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Tear Jerker / Doctor Who

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"Everybody knows that everybody dies, and nobody knows it like the Doctor."
River Song, "Forest of the Dead"

Seriously, it's a very emotional show. The hero dies and turns into someone else on a regular basis, their companions all leave them eventually, most of the time unwillingly or due to circumstances, and as the show has been running 50 years already there have also been a lot of instances of The Character Died with Him. You have been warned...

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    First Doctor episodes 
  • The very first serial introduces us to the series' very first murder victim: an old cavewoman. Sure she was a political schemer, but she was only trying to protect her tribe from what she believed would destroy them. Not only that, but instead of killing the Doctor and his companions to prevent them from teaching the tribe the secret of fire, she sets them free. And once caught she faces her death with (for the most part) fortitude and dignity.
  • The Daleks (oddly enough) in their debut appearance, after receiving an anti-radiation serum to protect from radiation poisoning. Many Daleks prove that the serum is incompatible with their biology, and they start screaming in pain before dying. It's surprising how sympathetic they seem when calling for help.
    Sick Dalek: (flailing about) Help! Cannot control! Cannot control! Help me! Help! Help! Help!
  • The First Doctor's Accidental Engagement in "The Aztecs". Note that he is so traumatized by the pain he unintentionally inflicts on his 'fiancee' that it takes seven regenerations before the Eighth Doctor gets romantic with an ephemeral again, putting this in Tear Jerker territory.
    • Going back and picking up Cameca's engagement necklace. It's probably the first sign of affection the First showed to anyone who wasn't Susan.
    • Autloch discovers someone who shares his qualms about Human Sacrifice, only to find her discredited and himself exiled.
  • Just seeing how much trauma John went through in "The Sensorites" is heartbreaking. Not only does he unintentionally doom himself and his crew to their imprisonment over the Sense Sphere, he is also driven mad by the Sensorites continually attacking his mind. Not even his fiance Carol can stand to face him in his condition. And during his treatment, he's aware of the City Commissioner's treachery, but can't tell anybody because of the helmet clearing his mind.Luckily, the heroes learn of the treachery and stop the Commissioner's plot. The scientists are also able to fix John, allowing him, Carol and the rest of the crew to peacefully depart back to Earth.
  • The very first companion departure. Susan, the Doctor's granddaughter, is torn between staying with her love and leaving with the Doctor, so he makes the choice for her by locking her out of the TARDIS. "One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then, there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs, and prove to me that I am not mistaken in mine. Goodbye, Susan. Goodbye, my dear." This was so moving to the producers that they used part of the speech to represent William Hartnell at the very beginning of "The Five Doctors". And then again as Flesh Eleven's first words in "The Almost People".
    • Carole Ann Ford actually cried real tears filming that scene.
    • It gets worse in the Expanded Universe, To elaborate, Big Finish Doctor Who has the Eighth Doctor finally return, and to find he has a great-grandson, Alex. After a brief, eventually happy reunion, Earth is invaded again by the Daleks. In the final fight, Alex is killed in a Heroic Sacrifice, leaving Susan distraught, and the Doctor bitter and more vengeful toward the Daleks then ever. She would later join the Time Lords during the Last Great Time War and end up at odds with the Doctor, though her fate afterwards is unknown and the Doctor assumes she died. Though it was later revealed Gallifrey is in a pocket universe, so she may still be alive. Regardless, Poor Susan.
  • And the next story — "The Rescue" — doesn't just brush off the whole thing. It's still not the focus of the serial, but there comes a time when the Doctor needs to operate the TARDIS. And, out of habit, he tells Susan to help him — only right then and there for it to fully sink in that she can't help him; that she's gone. And for several whole seconds, both the Doctor, Barbara, and Ian just stand there in silence, before Barbara tries to get their minds off it all.
  • The loss of the Doctors first human companions in "The Chase". Ian and Barbara chose to return to their own time, and the Doctor spends the last few moments of the episode in an uncharacteristically gloomy and morbid mood.
  • This even continues into the next episode, when the Doctor makes it quite clear that he views Steven as an inferior version of Ian, and takes an immediate dislike to him, picking on him and using him as a focus for all his frustration over losing his friends.
  • Though she wasn't a 'proper' companion, Katarina's death in "The Daleks' Master Plan" is a bit of this, even with only the audio.
    Steven: Not that one! Katarina! *spaces herself and her attacker* Katarina!
    • The end of that same story. The jungle planet Kembel, once known as the most hostile place in the solar system, reduced in seconds to a barren wasteland filled with the corpses of the Daleks and Sara. It doesn't help that the Doctor and Steven, the only survivors, spend several minutes contemplating the horror that the Time Destructor was able to bring about, all in absolute silence and stern voices.
      The Doctor: The waste... the terrible waste...
    • This line, after the Doctor is expressing satisfaction with the destruction of the Daleks:
      Steven: Bret! Katarina! ...Sara.
  • The ending of "The Massacre of St Bartholomew's Eve", where Steven leaves the TARDIS, disgusted that the Doctor left Anne Chaplet to be butchered. Gets even worse as the Doctor breaks down, remembering his companions who left him, especially Susan and combined with his guilt over his inaction in the massacre he's so broken he ponders whether to give up traveling altogether and return to Gallifrey. Even more sad as he’ll be separated from many more companions later in life.
    • The Doctor's speech is truly heartbreaking. He's never sounded more broken:
    The Doctor: Even after all this time he cannot understand. I dare not change the course of history. Well, at least I taught him to take some precautions. He did remember to look at the scanner before he opened the doors. Now they're all gone. All gone. None of them could understand. Not even my little Susan, or Vicki. And as for Barbara and Chatterton. Chesterton. They were all too impatient to get back to their own time. And now, Steven. Perhaps I should go home, back to my own planet. But I can't. I can't.
  • "The Tenth Planet" has the Doctor rapidly deteriorating, and whilst Ben and Polly don't know what is coming, he clearly does - his first regeneration, though he has no idea how the procedure will work, how it will hurt etc. The absent-minded, broken way he says "That's good... keep warm." to Polly as he leaves to become a new man is quite sad in hindsight.

    Second Doctor episodes 
  • "The Power of the Daleks": In the climactic showdown, we get a panning shot of the dead bodies. Then, just before the end, we see a frightened family approached by Daleks and a baby starts crying. Fortunately, the Daleks blow up just before they can kill the family.
  • "The Evil of the Daleks" introduces us to the very first humanized (read adorable) Daleks ever. Sadly, by the end of the episode, all the good Daleks are killed as they destroy their Emperor. All the Doctor could do was stand by the window and watch as the adorable pepperpots die when the building finally collapsed on top of the survivors. (According to 'Children Of The Revolution', some of them survived and met the Eighth Doctor, but died shortly afterwards.)
  • This whole speech from "Tomb Of The Cybermen". Deborah Watling's wonderful, moving performance as Victoria sadly remembering her dead family beforehand is great enough, but then Patrick Troughton comes out with this about HIS family...
    The Second Doctor: I have to really want to - to bring them back in front of my eyes. The rest of the time they... they sleep in my mind, and I forget. And so will you. Oh, yes, you will. You'll find there's so much else to think about, to remember. Our lives are different to anybody else's. That's the exciting thing! Because nobody in the universe can do what we're doing. So you go get some sleep, and let this poor old man stay awake.
    • Just...perfect.
    • Note that this is the first time the Doctor ever talked about his family (outside of his granddaughter Susan). The fact that he chose to confide in Victoria about this is proof that he truly loved her very much.
  • Victoria's goodbye in "Fury from the Deep". It's clear she's really torn between staying with The Doctor and Jamie, or the Harrisons.
    • Jamie's reaction to it as well. He clearly doesn't want her to leave and is quite depressed when she does. When the Doctor asks him where to go next, he responds he couldn't care less.
  • What happens to the Companions of "The Krotons".
  • "The War Games" episode 10 combines the Doctor's execution with the departures of two companions. Both of whom keep on hoping there's going to be a happy ending long after the Doctor's realized all too well there won't. Then after they've said goodbye to the Doctor (still hoping they'll see him again one day), the Time Lords casually inflict Victory-Guided Amnesia on them and we get to see the results. Heartbreaking.
    • Upon realizing that he couldn't avoid his trial, and had to say goodbye to his companions, the Doctor turns to Jamie, offering his hand and says goodbye. Jamie tries to object, but gets cut off by a much more curt "Good-bye, Jamie." You can practically see Jamie's heart breaking when he says goodbye back; he was the Second Doctor's companion for all but the first six episodes of his tenure, and the longest-running male companion in the Classic Who series. To see their friendship, and their adventures, have to end so suddenly, was just heartbreaking to those who had watched Jamie from the very beginning.
    • "I won't forget you, Doctor."
      • The last we see of him, he's charging a Redcoat who's shooting at him, when just before his memory was erased he talked down and cooperated with another. When you remember that and take into consideration how close Jamie was to the Doctor and how long they travelled together, well...
    • "I thought I'd forgotten something important, but it's nothing."
    • That Jamie and Zoe lost their memories was bad enough, but factor in the realization that given his nationality and time period, Jamie probably died at Culloden...
    • Except for the fact that unless the Time Lords screwed something up, that's an ontological impossibility.
    • Perhaps a slight happy tearjerker when, after he asks about them, the Time Lords do comfort the Doctor with the assurance that they'd taken steps to ensure both Jamie and Zoe will be fine.


    Third Doctor episodes 
  • The end of Episode Six of "Inferno". It's a Mirror Universe and all, and the Brigade Leader's a nasty piece of work, but that doesn't change the fact that four billion other people are dying at about the same time. But what really does it is the Doctor's complete inability to save anyone else.
    Brigade-Leader Alistair Gordon Lethbridge-Stewart: You’re going to take us with you, Doctor!
    Third Doctor: I can’t - it’s impossible!
    Brigade-Leader: (Whilst pointing a pistol at him) I advise you to try.
    The Doctor: I can’t, I literally can't. It would create a cosmic disaster.
    Brigade-Leader: You are not going to leave us here!
    The Doctor: Do you think I want to? I’d give anything to save you all.
    Greg Sutton: It’s not loaded!
    Brigade-Leader fires a warning shot to the side to prove Sutton wrong.
    Section Leader Elizabeth Shaw: Let him go, Brigade-Leader!
    Brigade-Leader: We helped him... We have every right to go... I give you until three, Doctor. One!
    The Doctor: You’ll have to shoot me Brigade-Leader, I have no intention of taking you!
    Brigade-Leader: Two! Thr- (BANG!)
    The shot came from the Section Leader’s pistol. The Brigade-Leader keels over.
    Section Leader: Now’s your chance Doctor!
    Sutton: Go on, Doctor, get out of it!
    We see an Apocalyptic Montage, starting with the Primord that was once the parallel Benton looking on as the main drilling complex goes up in a colossal explosion. We then cut to an unknown city being consumed by flames; civilians run around screaming, two men sit on the ground looking shell-shocked, and a soldier tries to flee, but finds the way blocked by a newly-opened lava pit. The Doctor, meanwhile, is still trying to cross back to his universe.
    Section Leader: Go on Doctor, go now!
    Doctor: I can’t it's still too erratic-
    Professor Petra Williams: GREG!
    The last thing we and The Doctor see of that world is lava pouring in through the door of the room the characters are standing in.
  • Ashe's Heroic Sacrifice in "Colony in Space", going up in flames before your very eyes when launching the rocket.
  • In "The Three Doctors", Omega isn't a very sympathetic character because of his ceaseless power tripping. This changes the moment he removes his mask and discovers his entire body has disintegrated in the antimatter realm and only his will allows him to exist as long as he thinks he is still alive. Omega collapses to his knees and begins the loudest, most helpless, and absolutely pitiful wailing you've ever heard. What follows is a horrifying Villainous Breakdown.
  • The DVD Commentary to "The Green Death", when Katy Manning begins talking about Jon Pertwee and breaks down in tears at the end.
    • And, of course, that lingering shot of the Doctor, standing alone by the door at Jo's engagement party, downing his last drink as he watches the guests mingle. There's a reason it's in every Fan Vid. Worse, Jo turns around once she notices he leaves and has a look of infinite sadness about her.
    • And then he drives off alone along the sunrise...
    • The Novelisation ends with "-and a tear rolled down the Doctor's 900 year old cheek..."
    • Also from The Green Death: when Stevens is freed from BOSS's control and sacrifices himself to destroy him. The shot of him resigned to his fate, shedding a Single Tear of regret is heartbreaking.
  • In "Death to the Daleks", Richard getting killed by an Exxilon shooting him in the back with an arrow. and Jill trying to save him.
    Jill: Help me with him! Help me!
    (The Third Doctor runs up to her.)
    The Third Doctor: It's no good, he's dead! We can't help him!
    Jill: But, please, we can't leave him here!
    (More arrows thud into the ground near them)
    The Third Doctor: Quick, come on! (Pulls her away)
    • Also from Death to the Daleks, the Doctor's last line:
    The Third Doctor: (Watching the Exxilon city melt) It's rather a pity in a way. Now the Universe is down to 699 wonders.
  • Aggedor's death in "The Monster of Peladon". The Doctor's face says it all.
  • The death of the Third Doctor in "Planet of the Spiders" holds up even today in terms of emotion, largely because of the superb acting of Jon Pertwee and Elisabeth Sladen.
    Sarah Jane: Oh, Doctor, why did you have to go back?
    The Third Doctor: I had to face my fear, Sarah...I had to face my fear. That was...was more important...than just going on living.
    Sarah Jane: Please...don't die.
    The Third Doctor: A tear...Sarah Jane? No, no, don't cry...while there's life, there's...
    Sarah Jane: Hope.
    • Three was always the suave, dashing, unflappable action hero. In his final moments, he just sounds so broken and weary.
    • Sarah's in an emotional state, the Brigadier is just silent and stoic, but aiding the Doctor in his final moments. He can't believe the Doctor's really dying either, but he takes it with quiet dignity.

    Fourth Doctor episodes 
  • The way the newly regenerated Fourth Doctor was trying new costumes in "Robot", only to have each one turned down by the Brigadier, was absolutely heart-wrenching. He just looked so sad when each suit was rejected...
    • Well, when you think about it, the Doctor solidifying his wardrobe after each regeneration is basically his way of demonstrating that he's finally comfortable with his new identity. The reason he's so downcast there is that he's just trying to figure out who he's turned into this time...
    • The K1 robot's entire story...
  • "The Ark in Space" had a sad ending:
    Noah: Goodbye, Vira...
    • In addition, the ending also has Rogin, a truly likeable member of the Ark's crew, being burned alive in a Heroic Sacrifice.
  • Near the beginning of "Pyramids of Mars" The Doctor is quietly standing in the control room of the TARDIS, looking unusually sullen. When Sarah Jane walks in she's wearing a dress she found. When she shows it off to him, The Doctor instantly recognizes it as one once worn by Victoria.
    Sarah: (excited) Doctor! Look what I found!
    Doctor: (absently) Hello, Vicky.
    • The Doctor then goes on for a bit about how Earth isn't really his home, sounding much like a stranger in a strange land.
    • Watching Laurence trying "I Know You're in There Somewhere" Fight on Marcus (or more precisely, Marcus dead body possessed by Sutekh's will) when he shows up. Worse, there seems to be a faint glimmer that Marcus might break free of Sutekh's possession, only to kill Laurence a second later.
  • The title character from "The Brain of Morbius", whatever terrible things Morbius did in his lifetime, he was still a very sad and pitiable creature in the end.
  • Sarah Jane's departure from the TARDIS in "The Hand of Fear":
    Sarah Jane: Don't forget me.
    Doctor: Oh, Sarah! Don't you forget me.
  • D84's Heroic Sacrifice at the conclusion of "The Robots of Death":
    D84: Goodbye... My... Friend.
  • Li H'sen Chang may have been a Punch-Clock Villain, but there's something about his Truth in Television pre-mortem vision of deceased loved ones coming to greet him.
  • "The Ribos Operation":
    • Unstoffe is deeply affected when the Graff brutally murders Binro simply for trying to help him.
      • This was especially tragic as it came so soon after the very moving scene where Unstoffe told Binro that his heretical ideas were right. The look of joy on the old man's face was a moment to provoke happy tears.
    • The Doctor didn't have it any easier, he had to stand by and watch as the Graff murdered many innocent people. It's no wonder he made certain the Graff suffered a Karmic Death from his own bomb.
  • "The Pirate Planet":
    • The Doctor reassuring K9, as his batteries and power are depleted.
    • The Captain telling a dying Fibuli that he's a good man and that he will be avenged.
  • "The Horns of Nimon":
    • Sezom's confession to Romana that he caused the destruction of his home planet, Crinoth, by allowing the Nimons to gain a foothold. When you consider that, unlike Soldeed who was only interested in conquest, he believed he was acting in his people's best interests, it becomes even more heart-breaking.
    • Meta example. Simon Gipps-Kent, the young actor who played Seth, died from morphine poisoning less than eight years after the story was first broadcast.
  • Near the end of "Meglos", just as The Doctor, Romana and K9 are about to leave Tigella to find and stop Meglos. the High-priestess Lexa dies shielding Romana from a stray laser blast. It's just so out of nowhere. Worse, moments before Lexa was little more than a one-dimensional religious zealot, next minute she's a dead hero.
    • Worse still, she died saving Romana. Since Romana is a Time Lord getting hit by a laser blast would probably have only required her to regenerate. So in effect, Lexa's death was little more than a Senseless Sacrifice.
    • Even worse, Lexa was played by Jacqueline Hill, who had played the First Doctor's companion Barbara Wright. "Meglos" was the last serial Jacqueline Hill ever stared in.
    • Romana is in absolute tears at being forced back to Gallifrey, and the Doctor's compliance to the order. He knows from experience that bad things happen when you try to defy the Time Lords (his execution springs to mind).
  • The Marshchild's final moments in "Full Circle": just watching the poor creature, who's been treated cruelly by nearly every human it's encountered (not least the Mad Scientist who just attempted to dissect its brain while it was fully conscious), reaching out towards a video screen on which it can see the face of the one person who showed it kindness: the Doctor. And then realizing that it can't tell that the image of the Doctor it sees isn't real, and watching helplessly as it smashes the screen to try and get to the Doctor, electrocuting itself in the process.
  • Romana's departure in "Warriors' Gate" and the Doctor's reaction.
    Adric: Will Romana be all right?
    The Doctor: All right? (Whispered) She'll be superb.
  • By the end of "The Keeper of Traken" the Master pulls one of the cruelest Grand Theft Mes ever and hijacks the body of Tremas. The rather kindly old man who'd just lost his wife to The Master's machinations.
  • Let's not forget the moment in "Logopolis" where the Doctor is forced to eject Romana's room from the TARDIS, even though you can tell he really doesn't want to. Dammit, Tom Baker, who knew you could deliver a heartbreaking performance like that?
    • Nyssa helplessly watching as her entire planet is engulfed in the entropy (especially after discovering that the man she thought was her father has actually killed him and taken over his body). Can you even imagine something like that, everyone you know dying all at once, and you can't do anything about it?
    • And she's not the only one to suffer grief, in the scene where the Doctor has to inform Tegan that the Master has killed her aunt. Logopolis as a whole is practically rife with this, including last but not least...
  • The Fourth Doctor's regeneration. Especially compared to the Fifth and Ninth, the circumstances may not have been the most impressive (and he knew it was coming), but keep in mind the Fourth is regarded by some as the most "alien" of the see such a strange, lovely creature go...
    • Not to mention that, if you were watching live from 1974-1981, you had spent over seven years and 172 episodes with this Doctor. That's a big loss.
      • Not only that but he was thinking of his companions before he "died."

    Fifth Doctor episodes 
  • The death of Adric in "Earthshock" made a few fans go misty-eyed.
    • And the break with the traditional closing credits. No theme song, no reversing the intro; just a picture of Adric's broken gold star accompanied by deafening silence. This moment of silence is all the more noticeable because it hardly ever happens on television these days. With the Credits Pushback, it's nigh impossible to do.
      • The last sound you hear before the silent credits is Nyssa and Tegan crying quietly in the TARDIS.
    • What makes Adric's death really heartbreaking is that he died thinking he'd failed and that the entire population of Earth was going to die with him. He had no way of knowing that he'd actually already saved them. It got even worse when you realise what that is he's holding in his final scene - his dead brother's belt, and the last little piece of home he has with him.
    • The Doctor's reaction to Adric's death isn't one of sadness, regret, or anger but confusion. Sure he's dealt with death before, but this is the first time in many many years that he's had someone close to him die and he's so shocked that he just doesn't know how to react. An alien moment from a very human Doctor.
  • Once again Omega proves to be a Tragic Monster, by the end of "Arc of Infinity". Borusa openly mourns for him and hopes that Omega could find peace after the Doctor used the antimatter gun to disperse him.
    Borusa: My hope is that he (Omega) has found peace at last...
    • Once Omega has gained his new body, he just walks around and takes in the sights. In fact, other than murdering a lone gardener to get a new outfit, he's positively adorable. Joining a crowd in watching a street side entertainer and smiling for probably the first time in a millennia.
  • The last part of "Terminus", when Nyssa is bidding farewell to the Doctor and Tegan.
    Tegan: She'll die here.
    Nyssa: Not easily, Tegan. Like you, I'm indestructible.
  • In "The Five Doctors", the look on the Second Doctor's face as he realizes that the Jamie and Zoe in Rassilon's Tomb can't possibly be real.
    • And the apparitions' screams as they fade away...
    • The twist that Borusa of all people was the one who pulled a Face–Heel Turn in order to obtain immortality was no doubt a shock to those who'd seen the episode for the first time.
    • The death of the Castellan, while the man was no saint, and certainly not likable. Being framed of betrayal, them promptly executed without trial still seems a rather pathetic way to go in the end.
  • "Warriors of the Deep", a Fifth Doctor episode with a Kill 'Em All ending. All the death is bad enough, but then the Doctor says "There should have been another way," and his voice is cracking and guh.
    • "Resurrection of the Daleks", three episodes later, ends the same way — and Tegan, unable to bear any more stupid, stupid deaths, leaves. More accurately, she runs away, leaving the Doctor standing among the ruins of his enemies.
      Tegan: I'm tired of it. A lot of good people have died today...I'm sick of it. My Aunt Vanessa said, when I became an air stewardess, "If you stop enjoying it, give it up." It's stopped being fun, Doctor!
      The Doctor: No, don't leave! Not like this.
      Tegan: I must. I'm sorry! Goodbye. (runs)

      The Doctor: It''s strange. I left Gallifrey for similar reasons. I’d grown tired of their lifestyle.
    • Then in a cruel twist, Tegan goes to rejoin the TARDIS, only to see it leave. She got left behind again, albeit this time for good.
  • The end of "Planet of Fire". Turlough didn't want to leave the Doctor, but he had just found his brother and needed to take care of him.
  • Despite Peri's cleavage, the Master's laugh, and the post-regenerative Mood Whiplash from hell, the Fifth Doctor's death at the end of "The Caves of Androzani" is still a massive downer, a counterbalance to what many consider one of the best episodes in Doctor Who history
    • Really, everything about the story's climax is depressingly nihilistic, even by the usual grisly standards of Davison's era. Every other character dies in the end, all because of a series of selfish mistakes and miscommunications. Sharaz Jek's death is especially poignant, as we spend most of the latter half of the story exploring his tragic status as a tortured Anti-Villain, only for him to expire while clinging to his last surviving android servant while his base crumbles around them. The scene is so frantic that the Doctor can only rush past while trying to escape with the unconscious Peri.

    Sixth Doctor episodes 
  • Watching The Doctor going through his post-regeneration trauma throughout "The Twin Dilemma". The poor guy has spasms of pain and screams one moment, then can't tell friend from foe the next.
    • The Doctor can't even remember his attempt to strangle Peri moments after trying to do so.
    • Six mistaking Peri for Tegan, a second later he realizes his mistake. Even worse is the wistful look on his face as he does so, as if he’s still saddened by how it ended.
    • The Doctor’s sadness and righteous fury at seeing what has become of the once lush and beautiful Jaconda.
    • Azmael's Heroic Sacrifice, and The Doctor's obvious grief.
    • Even from a behind-the-scenes perspective, this story is a Tear Jerker when we realise in hindsight that from this moment on, Doctor Who's card was marked.
  • The Doctor's lament in "Attack of the Cybermen".
    The Doctor: Didn't go very well now, did it?
    Peri: Well, Earth's safe, and so is the web of time.
    The Doctor: I meant on a personal level. (Beat) I don't think I've ever misjudged somebody quite as badly as I did Lytton.
  • The Doctor's grief over the loss of so many innocent and brilliant people in "The Two Doctors".
    • The second Doctor's reaction when Dastari and Chessene tell him Jamie's dead. The audience know Jamie's alright, but the poor Doctor has no way of knowing this, and lets out a howl of despair.
  • In "Revelation of the Daleks", The Doctor's brief but shocked reaction when Davros casually mentions that the two graverobbers he befriended and recruited earlier are dead.
    Doctor: Do you ever do anything but kill!?
  • From "Mindwarp": "You... killed Peri?" okay, she's Not Quite Dead (possibly. God knows), but the vulnerability, grief, and shock in his voice is so profound.
  • The death of the Vervoids in "Terror Of The Vervoids". While the creatures did kill many innocent people, and would have likely continued to do so if not stopped. The poor creatures' look very pathetic as they wither, die, and turn to dust. The sad look on The Doctor's face as the last Vervoid leaf crumbles to dust in his hand says it all.
  • The Doctor's rant in "The Ultimate Foe". It's Harsher in Hindsight post-Time War. It's even worse after The End Of Time.
    The Doctor: In all my travelling throughout the universe, I have battled against evil, against power-mad conspirators. I should have stayed here! The oldest civilisation: decadent, degenerate, and rotten to the core. Power-mad conspirators, Daleks, Sontarans, Cybermen, they're still in the nursery compared to us! Ten million years of absolute power. That's what it takes to be really corrupt!

    Seventh Doctor episodes 
  • Pex's Heroic Sacrifice and funeral in "Paradise Towers".
  • Although the circumstances behind Mel's departure in "Dragonfire" are possibly the most random and arbitrary reasons for a departing companion in the show's history, it's well-compensated for by the actual farewell scene, in which the Doctor quickly reveals his inner loneliness and sense of loss:
    Mel: Well, I suppose it's time.
    The Doctor: [pottering around the console] Time? Hmm. Funny old business, time. It delights in frustrating your plans. All of Kane's bitterness and hatred thwarted by a quirk of time.
    Mel: No, I meant... I suppose it's time I should be going.
    [The Doctor freezes what he's doing and looks up, a shattered look on his face]
    The Doctor: Oh.
    Mel: Time I left.
    The Doctor: Yes... well... [weak laugh] You could be right. Time for you to go.
    Mel: Before I go, I—
    The Doctor: [Cutting her off with forced cheer, begins to fiddle with the console again, avoiding eye contact] Funny old business, time!
    Mel: Doctor, I—
    The Doctor: Well if you must go.
    Mel: Before I go, I'd just like to say—
    The Doctor: There's no point, Mel. [A little bit of hurt and anger breaking through] No point hanging around wasting time.
    Mel: [Snapping] No, I'm not going before I've said my piece! I just want to say—
    The Doctor: [Turning around, finally meeting her eyes] There's no time, Mel.
    Mel: Oh, alright. You win.
    The Doctor: I do? I usually do.
    Mel: I'm going now.
    The Doctor: (faux-cheer) Yes, that's right, you're going! You've been gone for ages! (increasingly maudlin) You're not really gone. You're still here. Just arrived... haven't even met you yet... It all depends on who you are and how you look at it. Strange business, time.
    Mel: (sadly) Goodbye, Doctor.
    The Doctor: (recovering) I'm sorry, Mel. Think about me, when you're living your life, one day after another, all in a neat pattern. Think about the homeless traveller and his old police box. And his days like crazy paving.
  • In "Remembrance of the Daleks", the only reason Mike Smith is a Neo-Nazi is because he honestly doesn't know any better. And he doesn't get a chance at redemption.
    • The Doctor convincing the Supreme Renegade Dalek to destroy itself is quite saddening, particularly because while the Dalek flails in horror and distress at seemingly being the Last of His Kind, the girl who was made into the Dalek Battle Computer, whose mind is linked to the Supreme Dalek, also screams in pain, and is reduced to a sobbing wreck once the Dalek has died.
  • The moment from "The Greatest Show In The Galaxy" that can only be described as cold-blooded murder when the young starstruck über-fan WhizzKid was killed. To be frank, it's hard to tell whose callous disregard for the young man's life was worse. The Gods of Ragnarok, or the treacherous Captain.
  • The scene in "Ghost Light" where Ace tells the Doctor about the murder of her best friend at age 13 (though extra-canonical sources indicate that she survived) after her flat was firebombed by skinheads.
  • If your heart wasn't ripped out of your chest when the Doctor intentionally stuck a knife in every last one of Ace's insecurities to force her to lose her faith in him in "The Curse of Fenric", there is a high possibility you are not in fact human.
    • The audience knows, of course, that he doesn't mean a word of it. Ace does not.
    • Kathleen Dudman finding out about the death of her husband.
      Ace: (Reading Kathleen's letter) It is with deepest sorrow that I write to inform you that the ship on which your husband, Frank William Dudman, was serving, was struck by enemy torpedoes. Your husband was trapped in the fire and has been listed as missing, presumed dead. Please accept our sincere condolences.
  • Karra's death near the end of "Survival". Pretty much that entire scene from Ace's broken cry onward.
    • The Doctor's final monologue, recorded at a point where it was clear that series 27 was unlikely to occur:
      The Doctor: There are worlds out there where the sky's burning, where the sea's asleep, and the rivers dream. People made of smoke, and cities made of song. Somewhere there's danger, somewhere there's injustice, somewhere else the tea's getting cold. Come on Ace, we've got work to do.


    Eighth Doctor (TV Movie & "Night of the Doctor") 
  • The Seventh Doctor's death during The TV Movie. Yes, he was shot, but the bullets were removed and he seemed on the mend. But then a cardiologist with no knowledge of his two hearts got hold of him on the operating table. The eyes start getting watery as soon as the Doctor reaches up and grabs the surgeon's hand holding the scalpel. "Whatever it is you're about to do, stop." Perfectly lucid, desperate to stop the Master, and succumbing to sedation while terrified beyond belief at the idea of being cut apart by ignorant humans trying to fix a nonexistent problem.
    • The fact that the cunning chessmaster Doctor dies a stupid, easily avoidable death. If one follows both the series and the Doctor Who New Adventures, his manipulating and alienating of his companions means that he dies with no companions or familiar faces by his side and is unceremoniously shoved in the morgue. He didn't die alone, but he might as well have done.
  • "WHO... AM I?!" The Eighth Doctor gets it even worse than his predecessors, not only not entirely sure of the person he's turned into this time, but he's not even aware that he's the Doctor! Waking up in a morgue with no idea who you are but being fairly sure you didn't look like that a few minutes ago would freak any person out.
    • In the novel he ends up on the floor curled in a ball, struggling to keep warm while repeating "Who am I?" over and over.
  • While Grace is examining Eight's chest and heartsbeat and he says "But it was a childish dream that made you want to be a doctor" in the novel, there's a flashback to Grace's life in Sacramento. She's only five years old when her mother passes away from cancer. Later in life, she pursued a career in the medical field to try and prevent young kids from losing their parent(s) as she did.
  • When the Master kills Lee. It was so brutal and sudden, even though we knew it was coming. Luckily Lee got better.
    • Then he goes and kills poor Grace moments later.
  • Eight's goodbye to Grace at the end of the movie.
    • It's even sadder that Grace refused his offer to tag along. It would have been fun...
    • Just before their goodbye The Doctor offers to take her along. Grace declines but then suggests that he stay. The Doctor then looks around considering the idea for one wistful moment, then sadly declines.
  • The very idea that this gentlemanly, sweet, slightly scatterbrained Doctor is the one to experience the Time War.
    • "The Night of the Doctor" reveals that he attempted and failed to run from the Time War, and tried to help where he could, but eventually realized at the end of his life that the Daleks and Time Lords were becoming indistinguishable and that he was the only one who could end it, regenerating into a 'warrior' to finish it.
    • The experience that brings about this? The sole survivor of a crashing ship he was saving straight up decided she would rather die than be rescued by him the second she realized he was a Time Lord, despite his pleadings.
      • Cass' expression during her last moments sell it. You can tell that beneath all that spite and hatred, there's a bit of her that's terrified of dying and nearly on the verge of tears. Yet to her, this horrific last moment is preferable to being saved by a Time Lord.
    • The first word out of the Doctor's mouth after he's temporarily revived from having been killed permanently?
      Doctor: CASS!
    • Furthermore, when she refuses to let him save her, he doesn't bother to save himself and remains on the ship until it crashes into the planet, killing them both, him for good. When the Sisterhood of Karn bring him back to life temporarily to give him the chance to regenerate, he initially refuses and snarks he'll spend his last few minutes knitting instead. The Eighth Doctor is so broken by this point, he actively wants to die.
    • Then when the Doctor asks the leader of the Sisterhood if he'll feel any pain during his regeneration.
    The Doctor: (whimpers) ...Will it hurt?
    • And when she says it will, he says "Good". Because he's convinced that he's compromising every principle he's ever lived by, and believes that he deserves whatever pain the process might inflict upon him. Eight's last moments of existence were Eight at his most self-loathing.
    • Really, this minisode makes it very clear this was the culmination of a very long string of Break the Cutie moments that caused the Eighth Doctor to finally cross the Despair Event Horizon. "Physician, heal thyself" indeed.

