs in order.
  • Meanwhile, in the Future…: Rose contemplates the Doctor's imminent destruction — several hundred millennia in the future. She's in a tremendous hurry to get back the future and rescue the Doctor, despite the fact that, logically, there's really no need to rush, as her companions point out totally unconcerned, while for her it had just been happening right then. Given that Rose pilots the TARDIS by effectively becoming a God, so she can put it where/when she needs, there really was no real need to rush. Even so, it's indicated that several hours passed for Rose in the 21st century while less than an hour passed on the Gamestation before Rose's return.
    Rose: Two hundred thousand years in the future, he's dying, and there's nothing I can do.
    Jackie: Well, like you said, two hundred thousand years, it's way off.
    Rose: But it's not. It's now. That fight is happening right now.
  • Mood Whiplash: Nine says goodbye to Rose, and regenerates. The first thing we hear Ten say?
    Tenth Doctor: Hello, I– [beat] New teeth. That's weird. So where was I? Oh, that's right. [grins madly] Barcelona!
  • Morton's Fork: The Doctor doesn't have the time to refine the Delta Wave — either he lets the Daleks live and puts the whole universe at risk, or he commits another act of double genocide and takes out the human and Dalek races at once. Though the Daleks have probably already destroyed most of the humans on Earth, and the Doctor points out that humans have spread to other worlds.
  • My Greatest Second Chance: Implicitly suggested. It's been gradually revealed that the Doctor ended the Time War in the backstory by committing double genocide, destroying the Daleks at the cost of his own people. In this episode, he has to make a similar choice, with the opportunity to press a button and produce an energy wave that will eliminate the new Dalek fleet, while also destroying all life on Earth. This time, he can't go through with it.
  • My Skull Runneth Over: Rose absorbs the Time Vortex, making her effectively a goddess, but is in danger of being "burned up" by the power.
    Bad Wolf: The sun, and the moon. The day, and the night. But why do they hurt?... I can see everything. All that is. All that was. All that ever could be... My head... is killing me.
  • Mythology Gag: The TARDIS' holographic Doctor was first seen in "Infinite Requiem".
  • Not Me This Time: The Doctor, after the battle starts, assumes that, since they seemed to be behind everything else, the Daleks were behind the "Bad Wolf" words and asks the Dalek Emperor why he spread them through history. The Dalek Emperor responds that he doesn't know anything about them, and the Doctor realizes that if the A God Am I Emperor did do it, he would have gloated about it like he did with the rest of his plan.
  • Nothing Can Stop Us Now!:
    Dalek Emperor: I will not die! I CANNOT DIE!!
  • The Nth Doctor: It's a regeneration episode!
  • Oh, Crap!:
    • Since when did Daleks have a concept of blasphemy? This is when the Doctor realizes these Daleks are more dangerous than usual.
    • All over the Doctor's face when he hears the Emperor's voice.
    • Most of all when he sees Rose has absorbed the Heart of the TARDIS.
      The Doctor: What have you done!?!
  • O.O.C. Is Serious Business: As soon as the Doctor realizes that the Daleks have a concept of blasphemy, he starts realizing that something is very wrong with them — and throughout the episode, it shows; they're even more sociopathic than usual, particularly in their exterminations of Jack and Lynda. The Emperor is even worse; the other Daleks have the excuse of being composed of human genetic matter, which any Dalek would be driven insane by, but the Emperor went mad out of sheer isolation.
  • Physical God: Bad Wolf is basically the Time Vortex in human form. It has absolute control over time.
  • Protagonist-Centred Morality: The Doctor refuses to kill the Daleks because doing so would wipe out life on Earth (which the Daleks are wiping out anyway even as he thinks this, and would have killed many more if not for a Deus ex Machina).
  • Put on a Bus: Jack is left behind on the satellite, allegedly to rebuild Planet Earth. Whilst he'll show up again, both in his own Spin-Off and in the main show itself, that's it for his time as a regular companion.
  • Rage Breaking Point: Nine gets so worked up into a lather at the Daleks that he manages to terrify them. Think about that.
  • Reality Warper: Rose temporarily acquires this ability, at the ultimate cost of the Doctor losing another regeneration by absorbing the power's source, the Time Vortex, from Rose. The implication is that if Rose held on to it for too long, it would kill her. The ensuing Deus ex Machina does make you wonder why the Doctor never used the trick before; presumably, the effects of swallowing the Time Vortex are too unpredictable to depend on it, plus the aforementioned cost of one's life. Also, he later references it, saying "No one's ever meant to have that power. If a Time Lord did that he'd become a god — a vengeful god.", so it's probable that he doesn't dare risk it. Especially after his time as the Time Lord Victorious.