    War Doctor (publications and episodes) 
  • The newly-regenerated War Doctor's first words - "Doctor no more". Not helped by the fact he has donned a bandolier - a piece of equipment the Doctor would normally avoid like the plague. And his face is grimly serious. Not a smile, not a chuckle, not a witticism to be found going into his new life - just a very short and concise summation of what is likely going to be an unforgiving and joyless ordeal.
  • The Master adores chaos. The Cruciform fell and he ran away for that was too much chaos for even him. The Doctor however? He watched Gallifrey burn when the Cruciform fell.
  • In "Dead Man's Hand", the War Doctor is summoned to the Matrix to defend the name of the Eleventh Doctor by detailing his history as the Doctor. Poor War can't even bear to speak because he's so ashamed of the dark route he took compared to the other incarnations.
    • Only the Eighth Doctor will defend him, why? No doubt he feels horribly guilty for forcing War into his life in the first place.
  • Seeing how young and pristine the War Doctor looks in "The Night of the Doctor" versus the end of his life. He went into this life to end the war as quickly as possible but missed the boat on that notion because the war was just too bloomin' violent to curtail on his own. He instead spent 400 years fighting almost non-stop and his clothes and TARDIS showed the damage. He grew extremely old, his hair went fully grey, he looks very tired, and he even has a Beard of Sorrow. But worst of all, the War Doctor is now haunted almost perpetually and sports a consistent Thousand-Yard Stare.
  • The charity anthology psuedocanon film "Seasons of War" has the young War Doctor being given a gift from a grateful little girl for protecting fellow Time Lord war refugees on another planet. However, in her adulthood, the Doctor comes back, much older and battle-weary, for one reason. To give her back the gift because he doesn't deserve it anymore.
    • Also, the Corsair makes an appearance, getting blasted out of his senses at a bar to take his mind off the war. And then the anthology elaborates his eventual fate...
    • The Doctor's TARDIS interior is now in serious disrepair, slowly wearing out with its pilot. The lighting's all dingy, there's poorly fastened wires hanging loose from the ceiling which are choking out sparks, and it looks nothing like a quaint living space anymore. Not to mention that it looks like all the extra space was jettisoned, leaving the console room as the only room left, the room itself having shrunken from the massive space we saw in the TV movie down to the basic roundels we associate with One-Seven and the coral struts (and console itself) we'd come to associate with Nine and Ten.
    • The Doctor has acquired a memento from battle: a Dalek eyestalk which he turned into a telescope. When he lands on the beach of a nearby planet, the first thing he does is scan it to make sure it's safe, and barely speaks to anyone living there. This is a total departure from a man who once gleefully stepped out onto an uncharted world and actively befriended the locals. War has a cold and unfeeling stiff upper lip vibe since it's not a good thing to get too attached to someone in war with the prospects that person could meet a sudden, gruesome end. Engines of War drives this point on home hard.
  • Engines of War: Has its own page.
  • "The Last Day": A Foregone Conclusion that many Time Lords are about to be mercilessly killed by the single biggest Dalek attack of all time... and we get a front-row seat to it in the sky trenches of Arcadia. The minisode shows you that there are families who are going to see this and learn how their loved ones died... Soldiers screaming in terror, PTSD-like premonitions, and gratuitous close-up shots of Daleks descending right in front of the victims to gun them down at point-blank range. For the children, it would be beyond traumatizing to watch a family member die and get a clear glimpse of the murderer.
    • A single Dalek starts a mad panic in Arcadia after they feel totally secure that not a single one of the pepperpots can get in. This proves that the soldiers on watch at Arcadia were collectively putting up a front of courage and security, when in fact, all of them were scared out of their wits that the whole of their defenses could come crashing down at any moment, which they did.
  • In "The Day of the Doctor", the War Doctor goes to a quiet, secluded barn to detonate the Moment, abandoning the TARDIS. Why? He doesn't want her to witness the horrible thing he's about to do after she's been right beside him in all the times he has made her proud. This will be the one time he breaks her heart.
    • Worse, that barn is actually a childhood remnant of days long since past for the Doctor on Gallifrey. He chose the location out of some sense of security and comfort to latch onto in his Darkest Hour.
      • Which also adds some Fridge Horror: the Doctor fully intended to die with his planet when he activated The Moment,
    • The Moment is far from a weapon of genocide and truly cared that the Doctor would find a proper ending to the Time War. She might be the one and only force in the universe who was powerful enough to administer help where he needed it most in the exact way he needed it, almost like she was acting as his guardian angel.
    • The General and Androgar, along with the War Council, are not the cracked up evil Time Lords viewers were led to believe dominated the population of Gallifrey. There were innocent Gallifreyans, too - families, men, women, and most of all, children caught in the fray of the battle who would have been killed if the Moment and Clara did not intervene.
    • The Tenth Doctor was definitely right when he said the Time War turned into Hell. Children crying as Daleks lined up in droves to exterminate them, Time Lord soldiers being blown up in huge fireballs in the seats of their gun turrets by high-intensity Dalek fighter pod lasers, and just one Dalek was enough to reduce a city of millions to total ruin. Thankfully, the War Doctor was there to put a stop to all that.
    • The War Doctor is suicidal when he wants to use the Moment, not intending to live through the utter annihilation of his home and all the innocent residents who are about to burn.
    • When the Moment shows a glimpse of Arcadia being attacked, panicked residents are seen fleeing for their lives, there's a scream of a young girl, and a view of a mother cupping her hand to her mouth in horror at what she has just witnessed. This sight makes Clara break down in tears, and the War Doctor looks completely devastated by it - perhaps another reason to justify his lack of companions - he didn't want to make them suffer.
    • "Great men are forged in fire. It is the privilege of lesser men to light the flame". The War Doctor is referring to his successors as "great men", while he is the "lesser man" destined to light the flame when destroying Gallifrey.
    • There is an Empathy Doll Shot of a fuzzy animal... except not only is it abandoned, it's burning.
    • The War Doctor begging the Tenth and Eleventh Doctors, eyes wet, to go when he's about to activate the Moment: "Go back to your lives. Go and be the Doctor that I could never be."
    • Then his Thousand-Yard Stare when Ten and Eleven remark on how long they've spent "keeping you a secret, even from myself", despairing at how he'll be remembered, complete with a PTSD flashback... before they go on to acknowledge that seeing him now, seeing the Time War again, they've come to realise that he was more the Doctor than anyone else, being the Doctor on the day "it wasn't possible to get it right." His tiny whisper of "Thank you" when they offer to help him activate the Moment. War sounds on the verge of tears.
    • The War Doctor's pragmatic TARDIS control room is so haphazardly strung together, the TARDIS itself looks like it's been forced into a configuration it doesn't like and is screaming "no more" at the Time War.
    • Even though the War Doctor regenerated with the knowledge he saved Gallifrey and that life will end in peace, his next incarnation will immediately think he killed everyone, have a colossal Heroic BSoD, and spend most of that life brooding and angry. 100 years spent beating himself up, reconfiguring the TARDIS console room into an even more cold and grungy machine, and likely doing a great deal of crying from huge regrets, if the Single Tear Nine sheds in "The End of the World" is a good indicator.

    Ninth Doctor episodes 
  • "Rose": Rose's reaction when she thinks Mickey has been killed by Autons.
    • Clive is shot down by an Auton right in front of his own family, who then run for their lives, abandoning his body. And Clive just looks so resigned when the Auton turns its gun on him, like he was thinking something along the lines of, "I researched a dangerous alien whose constant companion is death. I got too closely involved. I knew this was bound to happen sooner or later."
    • In a subtle tearjerker, the track that plays when Rose first walks into the TARDIS is a vocals-only variation of "Doomsday".
    YouTube Commenter: Her fate was sealed the moment she walked in...
  • The end of "The End of the World", Rose is looking out the window at the remains of the Earth after it is destroyed by the Sun's transformation into a red giant. "The end of the Earth. It's gone. We were too busy saving ourselves, no one saw it go. All those years, all that history, and no one was even looking." And then the Doctor takes her back to her time, and we see all these people and things that, a moment ago, were gone.
    The Doctor: You think it'll last forever. People, and cars, and concrete. But it won't. One day, it's all gone. Even the sky.
    • And then the Doctor reveals that his planet is gone, and you realize that he brought Rose to see Earth's final moments because he's desperate for his new companion to understand his own loss.
    • In the same episode, what was said at the beginning of the episode. Rose's first trip in the TARDIS and the first thing she sees is the death of Earth - not in any of the thousands of potentially imaginable holocausts that humans could bring upon themselves. But because it's an old, old planet that has reached its time.
      Doctor: You lot, you spend all your time thinking about dying. Like you're gonna get killed by eggs, or beef, or global warming, or asteroids. But you never take time to imagine the impossible: That maybe you survive.
    • Earlier in the episode, where Jabe tells the Doctor she knows where he's from and how sorry she is for what's happened to him. Cue single Manly Tear from the Doctor.
  • Jackie's very real fear in "Aliens of London".
    "Do you know what terrifies me, is that you still can't say. What happened to you, Rose? What could be so bad that you can't tell me, sweetheart?"
  • You'd never think you'd cry over a Dalek of all things. But when the lone Dalek from "Dalek" develops feelings, due to using human material to regenerate, and finds itself unable to exterminate Rose Tyler or even Van Statten - the person responsible for containing and torturing it - and growing disgusted with itself for its nature, it begs for new orders - and realizes it's all alone. It begs Rose to order it to commit suicide, unable to deal with it all.
    • This line.
      Dalek: This is not life. This is sickness.
    • And the line after the order, with the Dalek facing its suicide/death was what really did it though.
      Dalek: [softly] Are you frightened, Rose Tyler?
      Rose: Yeah...
      Dalek: [softly] So... am... I...
    • It even closes its eye before initiating the self-destruct. Did we just see a Dalek Face Death with Dignity?
      • And the single, depressed, pathetic little "EXTERMINATE!" before it dies, as it gradually returns to what used to be its one anchor in its destroyed world.
      • Even more moving, when you watch it again after seeing "The Witch's Familiar", which revealed that Daleks activate their weapons by channeling their emotions. Normally that's hatred for their enemies, but the Metaltron managed to channel its own despair to trigger its suicide mechanism.
    • The music "The Lone Dalek" doesn't hurt.
    • The Doctor talking to the Dalek about the Time War, and his reaction when thinking it killed Rose. Eccleston was just amazing in that episode.
      • The Doctor raging at the Dalek.
    Doctor: Why don't you just DIE?!
    Dalek: ...You would make a good Dalek.
    • The whole scene where the Doctor and the Dalek realize that there'e no one else coming to the latter's distress signal
      Doctor: But there's no one else coming 'cause there's no one else left...
      Dalek: the universe...
      Doctor: Yep!
      Dalek: We are the same.
      • What makes these scenes all the more powerful is that you feel sympathy for what is supposedly the most hated creature in the series.
    • The Doctor trying to justify killing the Dalek to Rose:
      Doctor: The Daleks destroyed my home, my people! I've got nothing left!
    • Then Rose questions what he's turning himself into, and The Doctor looks at the Dalek... and lowers his weapon.
    • Even before absorbing Rose's DNA, the Dalek shows qualities of humanity. Whether this was an elaborate ploy or genuine caving in under the inevitability of death, it's enough to make you feel a bit sorry for it.
      Dalek: [softly] I... welcome death. But, I am glad that... before I die... I met a human... who was not... afraid.
    • The Harsher in Hindsight realization that the Doctor isn't long removed from The Moment, when he committed genocide against the Daleks and the Time Lords, killing warriors and innocents alike. As the lights come on, he has a moment when he realizes that it was all for naught: a Dalek survived, and despite having the blood of billions, if not trillions, on his hands, one of his enemies survived and the war between Dalek and Time Lord must inevitably restart.
  • "Father's Day" is often cited as making fans cry.
    Pete: Who am I, love?
    Rose: My daddy.

    Pete: I never read you those bedtime stories, I never took you on those picnics. I was never there for you.
    Rose: You woulda been.
    Pete: I can do this for you. I'll be a proper dad to you now.
    • Rose, not wanting Pete to know that he's dead in her time, telling him what a great dad he's been to her. Pete not only immediately realises that that sounds nothing like him - a sad thing in itself - but you can also just see him start to put two and two together and realise just why and how she would have that sort of rose-tinted view of him...
    • Billie Piper's eyes are red from crying in pretty much every shot.
  • A brief moment from "The Empty Child", when the Child tries to get into the house, and the Doctor, not yet knowing what the deal is, thinks he just wants to be with the other kids.
    The Doctor: It's never easy being the only child left out in the cold, you know.
    Nancy: And I suppose you'd know!
    The Doctor: I do actually, yes!
  • From "The Doctor Dances":
    The Doctor: Just this once, Rose, everybody lives!
    • And the moment before: "Yes, I am your mummy... I will always be your mummy."
    • The fact that, despite the Blitz going on all around and the immediate danger from the attacking zombies, what is it that saves the entire world? The love of a mother for her child.
    • Nancy's whole life, when you think about it. She gets pregnant, in the 1940s, aged probably no more than 16. The baby's father either dies or abandons her. Her parents kick her out to give birth alone, and she struggles against all the odds to keep her little boy, all the while lying to him and everybody else (except perhaps Dr Constantine) that he's her brother. And then she loses him anyway. And then he comes back as a monster.
    • Early drafts included Jamie's father, who would silently and anonymously appear to aid Nancy and the war orphans. The climactic discovery of his true identity would be accompanied by the revelation that he is German, providing an alternative motivation to Nancy's shame.
    • How the little boy became a monster in the first place is a tear-jerker - the nanogenes had never come across a person before, so they were just trying to do what they'd been programmed to do and save him, but they didn't have any kind of human template to work with.
    • Nancy and Rose's discussion about her general lack of Arbitrary Skepticism. Given the situation she finds herself in, she's ready to believe almost anything, even that Rose and the Doctor are time travelers... but not ones from the future. Pointing at nighttime London sky, with barrage balloons and flak burts and German bombers bombing the city, she asks Rose: What future? Nancy is, at this point, pretty much utterly hopeless and just running on survival instinct rather than any actual belief that anything could possibly get better.
    • The ending to "The Doctor Dances" doubles as a Tear Jerker and a Moment of Heartwarming. How desperately The Doctor wants just one day where nobody has to die.
    The Doctor: Oh, come on. Give me a day like this. Give me this one...
    [shortly thereafter] The Doctor: Everybody Lives Rose! Just this once, everybody lives!
    [later still] The Doctor: I need more days like this...
    • In retrospect, it's clear just how desperate the Doctor is for a day when nobody has to die at all.
      • It's worse than that. Yes, he supposedly killed his own people, but A Million Is a Statistic. The conversation where Dr. Constantine says, "Before this war began I was a father and a grandfather. Now I am neither," and the Doctor agrees was a Tear Jerker, when you take into account the Doctor indeed was a grandfather.
    • The last few scenes of "The Doctor Dances" have a second tearjerker that happens right after that. Captain Jack intercepts the German bomb, but finds that it can't be defused, only it's detonation can be slowed down. He transmits an absolutely heartwrenching hologram to Rose and The Doctor before taking his ship to outer space. And the few scenes after that implies that he is preparing to meet his doom. Of course, he's an important character, so cue Mood Whiplash and The Doctor to the rescue!
  • "Boom Town" starts off as a humor episode. Its title and content threaten to be all about action. The bulk of the episode is given over to a quiet allegory about capital punishment. Blaine is a murderer, and attempted to be one on a genocidal scale, but her grief at the loss of her family, her fear of death, her knowledge that she's responsible for the sorry state of her own life make her all too familiar, both to the Doctor and the audience. Both she and the Doctor argue whether the capacity for mercy outweighs the need for justice for her crimes:
    The Doctor: You let one of them go, but that's nothing new. Every now and then a little victim spared, because she smiled, 'cos he's got freckles, 'cos they begged. And that's how you live with yourself, that's how you slaughter millions. Because once in a while, on a whim, if the wind's blowing in the right direction, you happen to be kind.
    Margaret Blaine: Only a killer would know that. Is that right? From what I've seen, your funny little happy-go-lucky life leaves devastation in its wake. Always moving on, because you dare not go back. Playing with so many peoples' lives — you might as well be a god. And you're right, Doctor, you're absolutely right; sometimes you let one go. Let me go.
    • An absolutely amazing line and one unexpected for a former Monster of the Week (and a relatively minor member of the group at that) to be able to perform as well as she does:
      Blon: "Let's see who can look me in the eye..."
    • Mickey's tearful and angry speech to Rose about leaving him behind is a harrowing moment, revealing that, hapless as he is, she really hurt him. She even quietly admits at the end that he deserves better than her.
    • It's a throwaway line, if that, but Margaret's line about how all of south Wales could fall into the sea and the government wouldn't notice hits a lot harder for anyone who's lived in Wales and knows how often it's left behind in British politics.
  • In "The Parting of the Ways", we have Lynda, freshly invited to join the TARDIS, and utterly ignorant of the Daleks' ability to survive hard vacuum. Then the lights flash in that cadence we know all too well...
    • The Doctor's holographic farewell to Rose. Especially when the hologram turns and looks right at her and tells her to have "a fantastic life." Cue the waterworks.
      • If you replace Rose's theme with the music intended for the scene, it gets worse.
    • Jack's resurrection.
      • Especially in retrospect, knowing what happens to him over the course of the next two thousand years or so, Jack being left behind on the Gamestation in The Parting of Ways is quite the tearjerker. What with the absolute disbelief on his face and us knowing just how much he's going to go through from now on...
      • Jack sums up the consequences of when The Doctor inspires those around him to be selfless and self-sacrificing.
      Jack: Wish I'd never met you, Doctor. I was much better off as a coward.
    • Rose sitting despondently in the diner, talking about the ways her time with the Doctor has changed her life and made her a better person.
      Rose: But what do I do every day, Mum? Get up. Go to work. Catch the bus, eat chips, and go to bed.
      Mickey: It's what the rest of us do.
      Rose: But I can't.
      Mickey: Because you’re better than us?
      Rose: No, I didn't mean that. But it was, it was a better life. I don’t mean all the travelling and seeing aliens and spaceships and things. That don't matter. The Doctor showed me a better way of living your life. You know, he showed you too. You don't just give up. You don’t just let things happen. You make a stand. You say "no." You have the guts to do what's right when everyone else just runs away."
    • A smaller moment: Rose finally telling Jackie about visiting her father.
  • The Ninth Doctor's death, especially if you're a newcomer and he's your first, seriously hurts. Knowing that it's going to happen, watching it happen, watching him change...
    • His final exchange with Rose is all at once beautiful, heartwarming, and bloody sad.
      Ninth Doctor: See, Time Lords have this little trick. Sort of a way of cheating death. Except... it means I'm gonna change. And I'm not gonna see you again — not with this daft old face. And before I go...
      Rose: Don't say that
      Ninth Doctor: Rose. Before I go, I just want to tell you that you were fantastic. Absolutely fantastic! And you know what?
      [Rose shakes her head]
      Ninth Doctor: [grins] So was I.
    • What makes it especially sad is how ridiculously short the Ninth's "era" was. Other than the Eighth Doctor and the War Doctor (both of whom are explicitly stated to have numerous adventures/years off-screen), no other Doctor has had so few episodes before dying. Furthermore, it's clear that "Rose" is very, very soon into this incarnation and that Rose Tyler stayed with the Ninth Doctor basically his whole life. Unlike other Doctors, there is no Time Skip in between companions. Rose never really noticeably ages either, indicating that their time together is fairly brief. That one little series, Series 1, is basically the whole of the Ninth Doctor's life, minus the 100 years spent between Rose rejecting his offer and him returning. Which means Rose was so significant in Nine's life that after sharing one adventure with her, he returns a century later just to get her as a full companion... then dies after only travelling a year with her.
    • When the Ninth Doctor is faced with choosing between another double genocide or letting the Daleks conquer Earth, the Dalek Emperor mocks him and asks him whether he is a coward or a killer.
      Ninth Doctor: Coward. Any day.

    Tenth Doctor episodes 
  • "The Christmas Invasion":
    • When there's nothing left the humans can do and the chips are down, Harriet Jones does the only thing she can think of: she makes a desperate plea to the Doctor on national television for him to save them.
      Harriet Jones: [...] But, ladies and gentlemen, this crisis is unique, and I'm afraid to say it might get much worse. I would ask you all to remain calm. But I have one request — Doctor... if you're out there... we need you. I don't know what to do. If you can hear me, Doctor—if anyone knows the Doctor, if anyone can find him—the situation has never been more desperate. Help us. Please, Doctor, help us.
      • It helps that Rose breaks down during this because she believes the Doctor is Killed Off for Real.
    • The Doctor's punishment of Harriet Jones. Though he saved humanity, that does not give him the right to pass judgment on the Prime Minister and remove her from office and not just because she was supposed to usher in a new "golden age." Worse still, The Doctor and Harriet are never shown reconciling. She continued to have faith in him till the day she died, but he never once told her "I'm sorry". Even worse is that by interfering with the timeline and bringing about Harriet Jones's downfall, The Doctor unwittingly triggers a cascade of events that will cause the suffering of countless innocent people, including Jack, the Jones family, all the humans living at the end of the universe, Harriet Jones herself, and even The Doctor.
  • In "New Earth", Lady Cassandra accepts death, having taken over her willing servant, a clone with no real life anyway. The Doctor takes her back in time to a party when she was young. For those few seconds, a woman who has spent so long desperately chopping and changing and eventually mutilating her own body in a desperate bid to be beautiful can finally see what she lost.
    Cassandra: [in Chip's body] Excuse me... Lady Cassandra...
    Younger Cassandra: I'm sorry, I don't need anything right now. I'm fine, thank you.
    Cassandra/Chip: No — I just wanted to say... you look beautiful.
    Younger Cassandra: [casually] Well. That's very kind, you strange little thing. Thank you very much.
    Cassandra/Chip: I mean it. You look... so beautiful.
    Younger Cassandra: [sincerely moved] Thank you.
    • At the end, when Cassandra/Chip dies, and Younger Cassandra cradles the clone in her arms, stroking his face and shouting for someone to get an ambulance. It gets worse when you rewatch the episode and hear Cassandra at the beginning refer to Chip as being based off of "[her] favorite template." She remembered him!
  • A bit of Mood Whiplash when after repeatedly possessing both the Doctor and Rose to break the stalemate Cassandra possesses one of the infected Flesh but quickly repossesses Rose.
    Doctor: That is your last warning Cassandra!
    Rose!Cassandra: Inside her head...they're so alone. They keep reaching out just to hold us. All their lives, and they've never been touched.
  • "Tooth And Claw"
    • It's subtle, but at the end, when the Doctor manages to get the werewolf into the observatory and rigs the diamond up to kill it, we very briefly get a glimpse of the young man who was forcibly infected with the lycanthropy virus. He weakly begs for the Doctor to, essentially, Mercy Kill him: "Make it brighter. Let me go." We never even find out the young man's name; all we know is that he was a weak, sickly child kidnapped by the brethren for their twisted ends.
    • Sir Robert and Captain Reynolds' Heroic Sacrifices. They both know that they won't be able to kill the wolf, but they're willing to let it take them down just to buy the others some time.
  • "School Reunion".
    • The Doctor and Sarah finally reuniting.
    (Sarah spots the TARDIS while investigating and has a mini-panic attack; she turns to see the Doctor facing her)
    Sarah: It's you. Oh, Doctor Oh, my God, it's you, isn't it? ...You've regenerated.
    The Doctor: Yeah. Half a dozen times since we last met.
    Sarah: You look... incredible...!
    The Doctor: So do you.
    Sarah: (meekly flattered, but nods in disagreement) Hmh... I got old. (nods yes in acceptance) ...What are you doing here?
    The Doctor: Well, UFO sighting, school gets record results. I couldn't resist. What about you?
    Sarah: The same.
    (They share a giddy, but awkward laugh)
    Sarah: (tears up) I thought you'd died. I waited for you and you didn't come back, and I thought you must have died!
    The Doctor: I lived. Everyone else died.
    Sarah:What do you mean?
    The Doctor: Everyone died, Sarah.
    • As happy as Sarah is to encounter the Doctor again, seeing him looking younger and more handsome than herself, with a younger and sexier companion, has got to sting.
    • Ten explains the curse of being the last Time Lord.
      The Doctor: You can spend your whole life with me. But I can't spend my whole life with you.
    • The second parting of The Doctor and Sarah Jane.
      The Doctor "Goodbye — my Sarah Jane!"
      • This line is a double-whammy Tear Jerker and CMoH. Just for a moment, as he picks her up, she's young Sarah-Jane again...
      • Considering the news on 4/19/11 knowing that Elisabeth Sladen, the actress who played Sarah Jane, has passed on, the line "Goodbye... my Sarah Jane!" will now cue Inelegant Blubbering of the messiest sort from Whovians old and young. Made even worse by the passing of Sir Nicholas Courtney just two months before; two of Classic Who's biggest, most beloved icons, gone in a matter of weeks.
  • The Heroic Sacrifice of K9. When the Doctor says "Good dog", it brings on the tears.
  • "The Girl in the Fireplace":
    • The last five or so minutes of The Girl in the Fireplace never fail to trigger the waterworks for some.
    • The scene where the clockwork robots shut down... because they no longer have a purpose.
  • "Rise of the Cybermen" / "The Age of Steel".
    • The reveal of Mickey's background. As if it's not enough that both parents walked out when he was a baby and the grandmother who raised him died, he blames himself for causing his grandmother's death (she fell down the stairs after tripping on a piece of loose carpet he was supposed to fix). He breaks down when he meets the alternate universe version of his gran.
    • Rose interacting with her "mother" in the alternate universe. You can't help but feel bad when Alt!Jackie looks at Rose and talks to her like she's dirt under her shoe, especially considering Rose considered this woman to be her mother just as much as Jackie from Rose's universe.
    • Ricky's death: he and Mickey are almost to safety. Mickey spots the oncoming Cybermen and desperately warns Ricky to hurry, but the poor man just isn't fast enough... And of course Mickey is witness to all of this, unable to even help his alternate self (almost like how he was unable to save his grandmother).
    • Jake's reaction upon finding out that Ricky is dead. A deleted scene even reveals that the two were dating.
    • The reveal that Jackie has already been turned into a Cyberman and Pete and Rose's reaction to it.
    • Just the looks of horror on Rose and Pete's faces when she/it reveals the truth to them.
    • The sad little voice coming out of the Cyberman who has regained self-awareness; "Is Gareth there? It's bad luck to see me before the wedding..." God, the poor thing...
    • At the end when all the Cybermen's emotional inhibitor were broken all at once: at least before they were mostly unaware, but now, the people inside could see what they had become. None of these people deserved what happened. They didn't ask to be turned into emotionless metal monsters, but they were all killed as part of Lumic's mad Evil Plan. The Doctor had to Mercy Kill them all in part because death is preferable to being that, and to save all the living still in the world. It's a small-scale version of what we later learn he had to do in the Time War... and oh god, that's a tearjerker in itself.
    • We get to see one Cyberman staring at its reflection. Through just the movement of its head and arms, the sheer horror of what the poor person inside is feeling comes through perfectly. The Cybermen not only do not have emotions, in their metal suits they are designed so that they shouldn't be capable of showing emotions, which just makes seeing this even more heartbreaking.
    • "I'm sorry... I'm so sorry.
  • There's something about "The Idiot's Lantern". The Abusive Parent is heavily implied to be a Fallen Hero, families have to hide their family members because The Men in Black will take away the ones who have had their face stolen, and even a member of The Men in Black himself hates what they're doing in the first place. Inspector Bishop wants to investigate, but it's way out of any of their league and there's nothing they can do about it. Not to mention that Tommy, son of Abusive Parent, absolutely hates his dad for tattling on the other families. It's clear that no one in his family will ever forgive him, even after Rose tells Tommy to try and make up with him. The dad just looked so lost while standing there on the steps of his house, realizing what he'd done. Then he left when the mom (Rita) told him to get out. He clearly regrets what he's done, but there's nothing he can do. His life is over.
  • "The Impossible Planet / The Satan Pit" has a few:
    • Scooti's death and Ida's whisper: "she was only 20 years old."
    • The Ood cowering at the end as the planet fell into the black hole. They don't say a word, but they're clearly terrified and either have no idea what is going on or, worse, they know exactly what's going on and can't stop it - the best they can do is cling to each other.
    • It gets worse: having spent most of two episodes as the pawns of the Beast, it's entirely possible that it's only at this point that they've regained control of their minds. They get their souls back just before they die an indescribable death.
  • "Love & Monsters"
    • We see two romances born from LINDA and both of them are sundered by a villain.
    • If you believe the Word of God theory that Elton's gone mad from the events of the episode, then the best time of his life has broken his mind.
  • "Fear Her".
    • When Rose is joking about bratty children, the Doctor says "I was a dad once." Rose looks like she wants to ask or comfort or say something, but the Doctor changes the subject immediately.
    • "She's my baby! You're not hurting her again!"
  • "Doomsday" is often cited as making fans cry.
    • Being separated by that wall... the goodbye scene ain't got nothin' on the one before it!
    • When the breach is sealed and the Doctor walks away.
    • The transmission being cut off. When he gets back to the TARDIS, one eye wet, it's even worse.
    • The Doctor's expression as he leans against the wall. It is so simple, so unmoving, but his eyes... Rose can bawl her eyes out and everything, but Ten has the pure, unadulterated sadness conveyed solely in the Doctor's eyes.
      The Doctor: Rose...
    • When the two touch the wall at the same place but divided by not just a wall but by an unbreakable universe... *Sniff*
    • "I did my duty for Queen and country." That episode has an unfair amount of Tear Jerker scenes.
    • Yvonne Hartman's Heroic Sacrifice after being turned into a Cyberman, especially with that one black tear sliding down her "face". Whatever she was, she so did not deserve that.
    • Her final words, too. "I did my duty for Queen and Country." She wasn't out for money or power, everything she did was out of patriotic love for her homeland- and look what happened because of it. She is choking up but continues to mutter this under her breath as she walks in the conversion chamber
    • Her patriotism turns her last words into a You Shall Not Pass! moment for her. She opens fire on a stairwell full of fellow Cybermen, repeating the last thing she said as a free-willed human being. She believed that she was doing the right thing so completely that even the indoctrination of the cyber-conversion couldn't take that away from her. She even gives a rhetorical reply to the question "What is your malfunction?" Her only 'malfunction' was doing what she fully believed was the best thing for her nation.
    • It's a small thing but when The Doctor hears from Alt!Pete that an alternate Harriet Jones is now president. The Doctor delivers a rather cold "warning" that Pete should "keep an eye on that one". After all that's happened, he still can't let go of his anger toward Harriet Jones. And now he's taking it out on her alternate self too.
  • In "The Runaway Bride", when Donna finds out that Lance had been lying to her the whole time, and in reality couldn't stand her. Dammit, Catherine Tate. No wonder Donna went on to become so beloved, if we were seeing flashes of Tate's talent that early.
    • It's hard enough watching Lance, who was Evil All Along, just chew out poor Donna for being shallow, but once the Doctor saves Donna and gets her back in the TARDIS, he starts going on with typical Doctor Techno Babble, until he looks over at her, just sitting there a sobbing wreck.
    • The scene where Donna finds Rose's jacket, left behind back in Army of Ghosts and assumes the worst:
      Donna: I knew it! I'm not the first, am I?
      The Doctor: (looks up, and then sees what Donna's holding. Eyes show internalized sadness equal being stabbed in both hearts) That's my friend's.
      Donna: Where is she, then? Popped out for a space-walk?
      The Doctor: (Donna's really rubbing it in) ... she's gone.
      Donna: Gone where?!
      The Doctor: I lost her.
      Donna: Well you can hurry up and lose me!
      (utter silence, as the Doctor absently pokes at the TARDIS, not even looking at Donna anymore, while what he just said about himself sinks in.)
      Donna: (quietly) How d'you mean lost?
      (The Doctor doesn't respond at all)
    • The Doctor flushing out the Empress of the Racnoss and HER CHILDREEEEN. Donna has been saved multiple times over by this man, and now she looks at the Empress wailing in horror, and all this destruction caused by a now stone-faced Doctor, and looks utterly horrified by what this same man is capable of. Becomes worse when you realize the Doctor is still broken after losing Rose, and letting out all his anger and torment on the Empress. It's not a pretty sight.
      Donna: Doctor! You can stop now!
  • The scene in "Gridlock" where the Face of Boe dies, and the look of sheer emptiness on the Doctor's face as he's told he's not alone.
    • Even more so when rewatching it after the end of series 3. Which is simultaneously upsetting and in another way, almost happy, because finally, after five billion years which have no doubt contained one helluva lot of heartache and waiting, Jack Harkness gets the all too human gift of peace.
    • The Hymns. How the hell did they make a freaking traffic jam that tragically uplifting?!
      • They seem to have used 'eventide' (the melody of 'abide with me'), a truly beautiful and sad tune.
      • The effect is worse when you realise that in the Commonwealth, "Abide With Me" is strongly associated with military memorial services. For a large part of the viewing audience, this drives home the Doctor's status as, effectively, a casualty of war.
    • The Tenth Doctor remembering Gallifrey as he talks to Martha. The look on his face, not quite crying but totally hollow and empty, like he's hurting just to think about it. The look on David Tennant's face, like he's just thought of the saddest thing in the world.
    • After the events of "The End of Time", rewatching this scene is even worse. Dammit, RTD...
  • The third season episode "42", in particular the end where Captain Kath opens the airlock allowing her and her possessed husband Corwin to be sucked into space... while telling him she loves him, even when he's preparing to kill her.
    • And earlier when Corwin is striding towards Kath for the first time since his possession, about to vaporise her, while she begs him not to, reminding him that she's his wife, to which he responds:
      possessed!Corwin: [in a curious, remembering tone] My wife?
    • It then gets even sadder when the Sun possessing him reasserts itself and hisses, "This is your fault!"
    • When the escape pod is being jettisoned, and Martha's banging on the wall, yelling for the Doctor and looking more and more desperate, and the Doctor, unable to help her, stands on the other side of the airlock and screams, "I'LL SAVE YOU." (five times.) and she can't even hear... And the pod just drops toward the sun. The silence makes it hit harder.
    • Martha and one of the weekly mauve shirts are trapped in an airlock capsule heading directly for the sun, and she calls her mum up — just to talk, about (in Martha's words) "Anything! What you had for breakfast! What you're going to give dad next time you see him!"
      • It's made all the worse by the fact that the call was clearly being overheard by Mr. Saxon's people.
    • When we first realize the Doctor is possessed and he's going on about how he knows about them taking fuel from the living sun, just the rant he gives and how he says it is heart-wrenching because he's in excruciating pain from being possessed by the sun's spirit (?) and so enraged at the horror of what they've done to a living being. And he's right.
      The Doctor: You mined that sun! Skimmed its surface for cheap fuel! You should have scanned for life! That sun's alive, a living organism! They scooped out its heart, used it for fuel, and now it's screaming! HUMANS! YOU GRAB WHATEVER'S NEAREST AND BLEED IT DRY! GAHH! YOU SHOULD HAVE SCANNED!!
    • *When you consider how many times the Doctor, in various incarnations, expresses his unrivalled adoration for the human race, it's chilling to see him be so utterly, utterly FURIOUS at them. It's not a chewing out or a tough talking-to like what he did with Harriet Jones, it's the Doctor screaming and crying in absolute rage at a species too stupid and greedy to even consider the word 'consequences'
    • The point when they are about to push a possessed Doctor into a stasis chamber to be deep frozen in an attempt to get it out of him and he's screaming, saying how scared he is, yelling for Martha and reaching out for her, trying to find her even when she only lets go of him for a matter of seconds, because he can't open his eyes without killing someone and she's telling him to trust her... Gah. Just, gah, David.
      Martha: Are you ready?
      Doctor: No!
  • "Human Nature / The Family of Blood"
    • Not only the drama of John Smith's choice (and seeing his "dream of a normal death") but the Ode of Remembrance too?
    • Though it starts out as funny when we hear The Doctor emerge for a moment to give some Technobabble explanation to Timothy when he asks why he can hear the watch. Literally a second after, it's not so funny.
      As The Doctor: Oh, it's just a low-level telepathy field, you were born with it, just an extra-synaptic engram causing—
      As John Smith: [gasps in utter horror and looks up, terrified] Is that how he talks?
    • Then Joan asks Martha and Thomas to give them a moment alone. She turns to John, who breaks down and starts crying on the spot. Joan promptly goes to him and gives him a hug, it doesn't help...
    • The bit when you realise Joan would never really see John again, only the Doctor. As in, John's dead. He lost himself when he opened the fob watch.
      • "The Family of Blood," from the part when Martha, Joan, and Smith are hiding and the Family begins to call out for the Doctor to show himself because they have the TARDIS. It's when he recognizes the blue box from his dreams that Smith finally realizes that it's all true, and starts to cry himself, begging Joan, "Why can't I be John Smith? Isn't he a good man? Why can't I stay?" Damn you, David Tennant. The rest of the episode only gets more Tear Jerky from there.
    • A smaller one, when the scarecrow army attack the school and the schoolboys take up arms to defend the school. The sheer look of horror on their faces as they gun down the scarecrows, some visibly crying, coupled with that choir music from the start of Human Nature is pretty hard to watch. War Is Hell indeed...
    • Jessica Hynes's acting in her last scene — all that quiet devastation and disgust with the Doctor — is heartbreaking. Made worse by the fact that the Doctor hardly even acknowledges what a mess he's made of her life and so many others. At least he had the decency to ask after her in The End of Time.
    Nurse Redfern: Can you change back?
    The Doctor: Yes.
    Nurse Redfern: Will you?
    The Doctor: No.
    Nurse Redfern: Answer me this - just one question, that's all. If the Doctor had never visited us, if he'd never chosen this place... on a whim... would anybody here have died?
    The Doctor: *doesn't answer*
    Nurse Redfern: You can go now.
    • Made even worse by the fact this conversation is the reverse of one the newly regenerated Tenth Doctor had with Rose.
    Rose: Can you change back?
    The Doctor: Do you want me to?
    Rose: Can you?
    The Doctor: No.
    • These conversations are true opposites. Whereas Rose eventually realises that though he looks different and cannot change back, he is ultimately still the man she loves, Joan has to live with the fact that although he looks exactly the same and can change back any time he wishes, he is ultimately not the man she loves.
    • The bit with the Journal of Impossible Things. Especially when, in passing, we got a glimpse of a bunch of faces John Smith drew. His faces. All the Doctors before him, unknown to him, simple strangers. It's something little, but reminds the audience of something: If John Smith refuses being the Doctor, the work of ALL of them will be lost.
    • The entire two-parter becomes a massive tearjerker when one takes the dates into account: they're in 1913, only a year before an absolutely devastating war and also the one most notorious for having boys lying about their age to enlist. Theoretically, that entire school of boys (or at least a vast majority) could have been wiped out within 5 years.
    Martha's friend: (after some boys have insulted her and Martha) Just think, in a few years' time boys like that might be running the country!
    Martha: 1913. They might not...
  • Sally Sparrow's reunion with Billy Shipton in "Blink". Especially the final shot, of her in the empty hospital room after he dies.
    • Made worse when you remember the Doctor warning that the angels feed off the person's possibilities — their could-have-beens, should-have-beens. That Sally Sparrow Shipton was one of those things taken away with a blink. Making two people who had a connection into a mourning young lady and a dying old man in a hospital room.
    • And made even worse by coming right off of Kathy's attack by the Weeping Angels. Although she's stranded in the past, it's at least softened by the implications that she was looking for something new in life, enjoyed old things, and in a sense, maybe even belonged there. There is none of this with Billy, and the contrast hits you like a sack of rocks; this was truly a murder.
      • The dialogue is just heartbreaking.
        Billy: It was raining when we met.
        Sally Sparrow: It's the same rain.

        Billy: No, gorgeous girl, you can't. There's only tonight. He told me, all those years ago, that we'll only meet again this one time, on the night I die.
        Sally Sparrow: Oh Billy...
        Billy: It's kept me going; I'm an old sick man but I've had something to look forward to. Life is long, and you are hot! ...Look at my hands. They're old man's hands — how did that happen?
        Sally Sparrow: I'll stay. I'm gonna stay with you, okay?
        Billy: Thank you, Sally Sparrow. I have til the rain stops.
  • In the same vein as "Human Nature", Professor Yana's "death" in "Utopia" can be quite heartbreaking. He was so nice... and he became the Master.
    • Remember the Crowning Moment Of Heartwarming when the last humans leave for Utopia? Try watching it the second time round — remembering the Toclafane.
    • The fact of Yana being the Master is a tearjerker in and of itself- the Doctor tells Joan that John Smith was just a part of him, only a fraction of the being that is the Doctor. Then you realize that the same must be true of the Master- somewhere in there is just a kind, helpful old man that will likely never see the light of day because the Time Lords ruined his life when he was a child. The Fridge Horror tearjerkers are just as bad.
      • Sir Derek Jacobi's acting makes it even more effective. He wasn't the Master for very long, but he still was able to play the character as completely different from Yana. Just like when Tennant played John Smith, the difference in their personalities really drives home that Yana is dead, but Jacobi pulls off in minutes what took Tennant two episodes.
      • In the same vein, watching the Doctor's "You could be beautiful" speech to the Master in End of Time, realizing that he's remembering not only their childhood, but also the brilliant old professor trying to help his people reach Utopia. (Sniffle)
  • In "The Sound of Drums", it's really heart-wrenching to see the Doctor struggling in agony when the Master uses his Laser Screwdriver to make the Doctor's age catch up with him. It's even worse when he does it a second time. When we finally see the end result, the Doctor has shriveled away until he's just a wrinkly head and a baby-like body that can barely support him. And the Master puts him in a cage.
  • The start of "Last of the Time Lords" when we realise Jack's been tied up and tortured (and probably killed repeatedly in every possible gruesome way the Master can come up with) every day for the last 365 days... and he's still joking. Never mind that the humiliated Joneses have probably had to watch, the Doctor probably hasn't had it much better, and a good half of earth's population has been slaughtered. Not even those amusing Voodoo Child scenes will convince her that the Master isn't irredeemably evil.
    • When Martha and Doctor are told the truth about Toclafane. They are the last of humanity, which went to Utopia only to find nothing. They went crazy and cannibalized themselves, used their remnants of technology to become a sadistic Hive Mind race that thought nothing about killing their human ancestors For the Evulz. What is more tragic, this event hasn't been retconned. Downer Ending for human race...
      • Even worse, this is revealed via the thing that used to be Creet. Yep, that adorable little mop-headed kid who was so excited to see the skies made of diamonds and really wasn't old enough to work...
      • However, one Doctor Who novel states that humanity (all of it) was later recreated by Compassion and lives in a city between two universes. So, not quite ending.
    • When you re-watch the "decimation" scene, really watch it: the expression of helpless heartbreak on the Doctor's face, the tears running down Martha's face, the innocent people screaming in horror as they're slaughtered like cattle.
    • It's "Last of the Time Lords" that does it. "REGENERATE!"
      • The version they show in the Confidential is even worse. The sound of him sobbing goes on forever.
      • The scream of anguish. You can feel the sheer heartbreak at losing the last hope he has at real companionship; remembering how willing the Doctor was to "adopt" the Master makes it that much worse.
      • Yes, as monstrous as the Master is, the Doctor is that lonely. They were best friends. If not more.
      • The Master's final words. "The drumming... will it stop?" The sounds that he heard as a kid that drove him insane, have remained in his head all his life, and continue to in his dying moments. He let himself die, not simply to spite the Doctor, but so he could stop hearing the sound of the drums in his head.
      • This line. No trash talk, no boasts, just a simple expression:
    The Doctor: You wouldn't listen... because you know what I have to say... "I forgive you!"
    • Martha leaving the TARDIS. Before she does that, she comes back to deliver an anecdote that is essentially her version of telling the doctor this: "Whatever has happened between you and that someone else you keep thinking about, is the reason why I cannot stay. It can never work out between the two of us."
    Martha: Because the thing is, it's like my friend Vicky. She lived with this bloke, student housing, there were five of them all packed in, and this bloke was called Sean. And she loved him. She did. She completely adored him. Spent all day long talking about him.
    The Doctor: Is this going anywhere?
    Martha: Yes. Because he never looked at her twice. I mean, he liked her, but that was it. And she wasted years pining after him. Years of her life. Because while he was around, she never looked at anyone else. And I told her, I always said to her, time and time again, I said, get out. So this is me, getting out.
  • "All my love to long ago" in "Time Crash".
    • The entire last half of Time Crash probably counts:
    The Doctor: You know... I loved being you. At the start I was always trying to be old and grumpy and important, like you do when you're young. But then I was you, and it was all running about and playing cricket, my voice going all squeaky when I shouted! I still do that! I got that from you! Ooh, and the trainers, and... [puts on brainy specs] Snap. 'Cause, you know what, Doctor? You were my Doctor.
  • The 2007 Christmas special "Voyage of the Damned" is guaranteed to make everyone cry at some point.
    • Bannakaffalatta's Heroic Sacrifice.
    • Astrid's flickering, translucent figure crying out "I'm falling," and just everything The Doctor says after that is so heartbreaking. Then The Doctor scattering the late Astrid's atoms so that she'll always be able to travel the universe,
    "You're not falling, you're flying."
    • The Doctor's goodbye to Mr. Copper, it's basically "I travel alone"
    • Foon's reaction to Morvin's death, all the way up to her lassoing the Host and jumping off the bridge. They were such a sweet couple!
    • Listening to "The Stowaway".
    • "I CAN DO ANYTHING!" Followed by a kick of frustration and a heartbreaking expression.
  • During "Partners in Crime" when Donna tells the Doctor about how meeting him in "The Runaway Bride" changed her and her outlook on the world and how she woke up the next day to "the same old life", because she seemed to be speaking for all of us young people who are still looking for some sign of what they want to do with their lives and what the world is all about.
    • Maybe Doctor Who has always been about this kind of thing, to a lot of people: after all it introduces us to a world full of brave, beautiful, terrible, wonderful things, people, and places we can't quite touch: it scares us to death and entrances us at the same time. It's kind of a reflection on reality because the real world has potential too, and yet so many of us fear ending up like Donna, living that same old life, and never getting to experience anything bigger or be anything more important. We're the Roses who never had a chance, the Mickeys who never learned to be brave, and the Donnas who tried to believe, and then had that hope taken away again. That's the real Tear Jerker.
  • "The Fires of Pompeii". You know from the title how it'll end, but when you actually see the lava and smoke pouring into the city, interspersed with the panicked screams of thousands...
    • The family he saved and that one line, "All those people..." It would be bad enough for a fictional event, but for something that actually happened, it was almost too much.
    • The Doctor has his hand on the lever that will kill thousands, knowing he has to pull it. Donna places her hand with his, refusing to let him bear the burden alone. And together, they pull...
    • And later, while the volcano is erupting. Donna is pathetically screaming at everyone to run into the hills instead of the beach. She's trying desperately to save them, knowing full well that she can't. It gets especially bad when she tries to pick up the little boy that was frozen with fear, but his mother grabs him away. She has the slightest glimmer of hope of saving somebody, anybody, but it just doesn't work.
      • That is soon followed by her completely breaking down in the TARDIS and begging in tears to the Doctor to save just one family. If there were any doubts about Donna's character before, they were gone with this episode. And this one moment ends up being so important in the Doctor's life that it becomes the basis for his Twelfth incarnation, many years later.
  • "Planet of the Ood"
    • Hearing the Ood's not just the overwhelming intensity of the song itself, it's being slammed with the sheer reality of how dehumanized the Ood really are. These are people, with a culture.
    • The "unprocessed" Ood just sitting there, huddled defeatedly, in cheap labor camp-style clothing.
    • Donna's understandably horrified reaction over the Ood, followed by her wanting to go home. She's almost completely broken and doesn't want to go on, and this was after Pompeii.
    • Just try watching the Ood singing the praises of the DoctorDonna on repeat, having already seen what happens to Donna at the end, without crying. Just TRY it.
      • It's even worse when you realize that this takes place in the 42nd century. From the Ood's perspective, the DoctorDonna existed well over 2000 years ago so they know what is going to happen but can do nothing except remember her.
    • Any of the Ood song, really, especially at the end of "The End of Time".
      Ood Sigma: The universe will sing you to your sleep.
  • "The Poison Sky"
    • Clone!Martha's death.
    • Also, the utterly pointless death of Ross the UNIT soldier, refusing to flee even when it's clear he'll die. What the Doctor, who had gotten to know him in the previous episode, says to Colonel Mace afterward.
    The Doctor: [utterly calm] His name wasn't Greyhound Fourteen, it was Ross.
  • "The Doctor's Daughter".
    • Jenny's death; she wasn't even alive for an hour! She'd gone from just a soldier to someone looking forward to seeing the wonders of the universe and then she takes a bullet to the chest for the Doctor, and watching the Doctor telling her she's going to be amazing and that she'll be okay as she dies in his arms. She revives but The Doctor doesn't know this, thus making it all the sadder.
    • The Doctor's reaction to Jenny's death. He grabs the gun you wonder just for a second if it had really pushed him enough to send him over the edge, then he declares that he never would. The Lonely God, Last of His Kind, can't keep a companion because of the nature of his existence, been through absolute hell the past few hundred years, and add to that the traumatic emotional roller coaster of gaining a daughter and fellow Time Lady, accepting her, and losing her within hours, and he still never would. Gah, DT!
    • The aforementioned #1 itself:
    The Doctor: Donna, I've been a father before.
    Donna: What?
    The Doctor: I lost all that a long time ago. Along with everything else.
    Donna: I'm sorry. I didn't know. Why didn't you tell me? You talk all the time but you don't say anything.
    The Doctor: I know. It's just... when I look at her now, I can see them. The hole they left, all the pain that filled it. I just don't know if I can face that every day.
    Donna: It won't stay like that. She'll help you. We both will.
    The Doctor: When they died, that part of me died with them. It'll never come back, not now.
    Donna: I'll tell you something, Doctor. Something that I've never told you before. I think you're wrong.
    • After seeing "The End of Time", you realize that he thought he was forced to kill his own children. And although he hasn't been in contact with them for very long, his real children may be no more dead than Jenny is; and he's still grieving all of them.
    • Martha's Hath friend sacrificing himself to save her. Cue seemingly never-ending crying scene.
    • Near the end, Donna says that she's going to travel with the Doctor forever. If you've already seen the season finale, this can be counted as the scriptwriter kicking you when you're down.
  • The Unicorn and the Wasp
    • Agatha Christie is at the estate because she found out her husband was cheating on her with a younger woman. (This is absolutely true, by the way.) Donna comforts her and empathizes, saying she knows what it's like to have a man betray you. The only comfort is that Mr. Christie didn't try to murder her the way Donna's husband did.
    • As Agatha coolly reminds the Doctor, who is posing as a Scotland Yard sergeant, don't forget that there are dead bodies, and people to mourn them. The Doctor has the decency to look ashamed about it.
    • When the Priest is revealed to be the Monster of the Week, Agatha pulls a Heroic Sacrifice. She grabs the jewel influencing his mind and drives to the lake. Then she is determined to make a Last Stand and draw the wasp's wrath on her. Donna then responds instinctively: to throw the jewel into the lake to save Agatha. The wasp dives into the lake, and while drowning releases his hold on the author, who collapses and suffers a memory loss. Both the Doctor and Donna take Agatha to the hotel where she'll be found under an assumed name, with the Doctor reassuring Donna that Agatha will have a happier life from now. The Greatest Story Never Told that Agatha solved a mystery in real life and only a handful of people know.
    • Something that adds an extra layer of sadness to this dénouement is the fact that it's major foreshadowing for Donna's own fate at the end of the season: losing all her memories of the adventures she's had with the Doctor as a price to be paid for saving the multiverse. Donna connected with Agatha because she too has plenty of self-doubt and insecurities when it comes to her abilities and her place in the world, and like Agatha, Donna will lose all of her character growth just when her confidence in herself was starting to improve, but her actions will make the world a safer place for everyone around.
  • "Silence in the Library",
    • The Mauve Shirt Miss Evangelista dies she was wearing some neurological Applied Phlebotinum device which keeps your consciousness around for a little while after death. She's still thinking she doesn't realize what's happened - combine this with the Vashta Nerada and you're left as just a skeleton and a voice. So she fades away as the rest of the cast try to comfort her in her last seconds.
    The Doctor: Help her.
    Donna: She's dead.
    The Doctor: Yeah, help her.
    • She previously mentioned to Donna that the rest of her crew didn't like her because she was stupid. As she is dying, she asks for the "nice lady," a.k.a. Donna. After one minute-long conversation, she wants to talk to Donna over all the people she knew. None of them were kind to her one bit, were they?
    "Please don't tell the others. They'll only laugh."
    • You can tell by the pure guilt on their faces when this happens that they're all painfully aware of this fact as well.
    • That last bit at the end, when her thoughts have finally degenerated to the point where it just repeats "Ice cream. Ice cream. Ice cream..." is absolutely heartbreaking. No wonder Donna says it's the most horrible thing she's ever seen. There was a very strong HAL vibe, this quote, but is very applicable:
    "It would have been funny, only she had never seen anything less funny in her entire life."
    • It wasn't that degenerated really, she was just answering the Doctor's question "Who Screamed?!": "I screamed."
    • When the Doctor sees Donna's face on the statue, and realizes she's been taken. He just stares in horror and touches her face, calling her name, and it takes River to snap him out of it when the Vashda Nerada catch up.
  • "Forest of the Dead"
    • Anita, another Mauve Shirt, discovers she has two shadows and realises it's only a matter of time before the Vashta Nerada eat her. Watching her struggling to keep it together and the crew's attempts to keep her safe is heartbreaking, as is the Doctor's fury when the Vashta Nerada finally kill her.
      The Doctor: I really liked Anita. She was brave, even when she was crying, and she never gave in, and you ate her. You killed someone I liked and that is not a safe place to stand.
    • When River's about to plug herself into the computer rather than let the Doctor do it and she starts telling him it's okay.
      River Song: It's okay. It's okay, it's not over for you. You'll see me again. You've got all of that to come. You - and me. Time and space. You watch us run.
    • The look of broken heartedness on the Doctor's face once it's done as he just sits there, looking off in the direction of the chair with a face that makes it seem like he feels like he's really failed. For some reason, the position of his arm by his face does it. Just the sort of resigned practicality of it, as compared to the rest of the image.
    • Hush now. Spoilers...
    • Her talking about their last date:
      River: The last time I saw you, the real you, the future you, I mean... You turned up on my doorstep with a new haircut and a suit. You took me to Darillium to see the singing towers. What a night that was! The towers sang, and you cried. You wouldn't tell me why, but I suppose you knew it was time. My time. Time to come to the library.
    • That scene with River and the Doctor is even worse after series 5 and 6.
      River Song: If you die here, it'll mean I'll have never met you.
      The Doctor: Time can be re-written!
      River Song: Not those times. Not one line. Don't you dare.
    • This hurts so much more after "The Time of the Doctor."
    • All the River Song parts are made much sadder after watching Series 6. Now the Doctor meeting River is so much worse because it's not River's Doctor at all.
    • Some of the dialogue going back is just heartbreaking.
      River: [angry] Oh, I hate you sometimes!
      Doctor: [stressed, working out his plan] I know!
    • Cue the audience bellowing, "YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO SAY 'No, you don't!'" And then there's this:
      River: You're younger than I've ever seen you.
      Doctor: ...You've seen me before then?
      River: Doctor...please tell me you know who I am.
      Doctor: Who are you?
    • Right after this exchange River just gets this stricken look on her face, like her heart's just been ripped out of her chest.
    • She might have actually been hoping for death, considering, as she said in series 6, finally meeting the Doctor with no memory of her was something so terribly heartbreaking to her because it was the sign that, for the rest of her life, she'd never see him ever again, something she told Rory she lived for. Now, though, she's in the computer world, sure with nice people that she knows to pass the time with, but with the fact that she'll never see the Doctor again, not just until the end of her life, but forever. It's made even worse because at this point, she is just some woman to him, rather than the brilliant badass that we end up seeing.
    • River needs The Doctor to trust her, but not having the time to build that up from literally nothing due to him never having met her before, unleashes the nuclear option. She leans up and whispers his real name in his ear, between the ethereal Gallifreyan singing, her apology before she does it, and the way The Doctor seems to age a thousand years after she does so, it's an incredibly powerful and heart-rending moment.
    • Donna's struggle in the parallel universe, realizing that nothing is real and her children don't exist. Crying with her husband (who has an adorable stutter), they assure each other that they DO exist, and that they will find each other when they get out. Once back in the Library, Donna can't find him, and resigns herself to the knowledge that he wasn't real either. The audience knows better, because we see him see Donna and try to call out to her, but he can't manage with his stutter and she leaves forever, never to see him again.
      • The part where her virtual children disappear in their beds and Donna completely panics and starts screaming and sobbing... truly a Tear Jerker for any parent. Also a real case of Nightmare Fuel.
      • The fact that Donna will never meet the man she was married to in the library's computer because the Doctor wiped her memories AND she's from another place and time.
      • The fact that the man she was married to will remember her, and will spend the rest of his life kicking himself for how his stutter prevented him from calling out to the woman he'd loved.
    • The Doctor's mad dash to save River is so desperate.
    The Doctor: [to River Song] STAY WITH ME! You can do this, stay with me! Come on! YOU AND ME, ONE LAST RUN!!"
    • The Reveal about CAL: she's a computer reconstruction of a terminally ill girl. The Captain reveals he's her nephew, meaning that if she had lived, she would be a great-aunt. He's been acting like a jerk to keep her safe from strangers who would want to use her. CAL has a Freak Out and gives a Rapid-Fire "No!" about her true identity.
    • Miss Evangelista in the hard drive-reality, rendered hideous by a computer glitch. The same glitch that made her brilliant enough to understand her own present circumstances, and to better realize just how inept and pathetic she'd been previously.
  • "Midnight"
    • The very concept of the episode is depressing. Every single one of the Doctor's strengths are turned against him. At the same time, the other people on the ship become more and more paranoid to the point where they attempt to murder a possessed passenger and the Doctor.
    • It then comes this point after the Hostess has saved everyone by ejecting both herself and the possessed woman from the ship. The Doctor asks the other passengers what the Hostess's name was and nobody knows.
    • It is incredibly tragic when he's on the ship facing the camera, and you see one of the TV screens behind him flick on, and you see Rose clearly calling out "DOCTOR." Because he truly loved her, and right when he admits his feelings to himself, right when there's a chance for them to actually be together... and he loses her. When she appears on that screen, she is so close to him and he doesn't even notice.
    • The Doctor's interaction with Donna at the end of the episode. She gives him a big hug, and the two start to talk, with her eventually answering the Doctor's halfhearted "Molto bene" with one of her own. The Doctor then replies with his usual "No... don't do that" and it looks like, despite not being a happy ending, now that the danger has passed, things are going to be hunky-dory like usual. Then the Doctor adds a fearful "Really... don't." Many an episode has had the Doctor sad at the end, but never, not even after taking on the Devil, had he seemed so frightened. A few extra words take a usually comical Catchphrase and use it to show just how traumatized the episode left the Doctor, and it's heartbreaking.
    • He's just so scared. After the Hostess and Skye die, he's set free, and all he can do is whisper over and over, "It's gone. It's gone. It's gone. It's gone."
    • Think about how the other passengers feel. They'll have to spend the rest of their lives with the knowledge that they nearly murdered an innocent person because of their paranoia. Who wants to bet at least one of them might end up Driven to Suicide?
    • The episode's overall implication about human nature. For a series that's told us time and time again how brilliant and wonderful humanity is, we're faced for the first time with the other side of the coin and it is terrible.
  • "Turn Left"
    • A soldier says the Doctor is dead and we see the sonic screwdriver fall from his hand, when Martha, Sarah Jane, and the kids all die during the Plasmavoore incident, when most of the Torchwood team sacrifices themselves, and when Donna's running in front of the car.
    • The slightly corny Italian guy saying goodbye to Donna and her Grandpa, before he gets shipped off to a "labour camp." The look on Wilfred's face as he salutes him is utterly devastating — you can tell he knows exactly where this is going. And you can tell the Italian guy knows too.
      • Donna asks what sort of "labour" they'll be doing. Colsanto makes eye contact with Wilf and stops smiling for an instant, then talks about "sewing...digging" and changes the subject. They put in the exact moment when he comes up with that lie.
      • "Labour camps. That's just what they called them the last time." And you can hear Wilf's heart is breaking along with the audience's. It becomes absolutely horrifying when you remember Wilfred fought in WWII and remember what the Nazis were most hated for doing. They even cut in Colsanto dropping the facade, holding his wife, and starting to cry.
      • What's even worse is that what sounds like the Cyberman theme plays as the Italian family is being driven away, implying that something more horrible than mere death is in store for them.
      • Then you have the moment where Donna realizes what's about to happen, and starts screaming at the soldiers. "Where are you going?"
    • What's happened to the TARDIS. Without her idiot, she's dying, and from the way Rose phrases it, she's dying from depression.
    • The speech Donna makes when she has decided to go with Rose and is standing in the circle of mirrors.
    Donna: 'Cos 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, 'cos 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.
    • She just starts out so happy and confident that she's dodged a bullet. By the end of the episode we think it too. Then "Journey's End" happens.
    • The moment Doctor realizes exactly who Donna talked to in the parallel world. At the mention of "blond hair" he becomes very serious. It's a Hope Spot. Then he sees "Bad Wolf" everywhere.
    • The scene with Sylvia in the kitchen: The look on her face shows that recent events have left her utterly broken and devoid of hope. Making things worse she has no problem admitting she thinks Donna is a 'disappointment' to her. Despair or not, that must have been brutal for Donna to hear.
  • "The Stolen Earth"
    • When the Daleks put their first message through to the human race, consisting of nothing more than the repetition of their famous catchphrase. The scene moves rapidly amongst the cast members as they react in horror to what they're hearing. Particularly the reactions of Jack, clinging to Ianto and Gwen, kissing them and saying he can't do anything, they're as good as dead, and Sarah Jane clutching Luke and sobbing, knowing better than anyone exactly what's coming. Special credit to Elizabeth Sladen's top-notch acting. When she could have played it over the top, instead we just get this long moment of Sarah Jane staring in silent, tearful horror, before looking at Luke.
      Sarah Jane: [embracing Luke] Oh, God! You're so young!
      • When you look at their faces, as Jack was killed by Daleks, and Sarah Jane, who obviously knows the Daleks very well, and their dread is tangible.
      • Often overlooked here is the reaction of Ianto, because it's so briefly seen and quiet within Jack's typical boldness and Sarah Jane sobbing. One of 28 survivors of Canary Wharf, and he knows exactly what's coming.
    • There are several in the 'subwave network' sequence:
    • Martha's mother: 'You came home. At the end of the world, you came back to me.' This is made even more so when you consider that "Project Indigo" could have taken Martha anywhere in the universe - even to the Doctor himself - but in the back of her mind, she wanted to go home to her mum.
    • Captain Jack saluting Harriet Jones and especially when you realise that she knows that she's about to sacrifice herself.
      Harriet: Captain Jack Harkness, SHAME on you! Now stand to attention, Sir!
  • Harriet Jones facing the Daleks for the final time:
    Harriet: [holding up her I.D.] Harriet Jones, former Prime Minister.
    Dalek: Yes, we know who you are.
    Harriet: Oh, you know nothing of any human — and that will be your downfall.
    • Let it be known that no series but Doctor Who could, in three lines, manage to evoke a Running Gag, a Tear Jerker, and a Crowning Moment of Awesome at the same time. It's not the only time it does, either — consider K9's final "Affirmative" in School Reunion.
  • The scene where the Doctor connects with the subwave network:
    Rose: [sadly, as she can't communicate with the network, only monitor it] Doctor, it's me... I came back.
    • A moment later:
      Donna Noble: It's like an outer-space Facebook!
      The Doctor: Everyone except Rose...
    • Worse is Jack's "Good luck". He's the only one who really accepts it's about to happen.
      "I've got you, it missed you. Look, it's me. Don't die, oh, my God, don't die..."
    • "I'm sorry... it's too late — I'm regenerating-!"
      • Never mind the actual regenerating, the goddamn lead up to it. What starts out as a Meadow Run turns into a scene straight out of West Side Story. The Dalek comes out of nowhere (and the Daleks are just the most illogical bit of Nightmare Fuel ever; for heaven's sakes, characters whose designs are based on a salt shaker should not be as scary as they are to many people) and then... "Exterminate". Like Rose or not, that scene still tugs the heartstrings.
      • Not until you've seen the Tenth Doctor truly regenerate do you really understand the overwhelming, crushing fear of death that motivated his sudden bright idea to channel his regeneration into his severed hand. It was a desperate try to get. One. More. Minute. In existence. Cue waterworks. Because it's a fightin' hand.
    • When he reaches towards Rose to pull her back, she hasn't seen him in years, they both thought they'd never meet again, but she goes straight into his arms like no time has passed. What a reunion.
    • When Rose informs The Doctor of Harriet Jones's sacrifice, he's completely taken aback. Really, Doctor, how could you expect anything less?
    • The little montage of everyone who's died over the last four series coming back to haunt the Doctor in one last "The Reason You Suck" Speech from Davros.
      • The Doctor has done a lot of sucky things and there are more than enough reasons for him to be called out on them, but it's hard to think of a single one of the people in those flashbacks who didn't deserve to be remembered as so much more than just a senseless sacrifice, or as weapons who died to clear a path for the Doctor. They died because they chose to fight and what they thought of him, in the end, doesn't matter. They were heroes, damn it.
      • This is why people like Davros are the villains — because they'll never understand what being a hero means. Davros, being the Whoniverse version of Hitler, is a charismatic speaker, and you can tell from the Doctor's expression during that sequence because he's struggling with what Davros is saying while knowing deep down that he's wrong, all because the Doctor tends to blame himself anyway and Davros is playing off that.
      • Made even more painful when his own allies start pointing it out.
        Rory Williams: Do you know what—you know what's dangerous about you? It's not that you make people take risks, it's that you make them want to impress you. You- you make it so they don't wanna... let you down. You have no idea how dangerous you make people to themselves when you're around.
        Danny Pink: (to Clara Oswald) I know men like him. I've served under them. They push you and make you stronger, till you're doing things you never thought you could. I saw you tonight. You did exactly what he told you. You weren't even scared. And you should have been.
        Clara Oswald: I nearly didn't press that button. I nearly got it wrong. That was you, my friend, making me scared. Making me feel like a bloody idiot.
      • What's worse is someone included in the montage is Jenny. It's one thing to think about the ways the Doctor has unintentionally influenced his friends and allies, but Jenny is his child. She was created from him to be a soldier, but she chose to follow him instead. Rather than shooting the genocidal general Cobb, she embraced the Doctor's code against killing. She inherited his beliefs about saving people and seeing new worlds, heard about all the adventures he has, and the society he came from, and wanted to follow him. Without even thinking about it, the first person she tried to save was her father. And while she survived and went on to follow in the Doctor's footsteps as an explorer and hero, he doesn't know that and probably never will. He made her better, but the Doctor is left believing that she died because she was too much like him.
    • A little later.
    Martha: Oh my god... he found you [Rose]!
    • The Doctor (2.0) trying to make Donna accept how special she is, and her steadfast refusal to believe him:
    Doctor: No, but you are, you...Oh... you really don't believe that, do you? I can see, Donna... what you're thinking. All that attitude, all that lip, 'cos all this time... you think you're not worth it.
    Donna: Stop it!
    Doctor: Shouting at the world 'cos no-one's listening. Well... why should they?
    Donna: Doctor, stop it.
    • How hurt she sounds like she wants to believe him but she can't. Dammit, Ms Tate, why must you be so awesome?
    • Mickey making an offhand comment about his Pete's World grandmother passing away, which was the prime reason he stayed in that alternate universe, meaning he's now dealt with the loss of two versions of his gran, and even if he had saved his original from breaking her neck by tripping on a torn carpet over a staircase, it wouldn't have bought her many more years alive.
      • Almost sadder is just before he walks out of the TARDIS, he's hugging Jackie and says he's going to miss her more than anyone. Given the implications about how she's been like a mother to him when his Gran couldn't be, it's more than a little heart-breaking that he gave up having her because he didn't want to be "in the way" with Rose and 10.5.
    • Donna's begging not to be mindwiped. It's made even worse by the realization that just a little earlier, she saved all of reality, finally moving past her idea that she wasn't important. It's worse still if you consider her mind wipe to actually be Mind Rape as she makes it clear she knows what will happen to her and still begs the Doctor not to take her memories. He does so against her will.
      • What makes it even worse is re-watching Series 4 from the beginning and picking up on all the clues left about Donna's ultimate fate, and Donna's statement as far back as "Partners in Crime" that she'd never forget the time she had with the Doctor. As of "The End of Time" (her final appearance since it has been said that no RTD-era companions will appear again, with the possible likely exception of Jack Harkness), all hope that she may at least remember the wonderful life she had and everything she accomplished, is gone. She ends up, at least, Happily Married and Wealthy Ever After (the latter thanks to the Doctor) but it is still horribly tragic and everyone that knows the Doctor will have to tread carefully around her for the rest of her life.
    • Wilfred Mott's response to what's happened, especially "I'll look up at the sky, and think of you". Plus while this is all happening, the Song of the Ood is playing.
      • At the very end of "Journey's End", when the Doctor brings Amnesia!Donna back home, and gives this speech to her mother and Wilfred:
        The Doctor: I just want you to know that there are worlds out there, safe in the sky, because of her. That there are people, living in the light, singing songs of Donna Noble. A thousand million lightyears away. They will never forget her...while she can never remember. And for one moment, one shining moment, she was the most important woman in the whole wide universe.
        Donna's Mother: She still is. She's my daughter.
      • The Doctor's next line, "Well maybe you should tell her that once in a while." He was able to completely shut down Sylvia right there, letting her know that Donna doesn't feel particularly loved by her own mother, which might explain her general feeling of worthlessness. All Jacqueline King does is raise an eyebrow, but she's able to cut through a whole range of emotion.
      • When The Doctor says goodbye to her, she barely acknowledges it because she really doesn't remember.
    • The Doctor leaving Rose with his meta-crisis clone, who can say all the things he just can't. You can tell he's absolutely crushed when he sees his clone kiss Rose and do all the things he has to miss out on.
    • The fact that this is the first series finale since the revival series began not to end on a positive note. It is unrelentingly sad, with the final shot of the episode focused on a brokenhearted Doctor all alone in his TARDIS, sopping wet in with rain like a drenched dog, a very mopey face, and no twist ending cliffhanger.
      • In fact, this episode was supposed to have one with the Cybermen suddenly popping up in the TARDIS, but the Christmas special that followed it underwent a rewrite that caused the planned ending to be changed and because Doctor Who Magazine writer Benjamin Cook personally told Russell T. Davies himself that the twist ending was too inappropriate, being very jarring after the cascade of sad events playing out in the episode's closing scenes.
    • At the end of the episode, when the Doctor steps out to say his goodbyes to Wilfred. He begins uttering some technobabble about the heavy rain that is currently falling. This is something we've seen the Doctor do many times in both the classic and new series when dealing with grief. But this time, he just gives up what he's saying. He's that badly affected by the events of the episode.
  • The ending of "The Next Doctor", which is one of the most touching examples of the Doctor being a Woobie:
    Jackson Lake: All those bright and shining companions! ...But not anymore?
    The Doctor: No.
    Jackson Lake: If I may ask, why not?
    The Doctor: They leave. Because they should, or they find someone else. And some of them, some of them... forget me. I suppose, in the end... They break my heart.
    • Not since the Master died was he this close to tears.
    • Plus the fact that he's trying to justify it, not to Jackson, but to himself- the first thing he says is "because they should," and he's trying to convince himself they're better off living their own lives, no matter how much he misses them.
    • And earlier in the episode, where he's explaining how Jackson Lake became the Doctor.
      Doctor: I'm sorry, I am so sorry, but... That's an awful lot of luggage for one man...
      • It's even worse once you realize he's not just talking about the suitcases.
    • There's also the part where the Cyberking is walking over all of Victorian London and there's a small exchange of dialogue.
      Doctor: Jackson, you've got your son. You've got a reason to live.
      Jackson: And you haven't?
      Doctor: *doesn't say anything*
    • According to "Flesh and Stone", the events of this episode never existed. Which isn't so bad for Jackson and his family and a whole bunch of other people, but what about Rosita? It was most likely restored when the universe was rebooted in The Big Bang.
  • Basically all of "The Waters of Mars".
    • Everything from the scene in the airlock when the Doctor tells Adelaide that she and her entire crew are going to die, pretty much. Though Steffi's death scene stands out. She puts on a film of her children.
    • In the scene where the crew is trying to escape and the Doctor is walking back to the TARDIS (his face lit up to look like a skeleton and horribly depressing music playing in the background, no less). It was even worse when one character had a drop of water hit him, making him have to stay behind. And the Doctor's reaction when he hears "One drop." It was just so sad.
      • The Doctor defies the laws set down by the Time Lords and uses the TARDIS to take the remaining three crew members home. Adelaide questions the Doctor on his contradictory actions, but he rebukes by declaring himself Time Lord Victorious, who now believes he has the power to change time to whatever he wants. Adelaide Brooke's answer? Walks into her home, and kills herself, correcting the timeline. The sheer shock on the Doctor's face, and the memories flashing through his mind.
    • What makes it worse is why the Doctor's so horrified. In Trying To Set Right What Once Went Wrong, he made it worse. Adelaide's granddaughter was originally motivated in life by not knowing how her grandmother died. Thanks to the Doctor's meddling, it's now not knowing why her grandmother committed suicide. His arrogance turned a mystery into a tragedy.
    • The Time Lord Victorious speech was enough to cue hysterical tears. That arrogance with which he struts out of the TARDIS, the smug security that he can do this now, he can dictate the flow of the universe to his whim and it just looks so good and right on him... but it's so wrong. The thin line that the Doctor can cross... and he crosses it, and it's heartbreaking.
      Adelaide: The future of the human race! No one should have that kind of power.
      Doctor: Tough.
    • By calling himself the Time Lord Victorious, the Doctor has become the Master.
    • Poor Adelaide did everything she could, she kept trying to get through to The Doctor that he needed to stop. That he'd gone to far and just needed to stop. But nothing she said got through, and she died miserable while The Doctor would have to live with what he'd caused her to do to stop him.
    • Still, there is one good little gem at the heart of the mess- before, nobody knew why the base exploded. Now, Adelaide will be remembered as a hero. And two people who were meant to die at the base are spared the fate of death, living on to tell her tale.
    • Looking back on Ten's run, it's clear that in a variety of ways his entire character arc was building up to this moment, starting with what he did to Harriet Jones. And his A God Am I speech implies heavily that all this is one of the psychological results of what he did during the Time War. Come "Day of the Doctor," we learn that Gallifrey didn't fall, that the Doctor instead locked it in stasis in a pocket universe, and that he was forced to forget this fact so that he would have his immense regret as motivation to spend the next four hundred years thinking of a way around destroying it. Basically, the Time Lord Victorious—and all the anguish which led up to that terrible, terrible moment—is based entirely on a lie. He became the sort of man who could do this only because he mistakenly thought he already was.
    • Possibly the biggest tearjerker of this story is that at first, he didn't go back to save them out of arrogance. He did it because people were crying out for help, and he just couldn't turn away. The one time he needed to ignore people crying out for help, and he just couldn't do it.
  • A few scenes from "The End of Time", Part One qualify.
    • The Doctor and Wilf sit in a cafe and talk about dying. The Doctor tells Wilf that when he regenerates, it's still like dying, because everything that is him dies and a new man gets up and walks away.
    • In the same scene, Wilf asks the Doctor to fix Donna, who still can't remember being his companion. The Doctor says no, and tells Wilf that he's been traveling by himself. He says that he thought it would be better by himself, but he did the wrong thing and it all messed up, and he cuts off and breaks down crying.
      • There are actual tears visible in his eyes. He just barely stops himself from bawling like a baby! GAH!
    • From the end of the same scene is Wilf's line: "You need her, Doctor... Wouldn't she make you laugh again, good old Donna?" What's worse? A despondent grandfather begging the Doctor to restore Donna's memories, or the Doctor, who wants nothing more than to have Donna back again, but is deeply convicted that he can't?
    • In the wake of Bernard Cribbins' death in 2022 at the age of 93, a solid ten years after this episode aired, one exchange between the two of them cuts a lot deeper.
      Doctor: I'm dying.
      Wilf: So am I, one day.
      Doctor: (chuckles bitterly) Don't you dare.
      Wilf: (smiles) Okay, I won't.
  • "I don't want to go." says the Doctor, alone again after a heartbreaking series of good-byes.
    • It's even worse when you realize he became an actor specifically to play the Doctor. When he says, "I don't want to go," that's... Davies, you heartless bastard.
    • "What year is it?" "Boy, you must have had a lot to drink! January 1st, 2005."
      • "I'll bet you're going to have a really great year."
      • In the Italian dub he says "a fantastic year". How much more tear-inducing would the scene have been if they had used that version of the line?
    • Wilf begging the Doctor to take the gun and not die. The moment, the exact moment, the Doctor hears the knocking, after the Hope Spot. The entirety of Donna's wedding.
    • "Borrowed a quid off a really lovely man. Geoffrey Noble, his name was."
    • "This song is ending, but the story never ends."
    • The Doctor's book-signing with Miss Redfern's great-granddaughter.
      Doctor: Was she happy? In the end?
      Verity: Yes, she was. Were you?
      • The truly heartbreaking moment is the look on his face as she asks him. He tries to smile, but his lip trembles, and it's just...
    • Then there's Jack. Notable because neither of them speaks a single word to each other aloud, when there's clearly so much that needs to be said. The mock-casuality of his bringing together two people who have seen him at his worst, and a brief salute... For now, it'll have to do.
      • It was far more effective without words. After Torchwood: Children of Earth, we know Jack is devastated and can't forgive himself. Then he gets that note, looks up, sees the Doctor... and then we realize that, no matter what happened, the Doctor has forgiven Jack. Only then do we start to see the Jack we're used to.
    • The number of cast and crew members who have publicly stated "I cried when I read the script" is literally in the dozens.
    • Wilf begging the Doctor to take the gun and save himself, when the Master told the Doctor to step out of the way.
    • When the Doctor goes to enter the booth and save Wilf at the cost of his own life, Wilf breaks down to the verge of tears and begs the Doctor not to do it. Bernard Cribbins will break your heart in that scene.
      "We will sing to you, Doctor. The Universe will sing you to your sleep."
      • What made it even more tragic is the similarity of those lines to what Horatio says to Hamlet at his death ("Goodnight, sweet prince/And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest."). For the death of the Tenth Doctor, already desperately sad, to evoke that most tragic of play endings...too much altogether.
      • Especially considering the movie with David Tennant as Hamlet. Don't watch them within the same week at the least.
      • Four versions of that last line were shot, increasing the emotion each time. They went for number three as four was even more tear-jerking to the point that Tennant felt it out of character.
      • And the saddest part? Ten was saying just what we felt. We didn't want him to go either.
      • The final words were sad, the goodbyes were sad, but there was a sort of hollow stabbing sadness when you hear Wilf telling the Doctor not to die for him, because you know and the Doctor knows and in all likelihood Wilf knows that no matter how badly he wishes he could just walk away, he's already decided he can't.
      • When Ten regenerated, through the sadness, I couldn't help but think of the words of Sarah Jane:
      "Some things are worth getting your heart broken for".
    • Ten's actions. To simplify, one of the last things he does is saving Luke. Pulling him from in front of a speeding vehicle, doing what he's done for hundreds of years. Helping. Even with his final breath. And then his last action, his very last action, struggling to reach the TARDIS and getting it in flight... just... gah.
    • The music for that scene, "Vale Decem", is in no way helpful. The lyrics are in Latin, and not terribly good Latin at that, but a rudimentary understanding of the language makes it even more heartbreaking. Especially when you realize that one line can be reasonably translated as "You are not alone."
      • The castrato voice building in emotion and reaching impossibly high notes for a voice... Erg...
    • Ten's catchphrase was "Allons-y!", which is French for "Let's go!". His last words were "I don't want to go."
  • Eleven's first words being so cheerful. Because of what the Doctor said regeneration meant to him in "The End of Time Part 1", about it being like dying with a new man getting up in his place. Of course, this was probably intentional on the writers' part. Bastards.
  • During the climax of "The End of Time Part 2", the Doctor is in turmoil weighing whether to shoot The Master or Rassilon, while simultaneously grappling with the idea that he will have to kill again. Then, for a moment, he shares a sad, knowing look with the mysterious Time Lady standing in the ranks of the revived Time Lords. It's never said who this is, and when asked about it later the Doctor merely looks away into the distance and refuses to talk, but all we know is that she has a very, very personal connection to the Doctor. Whoever she is, that one glance they shared inspired the Doctor to Take a Third Option and remember his pacifism. Fans who interpret her as being the Doctor's mother see this as an I Miss Mom moment.
  • The entire radiation scene. The Doctor's Rage Against Fate speech hits you just how serious regeneration is to the Doctor, or at least to Ten. How he protests against the unfairness of it all until he finally accepts his fate. And of course, that self-sacrifice is exactly what makes him who he is. The Doctor, the last of the Time Lords dying to save one little human? Of course he would. And finally when the chamber floods with energy and this great man who has stood tall against angels and demons is curled in the fetal position in silence.
  • Going back to the visitations, the Sarah Jane Adventures episode "Death of the Doctor" reveals something that we didn't see there: the Doctor didn't just visit the companions of his tenth incarnation. He tells Jo Grant that he went to visit every single one of his companions from all of his lives. One can only imagine how tragic scenes with any of the others must have been. It's not made any better by Sarah Jane telling us how a number of them are doing great things with their lives, it just goes to show what great effect the Doctor had on so many individuals, which is the true meaning of his reward—seeing them safe and happy and being magnificent. As Miss Sarah Jane Smith once told the Doctor, he has the biggest family in the whole wide world...
    • In the whole wide universe, and other universes too.
    • Perhaps even worse when you realise that there are some companions he can't see. Take Susan. He's the last Time Lord. Susan's supposedly dead.
      • Given RTD's writing about a memorial off on some distant planet erected by a lone figure walking away, perhaps the Doctor just had a silent visit to some sort of grave or monument he had for all those he lost.
      • And yet there's a sweet sadness in hearing that even after hundreds of years and hundreds of adventures, he still managed to go back and visit even his very first human companions, Ian and Barbara, now happily married decades later.
  • Another "End of Time" part's one and two, but a little different than the prior scenes. The final scenes with the Master, just for how badly screwed over he was by the Time Lords. "Get out of the way!" Oh, and if you look closely in that scene when the Doctor points the gun at him (and in the interrogation scene to boot), there's a point where he's on the verge of tears. Made it even worse.
    • The other "Get out of the way" is also a tear-jerker. The Master thinks everything he's doing is right, that it's what the Time Lords wanted, but it wasn't. He has no way to vent and he knows he's going to die soon and he has to kill the person he's trusted until about five minutes ago and he completely loses control of everything.
    • That look on the Master's face when Rassilon sneers, "You're a disease." He finally realizes he means less than nothing to the Time Lords; his entire life, everything he's done, and all he's suffered has been for nothing.
    • Going from the forced confidence of "you never would, you coward" to John Simm's tiny little head shake of denial moments later.
      • Looking at that line from a different perspective, it almost sounds like he's begging the Doctor to kill him.
    • The "you could be so beautiful" scene, when the Doctor is trying to convince the Master they don't need to rule the universe, just see it. It's not Tennant's impassioned pleas, it's the tears in Simm's eyes and the crack in his voice, like he wants to believe, but can't conceive of a life without the drums.
      • Semi-relevant fact: The Master's sacrifice was originally intended to be a fitting and redeeming end for Roger Delgado's Master in his would-be last story, only Roger Delgado died in a tragic car crash down a ravine before it could be filmed. The producers had to scrap the story completely. Now, it got its spiritual fruition.
  • Throughout the last twenty minutes or so of Part 2. The Doctor screaming at Wilf about how it wasn't fair that Wilf could die, while the Doctor had to travel the stars with people that he grew attached to, and then had to let them go. Then...the goodbyes...the goodbyes...especially Rose.
    • One of the bigger tearjerkers is when the Doctor gives the lottery ticket to Wilf and Sylvia and tells them he borrowed a quid off Geoffrey Noble to do it. Sylvia's on the verge of tears when she realizes who he means and that her deceased husband still got to give his daughter a wedding present.
  • And when he collects himself, "I've lived too long", it sounds so much like a suicide.
    • A man is about to die a horrible, radiation-related death after being haunted by it for months, and watching the people he had to wipe out come back for a second shot thereby making his choice irrelevant, then having to send someone who helped him (possibly his own mother) back into a time lock to die in an inescapable war... Not to mention that after he just survived the unsurvivable, he's now dying because a lovely old man got himself stuck in a booth... And people are calling this wangst?
      • One could look at that rant from a different angle. Since partway through Series Two, the Doctor's life has been pushed in a certain direction because of all these prophecies dictating his fate- the loss of Rose, the return of the Master, Donna losing her memories, and now his own death. Imagine how that must feel, to not have any real choice in your life because it's already been plotted out for you. At the heart of the matter, that's what Ten is really angry at- that the choice has been made for him, like so many before it. So he screams at the universe because it doesn't have the right to choose for him- but he still goes back to the booth. He still saves Wilf. Because that's what he does. Because he's the Doctor. And in that moment, he actually makes it his own choice- rather than dying because someone told him he was going to, he makes it clear he could leave, but he isn't going to because he will not let Wilf die- and that's when he takes his destiny back into his own hands.
      • A very interesting point when you realize it doesn't even end there. Eleven is forced to deal with the impending explosion of the TARDIS, his very complicated rescue from the Pandorica, the precise moment of his death, and now The Question itself all in the form of vague prophecy. You even get one more rage against the universe when Eleven declares he can still do anything he wants because he has all the time in the world, and "time has never laid a glove on me!" A fury quickly punished when he discovers that the Brig has just passed away. Damn you, Time. Damn you.
    • All it can take for the waterworks to start up was one sound. The sound of rapping on a glass door, to a count of four. Tap tap tap tap.
  • This is all summed up pretty well in the Sarah Jane Adventures episode "The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith" when she and the Doctor say their goodbyes.
    Doctor: Don't forget me, Sarah Jane.
    Sarah Jane: No one's ever going to forget you.
    • Because we won't.
  • While we're on Sarah Jane, she was by far the most heartbreaking goodbye in "The End Of Time". Of all the people he went to see, only she had seen a regeneration before — only she could understand; she's seen the "different man" get up and walk away, seen the Doctor change from one man to another, seen everything change and become different, seen the Doctor lose all of one person and be replaced by all of another. When the Doctor sees Rose, she's yet to meet the Ninth Doctor. While Luke was all excited that the Doctor was here, you could tell Sarah Jane knew what was happening to him and what it meant, and why he couldn't speak to her.
    • Worse, with the 2011 death of Elisabeth Sladen hitting the fandom, that scene isn't just Sarah Jane saying goodbye to the Doctor. That was her last scene in the series that made her famous. David Tennant, the ultimate Ascended Fanboy who grew up as a massive fan of hers then got to play the Doctor alongside her, is practically saying goodbye to her for us. GAAAAHHHHH.
    • She might not have seen a regeneration before but, from the way she clings miserably to her husband and doesn't even try to talk to her old friend, you can tell Martha knows exactly what she's seeing.
  • The Doctor stumbling and pressing himself as hard as he can through the snow, toward the TARDIS so he can regenerate. Knowing what he said to Wilf before about it before, this is a man walking to his death. And knowing he has to because it's the only way he can still live.
  • When it's all said and done, from what we know, this incarnation lived only 9 years. This Doctor was the shortest-lived ever by decades, three years spent on Volag-Noc raising a robot bird. His angst and unwillingness to regenerate makes so much sense and his line about living too long more heartbreaking.
    • You can just feel his rage and anger about having to die, especially after having cheated it several times (most notably in "The Stolen Earth"). Compared to the end of Nine and most other Doctors before him, he very much feared death because there was still so much left undone and he was full of guilt and regret, but ultimately had to accept it in the end. It's comparable to what many real-life people go through when they are dying, and it only makes things so much sadder.
      • Even if you are one of those people who believe the Doctor has completely lost track of his age, it is still pretty sad when you realize how many times the Doctor has had to go through this, and how he knows exactly what happens when he becomes a new Doctor.
      • It's even worse then that. Comparing Time Lord lifespans, which are around 450 years, 10 lived for 1.66, less then a mouse.
  • And the coda on this entire folder: at first, there were some who criticized Ten's final words as being needlessly melodramatic and out-of-character...and then The Time of the Doctor happened and we realized that with the War Doctor and the Metacrisis Tenth Doctor, Eleven was supposed to be the Doctor's final life. That was why Ten didn't want to go: he knew his song was one life away from ending forever.