  • "The Reason You Suck" Speech: Jack has some harsh words for the people on Floor 0 who won't help with the defence against the Daleks. He finishes off by telling them their only hope for survival is to stay quiet and hope the Daleks don't decide to come downstairs.
  • Red Herring: It's implied that the Doctor used a Delta Wave to end the Time War, and ended up killing all of the Time Lords and Daleks as a result. Later episodes would show this was not the case.
  • Regional Redecoration: The Dalek fleet bombards the Earth so severely that they distort the shapes of the continents.
  • Roar Before Beating: Lampshaded when a Dalek gets in a firefight with a robot that's designed to spout a catchphrase before firing its disintegrator ray (the Dalek wins because, unlike the android, it can just fire without shouting first if it really wants to).
  • Sacrificial Lamb: The last episode set Lynda up as a possible companion. She dies in this episode.
  • Sadistic Choice: Either the Doctor uses the Delta Wave to commit double genocide against humans and Daleks alike, or he allows the Daleks to spread throughout the universe. Fortunately, another option comes in the Bad Wolf arriving.
  • San Dimas Time: Pointed out by Jackie when Rose is desperate to get back to the confrontation that's happening right now... 198,000 years in the future.
  • Scary Dogmatic Aliens: "DO NOT BLASPHEME!"
  • Scotty Time: Deconstructed. The Doctor states that making a Delta Wave transmitter using the Gamestation, even for him, should take three days. By the time he's come up with the idea he's got barely half an hour before the Daleks get there. Somehow he manages to successfully rig it up before they get to him, which even he seems surprised by. However, he had to cut corners in order to get it ready in time and so it will kill both Daleks and humans in its range.
  • Season Finale: The first of the revived franchise, and arguably the first traditional "season finale" in Doctor Who. It's also the Grand Finale for the Ninth Doctor.
  • See You in Hell: Jack, like in "Boom Town" — except this time he knows he's going to certain death.
  • Send Me Back: Rose is trapped in the TARDIS by the Doctor and sent back to the twenty-first century, because "Emergency Program 1 means [the Doctor] is facing an enemy that should never be allowed to get their hands on the TARDIS." However, Rose won't take that for a good reason. She knows that the Doctor is going to die if he fights the Daleks by himself, so she gets Jackie and Mickey to help her crack the TARDIS so she can get back to the 2001st century — and it works.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: The elaborate battle plans and heroic resistance that most of the episode focuses on hardly slow the Daleks down. Earth's bombed enough to reshape entire continents, everyone on the station apart from the Doctor dies in a one-sided massacre and the Doctor can't go through with destroying the rest of humanity to stop the Daleks. Only Rose's return saves the shaggy dog from getting shot.
  • Shoo the Dog: The Doctor tricks Rose into getting into the TARDIS, which takes her back to her own time and away from the Dalek armada.
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: When the Dalek Emperor begins a monologue about how he survived the Time War, the Doctor interrupts him with a flat "I get it", after which all the Daleks furiously state how he should never ever interrupt their Emperor. The Doctor's response:
    The Doctor: I think you're forgetting something. 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 there is anybody who's going to shut up, IT'S YOU!
  • The So-Called Coward: When faced with destroying all life in the Solar System, the Doctor will choose coward over killer any day.
  • Space Is Noisy: Averted. When the Dalek rises up to the window of Lynda-with-a-Y's hiding place, while you don't hear it, its dome-lights flash in what is clearly it shouting "EX-TER-MIN-ATE", before it blasts the window apart, opening the room to the vacuum of space (evidently, the Daleks say it more for themselves than anyone else at this stage).
  • Space Opera: Aboard a grim, run-down satellite in a bleak Used Future, a ragtag group of heroes makes their last stand against The Emperor and his planet-conquering army.
  • "Spread Wings" Frame Shot: When the Doctor asks the Dalek Emperor if he's "gonna be one of [your] angels", lights on the elevator door behind him look like wings.
  • Stable Time Loop: The Arc Words "Bad Wolf" were planted by Bad Wolf so she could find a way to get back to the Doctor, which involves Rose getting possessed by the TARDIS so she can plant the "Bad Wolf" messages.
  • Suddenly Shouting:
    The Doctor: I'm the Doctor, and if there's one thing I can do, it's talk. I've got five billion languages and you haven't got one way of stopping me. So if anybody's going to shut up, [spins round] IT'S YOU! [two Daleks jerk back in fear] Okeydoke. Where were we?
  • Take That!: Russell T Davies expresses his ambivalent and nuanced feelings regarding the TV movie's claim that the Doctor was part human:
    Rose: But that makes them... half-human!
    Daleks: Do not blaspheme! Do not blaspheme! Do not blaspheme!
  • Talking Is a Free Action: A group of Daleks get in a shootout with a robot that's designed to spout a catchphrase before firing.
  • Tall Poppy Syndrome: Briefly, when Rose is back in the twenty-first century, having a Heroic BSoD. Mickey's contribution to this discussion? He bitterly asks if she thinks saving worlds with the Doctor makes her better than everyone else.
  • The Tape Knew You Would Say That: In the Doctor's holographic message to Rose, he turns his head to her as if he knew she would walk around the hologram to its side.
  • Technobabble: The Doctor's explanation of how he plans to use the Gamestation to generate a Delta Wave.
  • This Cannot Be!:
  • Time-Travel Tense Trouble: A non-comedic use: Rose is sent back home to avoid a bloodbath taking place in the future. Jackie brushes it off, but it tears Rose up enough she tears up other things.
  • Tongue Twister:
    Captain Jack: We've got a fully-functional force field. Try saying that when you're drunk.
  • Too Dumb to Live: The people in charge of the Gamestation do try to warn Earth about what's coming. Earth's only response is to cancel their licence because they weren't showing any games.
  • Trailers Always Spoil: Partially subverted. While everyone knew that the Daleks would appear in the finale, most didn't expect the Dalek Emperor to appear. However, his voice was heard in the Next Time trailer and some long-term fans recognised it.
  • The Un-Hug: When the Doctor says goodbye to Lynda as she's heading off to help defend the space station.
  • Wham Episode: Jack is left behind in the future, the meaning of the Arc Words is explained, the Dalek Emperor appears, and the Doctor regenerates.
  • Wham Line: The Dalek Emperor is asked if he was responsible for the "Bad Wolf" Arc Words. His response?
    Dalek Emperor: I did nothing... They are not part of my design. This is the truth of God.
  • Wham Shot:
    • A shot of the Dalek corpse that Jack killed reveals that it has two eyes. The Emperor soon reveals that his new Daleks were created from human remains.
    • Rose, feeling demoralised and upset because the TARDIS won't fly, is sitting and brooding in a sports field. As Mickey talks to her, she notices the words "Bad Wolf" written on the ground. Then she sees several more "Bad Wolfs" among the graffiti on a wall across the playing field.
    • When the Doctor sees the back of his hand start to glow.
  • What You Are in the Dark:
    • The Doctor suggests to Rose that they leave, and let history take its course. She points out he wouldn't do that.
    • Later, surrounded on all sides by psychotic Daleks, with everyone else dead, the Doctor threatens to activate the Delta Wave.
      Dalek Emperor: What are you, Doctor? Coward or killer?
      The Doctor: ... coward. Any day.
  • Why Don't You Just Shoot Him?: Partially justified due to being effectively invincible and a lot more sociopathic than usual, but the Daleks are really bad at this in this episode.note  Despite this (or because they're in no hurry), they still only lose three and a bit Daleks. The Emperor at least justifies this when the Daleks corner the Doctor through Pragmatic Villainy; since he knows that the Doctor could activate the delta wave and is actually interested in seeing the Doctor become a killer. As soon as something starts going south though, they stop screwing around; after three of them are swiftly disintegrated by the Anne-Droid, the next one shoots it from the side before the Anne-Droid can finish its sentence, and on Floor 499, the Daleks don't start shooting until one of them gets blinded, at which point they swiftly exterminate the whole room save Jack.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Rose says that if they can open the TARDIS' console, they call "tell it what to do" because the TARDIS is "alive". While she's right that the TARDIS is alive, she's entirely wrong about telling the TARDIS what to do — the TARDIS does exactly what she wants to do. In this case, that just so happens to be what Rose wants.
  • The X of Y: "The Parting of the Ways".
  • You Are What You Hate: Don't tell the Daleks that their Human Resources origin makes them human. The Doctor believes that the Daleks knowing this has driven them insane.
  • You Shall Not Pass!: Captain Jack stops at the entrance to the main part of Floor 500, holding off several Daleks with a pistol to give the Doctor an extra twenty seconds.

"Rose, before I go, I just want to tell you, you were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic. And do you know what? ....So was I!'"

"Hello! Okay- ...New teeth, that's weird. So, where was I...? Oh, that's right! Barcelona!"


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Alternative Title(s): Doctor Who NSS 1 E 13 The Parting Of The Ways


The Emperor of the Daleks

"I reached into the dirt and made new life. I AM THE GOD OF ALL DALEKS!"

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