    Eleventh Doctor episodes 
  • "The Eleventh Hour":
    • Even though you could see it coming from a mile away, young Amelia Pond waiting with her suitcase. You just knew he and the TARDIS were in no state to make it back in time. Poor little girl.
    • The moment when you realise - especially after The Doctor's Wife - that all the weakened Doctor could do was get the TARDIS to crash somewhere where she could safely recover and that there's nothing the previously exploding TARDIS could do to help him, even though she did try later in the episode.
  • "The Beast Below"
    • "Nobody talk to me! Nobody human has anything to say to me today!" When The Doctor realises that to save an entire nation of stupid, ignorant people, he has to brain-kill the last of a very old and noble race to end its incessant suffering. You can see the fury and anguish in his face; every last ounce of it.
      • When the Tranquil Fury started coming out in the Doctor's voice, and then when he exploded...that was the worst. That and:
        And then I'll find a new name. Because I won't be the Doctor anymore.
      • It says something when he calls this "the worst thing [he]'ll ever do". That's coming from someone who thought he had to kill his own entire race. Adding to this the fact that he had changed his name before...
    • "It came because it couldn't stand to watch your children cry. What if you were really old, and really kind and alone? Your whole race dead, no future. What couldn't you do then? If you were that old, and that kind, and the very last of your kind... (looks straight at the Doctor) you couldn't just stand there and watch children cry." Oh, Amy. That's exactly what the Doctor needed to hear. He doesn't realise just how good and kind a person he is because of all the dreadful things that he's had to do.
    • The poem at the end. We'd originally heard one that used the Star-Whale as a threat to scare a child, but at the end, after everyone has realized the Star-Whale is actually benevolent and generous and had never wanted to harm anyone, we get a CMOT & CMOH all in one:
      In bed above, we're deep asleep, while greater love lies further deep
      This dream must end, this world must know: we all depend on the Beast Below.
    • This line: "But when they cry silently, it's because they can't stop. Every parent knows that." Oh, Doctor... and the way he instantly changes the subject after that.
  • "Victory of the Daleks".
    • The Daleks survived and escape, and he let it happen. After all that he's already sacrificed and done, the Daleks are still a threat. It gets worse when you consider that the "new" Daleks are original-line Daleks from Skaro, instead of the hybrid ones that have been in the new seasons on and off. Not only is the death of his own race now very slightly less important, but now he has to deal with pepperpots that are very likely going to prove to be even more repugnant than some of the ones he's faced in previous revival seasons.
    • The Doctor's expression towards the end. The day is saved, but the Daleks have escaped... and he just looks so out of it and sort of staggers backwards, horrified...
  • "Flesh and Stone".
    • The Doctor has to leave Father Octavian to be killed by a Weeping Angel... then he walks off-screen without a word, and all you hear is the crack. It's made worse in that the story at that point had already built up a decent and likeable character in Father Octavian and his men. The character was basically a four-in-one of Cool Old Guy, The Brigadier, Officer and a Gentleman and a Badass Preacher. He did the best job anyone in his situation could dealing with the Angels while trying to deal with River and the Doctor at the same time, and it was a cruel way for him to go.
      Father Octavian: I die in the knowledge that my courage did not desert me at the end. For that I thank God, and bless the path that leads you away to safety.
      The Doctor:(pause) I wish I could have got to know you better
      (Octavian smiles)
      Father Octavian: I think, sir... you knew me at my best.
      The Doctor: Ready?
      Father Octavian: (peacefully) Content.
  • "The Vampires of Venice"
    • Despite the evil she's done, there's something very sad about Rossana's suicide. She's stopped caring and plunges in. The scene also has vibes of her punishing herself; it's the same manner of death she subjected Isabella too.
    • These fish people are not evil. They're refugees driven to extreme measures.
    • Isabella's death, and her father's desperation to save her; even worse because we know he never does.
    • Rory's frustration with Amy is quite sad to watch, especially as she never really apologizes to him and doesn't seem to take his concerns about their relationship seriously.
  • "Amy's Choice".
    • The Doctor and Amy committing suicide together after Rory dies. A lot of sad moments in just a few minutes.
    Amy: This is the dream. Definitely this one. Now, if we die here, we wake up, yeah?
    Doctor: Unless we just die.
    Doctor: How do you know?
    • Then after that, when they leave the cottage, Amy turns to the Doctor with tears in her eyes and admits that she doesn't care if she dies or not, she just wants to be with Rory again.
    Amy: I love Rory, and I never told him. But now he's gone.
    • The very second Rory died. Amy's small voice when she asks Rory to come back, how she asks the Doctor to save him, and he just looks like a lost little boy when he says he can't. Then Amy says the most horrible thing, and he just stays silent, almost as if he wonders himself.
      Amy: Save him. You save everyone, you always do. It's what you do.
      The Doctor: Not always. ...I'm sorry.
      Amy: Then what is the point of you?
    • Doubles also as an Ironic Echo and Call-Back to "Dalek", when the Ninth Doctor used the same words to mock the Dalek by questioning why it bothered to go on living when it's unable to kill anymore. Amy now throws the same question right back at him, questioning why the Doctor continues on when he knows he can't save everyone?
      • The Doctor chose his name, his identity, to be "the man who makes people better." You just know he's asking himself the exact same question.
    • When Amy gets up from the floor, there's a tiny clip where the Doctor goes to help her, but he doesn't touch her, doesn't seem to dare...
    • The Doctor says he knows who is behind the dream/alternate realities because "there's only one person in the universe who hates me as much as you do". We later find out that the person behind it is the Doctor himself meaning... Oh, Doctor.
      • This needs to be elaborated on. By the Doctor's account, no one, none of the monsters he's fought, not even the Daleks hate him as much as he hates himself.
  • "The Hungry Earth":
    • The Doctor tries to pull Amy out of the hole in the ground but fails. Why is it a Tear Jerker? The look on the Doctor's face. That, and when you remember that the Doctor's lost so many companions and friends over the years...It just makes you want to hug him, the poor Time Lord!
    • Restac's reaction to finding out about Alaya's death. Yes, she's a trigger-happy, militaristic racist whose first reaction to anything not going her way is to kill things; and yes, Alaya was completely insane and was intentionally trying to start a genocidal war. But she was Restac's sister, and she loved her. It's the one and only time we've ever seen a Silurian completely and utterly break down, and it's gut-wrenching. Those tiny, broken little whimpers and the fact that she didn't even care about the fact that she was sobbing in front of humans... Ambrose, you monster.
    • In a way, the fact that Restac's first question in every situation is "Where's my sister?" Their entire civilization is at risk; but she can't focus on that when her sister is in danger. Turns out she was right to worry, which is a tearjerker for the human race in and of itself.
    • The Doctor yelling at Ambrose, summing her up in a way that's a well-deserved kick in the gut: "You were so! Much! Less! ...than the best of humanity."
      • Later on, urging her to raise her son Elliot to be "the best of humanity, the way you couldn't be." He may understand why she did what she did, but that doesn't make it okay.
    • Elliot having to say goodbye to his grandpa.
    • For all Ambrose might be, the look on her face when her son finds out she murdered Alaya and backs away from her in disgust. She crossed a Moral Event Horizon because she was afraid for him and he's horrified by it.
    • The saddest thing of all about Ambrose was she was never any kind of monster (no more than Restac at least) as both the characters and even the writers seem to wish to portray her. She's a mother, an understandably frightened one at that. Alaya took her motherly love and concern and used it against her. note 
    • Rory's death and subsequent disappearance from all of history. Especially his confusion in that he had earlier seen himself and Amy from the future, waving to themselves in the past from a hillside. When the episode ends, we see older!Amy on the hillside again, waving to her younger self... but this time she's all alone, and only briefly imagines she can see someone else there with her.
    Rory: I don't understand... we were on the hill... I'm sorry.
    • In that vein, Amy's screaming and crying to go back for him, and then her struggling and failing to remember him.
      • Seeing Amy, who was normally so strong and fierce, completely breaking down into screaming and sobbing. The fact that both she and the Doctor know she'll be erased from time too if she goes back and that she just doesn't care because she can't stand to live without him... gaaahhh. The Doctor's reaction is heartbreaking too, over the last few episodes we saw him really grow to like and respect Rory, and he's practically on the verge of tears. He knows that if he doesn't take command of the situation and restrain Amy then he'll lose her too, even though he's devastated by Rory's death as well. The acting of the three leads makes that scene so damn effective.
  • "Vincent and the Doctor"
    • When Van Gogh tells Amy he is sorry that she is sad and says he feels she's lost someone. Amy confusedly tells him she's not sad and hasn't lost anyone. Then Vincent points out that she's crying... She didn't even notice.
    • Vincent's episode when the Doctor comes to recruit him for the trip to the church. It's totally irrational, he's among friends who admire and respect him for possibly the first and last time in his life, and he's curled up in bed, completely paralyzed with self-loathing and terror at the world and incapable of tearing himself out of it - or letting others tear him out of it - until it passes by itself. Anyone who suffers from or has dealt with anyone who suffered from Manic Depression will recognize the powerless state he's in and the injustice of anyone being forced to live like that, particularly someone as good and sensitive as this man.
    • Van Gogh being shown his works in a museum and getting told what a great painter he was...and Amy learning that he still committed suicide.
    • Even worse if you work out the Fridge Logic as to why events still turned out that way. Consider that most creative year of Van Gogh's life was very likely spurred on by that visit to the future, and the praise he received. Now consider that he still had to return to a life where he was ridiculed and mocked, and the psychological effect of knowing that your destiny is to become a world-renowned artist, when you can't get even a shred of respect from the people around you. Vincent suffered from Manic Depression, and sometimes the disease wins, and there is nothing you, your loved ones or your time traveling alien from the future can do to stop it.
      • Or, another moment of Fridge Logic that makes his heartwarming and tragic all at once, he still died because he didn't commit suicide at all. There is a theory that his death was accidental murder and he claimed suicide so that the kids responsible wouldn't be prosecuted. The Doctor at least let him live his final months knowing he'd be remembered as a great painter.
    • Every minute of the last 15 minutes of Vincent and the Doctor were tear jerkers. The look on Amy's face when she realizes that Van Gogh still killed himself, and again when she sees the painting that he painted for her. If you know Van Gogh's history it gets a bit worse, the first scene with Van Gogh is him painting the last painting he ever would, with a rustling in field reminiscent of the Krafayis, reminding him of what he'd done.
    • The last little exchange in front of Van Gogh's "Sunflowers" painting:
      Amy: If we had gotten married, our children would have had VERY red hair. (pause) The ultimate ginger.
      The Doctor: The ultimate ginge!
      Amy (quietly): Brighter than sunflowers.
  • "The Pandorica Opens"
    • The very first scene of this episode is Vincent suffering one of his depressive swings. It happened after he finished the final painting of his life: the TARDIS exploding. note . He knows it means that the two people who showed him understanding and respect are dying along with it. This could be what drove him over the edge into terror and insanity. This could be why he killed himself. He's not just manic-depressive; he's also heartbroken.
    • Everything about Rory in this episode:
      • Him realising Amy doesn't remember him,
      • The Doctor's line bracing Rory for the fact that Amy doesn't remember a thing about him: "I'm sorry, Rory, but you're going to have to be very brave now."
      • When she does and he realises he's not the real Rory, but an Auton programmed well enough to believe his own facade. No matter how he tries to convince himself he is who he thought he was, and no matter how Amy begs for him to stay, the programming gets enough of a hold that he ends up shooting her anyway.
      • The last scene of the episode has him clutching Amy's dead body while every star in the universe goes nova.
    • While all the badness that is happening, the Doctor is being sealed away in the Pandorica, beyond anybody's reach, unable to save a damned thing. What cinches it is the expression on his face. He's utterly devastated.
  • "The Big Bang"
    • It's probably not considered typical to cry at the phrase "Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue".
    • Amy's entire speech at her wedding reception. Especially the part where she starts realising why the Doctor told her the story about the "brand new, ancient blue box. Ohhhh, clever, very clever."
    • The Doctor's speech to Amy. "You won't need your imaginary friend anymore..."
    • Rory, sweet, gentle, stupid, good Rory says, with a look of utter bewilderment "How could we forget the Doctor?". Just the look on his face and his tone, like he was just remembering the most important thing in the world and simultaneously mourning the fact that he forgot it in the first place.
    • The TARDIS. Think about it. Yes, the mysterious evil voice probably made sure the TARDIS would explode on the date of Amy and Rory's wedding day. However, it didn't specify that it would have to be on Earth. The TARDIS, exploding over and over again, keeping the Earth warm after all the stars ceased existing.
    • River Song trapped inside that loop trying to escape the exploding TARDIS, yet failing to do so every single time. The clincher is the end of each one:
      River: I'm sorry, my love.
    • The first scene after the opening credits of Rory cradling Amy's dead body. He attempts to make a joke about how the universe ending in the past means they're not going to be born, which is now the second time that's happened to him.
      Rory: You would have laughed at that. Please laugh.
  • From "A Christmas Carol"
    • The poor Sky Shark. She only attacked out of hunger.
    • The passengers on the stranded ship singing "Silent Night", all together, alone in the fog, in one last, desperate attempt to stabilize the clouds.
    • The moment when Kazran, confronted with his younger self mistaking him for his abusive father, finally breaks down. Michael Gambon, you beauty.
      • A callback to previously in the episode when the Doctor believed Kazran was capable of redemption because "you didn't hit the boy." That look in his eyes when it hits him that he's that close to becoming the man he despised...
    • The part where Abigail, now that everyone knows that she only has a day to live, says to Kazran, "We've had so many Christmas Eves, Kazran. I think it's time for Christmas Day." Dammit Katherine Jenkins.
    • Every freaking time Abigail sings in this episode. It turns into Fridge Horror when you realize the word "Silence" is very common in the last song... Steven Moffat, you clever, terrifying man.
  • "Night and the Doctor"—"Good Night."
    • Amy figures that companions are small parts of the Doctor's life, and he replies that "You are enormous parts of my life. And you are all I ever remember.” With all the fantastic things the Doctor has seen, he remembers his companions first and foremost. Considering what's happened to most of them...
  • "The Impossible Astronaut"
    • River explains to Rory that not only are she and the Doctor meeting out of order but in reverse order: Every time she meets him, he knows her less and less. She fears the day when she meets him and he has no clue who she is, full-heartedly believing that it would kill her. Even more heart-wrenching when you consider that we already know she's right.
      • It's bound to throw a wrench in your heart is that it's probably gonna hurt just as bad for the Doctor when he meets her for, from her perspective, the first time.
    • Right near the beginning: The Doctor is killed mid-regeneration, one of the few ways to kill him permanently. Way to kick the new season off, guys.
      • In "Death of the Doctor" (taking place between Season 5 and Season 6 of Doctor Who), Sarah Jane Smith says "With friends like these, he's never going to die, is he?". Cue the first few minutes of Season 6... Even more tear-jerking given that, as we now know from the end of "Closing Time", that it will be River that kills him.
    • The fact that River is trusting her father with her greatest fear, and he doesn't know who she is, and therefore, unable to provide the comfort she's seeking.
    • River tells Amy that she's considering murdering the little girl in the spacesuit before she can kill the Doctor. Considering who that little girl is...
  • "Day of the Moon"
    • River, who meets the Doctor in exact reverse order, kisses the Doctor for his first time, her last time, and afterwards finds out that this was, in fact, the first/last time, and that from here on, every time she meets the Doctor, he'll be less and less in love with her.
    Doctor: You know what they say, there's a first time for everything! [leaves]
    River: [in shock] And a last time...
    • This exchange:
      Amy: What's the matter with you?
      Rory: You... called me stupid.
      Amy: I always call you stupid.
      Rory: No... but... my face. [Amy looks at the transmitter, and realizes] I wasn't sure who you were talking about... You know, me or...
      Amy: Him?
      Rory: Well you did say "dropped out of the sky."
      Amy: It's a figure of speech, moron!
    • The end of "Day of the Moon", where we see Melody Pond/River Song regenerating? Seriously, the look on her face and the little laugh?
  • "The Curse of the Black Spot"
    • Toby has this image of his father as a gallant officer, a naval version of a Knight in Shining Armor. Then he finds out that his father is a pirate. It's a sad day when a child realizes that his parents aren't as great as they believed.
    • The exchange between the three leads when they're left with a choice of either leaving Rory on the ship or risking his death by drowning since the ship is keeping him alive howeverwhatwaythatworks, is heartwrenching. He opts to leave telling them that all they have to do is resuscitate him when they get back. He wants the person who does it to be Amy, not the Doctor, for one specific reason. "Because I know you'll never give up."
      • It's even more meaningful when you remember Rory's a nurse. The inaccuracy of the whole thing aside, he knows the odds, but he still trusts her completely and he's right. For everyone who has ever wondered why Rory was willing to wait 1894 years for a girl that a number of people don't think deserved him? That scene is your answer. Don't even get started on the look on the Doctor's face the whole time.
      Doctor: "Come on, come on, Rory, not like this, not today!"
  • "The Doctor's Wife".
    • The TARDIS reveals that she wanted to see the stars, just like the Doctor, and he was the only one mad enough to take her as she was already past the point of colossally ancient by then anyway and was in a museum as a museum piece, written off as obsolete by the other Timelords; she saw the Doctor coming, unlocked her doors and stole him, and he thought she was "the most beautiful thing [he] ever saw." and "borrowed" (read: sort of technically stole her but didn't classify it as stealing) her. She makes it clear — "borrowing implies the eventual intention of returning the thing that was taken". She did not borrow him, she stole him, and after all the years they've been together and things they've seen and done and are yet to do, she is definitely not giving him back and, given how close they are, he's probably (read: definitely never) never going to give her back either. For something that has never been able to talk before, she certainly knows how to yank the heartstrings.
    • The TARDIS, in Idris's body, is able to use time energy to kick start the mish-mash TARDIS the two of them have built. This implies that the TARDIS can pilot herself without a Timelord at the controls and could have left that repair shop whenever she wanted to but was waiting for the right Timelord to come along so she'd have the right person to see the universe with. Boy, did she get him!
    • The Doctor's goodbye to the TARDIS in human form He's just so vulnerable. His lip's trembling, his eyes are full of tears...
      Doctor: Please... I don't want you to... Please.
    • Look how many times the Doctor has died so far, and he never got this sad. It's then you realise it's his more-or-less best friend of hundreds (maybe thousands) of years. The look in his eyes... gah!
      • It's made even worse by what she said before returning to being incapable of communicating- "this is the time we talked". She exists outside of linear time as we understand it, and experiences everything at once- meaning, he's never going to get a chance to speak to her as a person ever again.
    • The last thing the TARDIS said to him was the one thing she was never able to tell him all those years ago when they stole each other:
      TARDIS: Hello, Doctor. It's so very nice to meet you.
    • If you listen very very closely, the TARDIS whispers something before she fades:
      TARDIS: I love you.
      • The original version of this scene, as confirmed by interviews, is even worse; originally, the TARDIS was supposed to forgive the Doctor for his part in the Time War and "I love you" was supposed to be "I forgive you".
    • The TARDIS's thoughts on her sisters' graveyard: "I'm thinking all of my sisters are dead, that they were devoured, and that we are looking at their corpses." Ouch.
    • The random snippets of the Time Lord distress signals we hear when The Doctor tries to fix Nephew's communicator.
    Unknown Time Lord: [obviously frightened] Help me! Send a signal to the High Council of the Time Lords of Gallifrey! I'm still alive! I don't know where I am!
    • There was an extremely sad moment before the Doctor realised who the TARDIS was; when he's looking for the other Time Lords that he heard, and finds the cupboard full of distress signals and realises that was all he was hearing.
      Doctor: I really thought I had some friends there...
    • When Amy starts protesting about her and Rory being sent back to the TARDIS and saying that the Doctor was simply seeking redemption from any surviving Time Lords. The Doctor's response is heartbreaking, both in terms of character building and in delivery.
      Amy: You want to be forgiven.
      The Doctor: [quietly] Don't we all?
    • The Doctor described the Corsair as "one of the good ones (Time Lords)." We all know that the Doctor loathes himself; now one of the reasons he's so happy is that there may be just one Time Lord out there that's still good.
    • The scene of Rory and Amy getting separated and Rory waiting for hours in the corner, just sitting all curled up and continuously calling her name. Maybe the rest wasn't as sad since by then she'd realized it wasn't real, but that initial shot of him sitting down the hallway, clearly just desperate for a response from her… it's just so heartbreakingly sweet when they show how devoted he is to her.
    • Rory's room full of crazy, the realization that he's probably been repeatedly Mind Raped for decades, and his dead body when she's pulled away again and he thinks she's abandoned him. The body alone is enough of a tear-jerker. The room scrawled with threatening graffiti that may or may not have been done by Rory himself after he finally snapped? It's probably one of the most horrifying scenes in the entire fifty years of Doctor Who. The last thoughts in Rory's head were the words on the walls—Kill Amy, Hate Amy, Die Amy. Imagine finding the person you love most in the world's dead body surrounded by that and being unable to do anything. Then somewhere in the middle of all that scrawl are the words help me.
    • Just as Amy breaks down on seeing this, the real Rory approaches her, calm and cool. He reassures her that what she saw wasn't real, and he's fine. Then he gently leads her away, keeping a firm grip on her hand. The show never shows us how House tortured Rory, but either it was a No-Sell or he became a Determinator to save his wife. After all, Rory spent millennia separated from her; House went up against a battle nurse.

  • "The Rebel Flesh"
    • Ganger Jennifer is reminiscing over her childhood memories. Except they're not really hers.
    Ganger Jennifer: I'm not a monster... I am me... me! me! me!
    • When it hits home to Ganger Jimmy that the man he wants dead is the father of the child he considers to be his son. Then when Original!Jimmy dies and gives him permission to go be a father to the boy (doubles up as Heartwarming Moment).
    • It turns out the only reason Human Jennifer ran into Ganger Jennifer (and was killed) is that she was running away from the newly forming Ganger Doctor, who as we know wouldn't have harmed her. She saw him, got scared and ran away. No doubt both The Doctor and his Ganger realized this at some point.
    • Rory having to let Ganger Amy go.
    • These two lines:
      Ten's voice coming out of Ganger!Doctor's mouth: Hello, I'm the Doctor!
      Ganger!Doctor: Noooo! Let it go, we... we've moved on!
    • It gets so bad that the Ganger!Doctor starts screaming as if he were in pain. The Time Lord Doctor gives him a hug while encouraging him to try and stabilize.
    • Amy demeaning and deriding the Ganger!Doctor or at least who she thinks is the Ganger!Doctor throughout the episode was pretty harsh.
    • While he wasn't perfect (both of him?) the deaths of Buzzer and his Ganger were depressing as well.
    Doctor: (Cleaves kills Ganger Buzzer) His heart stopped. He had a heart!
    • The eventual death of Ganger!Doctor. It was quick and appeared to be painless, but that didn't make it any easier to watch.
  • "A Good Man Goes to War"
    • As the world is falling apart around his ears, The Doctor comes across a girl whom he met when she was little. A girl who has joined the army and risked her life, just so she could meet him again. He has no idea who she is :
    Lorna: You don't remember me.
    Doctor: Of course I do, Lorna. I remember everyone.
    • It's made all the worse when you consider how easily that girl could have been Amy. What if he never had come back for her in Eleventh Hour? She would just be another person The Doctor left behind without even realizing.
      • Oh, nice to meet you, Lorna! She's a sympathetic character, maybe she'll be the companion after Amy and Rory le-OH SWEET MERCY MOFFAT WHY?
      • When the Doctor turns around, looking utterly hopeless (and possibly ashamed?) and asks "Who was she?" The Doctor knew full well this was someone he hadn't met yet from his own perspective, and as she was dying he realized he was going to meet her later on knowing she would die there for him... and he lied simply because he couldn't stand to break the heart of a dying woman.
      • "They're always brave," was tear-jerking enough to begin with, but when 11 repeated it, almost in a whisper... Brr.
    • River happily tells Rory about her birthday celebrations with the Doctor. Later in the episode, it's revealed she's his daughter, lost in time and meeting him in the wrong order. She was telling her father all about a date with her boyfriend, only to discover Rory had no idea why she was so happy to talk to him.
    • The Doctor declares that Melody is tired, and comes up with a little cradle. A very old cradle. "Where did you get a cradle?" asks Amy. After some awkward, painful moments, he says it was his own before walking away. ''*sniff*'
    • River's "The Reason You Suck" Speech / What the Hell, Hero? given to the Doctor becomes this when you realize she was calling him out for what was done to her. River is essentially walking proof of what happens when the Doctor makes people scared.
    • The version of Melody that Amy is protecting during the final battle with the Monks is a flesh avatar. As the realisation slowly dawns on the Doctor sealed away in the control room, Melody liquifies in Amy's arms. Amy then gives off the most piteous and distraught cry for Rory imaginable. When the Doctor bursts into the hangar to try and warn Amy about Melody, he's interrupted by Rory.
    Rory (choked): Yeah, we know.
    • How bad does your self-esteem have to be that, when your own mother points a gun at you, your only response is "it's okay, she's fine, she's good?"
  • "Let's Kill Hitler"
    • We find out that Amy and Rory's childhood friend Mels is actually Melody/River Song. Meaning that the Doctor failed to keep his promise to Amy, and they never get to raise their child at ALL.
    • The Doctor being unable to use the TARDIS' voice interface in the guise of himself, because that's not someone he likes. It's also unable to use Rose, Martha, or Donna, due to the guilt he feels over what happened with all of them.
      • The interface finally takes on the form of Amelia Pond. Not current!Amy; the Doctor knows too well he's messing up her life like he did her predecessors'.
    • The look on Melody's face when the Teselecta transforms into River.
    • The climax of this episode gives us River Song's Heroic Sacrifice. The second one, in fact.
      River Just tell me. The Doctor... is he worth it?
      Amy: Yes! Yes, he is!
    • Melody's interactions with the TARDIS. Her (own) first actions were to basically take everyone hostage and shoot the being that is, in a sense, her mother. Then there's the Doctor screaming at the voice interface of his companion for seven centuries, over the faces of his much more transient friends. Poor TARDIS.
    • That bit where Mels claims that Amy already has got Mr. Perfect a.k.a. Rory, and they both deny it, with Amy saying that he's gay while Rory himself says that he's a friend. If you pause the screen and look at Rory's face, you can see his eyes tearing up. And then Amy, ever so Oblivious to Love, continues with how Rory has never shown the slightest bit of interest in a girl, and Rory genuinely looks like he's about to cry. The scene ends with Rory running out of the room, and Amy having an Oh, Crap! realization, and dashing out after him, so we can assume they made up and got together later.
  • "Night Terrors"
    • The look on Rory's face when he sees Amy being turned in to a doll.
    • At the climax Alex realizes that the reason George is so scared of everything is that he was afraid that he was unwanted.
  • "The Girl Who Waited".
    • The title alone says you're not leaving with a dry eye.
    • When Older Amy sees her husband for the first time in 36 years, and then she picks up her lipstick. She's about to put it on… Only to remember she's old now, stopping completely.
    • When Older Amy says that she hates the Doctor, and has never hated anyone as much.
    • Rory finally snaps, yelling "I DON'T WANT TO TRAVEL WITH YOU!" Later, when they make it back to the TARDIS, he does it again. "You're turning me into you!" It gets worse when you remember that was exactly what Davros said to the Doctor.
    • When Older Amy and Doctor lock eyes from across the Gallery. The penny drops, and both the viewers and Older Amy realize exactly what's about to happen. Older Amy throws aside her weapons and sprints for the TARDIS door... only to have it closed in her face.
      • The Doctor himself isn't unaffected by this either mumbling to himself over and over that, "she's not real, she's not real" in an attempt to justify what he's about to do to her in his own mind.
      • "You're turning me into you!" That's what the Doctor has always done, and that's why he knows who the Dream Lord is. "There's only one being in the universe who hates me as much as you do."
      • "If you love me, don't let me in."
    • This bit:
      Old Amy: Give her the days... Tell Amy... Your Amy... I'm giving her the days. The days with you. Days to come... Days I can't have. Take them, please... I'm giving you my days.
      • Rory, on the other side of the door, isn't saying anything...he's just whispering 'I'm sorry,' over and over again.
    • Older Amy's death in particular is sad. First we have her begging Rory to let her go because she will fight to live if he doesn't, then her staring at the hologram of the Earth and speaking about her husband as she dies.
      Amy: Show me Earth. Show me home. Did I ever tell you about this boy I met there? He pretended to be in a band…
  • "The God Complex" is a Trauma Conga Line.
    • There's Howie, who mentions worrying about how his disappearance might be affecting his mother. It's also revealed that his greatest fear is a room full of Alpha Bitches who tormented him for his stuttering and that he had just successfully finished a long rehabilitation process to stop said stuttering. Naturally, he dies, making all that for naught.
      • Rory's reaction to the portraits listing off those who already died in the hotel was a mix of sweet and sad. When he says he had forgotten that not all victories are about saving the universe, he just sounds so very tired.
    • One of the portraits was for a Sontaran. It's especially sad when you remember that all Sontaran's fondest dream is to die gloriously in the field of battle, facing his enemy without fear. That poor guy was instead scared to death and then eaten alive...
    • There's a Tear Jerker hidden in Rory's awesome. Rory was immune to the effects of the Hell Hotel because he had no faith! Imagine, for a second, all the things that bring you comfort, like religious belief or belief in other people, he finds no comfort in! Even the Doctor has faith in his companions, despite all the hellish things that have destroyed his faith in everything else, so get a hanky ready when you realize the kind of nightmarish things Rory has suffered to deny him the smallest solace in belief of something outside himself...
    • Rita's death. The Doctor liked her so much she was going to be a Companion, yet she dies to the same mind rape as the others. "Robbed of my faith in private"; imagine how sad that would be, for someone to forcibly make you apostate. It hits particularly hard for viewers who subscribe to a specific faith—imagine clinging on to your beliefs in the face of all this, and that faith being twisted and defiled by a monster who uses it as food.
    • The Minotaur's death speech, which Doctor translates. It describes an ancient being, soaked in the blood of the innocent, drifting through space in an endless shifting maze and how that creature would consider death to be a gift. As the Doctor walks away, the Minotaur reveals it wasn't describing itself.
    • The Doctor making Amy lose her faith in him, realising just what has happened to him
    • The Doctor leaving Amy and Rory behind and the reasons he gives: I'm going to get you killed eventually.
    • The stage directions for the final scene are utterly heartbreaking, especially in their description of the Doctor:
      And now all is quiet aside from the grind of the engines. The TARDIS has never seemed so big and empty. The Doctor steadies himself against the desk as the loss of Amy crashes into him like a wave. A sob is getting through. He is so old, so sad, and so alone.
    • A minor blink-and-you'll-miss-it one, but when Rory comes out of the house again, he's got three champagne glasses.
  • "Closing Time"
    • This is a fairly heartwarming episode that serves to show that people still believe in the Doctor, even when he doesn't believe in himself, but it's very horrifically contrasted by the ending which shows Madame Kovarian and the Silence come for River Song and force her into the astronaut suit and place her in Lake Silencio for the moment that we all knew was coming. To see River so helpless in this scene is what really makes it such a tragic moment.
    • The moments where we see the Doctor borrow some stationery and is given a Stetson hat from Craig as a gift. He knows the significance. He specifically stated his next stop was America, and Word of God is there is a two-hundred-year gap between God Complex and Closing Time (which is why the future Doctor who died in The Impossible Astronaut was 1103 years old instead of 909). This means visiting Craig was his last trip before going to die and he knows it.
    Craig: Doctor, I know that something's wrong. I can help you.
    Eleven: Nobody can help me.
    • There's the reason why The Doctor was going to visit Craig and Sophie, thought all his centuries he has had many companions and friends, but Craig has earned a special place in the Doctor's heart, he is one of the few beings the Doctor has explicitly called his "mate."
    • "Petrichor. For the girl who's tired of waiting."
    • "I'm the Doctor. I was here to help. And you're very very welcome."
  • "The Wedding of River Song"
    • While technically not part of the show, this fanmade trailer for The Wedding of River Song was pretty tear-jerking, especially at the end when everything goes quiet and The Doctor hangs his head low as the First Doctor's famous "one day" speech echoes in the background.
    • The Doctor finding out about the Brigadier's death. The Doctor feels so confident, there is a happy tone, he's boasting that time has never laid a glove on him...then he hears the Brigadier died in his sleep. The Doctor was calling up the Brigadier to invite him to just hang out and have a laugh. We see the Doctor's demeanour change in an instant, and he comes close to crying. That was one of the saddest moments of the 11th Doctor's time. He also realizes that he can't put off his own death any longer, because the Brig would have always done his duty, no matter what. To do any less would dishonor his memory.
      • Even worse? We learn that he always made the nurses pour an extra brandy "in case you ever came around, one of these days." Possibly implying that he just snuck in and didn't let her know he was there, or that he just never visited. After all, the Doctor does hate endings...
    • When the Doctor learns of the timey-wimey distress beacon one of the things he says is:
      The Doctor: That would mean nothing to anyone.
    • Then River points out how much all of existence would miss him if he died, and he still insists on doing so.
  • In the DVD short "Last Night" the Doctor encounters his future self with River, who mentions that he's taking her to the Singing Towers of Darrillium. The present Doctor is with a younger River at the time, who returns to the room after their future selves depart. She later jokingly mentions that the Doctor will be the death of her. His face after each encounter is what does it.
  • In "Good Night," when Amy and the Doctor are discussing the effect time being rewritten has on memory, the Doctor mentions Rory spending two thousand years as a Roman. Amy replies that Rory says he barely remembers it.
    The Doctor: Ah, but sometimes you catch him just staring.
  • "The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe"
    • After the funny Action Prologue ends in Madge's introduction, we skip forward a few years to her at home with her husband Reg, chiding him for obsessing over the growing war in Europe. One more skip and Reg is flying a damaged bomber over the English Channel, lost and trying to get home. If you know the title of the special, you have a pretty good idea of how this scene will end.
    • The Doctor's analysis of Madge's difficulties in having Christmas with her kids after her husband has been reported missing.
    "What's the point in their being happy, when they're going to be sad later? And the answer is, of course, because they're going to be sad later."
    • It's sad enough by itself. But then you remember that he used to be a father and a grandfather himself.
    • When The Doctor is trying to help Madge land the ship telling her to think of home and her memories of Reg to guide their flight home. Things he claims he can no longer do himself, like spending time with family or crying when happy.
    • The end, where after telling Madge that he has no family or friends to spend Christmas with, you can tell that he wants to but he can't. He's supposed to be dead.
      • It hurts even more when you realize that, after Ten lost everyone he loved in increasingly brutal and horrible ways, Eleven seemed determined to distance himself to prevent having to feel that pain ever again. How ironic that the first person Eleven meets becomes his mother-in-law. Poor, lonely Eleven, running from friendship because he knows how it always ends, wound up with more family than he's had since he left Gallifrey in the first place.
    • His ferociously happy expressions earlier, when he's explaining himself to Madge, are seven kinds of heartbreaking.
      "Never mind, watch my box do its thing, it's really cool. You'll love it."
  • The Pond Life omnibus, containing 5 minisodes counting down to the first episode of series 7 are filled with small, but brilliantly funny moments... until the last one, where it flashbacks to Amy and Rory arguing as he leaves their home, leaving her in tears. The effect is magnified when you find out why.
  • "Asylum of the Daleks"
    • The truth about Oswin. The first and probably only time you'll ever hear a Dalek cry.
      • Just the sound of the Dalek's cry will summon tears. The Daleks usually speak in loud voices full of hatred and fury, and even in their more mellow moments their voices have some trace of anger or extreme annoyance. When the Dalek cries though, it's a heartwrenching, pitiful, garbled noise. There is a lot of impact in seeing such a long-lasting and hated enemy make such a sad sound, even if this Dalek used to be human.
      • It isn't just that the Dalek is crying. It's the moment you hear a Dalek's electronically reverberated voice speaking with the inflections of a sad human.
      • Adding on to that, just hearing a Dalek ask the Doctor "Why do [the Daleks] hate you so much?"
      • "We have grown stronger in fear of you." For a moment, you can hear her actually giving up and referring to herself as a Dalek, and good Lord it is horrifying.
    • ""
    • The revelations as to just why Rory and Amy split up and were divorcing. It turns out that what was done to Amy in Demon's Run left her unable to have any more children, and she knew that Rory wanted children more than anything, so she thought he would be better off without her and broke up with him.
    • "Amy, basic fact of our relationship is that I love you more than you love me." Oh, Rory...
    • The start of the episode contains some hefty Fridge Horror-flavoured Tear Jerker. The Doctor goes on what is obviously (to him) a trap, right on Skaro and right in the middle of a brand new and obscenely powerful Dalek empire (a species which despite his efforts and sacrifices in the Classic Series, the Time war, "The Parting of the Ways", "Doomsday", and "Journey's End" has only been made stronger by his efforts to fight them), and after the events of the previous season, he seems to be nothing but a burnt-out, disillusioned and utterly self-hating wreck, even more so due to his lack of companions.
    • It's only a small thing, but the fact that Darla was clearly a devoted and loving mother before she was turned into a Dalek puppet is crushingly depressing. The Doctor reminds her that she used to have a daughter, and she simply replies, cooly and calmly, "I know. I've read my file," demonstrating that there's nothing left of her but the Dalek programming. If you were in need of reminding that the Daleks are Complete Monsters and far from being Harmless Villains (especially after the last two seasons), you need look no further than this tiny, sickening detail.
  • "Dinosaurs on a Spaceship:"
    • How about the Doctor calling himself "worthless" when Solomon scans him?
    • The completely unnecessary death of the triceratops (nicknamed Tricey) and then everyone's reaction to it. The Doctor acts like its a fallen companion, Riddell whom Amy earlier accused of as being a "poacher of defenseless creatures" taking off his hat in silent mourning. And Brian changes his demeanor completely from neutral observer, to folding his arms defiantly and glaring angrily at Solomon.
    • Thousands of Silurians slaughtered by a greedy human. It's little wonder they have a low opinion of humans.
  • "The Power of Three"
    • The Doctor's speech to Brian about what happened to his companions: some of them leave him, some of them are left behind, and some die. The Doctor is most hesitant on this third point and makes sure Brian understands that this is a rarity.
    • While it was a relatively funny yet suspenseful episode, it was a huge Fridge Sadness - It was Amy and Rory's penultimate episode, and it's done very brilliantly - While we get to see them with their Doctor in their usual adventure of the week, we also get to see them in their daily lives and how they're considering ending their adventures with the Doctor.
  • "The Angels Take Manhattan".
    • When Amy and Rory decide to commit suicide together to cause a paradox. Rory's rationale is that he won't die because he never stays dead. That he can talk about his death as a plurality and not just because he just watched his future self pass on, you feel for the guy.
    • "I don't like endings." If there is one thing the Doctor can't stand, it is to watch his companions die. It is why he leaves them because he knows he will outlive them otherwise - he admits as much in the school reunion episode.. Seeing the Doctor absolutely devastated was the finishing blow to an already devastatingly tearjerking scene.
    • Amy, Rory, the Doctor, and River watching Rory's future self die.
    • The Doctor goes back to get the page that he ripped out of the book in the beginning of the episode and he reads the message that Amy left for him. He's running full tilt back there. You'd think a Dalek was chasing him.
    • When Amy makes up her mind. She grasps River's hand while staring at the Weeping Angel, and then emotionally breaks the Doctor and us:
      Amy: Melody... You look after him. And, you be a good girl and you look after him...
      The Doctor: (Choked up) You are creating a fixed time. I will never be able to see you again!
      Amy: I'll be fine... (Sobs) I'll be with him.
      The Doctor: Amy, just come back, to the TARDIS. Come along, Pondplease.
      Amy: (Through tears) Raggedy Man... (Turns to face him) Goodbye!
      (Amy disappears. The Doctor wordlessly looks over to Rory's gravestone, and breaks down at seeing Amelia's name)
      The Doctor: NO!
    • The Doctor's either going to have to tell Brian what happened, or he's going to spend the rest of his life waiting for them to come home.
    • The fact that The Husbands of River Song reveals that River entirely ignored her mother's last wishes and was intending to murder someone, makes it even worse; River isn't being a "good girl" and she certainly isn't "looking after" the Doctor.
    • Afterword: By Amelia Williams. All of it.
    Amy: Hello old friend, and here we are. You and me, on the last page. By the time you read these words, Rory and I will be long gone. So know that we lived well, and we’re very happy. And above all else, know that we will love you, always. Sometimes I do worry about you, though. I think, once we’re gone, you won’t be coming back here for a while, and you might be alone, which you should never be. Don’t be alone, Doctor. And do one more thing for me. There’s a little girl waiting in a garden. She’s going to wait a long while, so she’s going to need a lot of hope. Go to her. Tell her a story. Tell her that if she’s patient, the days are coming that she’ll never forget. Tell her she’ll go to sea and fight pirates. She’ll fall in love with a man who’ll wait two thousand years to keep her safe. Tell her she’ll give hope to the greatest painter who ever lived, and save a whale in outer space. Tell her, this is the story of Amelia Pond. And this is how it ends.
    • The missing scene "P.S.", where Brian finds out what happened to Amy and Rory. Sad, for more than just the obvious reasons, yet touching as well.
    • The Doctor really doesn't want to travel alone, but that's not a problem right? His wife is right there in the Tardis and willing to travel with him. Then the audience (and likely also the Doctor) remember that River can't stay with him and travel with him indefinitely. If she doesn't leave and go to the Library, then the Eleventh Doctor will never exist because his previous incarnation will die for good.
  • "The Snowmen"
    • The first half of is just heartbreaking. Eleven had always been able to keep his leftover angst from Nine and Ten buried and under control because of the Ponds. Seeing him not only regress but get worse without them is just... gah.
    • The Doctor's first scene—he scuttles on past with a definite "don't bother me" in his body language, turns around, looks at the snowman, and... takes out Amy's glasses.
    • Seeing the new TARDIS interior, awesome though it was, just drove home how long the Doctor had been miserable and alone after Angels Take Manhattan.
      • It makes sense for him to have changed it, too - the interior changed right after his regeneration, and every memory in that console room is with Amy and Rory. No wonder he changed it, the current "desktop theme" would be a constant reminder...
    • When The Doctor and Clara are in the TARDIS and he already plans for her to travel with him, and gives her a key to the TARDIS. Then, the ice comes to snatch her and they fall off the cloud, leading to her death.
    • "It's not raining. It's crying. The only force on Earth that could drown the snow. A whole family crying on Christmas Eve."
  • "The Bells of Saint John":
    • The reveal that Miss Kizlet was taken to work for the Great Intelligence when she was just a little girl, and her parents left her alone for a few minutes and presumably came back to find her gone...
      • Take into consideration Miss Kizlet's age. In her fifties, most likely? That would make her a little girl living in London when The Great Intelligence attacked the Underground. The Second Doctor saved the city, but one little girl fell into the wrong hands.
      • It's REALLY sold by the delivery of her last lines. "Where are my mummy and daddy? They said they wouldn't be long. Are they coming back?"
    • A blink-and-you'll-miss-it moment; when the first Spoonhead, a little girl from a book cover, comes down the stairs to attack Clara. While the Spoonhead is descending down the stairs, we get a close-up of the book she's on the cover on. Who wrote the book? Amelia Williams.
  • In "The Rings of Akhaten"
    • Clara at her mother's grave, crying onto the book that was passed down to her and making her mother's inscription run.
    • Merry's entire story. She's a queen who has to sing a very long lullaby to the Old God to keep him from waking up and going on a destructive rampage. If she messes up, she has to be sacrificed to the Old God. To top it off, Merry appears to be around eight or nine years old.
    • The scene where the Doctor shows the Old God all of his memories highlights just how much he has been through, seen, and lost in his 1200 years. Matt Smith gives one of his best and most heartbreaking performances here, and the music supplements it perfectly.
    • The Doctor's speech, delivered beautifully by Matt Smith, so full of anguish and loss and regret:
      The Doctor: I walked away from the Last Great Time War. I marked the passing of the Time Lords. I saw the birth of the universe and I watched as time ran out, moment by moment, until nothing remained. No time. No space. JUST ME. I've walked in universes where the laws of physics were devised by the mind of a MAD... MAN. I've watched universes freeze and creations burn. I have seen things you wouldn’t believe. I have lost things you will never understand! And I know things. Secrets that must never be told. Knowledge that must never be spoken. Knowledge that will make parasite gods BLAZE! SO COME OOOOON THEN! TAKE IT! TAKE IT ALL, BABY! HAVE IT! YOU HAVE IT ALL!
    • As the Old God consumes items of sentimental value, it can be assumed that the Doctor gave all of his memories of his companions and allies to the Old God. What makes this idea worse? By the end of the episode, The Doctor appears to have retained all his memories, but he doesn't appear happy about it at all.
    • The Doctor mentions his granddaughters; it's casual, flippant, but he still remembers her. She's been gone from his life for over a thousand years at this point. Yet, the first thing he mentions is her - the very first person he travelled with and one of the few (and first!) he has ever actually said "goodbye" too.
  • "Cold War":
    • Skaldak going through a breakdown while confinement when he thinks his entire race is extinct, mourning for his daughter. For that moment, he isn't a monster, a maniac, or an alien invader-he's an old soldier mourning his family, having lost all purpose in his life.
    • "I will blow us up if I have to." The tone of voice is heartbreaking; like he's trying to convince himself of it. You know he's having flashbacks to the Last Great Time War.
  • "Hide":
    • Emma screaming in pain trying to keep the portal open. When an empath—someone who can feel other people's emotions as if they were their own—is screaming in pain, you know they're hurting.
    • "Every lonely monster needs a companion." It's who says it that makes it heartbreaking.
  • "Journey to the Centre of the TARDIS"
    • Seeing the TARDIS crippled, helpless, and in pain, and the salvagers callously pulling off bits and pieces of her. They're hurting her and she can't stop them, and even the Doctor can't force them to stop because he has to find Clara and he needs them to help him do it.
    • As the salvager is carelessly yanking her console apart, there's a soft voiceover in the background of Doctors and Companions, all the way back to Susan, talking lovingly about the TARDIS. It makes you wonder if it's just happening in the show, or if the TARDIS herself is crying and trying to hold onto all the old memories..
    • An immortal, sentient timeship with all the power of our dear Sexy, and as she's being pulled apart, she can only manage the tiniest of sparks from a bit of exposed wire—but she makes them count.
    • When the salvagers steal one of her components, she seals off the room in a very obvious ultimatum—put it back, or you don't leave. His response is to order his partner to blow a hole in the wall. When he looks back, the door is back, and he smirks. He scared her. She was already hurt and in pain, and he effectively brandished a knife in her face and made her cringe back.
    • The entire episode is like watching an old friend being tortured. It's almost as bad as the Paradox Machine, and that was enough to make fans sick.
    • By the end of the episode she's so scared and in so much pain that the Doctor compares her to a wounded animal, snarling at anyone who gets close. She doesn't even recognize the Doctor anymore.
    • Seeing the Doctor fighting back tears because he doesn't know how to save her. It looks like he's trying to find the words to say goodbye, while at the same time not able to even comprehend the idea of a universe without his best friend.
      She's always been there for me...taken care of me... and now it's my turn and... I don't know what to do...!
    • He's similarly distraught about Clara's fate:
      I brought you here, to keep you safe, but it happened again. You died again!
  • "The Crimson Horror"
    • Seeing The Doctor afflicted with the Crimson Horror. You can just read his face, and know that he is going "I'd rather be regenerating than this."
    • Ada. She was so alone, treated like a freak, and all she wanted was just one friend... and then learning the truth about her scars, her mother threatening to shoot her just because the Doctor cared about her...
      • Her heartbroken crying when she discovers her 'monster' is gone. She was never cruel, she was never motivated by anything but a desire to care for the poor creature, and now she's all alone again.
      • Coupled with a bit of Fridge Brilliance; Ada only ever refers to The Doctor as "Monster", even at the end. The Doctor never corrects her.
  • "The Name of the Doctor"
    • When the Doctor hears from Clara that he has to go to Trenzalore, he just starts to quietly cry. It's a vulnerable moment you never see from Eleven, all wrapped up in his jokes and eccentricity.
      • It's made worse by the revelation that Trenzalore is the place where he will die. Not now, but someday. As he tells Clara, it's not something he can change, not something he can outrun, but a fundamental fact of his own timeline, he will always die there. And we have no idea how long he's been aware of this information, perhaps he knew even before River mentioned it to him. Given that it's the one place in the universe he has purposefully avoided going on, he may have been carrying this information from his very first incarnation!
      • Made even worse by the fact that the TARDIS cottons on to what the Doctor is doing and shuts down literally everything except the anti-gravs... which the Doctor shuts down, making his best friend/wife/eternal companion crash into a planet with enough force to put a crack in her.
    • The Doctor saying goodbye to ghost River, and giving her one final kiss.
      • When she vanishes, his face falters for a moment, realizing she really is truly gone.
      • "Goodbye, sweetie."
    • Jenny is killed by the Whisper Men but revived by Strax. To get her wife back, a desperate Vastra threatens her Sontaran comrade. Later, when the Great Intelligence re-writes the Doctor's timeline, Jenny herself is written out and Strax loses all memory of being Vastra's comrade and instead tries to kill her.
    • When she thinks she's lost Jenny, Vastra doesn't just break down; she shatters. The sheer number of times that Vastra thought Jenny was gone forever during this episode was gut-wrenching, and seeing someone normally so cool and in control slowly start to crack under the agony of losing the one person in her life she loves more than anything... damn, Moffat. It's even worse with Fridge Horror; who had the idea to use the trance state? Vastra. Imagine how that must've felt for her, not only to have Jenny die but to have her die because she couldn't defend herself, because of an idea that was Vastra's to begin with. It's even worse when you remember that Jenny knew something was wrong—entire minutes went by as she grew more and more certain that something was in the room with them. And then as she tried to say something, Vastra ignored her. If Strax hadn't been able to revive Jenny, she would have had to live with that knowledge for the rest of her life.
    • When the Great Intelligence first confronts the Paternoster Gang, the look on Vastra's face is terrifying and at the same time tear-jerking. She is afraid and furious and a hair's breadth from cracking. Hearing the Great Intelligence sneer at Vastra that he killed Jenny just to get their attention, call her a 'pet' and threaten her again while Vastra is, for the first time we've seen, utterly and completely powerless to protect her...
      • That moment of horrible realization when the rewrite caught up to Jenny.
        "...Jenny? Jenny! No, oh god, please no..."
    • Hearing River's anguish over the way she parted from the Doctor in her timeline. "He left me like an old book on a shelf. He never even said goodbye."
    • Clara's Heroic Sacrifice to save the Doctor, knowing what will happen; The Dalek Asylum, the Snowmen, and countless other dangers that she has to face, in addition to outsmarting The Great Intelligence.
    • Just before Clara and the Doctor go back, the Doctor sees his "War" self, revealing to us all exactly who ended the Time War.
    • The Doctor's tomb is his dead and decrepit TARDIS.
    • "No, please, stop! My life, my whole life is burning." Oh Doctor!
    • Some more Fridge Horror... as much as he hates constantly putting his friends in danger when he's alive, the Doctor can't catch a break and find peace in death since his timeline is still a threat to the entire universe.
  • The Day of the Doctor: Due to its focus on the darkest day of the Time War and the Doctor's greatest regret, multiple tearjerkers were given.
    • The two conversations about how many children were on Gallifrey, both between the Moment and the War Doctor and between the Three Doctors.
      • In the first conversation it is shown that for all his stoic, grizzled, and badass exterior and demeanour, the War Doctor is utterly disgusted at what must be done to end the war, having lost all desire to live past the end of the war, and when asked how many children he will kill, he freezes up in pure horror and sadness.
        The Moment: How many children on Gallifrey right now?
        The War Doctor: Don't know.
        The Moment: One day, you will count them. One terrible night.
      • Later when he asks his future regenerations this question Eleven desperately tries to deflect the issue before Ten reveals the number is 2.47 billion. Ten has the number burned into his memory, Eleven has purposefully forgotten to try to ease the pain, causing Ten to furiously deride him for forgetting while the War Doctor sees how much pain he will feel for centuries to come after ending the war.
        Ten: You've forgotten!? 400 years, is that all it takes!?
        Eleven: I've moved on.
        Ten: Where!? Where can you be now that you can forget something like that!?
        Eleven: Spoilers.
        Ten: No no no no! For once, I would like to know where I'm going!
        Eleven: No. You really wouldn't.
      • Seconded, as while the audience has known for the past seasons how destructive and terrible the Doctor's solution to ending the Time War was, it is never stated as poignantly as in this episode.
    • Ten and Eleven's last exchange:
      Tenth Doctor: I think we need a new destination. Because, I don't want to go.
      Eleventh Doctor: (with a smile) He always says that.
      • The kicker: a snippet of "Vale Decem" plays as he leaves.
    • The fact that even though, yes, the Doctor successfully found a third way out of the Time War, his past selves ultimately won't remember it and thus preserving the timeline. In particular, the War Doctor as he goes into the Ninth.
    • The look on Ten's face when the War Doctor says "Bad Wolf". He realizes Rose must have played some part in these events and knows those two words will haunt him forever. It's more subtle (several centuries later and all), but Eleven isn't exactly unfazed himself.
    • The Doctor's price for ending the Time War using The Moment.
      The Moment: Then that's your punishment. If you do this, if you kill them all then that's the consequence. You. Live.
      • It's established that he won't remember that he didn't and that he will still have to live with it.
    • This exchange:
      War Doctor: Go back! Go back to your lives. Go and be the Doctor I could never be. Make it worthwhile.
      10th Doctor: All those years, burying you in my memory.
      11th Doctor: Pretending you didn't exist, keeping you a secret even from myself.
      10th Doctor: Pretending you weren't the Doctor, when you were the Doctor more than anybody else.
      11th Doctor: Because you were the Doctor on the day it wasn't possible to get it right.
      • The War Doctor quietly thanking them for being with him makes the moment all the more tragic.
      Tenth Doctor: What we do today is not out of fear or hatred, it is done because there is no other way.
      Eleventh Doctor: And it is done in the name of many lives we are failing to save.
    • Clara begins to cry when all three Doctors prepare to burn down Gallifrey. She protests, silently, and tries to convince herself it has to be done. "Nothing," she says, when the Doctor asks. But it's not nothing. It never is. It's not just having to witness the Doctor having to make that choice againtwice! — but the fact that her Doctor specifically, the one she has grown to know so well that she could see just from looking in his eyes how hurt he is, is willing to do it all over again.
      Clara: You told me you wiped out your own people, I just... I never pictured you doing it, that's all...
      (later, when the Moment shows them the reality of the war on Gallifrey with terrified civilians and children running from the carnage and soldiers desperately trying to protect them)
      Clara: (horrified) These are the people you're gonna burn?
    • The return of Tom Baker after an absence of thirty-two years. He said no for the twentieth, he agreed for the fiftieth.
    • The fact that the Doctor will never remember being able to save Gallifrey instead of destroying it until he reaches his current point in his timeline. Meaning that the Ninth and Tenth Doctors will be guilt-ridden when they don't need to be.
    • The very fact that, thanks to the events of the upcoming Christmas Special, Eleven is never going to live to find Gallifrey. On the bright side, the Doctor's incarnations are all the same man, so it'll be a man who behaves a bit more seriously with shades of his previous incarnation still very much intact. So Eleven will live to see Gallifrey, though he'll change into Twelve.
    • It's very easy to miss, but when 10 gets in the TARDIS after he marries Queen Elizabeth, he never comes back for her. He mentions her again, (after he's already regenerated) saying that she's "still waiting." Poor Elizabeth, finding the man of her dreams, only to be abandoned right after their marriage. The next time she sees him, it hasn't happened for him yet, and she's so embittered by the abandonment that she's declared him her sworn enemy.
    • Poor Osgood gets two good tearjerking scenes. First, when she's chased by a Zygon and cornered. Her first instinct was curl up into a ball and beg for The Doctor to swoop in and pull a Big Damn Heroes, she managed to get out of that problem on her own, but still! Later, her second bout of despair is just as bad, she just stands rigged with fear as the building is about to go up and pleads that the Doctor come and save them.
    Osgood: Please Doctor. Please save us. Please save us. Please save us...
  • "The Time of the Doctor": Right before Eleven regenerates, he takes off his signature bowtie and lets it drop to the ground. If it was hard to believe it before, it was impossible to deny it anymore. The Eleventh Doctor is no more.
    • After years of concocting messed-up metaphors, Eleven finally comes up with one that works ... and it's "like tears in the rain". Which is a beautifully tragic Call-Back to "The Snowmen", when a literal rain of tears let Eleven know that the first version of Clara he'd ever met face-to-face had died; now, it's Clara who's losing the first Doctor she'd ever met.
    • Clara's final words to Eleven: "Please don't change..." And then he does. It almost brings to mind Sarah Jane begging the Third Doctor not to die, so long ago.
    • The Eleventh Doctor's final smile, combined with regeneration surging up his face, will make you cry.
    • Before he regenerates, The Doctor sees a vision of young Amelia. And then he sees Amy, his companion, as he knew her in life, smiling sadly at him. The first face his face saw - nine hundred years of being stuck on Trenzalore and he hasn't forgotten her; his best friend sees him out, just as she saw him in...
      Amy: Raggedy Man...good night.
      • And this beautiful line:
        Eleven: Amelia!
        Clara: Who?
        Eleven: The first face this face ever saw...
    • This exchange from the beginning of the regeneration scene:
      Eleven: Any moment now...he's a-comin'.
      Clara: Who's coming?
      Eleven: The Doctor.
      Clara: But are the Doctor.
      Eleven: [breaking down] Yep. And I always will be.
    • The reveal of what happened to Tasha Lem.
      Tasha: Three days ago the Daleks attacked the mainframe itself. I died in this room screaming your name. Oh... I died.
    • Eleven's final speech before his regeneration:
      Eleven: We all change. When you think about it, we are all different people all through our lives. And that's okay, that's good. You gotta keep moving, so long as you remember all the people that you used to be. I will not forget one line of this. Not one day, I swear. I will always remember when the Doctor was me.
    • As he says this Matt Smith is looking directly into the camera, giving the illusion that he's breaking the fourth wall and speaking directly to the fans. It's widely believed by most fans that Matt actually wrote those lines himself, which means if that's been the case (having the actor write the last line), it makes Eleven's departure more heartbreaking...
    • A meta tearjerker applies here too. During the table read-through of the script, Matt broke down when he got to this line.
      • And Steven Moffat immediately gets up of his chair to hug Matt. This man is hated by much of the fandom, but that simple image shows he has a heart of gold.
      • Even more, "Infinite Potential", a more emotional bit of the awakening song from "Rings of Akhaten", plays near the very end of his speech. If you think about it the original lyrics perfectly fit a regeneration: "Rest now, your hardship is over", followed by "Live, wake up!".
    • The episode even makes you feel bad for the disembodied, ruined head of a Cyberman (Who was affectionately named 'Handles.') After spending centuries at the Doctor's side, he died quietly before the sunrise after giving one final reminder to his companion.
    • Clara has it rough already, estranged even from her dad and only getting on with her grandmother as Christmas Eve nears. Then she gradually learns what Eleven has to confront... She's increasingly distraught and worried over this and, all their "boyfriend-girlfriend" jokes aside, it's clear she'd try anything that could prevent her beloved friend from dying. Even after she pleads to the Time Lords through the crack, her hands slide down the wall, she lowers her shoulders and starts walking away. Looking utterly empty and defeated. Luckily, her pleas had been heard...
    • Eleven wistfully saying goodbye to Clara and pleading to her to at least save herself. Clara being barely able to utter a word during all of this, her eyes flooded with sincere tears and her face nothing but confused desperation as he hugs her one last time. Luckily, with no other ideas left, she soon decides to beg the Time Lords for help.
      The Doctor: Handles... (shakes it) Handles... (shakes it again) Thank you, Handles. And well done. Well done, mate.
      • Not helping matters at all are that Handles' last words were reminding the Doctor to patch the phone through the TARDIS control console, something the Doctor had asked him to remind him of at a random time centuries beforehand.
      • And all this, for what technically rates as one of the Doctor's longest-running companions ever, for all that Handles only appears in one program. Indeed, Handles may well have served as a substitute companion and Tardis for Eleven-in-exile.
    • The relationship between the Doctor and Barnable. It resembles his relationship with Amy, specifically in his early days when he first meets Amelia, right down to Barnable promising he'd wait for the Doctor to come back. Sadly it is heavily implied Barnable died in the war, or may have even simply died of old age, given the length of time that has passed, as an elderly and dying Doctor constantly wonders if the person who had just entered his presence was Barnable. When a young man the audience is led to believe is Barnable enters we find out he isn't, yet the Doctor still refers to him as such, therefore refusing to acknowledge the boy's death. The impact may have led to the Doctor eventually resigning himself to his fate.
      • It's not even that The Doctor is refusing to acknowledge the boy's death. It's that The Doctor's clearly suffering from senility and legitimately doesn't know if it's Barnable or not. In addition, Clara needing to help The Doctor with the Christmas cracker is incredibly heartbreaking as well.
    • The fact that despite everything the Doctor did, and the fact that he survived the war, the planet Trenzalore (and Christmas in particular) was left as nothing more than a cold, dead graveyard.
      • However, there were people there to rebuild when the Doctor finally left, and the Time Lords changed history by giving him a new regeneration cycle, implying that Trenzalore's fate changed as well - that his long vigil was not in vain.
    • Clara's Gran talking about when she first met her husband, who died long ago.
    • The elderly Doctor saying goodbye to Clara before heading out to face the Daleks:
      The Doctor: You're going to stay here. Promise me you will. I'll be keeping you safe. One last victory. Allow me that. Give me that, my impossible girl. Thank you. And goodbye.
    • "And now it's time for one last bow, like all your other selves. Eleven's hour is over now, the clock is striking Twelve's."
  • Eleven using some of his last moments to call up Clara in the future and beg her to stay with him even though he's changed now, assuring her that however scared she is now, the man with her is even more scared.
  • Eleven preparing for the final bit of his regeneration: Enjoying one last bowl of Fish Fingers and Custard while he still can before his tastes change entirely, giving a fourth wall-breaking speech about how he will always remember when the Doctor was him.

    Twelfth Doctor episodes 
  • In "Deep Breath", The Doctor begging Clara to see that he's still the same person after Eleven calls her and asks her not to leave him.
    • Eleven's Cameo alone could count as this.
    • Clara's absolutely stunned and heartbroken reaction to the Doctor seemingly abandoning her to the Half-Man and his robots. Throughout the entire interrogation that follows while she attempts to put on a brave face, she is clearly-and even admits to-being absolutely terrified.
    • The many parallels being drawn between the Half-Man and the Doctor himself. Both are incredibly old, both of them have changed so many times that there's nothing of who they were originally in them (physically, at least), and both believing in some kind of "Promised Land" (the 51st Century for the Half-Man from whence he originally came and Gallifrey for the Doctor) and the Half-Man's stubborn insistence that he will eventually reach it versus the Doctor certain he will never find his. The Doctor illustrating his first point about the Half-Man having nothing of his original self in him is highlighted when he holds up a silver tray to him so he can see his reflection only for the Doctor to see his own staring back at him.
      • If you look closely, you'll see the exact moment when the Doctor realizes the implications of his own words could ring true for himself, and it scares him.
      • It's also kinda sad, because his previous self spent his last centuries saying that his true goal now is to finally go home once he found out that "Gallifrey falls no more". It's like all those hundreds of years defending home when it was so close sucked all the optimism out of him once he regenerated.
    • The Doctor talking in his sleep, when Clara assumes he's translating for the lost, disoriented tyrannosaur. He's actually talking for the lost, disoriented Twelve.
      Twelve: Just see me, just see me...
    • The Twelfth Doctor's final plea for Clara to look and recognize him for who he really is, he just sounds so hurt.
      Twelve: You can't see me, can you? You look at me and you can't see me. Do you have any idea what that's like? I'm not on the phone, I'm right here. Standing in front of you. Please just...just see me.
    • After Clara wanting to change the Doctor back and Vastra leaves disdainfully, Clara's hurt-puppy-dog eyes and simple "what have I done wrong?"
    • The T-Rex's death. The Twelfth Doctor takes it hardest because not only was he the responsible for bringing her to Victorian London, he promised to take her home, and then she was killed.
    • The Doctor admitting that he thought of himself as Clara's boyfriend, and that he thought of that as a mistake. Made sadder in retrospect as subsequent episodes reveal that the Doctor's feelings for her have not actually changed (it was implied he fell in love with her when he showed up at her door in "The Bells of St. John"), but now that he has changed appearance and personas (including taking on an aversion to hugging, something the Eleventh Doctor did habitually with Clara), he felt she wouldn't be interested in him anymore. While it's later revealed that Clara took this at face value despite her having fell for him on Trenzalore, this one does step over into Truth in Television as ageism and the frowning upon of May–December Romance is very real.
  • "Into the Dalek"
    • This episode is very similar thematically to the Ninth Doctor episode "Dalek". However, unlike the Ninth Doctor episode which is mostly about the sheer depths of the Ninth Doctor's self loathing and his hatred of the Daleks, Into the Dalek builds hope throughout the episode. The episode builds up the idea that perhaps the Doctor will finally know real peace, that maybe even monstrous Daleks can be reformed. The episode humanizes the titular Dalek to a greater degree than the Ninth Doctor episode. For once, it seems like the Doctor will have a meaningful victory over the Daleks. Maybe the Daleks are capable of realizing the value of life. The Doctor loses miserably. For a moment it seems like the Dalek will reform, that finally it sees how beautiful the universe is. And then the Dalek sees the Doctor's hatred, and it surpasses anything the Dalek has ever known. The Doctor's hatred is so great that the Dalek turns on its own kind. Nine's rage pales in comparison to Twelve's quiet regret.
      • Even more heart wrenching, when Rusty begins to see the hatred of the Daleks in the Doctor's heart, all the Doctor can say is "there must be more than that." By his twelfth regeneration the Doctor has become so different from when he started, he begins to fear that, truly, the only thing left in his heart is bitterness and rage.
    • Clara accidentally strayed into Dude, Not Funny! mocking of a former soldier who possibly has PTSD over his former career. Pink's reaction to the 'crying' remark clinches it. At least Clara realizes something's off, and her attitude towards him becomes Fridge Horror for her by the end of the episode, with everything she's experienced over the course of the story. Double Fridge Horror, for the viewer: Clara may have been reminiscing the Eleventh Doctor, whom she has said on record to have consoled whenever he had flashbacks regarding the Time War. So what may have been fond (if somewhat sour, considering the Doctor's 180 in personality in his next regeneration) reminiscence to Clara ended up being very hurtful to Pink. Cue Verbal Backspacing.
  • When the Doctor hears "Rusty" explain what motivated his Heel–Face Turn, you can hear the desperate need in The Doctor's voice as he says, "Dalek, you'd better not be lying to me." He knows the Daleks are fully capable of deception, and some part of him desperately wants to believe that this Dalek may even be reformed, even as he has trouble trying to accept it. Even if "Rusty" wasn't lying, the Doctor is saddened to hear that his personal hatred is as great as Rusty says it is.
  • Clara slapping the hell out of the Doctor. Lord knows he had it coming, and calling The Doctor on cold, callous, or smug behavior is the role of the Companions but it's just such a change in the dynamic between Clara and the Doctor. It wasn't like when River slapped Eleven in "The Impossible Astronaut", which was played for laughs, or even when Clara slapped Mr. Clever in "Nightmare in Silver" to snap the Doctor back to himself. This was full-on outrage at the Doctor's behavior, and well justified, and he was being a Smug Snake, almost gloating about "He was right all along" that Daleks couldn't be reformed.
  • "Robot of Sherwood"
    • The Doctor's horror as Robin jumps out of a window with Clara to escape the Sheriff.
    • Twelve spends the entire adventure positive that there is no real Robin Hood. Whereas Nine, Ten and Eleven would have been beside themselves with glee upon meeting such an historical wonder, Twelve simply investigates the situation with detached aloofness. Why? Because he doesn't think of himself as a hero.
      Clara: When did you stop believing in everything?
      Doctor: When did you start believing in impossible heroes?
      Clara: (looks up at him sadly) Don’t you know?
    • After The Doctor takes a sample of Alan A-Dale's blood he offhandedly mentions he's got six months to live. Alan looks to be about the same age as Clara...
  • "Listen"
    • We finally get to see a glimpse of the Doctor's childhood. We see him crying himself to sleep, while hiding in a barn. Two caretakers (maybe his parents, we're not told) come out to look for him. A woman tells a man that the young Doctor doesn't want to join the army; he wants to go to the Academy. The man scoffs "Well, he's not going to the Academy, is he, that boy? He'll never make a Time Lord." When Madame DePompadour said the Doctor was a lonely little boy she meant it.
    • This barn that the young Doctor hides in turns out to be the same barn where the War Doctor hid to activate the Moment. After all those centuries and all that fighting, he returned to a place of childhood comfort. This fact makes that scene even sadder than it already was.
    • When the Doctor puts a young Danny instantly to sleep with his mental powers, he offhandedly refers to it as "dad skills." Sometimes you forget that the Doctor had a family on Gallifrey that he hasn't seen in centuries. And even though he's saved Gallifrey, there's no way of knowing whether his child(ren) is/are still alive.
    • Clara's speech to the young First Doctor can very easily tug at the heartstrings:
      Clara: Listen. This is just a dream. But very clever people can hear dreams. So please just listen. I know you’re afraid, but being afraid is all right. Because didn’t anybody ever tell you, fear is a superpower? Fear can make you faster, and cleverer and stronger. And one day, you’re going to come back to this barn and on that day you are going to be very afraid indeed. But that’s OK. Because if you’re very wise and very strong, fear doesn’t have to make you cruel or cowardly, fear can you make you kind. It doesn’t matter if there’s nothing under the bed or in the dark so long as you know it’s OK to be afraid of it. So listen. If you listen to nothing else listen to this. You’re always going to be afraid, even if you learn to hide it. Fear is like a companion. A constant companion always there. But that’s ok, as fear can bring is together. Fear can be bring you home. I’m going to leave you something just so you’ll always remember. Fear makes companions of us all.
    • The Doctor's mention of Clara having three mirrors. By pointing out her insecurities, it foreshadows her breakdown at losing Danny in the series finale. Clara feels so lonely and unfulfilled in her life that she has to surround herself with the illusion of multiple people, which may explain why she feels the constant need to run away with a certain psychopath with an equally psychopathic magic box. Seriously, who else but Moff could turn a whimsical show like Doctor Who into such an existential heartbreak-fest?
    • Some sad reveals about Danny Pink's background: how he grew up in a children's home where other boys pranked him, playing with damaged toy soldiers and not even liking his own name. Pretty harsh situation to start one's life in, and in his case - which parallels young One's - we know he won't find an alternative to joining the military to get out of it.
  • "Time Heist"
    • Psi's attempted Heroic Sacrifice ends on a very painful note when he mentions the accidental erasure of his memories of his family.
    Psi: Every thief and villain in one big cocktail. I am so guilty! Every famous burglar in history is hiding in this bank right now in one body. Come and feast! Clara? For what it's worth, and it might not be worth much, when your whole life flashes in front of you, you see people you love and people missing you. I see no one.
    • Psi's speculation about why he'd erased his memories in the first place, so his interrogators wouldn't learn whom he'd been close to. His "I guess I must have loved them" is so matter-of-fact as to rate as Fridge Heartbreaking: he's sacrificed his feelings for whomever he forgot, along with his memories.
  • "Kill the Moon".
    • Clara's What the Hell, Hero? speech to the Doctor at the end. She's absolutely furious and immensely hurt with him for abandoning her because he believed that he had no right to decide for humanity whether or not the creature inside the moon egg should live or not and the Doctor is completely stunned by this because he believed he was doing the right thing for humanity while Clara sees it as an incredibly risky, patronizing gesture on his part. It ends with Clara telling the Doctor to leave, to fly off and leave her alone, to just go away and she later tells Danny that she's through with him completely. Whatever happens next, it's fairly clear their relationship has been significantly, if not irrevocably, damaged.
    Clara: Yeah, well, clear off! Go on. You can clear off. Get back in your lonely...your lonely bloody Tardis and you don't come back.
    • That look on the Doctor's face when Clara tells him off is similarly sad. After his previous interventions during significant moments of history ("The Christmas Invasion", "The Waters of Mars", etc.) he thought he made the right choice by letting humanity deal with the crisis on the virtue of their own strength. Poor guy just can't win.
      • Plus, he does not think humans are small, despite Clara claiming he does. But she wasn't there for his speech to the Half-Face Man in "Deep Breath".
  • "Mummy on the Orient Express"
    • The Doctor's very straight and unpleasant description of which people he was able to spare from the Foretold and which he had to let die alarmingly makes it sound like triage. Quite scary when Danny made all those comments about the Doctor displaying the mannerisms of an officer, and the fact the Doctor lived through a war of his own.
      Clara: So, when you lied to Maisie, when you made me lie to Maisie-
      Doctor: I couldn't risk Gus finding out my plan and stopping me.
      Clara: So you were pretending to be heartless.
      Doctor: ...Would you like to think that about me? Would that make it easier? I didn't know if I could save her. I couldn't save Quell, I couldn't save Moorhouse. There was a good chance that she'd die too. At which point, I would have just moved onto the next, and the next, until I beat it. Sometimes the only choices you have are bad ones. But you still have to choose.
    • Perkins' Refusal of the Call. It's one of the few times the Doctor asks for someone to join and he just doesn't accept. He deduces that travelling with the Doctor changes people. The best way to beat "an addiction" is to never start it.
  • "In the Forest of the Night": OK, so the Earth's genuinely doomed this time - even the Doctor can't fight nature. But he can at least save Clara, Danny and their class of schoolchildren. So they all head back to the TARDIS...where Clara quietly pulls the Doctor aside and tells him he can't save those kids: they'll just want their Earth and their parents for the rest of their lives. And Danny's not going to leave them. And she doesn't want to be the last of the humans. The only reason she brought everyone back to the TARDIS was so the Doctor could get there without feeling guilty, and then fly off.
    • Especially when you notice that the scene is a precise role reversal of the typical "Doctor tricks companion to get them to safety while he does something potentially suicidal on his own" routine we have seen many times in episodes like "Parting of the Ways", "Timelash", or, performed on Clara herself, in "The Time of the Doctor". Not only because he deserves it so much that someone finally pulls something like that for him, but also because reversals of common scene types between the Doctor and his companions were pretty common in series 7 (She drags him, she holds his hand to comfort him, she talks even faster...) In the context of how occasionally rocky their bond has been after the regeneration, the recurrence of that motif says a lot...
    • He finally calls Earth "his world" when he thinks he is about to lose it. Beyond showing just how much he's gotten attached to our little blue dot and its inhabitants, but also because of the implication that he is now free to admit that he feels more at home on another planet than his native one without guilt since he no longer needs to give Gallifrey the Never Speak Ill of the Dead treatment.
    • He also echoes Clara's guilt-tripping speech from "Kill the Moon" while doing so. This time, she accepts that he "can't fight physics" and doesn't always know what will happen, and even asks him to leave her to her fate, meanwhile, the Doctor doesn't even bother with pretending he's an outsider whom this doesn't concern - You can really see how, despite their frequent conflicts throughout this season, seeing each other's rougher edges has ultimately strengthened their bonds. The scene is fairly subdued as far as the dialogue goes, but the actors' performances really sell it, especially Capaldi's - He conveys so much with just his expression and tone of voice.
    • The Doctor's quiet, defeated reaction at the prospect that all the future Earths he has visited and the many spread-out humans he interacted with practically every other episode might be erased.
  • "Dark Water"
    • The opening parts of the episode might as well be called "Breaking Clara". She finally musters up the courage to be honest with her boyfriend about everything, then a mundane tragedy hits while everything seems to be going fine. The Clara we see after that is very clearly suffering from Survivor Guilt and is starting to obsess about undoing what she sees as her greatest ever failure. Given what we know of her fear of death and how depressed she was over the death of her mother, having her boyfriend die in a simple traffic accident is a definite and final Break the Cutie moment for her. The erratic behaviour she starts afterward (trying to forcefully blackmail the Doctor to help her) might be a bit off-putting, but she's very visibly grieving and not thinking straight while doing so. Oh, Clara...
    • When Clara believes that she has destroyed all of the TARDIS keys, saying tearfully that she'd do it again. Then, learning it was all a dream scenario and a Secret Test of Character, and that she (thankfully) failed, breaking the Doctor's trust and letting him down in the process.
    • She believes that she's fully lost the Doctor's trust and the right to travel with him when she mistakes his "Go to Hell" as a dismissal rather than him suggesting a course of action for reuniting her with Danny Pink.
    • The entire exchange after the dream sequence is a tear-jerker.
      Clara: You're going to help me?
      Twelve: And why wouldn't I help you?!
      Clara: Because what I just did, I...
      Clara: So then why are you helping me?
    • Danny himself, as he sits there with a tablet, preparing to Delete his emotions to spare himself the pain of losing Clara to his own death. The audience knowledge of what this will really do veers sharply off into Nightmare Fuel territory.
    • Danny reuniting with the boy he killed while serving in the army. The boy runs away from him, and why wouldn't he? That guy killed him.
    • The Doctor's horrified and disbelieving expression when he finally learns at the end who Missy really is. Damn! He's already been feeling massive guilt about not being able to bring Gallifrey back; now he's found out that someone was able to escape, but that person accuses him of leaving them to die, and is manipulating humans to turn them into Cybermen to take over the world, and is his old friend-turned-enemy who he last saw sacrificing himself to save his life. He also starts to smile at her, just a little, before he catches himself and looks horrified.
  • "Death in Heaven"
    • The Doctor's rather apt description of his relationship with the Master:
      I had a friend once. We ran together, when I was little. And I thought we were the same, but when we grew up, we weren’t.
    • The Doctor mentioning that if the Brigadier wanted a salute, all he had to do was ask. Yes, the Doctor loathes salutes almost as much as the Daleks (if not more!)... but the Brigadier has earned it.
    • The Brigadier returning as a Cyberman and hanging around for one last salute — the salute he always wanted. It's half the moment itself, half really missing Nicholas Courtney.
    • When Clara speaks to the Doctor about how she's going to delete Danny's emotions, it gives the implication she's going to commit suicide..
    • The Doctor's reaction to when he realizes he has to delete Danny's emotions in order to figure out how to stop Missy's plan. The pained look on his expression...
    • Osgood's death, especially since she tried to avoid it, and Missy did it for no other reason than to Kick the Dog to the Doctor.
    • The Doctor finally asks why Missy is creating a Cybermen army and killing everyone close to him just For the Evulz. Her response is it's all for him. She wants the friend back she had when she was a child, so she created the army to give to the Doctor so he would be corrupted by the power and prove that they weren't so different enough that they could become friends again.
    • When the Doctor is about to kill Missy, you can tell he's seriously heartbroken, especially when he says You Win. It's worse when you look at Missy's expression too, especially considering she did all of this in a misguided attempt to be friends again...
    • A lot of the chat between Clara and the Doctor right at the end in the cafe is nothing short of depressing as it unfolds. They're lying to each other: The Doctor says he found Gallifrey and is going home, when he didn't. Clara says she's back with Danny, but she isn't. They share one last hug, and you can tell from their faces that it's painful for them to lie about it.
      • The saddest part is that it's all based on a misunderstanding. Clara is leaving the Doctor because she needs to help find the boy's family, but he thinks she's leaving because she and Danny are settling down. So as not to make her feel bad, he tells her he's found Gallifrey and is returning home, prompting her in turn to tell him that he is right - she is settling down with Danny. You can just see the emotion on both their faces as they hug for the final time. They both look so broken and tired.
    • The reveal that Missy lied about the coordinates- it's less the lie, and more the moment that comes after; the Doctor's heartbreaking reaction to it. What makes it so heartbreaking is on how it builds up. Once the Doctor realizes that Missy lied, he calmly walks to the console, keeps his composure, and then begins to repeatedly slam his fists into it before slumping into the ground, with his head buried in his right arm. The Tardis console sparks repeatedly, and remember that she is fully sapient; the Doctor is taking out his anger on his oldest friend because his other oldest friend lied to him.
      • The fact that Missy didn't lie about the co-ordinates, the Doctor just didn't go far enough forward in time. He went to the time that is now, rather than the future. Missy was right (and, as The Doctor Falls reveals, the former Master was thrown off of Gallifrey so would, indeed, know where it is. The Doctor just assumed wrong when he didn't g forward in time.)
    • The Doctor's reaction to being told that it's his birthday. A birthday celebration is a privilege we take for granted, and he hasn't had it for 1800 years.
    • Danny Pink ended up dying three times in the space of two episodes. The first time he was run down by a car, the second time was when Clara activated his inhibitor ''killing'' his emotions. The third time he sends himself and an Army of Cybermen into the Sky to destroy a threat that would have turned the whole human race into Cybermen.
    • When Clara is being interrogated by Cybermen, a third Cyberman joins them. Clara tells the newcomer that as "The Doctor" she's really good at lying. The Cyberman lowers his head, and agrees with her. Of course it's actually Danny, who knows this all too well.
      • There's something heartbreakingly adorable about watching a Cyberman lower his head like that.
    • When Clara is boasting of her unique relationship with the Doctor, not knowing the Cyberman she's saying this to is Danny until he takes off his mask and asks to be killed.
    • In an out-of-character example, the fact that the version of "Death In Heaven" edited to run in an hour on BBC America (which shows more commercials) had to cut out nearly all of the above Tear Jerker moments is a Tear Jerker in itself.
  • "Last Christmas"
    • The "arctic crew", waking up to their real lives... and the consequences that come with reality. One of them, who dreamt she could walk just fine, is really wheelchair-bound. Another has dealt with a rocky relationship. One isn't even going to wake up, having been eaten by the Dream Crabs.
    • The attempts of the "arctic crew" to keep in touch as they disappear one by one. Shona in particular, who's later shown alone in her flat, wanting to mend a relationship, really wants to keep in touch in a way that implies that she doesn't have many friends.
    • The Doctor walking in on an 80+ year-old Clara, having left her behind for 62 years after "Death in Heaven". What is meta-sad is that this wasn't going to be a red herring. Jenna Coleman was preparing to leave the series but changed her mind; had she not, Clara would've died of old age.
      • Clara admitting that he, along with Danny, was the only other person she would have considered marrying. This is double-barrelled because not only is it sad in the context of Clara, but it is also a Meaningful Echo of a similar sentiment made by Sarah Jane Smith regarding the Doctor, invoking memories of the late, much-loved Elisabeth Sladen.
    • Clara saying good-bye to the dream Danny, hurting that he won't be there when she wakes up. Suddenly, he starts sounding less like a dream construct and more like Danny's actual spirit reaching out to her to give her closure. Even when he's nothing but a dream construct, Danny Pink keeps his promises: to hell with what the Crab wants, Clara will sleep safe tonight.
    • Clara slapping the Doctor when he is accidentally insensitive about Danny's death, due to mutual lies that made the Doctor think he survived as he planned, and Clara believed the Doctor was headed back to Gallifrey. And then, moments later, when the two realize they'd lied to each other and their separation was unnecessary.
    • Dream-Danny's remarks about how all Christmases are a "last Christmas" because you can't ever know for sure which of your loved ones won't be there next year, becomes much more of this trope now that we know Clara didn't live to see the next Christmas special.
  • "The Magician's Apprentice"
    • The tragic event that starts it all: Twelve is all set to rescue a scared boy trapped in a hand mine field (having already tossed him the sonic screwdriver) when he asks the boy's name. It is Davros, and the planet they are on is Skaro. The Doctor — after so, so many centuries fighting him and the Daleks, after the Time War — can't bear to rescue the boy or kill him, so he simply leaves, apparently starting the path that ends in the Daleks' existence. Twelve ends up feeling so guilty about his choice that he's ready to die in the present when Davros summons him.
    • For that matter, there's something touching and almost heartwarming in the Doctor's guilt. While he might have failed to be his best in that tragic moment of What You Are in the Dark, he is willing to shoulder all the blame for whatever it caused, making no excuses, not trying to run from it forever. In the prequel shorts, he regards it as letting a friend down. A friend! One wonders if one reason he's not more forthcoming to others who question him is because some might not blame him for his choice, but at hearts he knows he did the wrong thing.
    • Seeing the usually stoic Twelfth Doctor scream and plead with Davros to spare Clara's life. It's heartbreaking to see him so vulnerable, especially, since per Word of God, by this point both Twelve and Clara had done a Relationship Upgrade and were now a couple (though Rule 1: Moffat lies). When she is seemingly exterminated along with Missy and the TARDIS, his face shows that he is completely broken.
      Doctor: Why have I ever let you live?
      Davros: Compassion, Doctor. It has always been your greatest indulgence. Let this be my final victory. Let me hear you say it, just once. Compassion... is... wrong.
    • Now that he no longer has anything to lose, the cliffhanger has Twelve, having reached the Despair Event Horizon, somehow returning to the past, apparently ready to cross the Moral Event Horizon and potentially tear apart the universe by exterminating the innocent boy Davros. Sure, all of this is a clear case of Like You Would Really Do It, but...
      • This could also serve as a Call-Back to the Ninth era episode "Dalek" and Series 8's "Into the Dalek", where the titular Daleks call the Doctor "a good Dalek", considering in the end, Twelfth says this: EXTERMINATE!
    • Missy killing a married father, leaving behind a spouse and a small child who will have to grow up without a dad. And the worst part is that Missy doesn't care, doesn't regret it, did it for no good reason, and doesn't even get punished for it!
      • Even worse? Later in this season, in anguish the Doctor will save a young girl from death's door — and she will come to resent him for the "side effect" it left her with. And then and Clara will fight to save the life of Rigsy, knowing he is a father, and they will save a young woman's mother as well...but it costs Clara her life and sends the Doctor's sanity on the road to ruin. The Doctor suffers for caring about others and saving their lives, while Missy gleefully gets away with her sins!
    • The fact that Missy is right. She and the Doctor are, in whatever sort of twisted way it is, friends. They've known each other the longest, they know the truth of who they are - they know the real person behind the names and masks of The Doctor and The Master/Mistress - and this means that they don't have to lie to one another like they do to the rest of the Universe; the Doctor sends his confession dial to her because he knows that Missy would find the universe extremely boring if he was gone - The Master said so himself in The Five Doctors. Notice how Missy doesn't try to ever kill Twelve; Clara and Davros, yes, but not Twelve. Missy is proven right due to events — the Doctor sends her his confession dial, they both understand the truth about the gravity on the "hospital", they play off one another like repelling and attracting magnets with the Universe as their cosmic and eternal playground and he later lets Missy run away and escape rather than killing her and imprisoning her — and it's a tearjerker as the Doctor's best and truest friend is a megalomaniacal psychopathic woman/man who is basically what he would be if he didn't have his rules, what he almost becomes in The Waters Of Mars.
  • "The Witch's Familiar"
    • Davros, of all people, elicits feelings of sadness when he finally drops his cruel, boisterous nature and actually speaks to the Doctor as an old friend, including both of them sharing a laugh together over the Doctor being a terrible doctor. Although this is partially to further the villain's plot, it is clear that no matter what, the Doctor does feel actual compassion towards his enemy.
    • Clara, trapped in a Dalek armour, desperately trying to tell the Doctor it's her inside all while Missy continuously tries to goad the Doctor into killing her. The Dalek armour constantly translates Clara's pleas into threats and Dalek phrases...
    • Seeing the young Davros being taken home by the Doctor becomes a Fridge Tear Jerker when you realize what's in store for that little boy: a too-long life of constant warfare, nearly all of it crippled and in constant physical agony, driven by megalomania and fear to create a race of nightmares which will turn on him at the slightest excuse, and desperately denying that his creations are monsters because he couldn't possibly live with the truth of all the horrors he's done.
  • "The Girl Who Died"
    • Poor Twelve, blaming himself for Ashildr's death, having spent the episode surrounded by people who want him to be a hero (including Clara), desperately tired of losing everyone he cares about to the ravages of time and fate, and realizing that his whole reason for being is to save peoplenote , damn the rules of his own kind, decides to save one sweet girl the only way he can think of: by using Mire technology to restore her body...even though that will also make her immortal. He leaves behind another chip, so she can make someone else she cares about an immortal to stave off the loneliness he knows so well. But even as Clara praises him for his rash actions, he knows in his hearts — not having to be told (as in, say, "The Waters of Mars") — that he may well have made a grave mistake. He's clearly remembering the Gallifreyan prophecy of a hybrid warrior (Ashildr is now half-human, half-Mire) and Missy's explanation that "Everyone's a hybrid" of friend and foe; he may also be recalling his confrontation with the Fisher King, for now he, if for more compassionate reasons, robbed someone of their death. The Cliffhanger has Ashildr, The Ageless and yet alone in immortality, becoming despondent and hardened as centuries pass. This will haunt the Doctor — culminating when she has a part in the death of Clara.
    • The Doctor's tearful admission to Clara about how much he will miss her when she's gone, to the point where he expects to hurt so much that he "won't be able to breathe" which is likely the closest he ever came to truly expressing his feelings for her.
    • The beautiful, haunting Time Lapse shot at the very end of the episode encompassing the progression of centuries of Ashildr's life. The beautiful, starry skies of countless nights fly before her as she smiles brightly...but when the camera completes its circle around her and we see her face again, her smile is gone and replaced by a look of the deepest, weariest, oldest sadness. As well as anger towards the Doctor for letting her live to see the world and the people around her age to nothing.
  • "The Woman Who Lived"
    • Ashildr can't remember her old name/names, and has had to keep journals not to forget her own adventures. She can't even remember her children so she keeps the journal entries about them dying in infancy (there are some memories so traumatic she rips those pages out) to remind her not to have anymore.
      • Fridge Tear Jerker: Just to make it worse, it's entirely plausible that she might've previously had children who grew up to adulthood and died of old age, but doesn't remember them. After losing her babies, she'd have torn out any surviving children's pages, the better to remove the temptation to ever risk it again.
    • The look on the Doctor's face at the very end after receiving an affectionate hug from Clara.
  • "The Zygon Invasion"
    • The surviving Osgood standing in front of a gravestone that only reads "My Sister".
  • "The Zygon Inversion"
  • "Face the Raven"
    • The BBC promo trailer drove fans of Twelve and Clara to tears by revealing that she's bidding him a last goodbye in this episode (which wasn't even the season finale).
    • Clara ends up dying as a result of her overconfidence. That would be the result of the above scene and what's worse is it was a Senseless Sacrifice anyway.
    • The roughly eight-minute-long farewell scene between the Doctor and Clara counts as this in toto. Fans and critics have particularly noted moments such as the Doctor's childlike "What about me?" when Clara says no one is to be hurt after she dies; the hug when Clara stops the Doctor from expressing his feelings for her, admitting she knows what he was about to say; "Don't run - stay with me"; and the Doctor kissing Clara's hand and looking at her with immense sadness before she pulls away. His eyes have already turned red by the time they hug. Ramped Up to Eleven by the fact the two play out all Five Stages of Grief.
      • What makes her death even worse is the fact that hers is the first actually violent Companion death in New Who! Rose eventually got her happy ending, Martha left of her own accord and also got her happy ending, Donna might've lost her memories but she's still alive and married now and Amy and Rory did die but that was from old age in the past. Even Danny Pink's death by automobile happened strictly off-camera. Clara is the first companion to actually have a violent death since the show started again in 2005 and for a lot of people that haven't yet watched the Classic series, it can be incredibly upsetting!
    • Her last words: "Let me be brave...let me be brave..."
    • The Doctor furiously telling Ashildr to never cross paths with him ever again in a low-pitched monotone, considering she caused Clara's demise. The look on her face...
    • Rigsy painting a memorial for Clara on the TARDIS. It can really tug at the heartstrings.
      • And then there's this deleted scene which shows Rigsy coming home, where his wife; Jen, is waiting for him. She sees he's upset and asks what happened... Where Rigsy then breaks down into tears as he embraces her.
    • io9's review argues that the disaster here ultimately stems from two things the Doctor did: not stopping Clara from becoming too reckless of a hero via his influence, and saving Ashildr's life. Twelve really cannot win.
    • The Doctor effectively admits he's a lost soul in his final lines. He honestly seems to believe he is beyond redemption by this point in his lives.
    • The old man saying goodbye to his wife just before his death.
    • The fact that Rigsy, Anahson, and her mum all owe and love the Doctor and Clara...and they can't do anything to help them when worst comes to worst. Rigsy does take on the sad duty of making sure Clara's family, etc. is notified of what happened and that her body is properly treated in death according to a Deleted Scene in the script. But for the most part, these poor people are sucked into a game where life is the stakes and they're helpless to do anything to save the people who just saved all of their lives.
      • For Anahson in particular, it's even worse: Ashildr's scheme led the poor Janus girl to believe that her mother - not only her only apparent family but the only person who even knew she was female - had been murdered, leaving her marooned on the Trap Street ... which is ruled by the very person her prophetic powers must (correctly) tell her was really responsible for her mum being attacked. This, after escaping a life of slavery, only to wind up on a planet where the Trap Street's less-scrupulous residents may enslave her again if her sex is revealed, and where the native populace might well imprison or lynch her if her second face is revealed. Did I mention that she's the Janus equivalent of a teenager...?
    • How about Clara's poor father who not only lost his wife but now his daughter, he basically lost almost all of his indeterminate family and most parents don't want to outlive their children.
  • "Heaven Sent"
    • The Doctor reaches the end of the maze and discovers a 20-foot-thick wall made of a substance 400 times harder than diamond blocking the only way out. At that moment, he realizes the true meaning of the word ‘Bird’ traced on the sand earlier. Since the Doctor refuses to confess about the Hybrid, he has no choice but to spend two billion years (upped to four-and-a-half billion in the next episode) and countless trillions of lifetimes chiseling at the rock and all the while knowing that each time he dies, he will have to come to terms with Clara’s death all over again and has to physically drag his near-dead body, in a process that takes a day and a half, back to the start of the maze to begin the reset. The breakdown that follows just goes to show how badly the Doctor is handling Clara’s passing.
      • If this isn't enough, just imagine his experience on the last few trips, seeing that there's a good chance this will be the time he actually succeeds, only to have to make the trip back again.
      • Even worse, "Hell Bent" confirms he never does fully come to terms with her passing, as the only reason he endures the ordeal over and over is that if he admits the truth about the Hybrid, he won't have anything to use as a bargaining chip with the Time Lords to access the means of saving her from the grave.
    • The Doctor asks the memory of Clara what she would do in a situation like he's in. The reply on the chalkboard is "What you would do." The Doctor notes that this is correct, before adding that it's also what ended up getting her killed.
    • "WHY CAN'T I JUST LOSE?!" — It gets worse reading it at the official script:
      [He spins round on Clara — still standing with her back to him. But chalked on the blackboard in front of her, a single word: No! The Doctor, staring hopelessly at that word.]
      The Doctor: But I can remember, Clara. You don’t understand, I can remember it all. Every time!
      [Just the word No!]
      The Doctor: And you’ll still be gone. Whatever I do, you still won’t be there.
      [The Doctor sags. Like that admission ripped the heart out of him.]
    • The fact that the Doctor is alone in the first place. Apparently, there's not a soul aware of his suffering who has the compassion and/or courage to stop it. Now why should the audience not want him to achieve his Tragic Dream and destroy all space and time in the next episode? From how all space and time is treating him after all he's put into it, It Is Beyond Saving...
  • "Hell Bent"
    • In all of his appearances The General has been a Reasonable Authority Figure. When Rassilon decided all was lost and it was time to end time itself, he decided to fight on to save Gallifrey. When Rassilon (again) tried to kill the Doctor, he stood against him. And the Doctor guns his current regeneration down to save Clara. Extra lives or no (and s/he only has two left), that's still quite a sad moment.
    • Clara learning the Doctor went through hell for 4.5 billion years — all for her. And then there's her reaction:
      Clara:...Four and a half billion years..?
      The Doctor: If she says so.
      Clara: *more horrified at his reaction* No! Why would you even do that? *beginning to tear up * I was dead! I was dead! and god, *tries to smack him but only shakes in anger and sadness* why-why would you do that to yourself?!
      The Doctor: *silent for a bit*...I had a duty of care.
    • The invoking of Clara's leitmotif when, in a fourth wall-leaning moment, we are forced to give them privacy as Clara tells the Doctor something very important in the Cloisters. (And the later revelation that this is foreshadowing the end of the episode where the melody is revealed to be the Doctor's subconscious interpretation of what she told him.)
    • The Doctor tries to escape Gallifrey with Clara by stealing another TARDIS and taking them to the very, very end of the universe, when absolutely nothing is left...except for Ashildr/Me, sitting in the ruins of a now-dead Gallifrey, watching the stars go out. She remarks that the other immortals are gone now too, meaning until the TARDIS showed up, Ashildr was the only thing left in the entire universe, waiting for it to end.
    • Before arriving at the end of the universe, the Doctor begins to despair of being able to bring Clara fully back to life, to the point where he invokes the Time Lord Victorious, which is simultaneously a tear-jerker... and terrifying.
    • Not only is it revealed that Clara's death is inevitable, but the Doctor also loses all memories of Clara (except for their adventures together) as punishment for almost destroying the universe to save her.
      The Doctor: I know her name was Clara. I know we travelled together. I know there was an Ice Warrior on a submarine and a mummy on the Orient Express. I know we sat together in the Cloisters and she told me something very important, but I have no idea what she said. Or what she looked like. Or how she talked. Or laughed. There's nothing there, just nothing. There's just one thing I know about her. Just one thing. If I met her again, I would absolutely know.
      • Even more tragic when you realize that this includes his memories of his time with her as Eleven also. Although he does remember their adventures, Eleven's parting promise not to forget "one line" of his tenure as the Doctor is broken.
      • Clara's reaction to the Doctor's "If I met her again, I would absolutely know." She turns her back from the Doctor, trying to hide her tears. At that point, the undeniable facts hit her hard: he cannot, and will never remember her, their love is completely gone, and that all of this is good for both of their individual wellbeings.
    • Keep in mind that the Doctor's above actions in this episode are all in the wake of his being, effectively, Driven to Madness. Unable to handle his grief and let go of Clara, thanks in part to what he undergoes in "Heaven Sent", he's just not in his right mind. In part because the crisis he creates is so potentially catastrophic, he gets No Sympathy over what he went through from anyone aside from Clara and, to a much lesser extent, Ashildr. But in the end, Clara gets through to his best self, and he makes the right choice for the good of everyone. But in order to do so and thus atone, he winds up losing the most in this story aside from the poor General (and even the General appears to at least appreciate not being saddled with a male body anymore); he's alone in that TARDIS at the end, with no new companion, no one offering compassion or forgiveness to the man who so freely gives it to others. Talk about Being Good Sucks. Twelve. Can't. Win. (Until the Christmas Episode, that is. Then...)
  • "The Husbands of River Song"
    • The episode ends with Twelve taking River to the Singing Towers of Darrillium. We all know what that means...
    • There's something heartbreaking about River honestly believing that the Doctor doesn't love her. The Doctor's expression when she says this makes it ten times sadder.
      River Song: When you love the Doctor, it's like loving the stars themselves! You don't expect a sunset to admire you back! And if I happen to find myself in danger, let me tell you, the Doctor is not stupid enough or sentimental enough, and he is 'certainly not in love enough to find himself standing in it with me!
      • This is amplified when taken in context with the preceding episodes. The entirety of Series 9 spun around the Doctor's deep love (platonic or otherwise) for Clara Oswald. When River says she doesn't believe the Doctor is capable of loving anyone, we know this not to be true because we've seen it, and therefore the Doctor's reaction is even sadder.
      • Furthermore, River was raised by the Silence and Kovarian, then escaped to live with her parents (who didn't know who she was), and spent decades if not centuries having adventures with the Doctor and occasionally Amy and Rory, and the latter two didn't know who she was for a while. And during all that time, she almost never felt loved for who she was.note 
    • River knows that this is her last night with the Doctor, and expects him to turn around and tell her that he has a way out. Of course, he doesn't. (There is a grace note. A night on Darillium lasts twenty-four years.) If losing one love taught him anything it is that nothing is forever. So by losing Clara, Twelve finds the courage to let his other love go.
    • The realization that the Doctor is still wearing the velvet jacket that Clara gave him at the end of "Hell Bent". Her influence still endures.
  • "The Return of Doctor Mysterio"
    • The Doctor's pained reaction when Grant tells him he's known Lucy for 24 years: the same amount of years he spent on Darillium with River. He avoids showing his sadness to everyone, even with a companion (it being Nardole from the last Christmas special).
    • Nardole calling out Twelfth over the fact he's lonely: It isn't more of a crass call out, but more of pointing out why he's so hesitant when it comes to the topic of loss. Twelfth's behavior sells it. As with "Husbands of River Song", this is also amplified by what we, the viewer, remember that the Doctor doesn't anymore: that he has experienced the loss of not just one but two women he loved, back-to-back, so it's no surprise the topic of loss is sensitive to him.
    • The Bittersweet Ending of it all: Lucy tries to convince the Doctor to talk about River (as she can sense it), but he only vaguely states how things end, but one has to keep those memories in order to remember the times they had. After he leaves, Nardole just tells them about River, and how she died at the Library. The scene as Nardole is confirming to Grant and Lucy how the Doctor will recover from this being superimposed over the Doctor being emotional in his TARDIS, before going off to the next adventure with a smile.
      • It gets worse. That line from the Doctor about endings and beginnings unintentionally foreshadowed Peter Capaldi's announcement that he would be leaving the role.
  • "The Pilot"
    • Subtle, but Bill's pretty sad Christmas after she gets both the Doctor and her foster mother presents. The Doctor guiltily realises he hadn't gotten her anything (at first) and her foster mother only gave her a bit of money. Bill casually brushes both off by saying the gifts weren't expensive anyway, but it comes off as Bill being used to being taken for granted and not getting much herself. Followed by another Tear Jerker in the cut between Bill finding the box of pictures of her biological mother and her sobbing on her bed as she finally got to see what she looked like. Bill had always had to make things up about her mother because she died when Bill was a baby and Bill didn't know much about her, not even having any pictures of growing up because her mum had hated getting her picture taken. Also a Heartwarming Moment because the Doctor had gone back in time to get those pictures for Bill as a Christmas present — though obviously not one he can (yet) tell her he'd gotten her.
    • The Reveal of why the Pilot is chasing Bill across time and space in the first place: Heather's promise not to leave without Bill was her last thought alive before she was absorbed by the oil and became the Pilot. She is driven to fulfill her promise to the girl she had a crush on. Bill releases her from her promise but admits she really liked her and Pilot Heather whispers the same back, not a reflection but a sad affirmation of shared feelings. It does end on a more hopeful note, though: when offering to take Bill along in the TARDIS, the Doctor says they might even meet Heather again somewhere in time and space, something Bill had asked about earlier.
    • Her Missing Mom situation and shrugging off getting the short-stick at Christmas after her own generosity to others suggested Bill was somewhat of a Stepford Smiler as it was, but her begging the Doctor to let her remember the events of the episode — increasingly desperately bargaining to keep her memories for just a week, then just a day, then finally just one night — cements it. Even though she lost a girl she'd had feelings for, she badly wants to hold onto it because it was the only exciting thing to happen to her in her life.
      Bill: Let me have some good dreams for once.
    • The scene where Twelve tries to erase Bill's memories. Not only is it depressing to see him resorting to the same thing that cost him Donna Noble, but worse is the fact he feels he has to. Bill's attempts to tell him that she doesn't want to lose what she has and she wants to keep her memories. Worse is when she delivers the Armor-Piercing Question about the pain of losing your memories. Cue Clara's theme.
      • Worst moment is when the Doctor's arguing with himself and sees the photos of Susan and River and argues with them. He even argues with the TARDIS for godsakes, showing that despite everything, the Doctor is once again, so alone.
        The Doctor: (After looking at his photo of Susan) Shut up. You, shut up as well. (Points to the photo of River, where afterwards, the TARDIS makes a noise in an attempt to communicate to him) Will you all please just leave me alone? I can't do that anymore. I promised!
  • "Smile"
    • When Bill finds a book in the spaceship revealing Earth's history and why they travelled to a new planet. She is completely horrified and has tears on her face.
    "I've got to know. The people who came here, were they the last people? Were they our last hope?"
  • "Thin Ice"
  • "Knock Knock"
    • The reveal, which is the landlord not being Eliza’s father, but her son. He was so desperate to keep his mother alive that he used special bugs to transform her into a wooden being and fed the house to preserve her.
  • "Oxygen"
    • Bill's terror both times her spacesuit starts to malfunction. The first time, she blacks out and wakes up to find out that she survived the oxygen deprivation — because the Doctor gave her his helmet full of oxygen to help her survive as he carried her unconscious body outside the station to safety, and has become blind as a result of traveling in space without a helmet, to save her. Even worse the second time, when the group has to keep moving to flee from the suits but Bill's suit won't let her move, so they're forced to leave her behind despite this means that she'll be killed for sure. The Doctor tries to reassure the terrified Bill by promising her, "I will see you soon." She is killed by the suits shortly after, screaming for the mother who died when she was a baby, and the Doctor hears it and is visibly affected. Although Bill is saved in the end and believes the Doctor has regained his sight, he reveals he's still blind and doesn't believe he'll ever be able to see again.
  • "Extremis"
    • The flashback storyline revealing the nature of the Vault and its contents has a heartbreaking moment as the Doctor pulls the lever to execute Missy/, despite his obvious reluctance to do so and knowing full well what this will say about him. However, when we return to this storyline later in the episode, there is a ray of hope: he sabotaged the device. Missy lives, although she will have to spend 1,000 years within the Vault.
  • "The Lie Of The Land"
    • It's not often that the audience hears the Doctor beg and even rarer does he sound so desperate and panicked as when Bill attempts hijacking the system herself.
    • The fact the Bill believes the fact the Doctor truly has joined the Monks. She looks so broken and worse is when he explodes into a rant about how she stayed strong for him for six months only to see he's truly performed a Face–Heel Turn. Hell, it was even believed she went a bit mad as she shot him. Granted it was a test to see if she wasn't under mind control but still.
    • Missy showing regret for her past actions at the end. Yes, it could be one of her usual mind games, but still. She's visibly crying.
  • "Empress of Mars"
    • This line from the Doctor near the end:
      Bill: You knew that would happen.
      Doctor: Always been my problem.
      Bill: What?
      Doctor: Thinking like a warrior.
  • "The Eaters of Light"
    • Kar is first seen is performing a mourning ritual for her mother, father, and "all our dead". She is sobbing all through it and her voice cracks.
    • The remains of the Ninth Legion are stranded in hostile territory, without leadership, running out of food and there's a monster on the loose that slaughtered the majority of their comrades. Then you recall that these are child soldiers. They're lost, scared, and have no idea what to do. "A real commander would have a plan..."
    • The Doctor is frantic when the Ninth Legion and Kar take the Heroic Sacrifice instead of him. They themselves are doing their best to hold themselves together. Kar's brother is breaking down while assuring her that her great deed will never be forgotten because that's all he can do.
      The Doctor: Oh, stop being brave. I can't bear brave people!
    • That quote is even harsher when one thinks about Clara's death the last season.
    • The Doctor's and Missy's discussion about why Hope Is Scary regarding the possibility of their renewed friendship; it is clear both want it but he can't trust her given their history.
  • "World Enough And Time"
    • The BBC America and Syfy Latin America trailers revealing that in this story Bill is faced with conversion into a Mondasian Cyberman, possibly the worst companion fate ever, instantly broke hearts across the Internet. And then with that knowledge, certain promo photos suggested that the Doctor loses his race against time to save her from that fate and is heartbroken to realize it. And it all turned out to be true and worse. Fittingly, the final shot of the episode is of a single real tear leaching from Cyber-Bill's eye, and the final line borders on Kick The Doctor.
    Cyberwoman: Locating: Bill. Potts. I. AM. BILL. POTTS.
    Cyber!Bill: I. Waited. For. You.
    • Before that, we have the Doctor encountering the first of the original Cybermen and instead of putting up a tough front, he desperately tries to reason with it. Deep down, he must have known that he was too late.
    • The Teaser. In an arctic planet, the TARDIS materialises there. The Doctor staggers out, barely being able to stand and looking very worse for wear. He begins to regenerate. Just seeing all of this is equally shocking and heartwrenching, as no viewer even imagined that the beginning of the Twelfth Doctor's regeneration would be shown in this episode, rather than the 2017 Christmas special, of all places! It's even worse when he utters a Rapid-Fire "No!" as he sees the tell-tale orange glowing, something which can easily bring back memories of the Tenth Doctor's reluctance to change his appearance.
      The Doctor: [Starts to regenerate] NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
  • "The Doctor Falls"
    • The title alone is painful, especially since it makes it seem that for the third season in a row, the Doctor won't be getting a happy ending, and indeed he doesn't quite get one — he saves the day, but his companions are gone and living their own lives, the solar farmers may always have to be ready to battle the remaining Cybermen, he doesn't know what became of Missy much less that he actually succeeded in convincing her to be good...and he is tired of living, wanting to simply die for good. The fact that it's the Twelfth Doctor's second-to-last episode only makes things worse. Can the Christmas Episode, "Twice Upon A Time", possibly throw him a bone juicy enough to compensate?
    • Twelve sending Nardole away to lead and protect the level 507 refugees, even using an Armor-Piercing Question to butter him up into going. The little oddball can't find the words to suit his departure and doubts he ever will. All the sadder in that the Doctor is surely so determined to send Nardole to safety and a Happy Ending because he can't offer either to Bill, and there's no way he's letting both his companions die or worse on this ship.
    • The Doctor's speech to the Master and Missy, as to why he is willing to help the solar farmers even if it means certain death. Simply put, he's doing it for no other reason than it's a right, kind act, and he feels that's worth dying for. He is even asking them, begging them, to stand with him just once, just this one time. It's one of Capaldi's more raw speeches, like he's seconds away from crying, if that's what it takes. And then the Master shits all over it by saying he didn't listen to a word of it.
      • One little sentence from this speech is particularly heartwrenching. It's not even because it works because it hardly ever does. Obviously, this show is no stranger to a Downer Ending, but even in those stories, the Evil Plan usually ends up being stopped. However, as the First Doctor points out in the next episode, the real world is not a fairy tale. An episode where the villain wins would not make good viewing, but for every televised adventure we see where the Doctor saves the day, there must be ten offscreen where we have an outright The Bad Guy Wins outcome, and the Doctor is left utterly heartbroken and dejected as a result.
      • The Saxon!Master's response is even more heartbreaking after you consider the fact the Doctor explicitly states this isn't about trying to beat the Master this time, but doing the right thing. The Doctor is begging the Master to just for once put aside their rivalry and show a little bit of sympathy, in a moment of desperation where he's leaving himself open and raw, and the Master essentially spits in his face. Between this moment and what he does to his future self when she actually considers aiding the Doctor, it only drives home just how sociopathic and spiteful this version of the Master is.
      • At the beginning of the speech, however, Saxon's eyes - like Missy's - look suspiciously wet. Why? Because the Doctor just flat-out said he believes he'll die, really die, which the Master has admitted before is something they don't want to consider. Saxon continues to stay silent and look affected for the rest of the Doctor's speech and taking into account both this incarnation's more melancholy moments with Ten in the past, the potential for change and good Missy had in her, and the fact he stuck around long enough to even ask (note that it's Saxon and not Missy who asks how the Doctor plans to win), it's likely Saxon genuinely did feel somewhat affected by Twelve's words. At that point, though he's too stubborn, cruel, and petty to admit to being wrong, face up to the consequences of what he's done to Bill and countless others, and side with the estranged friend he's fought and belittled for so long, so he chooses instead to mock the Doctor's sentiments and abandon him; which is another tearjerker on its own, for the poor Doctor. At least his next incarnation was making progress, so the Doctor will know their old friend has the same potential for change Missy had, no matter how buried it might have become again next time they meet (though that in itself is a kind of tearjerker - especially if the next Master just uses the Doctor's partial success in redeeming Missy and lost chance in regaining their old friend as a companion to twist the knife).
    • Missy tries to make a Heel–Face Turn, only to be killed by her previous incarnation.
      • Makes it heartbreaking that Missy beforehand was determined to finally perform a Heel–Face Turn after realizing she wants to help the Doctor, which led to the Master killing her. Also the fact The Doctor will likely never know this.
      • Taking it Up to Eleven? When we next see the Master, they're straight back to the psychopathic monster we know and love to hate. Missy was so close to pulling an actual Heel–Face Turn and finally standing side by side with the Doctor again, after all these years.
    • When the Twelfth Doctor gets shot by the Cybermen, what are the first words he says afterwards? "Hello, I'm the Doctor."
    • After the Doctor blows up all of Floor 507 to defeat the Cybermen, he is seen lying amidst a ton of debris and fire, at death's door. That alone is saddening because despite being a man who abhors violence, tries to maintain peace in many galaxies, saves innocent strangers for the sake of being kind, and is rewarded with everlasting victory, he is still someone who leaves death and destruction in their wake, and can still be defeated by someone. This bittersweet point is further hammered home by his last sight being a big ball of flame, and even if he still didn't die, the emotion can still remain within you.
      The Doctor: Pity. No stars. I hoped there'd be stars.
    • Bill thinks that the Doctor is permanently dead. She and Heather take him back to the TARDIS, and leave to explore the universe, leaving the Doctor alone. That said, she holds out hope that he'll live again, and in fact it's her tears that revive him.
    • As his regeneration begins, there is a montage of all revival-era companions (barring Adam, Mickey, and Rory) saying his name, just like in "Logopolis" (Rose Tyler, Martha Jones, Donna Noble, Jack Harkness, Vastra, Jenny Flint, Sarah Jane Smith, Amy Pond, Clara Oswald, and River Song). And what happens next? He wakes up in a shock and randomly spouts certain famous first and last words of his previous incarnations. One of them? "I don't want to go".
      • Sarah Jane Smith's appearance in the montage is even more heartbreaking when one remembers that her actress, Elisabeth Sladen, passed away six years prior.
      • Add to the fact that Twelve goes into a heartbreaking rant about how he hates changing and wishes to stay the way he is, even going as far as to prevent and stop his regeneration, going as far as to say "NEVER AGAIN!". Makes you feel Peter Capaldi himself is saying this despite his own choice of departing.
    "Where have you taken me? If you're trying to prove a point, I'm not listening. I don't want to change again. NEVER AGAIN! I can't keep on being someone else! Whatever it is, I'm staying."
    • Just to cap it off, the way he suppresses his regeneration is to slam his fists against hard surfaces in a gesture of bitter outrage and grief. When have we seen that before?
  • "Twice Upon A Time"
    • The simple, brutal line from the Captain when Twelve offhandedly notes he's from World War I. "What do you" It's clear this man has already been through some horrible experiences and the idea that this is not "The War to End All Wars" is something he can barely even handle.
      • In the scene in One's TARDIS between the Captain and Bill, there's a clear shot of his hands involuntarily shaking, and his unsurprised expression heavily implies it's happened before. It's a fair guess to say that said experiences have given him PTSD, which he is unlikely to get much treatment for because of the state of mental health in his time. And worst of all, that's assuming he survives the war. It's 1914, the war's only a few months old, and unless he's wounded it is another four years before he can see his wife and sons again.
    • The Captain's lament about the fear of dying, especially considering he was determined to return home for Christmas. Add to the fact it's revealed he's actually an ancestor of the Brigadier.
      • Add the fact he, while reluctant, was ready to accept his death.
    • If you translate the German soldier's words, his face-off with the Captain becomes this trope: he, like his British counterpart, is desperately begging for his ostensible "enemy" to lower his gun and leave because he really doesn't want to shoot him. No need for sci-fi flourishes to make that a heart-rending situation.
    • When the Doctor talks about everything ending, the music from the poignant Singing Towers scene of "The Husbands of River Song" begins to play, reminding us of the original context where this statement came from when the Doctor forever parted with River.
    • While it goes more into Heartwarming since she has a point, the fact the Bill we see is more or less a memory version of her is saddening, meaning Bill still doesn't know the Doctor's alive.
      • Want a bit of Tears of Joy? Bill returning the memories of Clara to Twelve; she even tells him to not forget her again.
    • The entire dialogue between Twelve and the Glass versions of Nardole and Bill. Twelve laments how he wishes to finally just rest after so long, comparing it to an empty battlefield. Shows that even when accepting regeneration, The Doctor wishes to rest.
      • He points out to the both of them that neither of them are the real versions, something that pains them to hear.
      • But the Doctor relents and ends his conversation with them by thanking the two for everything they've done for him. The three embrace before Bill and Nardole vanish.
      • Bill slowly tears up throughout their final conversation, further proving she's just as real and authentic as the original Bill.
    • And of course, the big event: Twelfth's regeneration. More or less smaller than Eleventh who gave a speech about not forgetting to be the Doctor, Twelfth gives a speech to his successor, including "Never cruel or cowardly". And then...Regeneration via console room destruction.
    • The brutal line Twelve gives as he knows the end is near. It becomes even worse after Thirteen's trauma over seeing Gallifrey destroyed.
      "Well, I suppose one more lifetime won't kill anyone... well, except me."
    • The Twelfth Doctor's very final words: "Doctor...I let you go." A nod certainly from both Peter Capaldi and Steven Moffat, who were both massive "Doctor Who" fans before they came onboard to work on the show. They had their time, but you can't hold on forever...
      • Even worse, the Twelfth Doctor asks his own TARDIS to accept his future self. Then immediately after regeneration, the TARDIS seems to deliberately toss the Thirteenth Doctor out the doors and fade away, leaving her in free-fall.
      • The music in the final scene. The "Breaking the Wall" theme from "Heaven Sent" makes a return as the Twelfth Doctor gives his final speech, and ends just as he starts regenerating into the Thirteenth Doctor. But the music that plays during the Thirteenth Doctor's first moments? None other than the "Bad Wolf" leitmotif that first appeared all the way back in Series 1.
      • The last scene we get of Twelve is of his eyes and eyebrows fading away into those of Thirteen. Bookends to the very first scene with Capaldi where he made an early cameo in the 50th anniversary special.
      • The signet ring falling off the smaller Thirteen's hand and fall through one of the holes in the floor of the console platform, much like how the same thing happened for Two when One's ring fell off him and did the same. However, this moment carries a little added weight because that ring was not just a homage to the First Doctor; Peter Capaldi wore it to mask his wedding band because he wanted it on when he played the role. This is literally watching the sentimental remnants of the old actor on the stage be shed and lost.
      • The novelization reveals that Twelve's ring is HIS WEDDING RING. The implication, given how often their relationship is referenced in the book, is that it represents his marriage to River Song, suggesting that from the beginning of this incarnation he wanted to honor that relationship. This, of course, makes River's belief that he didn't truly love her prior to the events of "The Husbands of River Song" all the sadder.
      • Seeing one of the bookshelves topple over and all those tomes flying off into the abyss above what seems to be Earth as they are spit out the open doors of the TARDIS, and pages going everywhere. Not only is Twelve gone, but now his keepsakes are going with him.
    • How about the moment when the Testimony is showing the First Doctor what he'll become? He looks so terrified as he sees all the violent images and hears all his different, future titles..
      • The novelization makes matters worse by bringing up Twelve's inner thoughts on the matter, as he's specifically reminded of how his previous lives destroyed Skaro, fought in the Time War, and drove Captain Adelaide Brooke to suicide, as well as of the fates of Adric, Donna Noble, and Bill Potts — yeah, the audience knows Bill got better but does he really believe her "impostor" at this point?
  • At the very last, what does Twelve, the notorious hug hater, do? He hugs the glass avatars of his friends.

    Thirteenth Doctor episodes 
  • "The Woman Who Fell to Earth":
    • The climax sees Grace, one of the Doctor's new companions, making a Heroic Sacrifice to take out the data coil.
      • "Well, I suppose one more lifetime won't kill anyone... well, except me." - we're one adventure in and someone is already dead!
    • The reveal that Ryan was talking about his nan in the opening, not the Doctor.
    • Before the funeral, Ryan expresses his frustration that his father hasn't shown up to his own mother's funeral, despite saying he'd be there. The Doctor, who has made it a point to try and be as helpful as possible in this incarnation, is at a loss for anything to say.
    • Ryan's desperate attempt to ride his bike on the hill after Grace's funeral, intending to make her proud and keep practicing until he's able to ride it - only to fail again and again and again.
    • When the Doctor realises she's lost the TARDIS, she very briefly sounds like she's about to cry, before forcing herself to focus on more pressing issues.
      • Really just the fact that for the first time in a very long time, the Doctor is completely without the TARDIS, her one constant companion, and for the first time ever completely separated from it whilst still regenerating.
    • At the close of the episode, as the Doctor has finished jury-rigging a teleporter to send her to the TARDIS, she asks Ryan, Yasmin, and Graham to wish her luck, before taking a long moment to turn over her new Sonic in her hands, looking up to sadly say goodbye. She wasn't expecting to bring them along, or possibly ever see them again.
    • Rahul. He was desperate in trying to find out what happened to his sister, even though no one believed him, and knew he stood a good chance of dying when he found Tzim-Sha's pod.
      • When the group discover Rahul's body, all the Doctor can do is apologise to them (notable in itself because past incarnations would usually only apologise if they felt immense guilt for something that was directly their fault or they were talking to someone who was going to die and they couldn't prevent it):
      The Doctor: I'm sorry you all had to see this. [...] I'm sorry any of this is happening, I'm sorry that thing on the train planted these bombs inside you, and I'm sorry I haven't figured out what's going on yet.
      • The Doctor shows a great deal of empathy towards Rahul even though he's dead before she can meet him, and sports a visibly haunted expression while watching his video.
      Ryan: He knew what he was doing might kill him.
      The Doctor: [picking up a photo of Rahul and Asha as children] She was his family.
    • The Doctor talking about how regenerating feels like dying, and how terrifying it is. What's worse is that she's saying this to Grace (first face this regeneration saw and all that), and after Grace's death, she represses and keeps secrets so much that it causes massive problems in series 12.
  • "The Ghost Monument":
    • The Doctor looks visibly shaken when she discovers that the eponymous Ghost Monument is her TARDIS, and looks close to tears when it appears the journey was All for Nothing and that she wouldn't be able to get Yaz, Ryan and Graham back home (clearly thinking she's doomed them to die on an alien planet when they've done nothing but help her out so far and promising them she'd get them home safely).
      The Doctor: [on hearing the tentative vworping] Come on, please. Give us this...
      The Doctor: [raising her Sonic] It's alright! It's me! Stabilise...
      The Doctor: [stepping towards the materialising TARDIS] Come to daddy- I mean, mummy- I mean- I really need you right now!
      The Doctor: [the TARDIS finally lands] My beautiful Ghost Monument!

  • "Rosa"
    • Ryan and Yaz get a first-hand look at how bad 1955 Alabama is. When Ryan goes to return a lady's glove, her husband slaps him across the face as if he were some sort of inhuman scum. Later, a waitress makes it clear at a diner that "we don't serve your kind." For two people of the 21st century, it's a major shock to realize how people like them were treated just a few decades earlier.
      • Later, Ryan and Yaz have a heart-to-heart on racism they still encounter in the present, with Yaz especially sad that she gets called "Paki" even when doing ordinary police work.
    • Graham remembers how Grace was strong, including wearing a t-shirt in Rosa's memory. He and Ryan are both sad remembering her, although Ryan tries to defuse it by noting that Grace "would start a riot" and Graham chuckles in agreement.
    • Rosa Parks gets arrested because she doesn't give up her seat. And what makes matters worse is that, in order for that to happen and keep history on track, the Doctor and her companions have to stay on the bus and take up seats. And they are clearly distressed about having to sit there and let it happen. The Doctor's face in particular as history plays out behind her, knowing she can't do anything despite her natural inclination to help those who need it. Especially when you consider how she laid out her code in her first episode; "When people need help, I never refuse". She looks so haunted. Graham also looks positively gutted. His wife, whom he's only just lost, idolized Parks and would never have approved of him standing idly by while someone was being discriminated against, but he has to do exactly that in order to secure Parks' legacy.
      Yaz: We were here. We're part of the story. Part of history.
      Graham: No no, I don't want to be part of this!
      Doctor: We have to. I'm sorry, but we have to not help her.
    • Just the fact that there are still racist people like Krasko even thousands of years in the future is very depressing.

  • "Arachnids In The UK"
    • After arriving in Sheffield, the Doctor is very awkward as the group try to say their goodbyes, barely able to look at them and looking like she wants to cry at several moments. It's very clear she's gotten attached to the group and doesn't want to leave them and be alone, but she can't bring herself to invite them along because of how many of her loved ones have had pain and misery rained on them because of their association with her (especially as the loss of Bill is still very recent, not to mention regaining her memories of Clara and everything around that loss, and then there's Grace dying within hours of meeting her, which the Doctor no doubt feels responsible for). In fact, by the end of the episode, she still hasn't invited them to come with her, and when Ryan, Yaz and Graham express that they want to go with her, she tries multiple times to discourage them before agreeing.
    • Graham goes back to his house. It's all dark and lonely, Grace still there in his mind telling him that he's got to get on with everyday life, and soon the poor man's reduced to sniffing her old clothes. A half hour of that is all that it takes for Graham to decide he wants to stay with the Doc instead.
    • The giant spider dying of suffocation because it had grown too big for it to be able to process oxygen efficiently is very tragic as it wasn't malicious or evil, just an animal confused by its new circumstances and not knowing what was happening to it.
  • "The Tsuranga Conundrum":
    • The Doctor apologises to her team when she unintentionally gets them in danger again, accidentally setting off a sonic bomb that hurt them enough that they were all out for four days.
    • The Doctor has a near breakdown and starts freaking out when she discovers she's on a spaceship four days away from the junkyard planet she'd parked the TARDIS on, anxious to not lose her again. It takes Astos giving her a What the Hell, Hero? speech to bring her back to her senses, calling her out for being hostile and selfish, and endangering the patients on the ship (that she was ignoring much like her own injuries).
  • "Demons of the Punjab":
    • The Doctor realising that Prem is about to die at the hands of not the alleged Monster of the Week but an Islamophobic mob disgusted that he married a Muslim woman, and that he has to die for Yaz to even exist. Seeing Prem being murdered by said Islamophobic mob is heartrending, especially because the mob is led by his own brother, basically making it a fratricide. No wonder Umbreen didn't want to talk about this point of her life.
    • When one of the anti-Muslim mob levels his rifle at Prem, he recognises and recalls the name of the man on horseback as a soldier he fought alongside in Burma, and says they made a good team together. This man is the one who shoots Prem moments later. Humans Are the Real Monsters.
    • Furthermore, as this is happening, Team TARDIS is once again forced to do nothing while an injustice happens because they can't change history. Their anguish is palpable, and the Doctor looks notably crushed and visibly flinches when the killing shot is fired.
    • As for those supposed "monsters", they admit that they were once ruthless assassins. However, while they were on their hunt, their home world was destroyed. They show that all that is left of their race and history is a carton of dust. They were so shocked by this that they changed their ways, to honor the dead and remember them as no one would remember their own people. In short, the former monsters are now witnesses to the dead to redeem for their pasts. When the Doctor finally understands that they're not malicious, she immediately apologises and reflects their body language in mourning for their lost planet.
    • As the Thijarians honour Prem's sacrifice, his holographic portrait rises to join dozens upon dozens of others, many of which were almost certainly of other people lost in the Partition.
  • "Kerblam!":
    • The deaths of Dan and Kira are especially hard to watch; the former is a father who's sending all his money to his six-year-old daughter, the latter is a loner who's never felt appreciated. Both were only trying to do their jobs, and both were killed senselessly.
    • The death of Charlie is rather sad as well. While he may have deserved it by that point, he just wanted to avoid a future where humans were phased out in favour of robot workers, and he genuinely did love Kira. The Doctor and Graham both try to convince him to do the right thing and even though they fail, the Doctor still delays their escape a little to try and give Charlie a chance at escape.
    • The Doctor's heartbroken plea to the part of Charlie that fell in love with Kira. She's desperately trying to convince him to stop before it goes too far and he can't walk back from it. She's incredibly upset that she couldn't get through to him and just seems numb after she teleports everyone sans Charlie out.
      The Doctor: If you want it, Kerblam! it.
  • "The Witch Finders":
    • Willa watching her grandmother be executed is all kinds of sad. Learning that her relative was the one to order it makes it worse.
    • For all the evil she's done, Becka's Villainous Breakdown is also sad. She says she tried other things to get rid of the Morax possession, resorting to witch hunting in a fit of fear, panic and desperation. Maybe, if she hadn't cut down the tree, she could have been the benevolent leader she says she wanted to be.
  • "Spyfall":
    • The Master telling the Doctor that they destroyed Gallifrey because they found out the Awful Truth about the Timeless Child (mentioned in "The Ghost Monument") that made Time Lord society built on a lie. This effectively renders the Doctors' actions in "The Day of the Doctor" and all that followed All for Nothing, since everybody died anyway.
      • To make things even more heartbreaking, The Master's tone during the whole ordeal is absolutely solemn. Bear in mind that this is The Master we're talking about. A character who normally rejoices and laughs maniacally at the very idea of murder. Instead, he looks like he's constantly on the verge of tears when telling The Doctor what he had done. Whatever he had found out, it was enough to emotionally break him.
      • Whatever he found was likely the catalyst that sent him sailing past the edge once more, undoing all the work the Doctor did with him in his previous incarnation. The fact that their tenative friendship and alliance has been ripped to shreds and the two are once again mortal enemies is heartbreaking.
    • Thirteen reluctantly telling the fam the barest details about who she is, and the focus is kept on her face, which just gets sadder and sadder as she tells them.
      • The kicker is her quick retreat when Yaz asks to see the Doctor's home - she quickly turns them down and quickly retreats to the spot where the Master's message came from earlier, staring into the camera with a distant expression while the TARDIS bathes everything in depressive blue lighting as the episode ends.
    • The Master, for all his gleeful hamminess, regularly seems to be on the verge of tears, whether he's describing the destruction of Gallifrey or kneeling face to face with the Doctor.
    • Thirteen's anger at the Master. It's deserved, but unlike pleading Ten and trusting Twelve, she gets in his face and bitterly asks when the betrayals will stop, not knowing that Missy wanted to stand at her last incarnation's side. It makes what happened with Missy all the more tragic.
    • Just after Thirteen goes back to Gllifrey to see what the Master has done there's a reaction shot just before the Master's hologram message. The Doctor just sits there, alone in her TARDIS. Except she's not alone. The TARDIS as replaced it's bright orange lights for sad blue ones. The TARDIS is grieving as well. And when their companions return it's not just the Doctor who brightens up for their sake.
    • Ada Lovelace is horrified to learn that by the 1940s the wold will be "on fire" due to World War II. It gets even worse when the Doctor and Noor Inayat Khan reveal that this isn't the first time war will break out.
  • "Fugitive of the Judoon":
    • The Doctor apparently tortures herself by dropping her fam off and going to the remains of Gallifrey alone. She's obviously in the isolation stage of depression, which Graham, Ryan and Yaz call her out on.
    • The end of the episode is a little lighter, but the Doctor still hasn't opened up to the companions about Gallifrey.
    • Ruth's plight is heartbreaking, from both seeing her husband being murdered in front of her and the fact that her entire life is a lie. The cherry on top is her begging for 13 for help, imploring that she is not the person the Judoon think she is and 13 telling her she doesn't have a choice in the matter.
    • A small one: the Doctor missed out on reuniting with Captain Jack this time around, when they definitely would have been happy to see each other.
    • "I know what I've done, I know my own life." She sounds so mournful, like she's just catalogued all the terrible things she's had to do.
    • Earlier on, after meeting Ruth!Doctor, we cut back to the Doctor walking back to the companions while yet again staring into the middle distance. If it isn't enough her old friend is back and has destroyed Gallifrey, she is now questioning her own identity and grimly notes that 'something is coming for me'.
  • "Praxeus":
    • Graham has a heart-to-heart with Jake, who admits that he struggles with emotions and commitment, and feels like he's burdening his husband who he doesn't understand why he's sticking with him. Graham's reaction and advice makes it clear that he's being reminded of his late wife Grace. Of particular note is his pained face when Jake says "Can you imagine being married to someone that impressive?"
    • Even if it doesn't go anywhere, the Doctor's face looks weary and afraid when Yaz wants to go off by herself. It's clear she's thinking of Clara and where her thrill-seeking ended up.
    • Right after the Doctor calls herself a romantic, her face suddenly goes sad. It's up to you who she's thinking of.
      • How could the answer be anything else but everyone she's ever known and loved across her many lifetimes?
  • "Can You Hear Me":
    • As soon as the companions leave the Doctor for a day, the smile just drops off her face.
    • Graham confesses to the Doctor that his greatest fear was his cancer returning. The Doctor doesn't know how to respond. To prevent herself from saying the wrong thing, she simply chooses to make herself busy. To imagine any Doctor blatantly ignoring such a confession from a companion is unthinkable, never mind this one.
  • "The Haunting of Villa Diodati
    • When the Doctor and Yaz argue about her going to face The Lone Cyberman alone, the Doctor explains Cyber Conversion to the humans and says "I will not lose anyone else to that". This remark, and the sheer Tranquil Fury the Doctor shows at having to face the Cybermen again, shows that she still hasn't resolved her guilt for what happened to Bill.
    • The Doctor snaps, shouting that sometimes it's not a flat team structure, more like a mountain where she's at the top and sometimes even she can't win.
  • "Ascension Of The Cybermen"
    • The Doctor is in full-fledged arrogant self-loathing mode, yelling at the fam and herself because she's been reckless with them, and clearly projecting to the Lone Cyberman about an identity crisis.
    • The plan going wrong at the top of the episode, and yet more humans dying. The look on the Doctor's face and her briefly exploding at the fam when they rub salt in the wound in their panic caps it off.
    • The ending. The Doctor sent the fam away in an attempt to keep them safe, which only resulted in Graham and Yaz ending up in more danger, and is out of reach to be able to help them. Then she sees Gallifrey on the other side of the Boundary, and to top it all off the Master returns, promising her that everything is about to change and warning her that the truth will hurt in the 'next time on' preview.
    • Crosses with heartwarming, but neither Graham nor Yaz blame or resent the Doctor for putting them in danger, because they want to get back to her and help her and Ryan. All the Doctor's self-loathing is self-inflicted, but she just can't see it after the loss of so many others when she was the Twelfth Doctor.
    • Just how tired the Doctor looks in the finale preview. Even the Master looks morose over the truth about Gallifrey.
  • "The Timeless Children"
    • The Doctor makes one final (and her only, in this regeneration) bid to remind the Master of their friendship. Turns out their history, both in their last incarnations and as children, is partly what's driving the rage.
    • The Doctor plans to make a Heroic Sacrifice to stop the Master and his new breed of Timelord-Cybermen. Yaz tries to stop her and the Doctor pulls away, visibly tearing up. The companions then end the episode thinking that the Doctor is dead, when she got away safely...but is now stuck in a Judoon prison. And even though it's funny that the Doctor gets arrested, she admits she needs a minute and looks likes she's gonna pass out.
    • The Doctor IS the Timeless Child... which means that the Time Lords lied to her, exploited her, and she isn't actually a Time Lord or Gallifreyan at all - she's the Time Lord progenitor, so could have family alive somewhere else. Also that she was an abused child, medically tortured, makes her chosen name and compassion for children so much sadder.
    • The montage the Doctor uses to get herself out includes a shot of Missy, Ten crying over Saxon and many sad moments for the previous Doctors.
    • The Ironic Echo of the Doctor in "The Doctor Falls" reaching for Missy but her being unable to stand with him, and this, where the Master offers his hand and 13, still stung from the above, bitterly replies "never".
    • The Master throughout this entire episode seems to straight up have a death wish. He remarks, when the death particle doesn't activate after he shrinks the Lone Cyberman, that he wishes it had so that it could have ended all this. After that, he leaves the shrunken Lone Cyberman for the Doctor to find because he hoped she would use it to kill him to stop his plan. And after the Doctor ultimately is unable to use the death particle because she can't bring herself to kill all life on Gallifrey, the Master looks upset and disappointed, clearly having wanted to partake in Suicide-by-Doctor. The Master has never been this intent on dying before, which shows just how broken he has become.
    • The hill scene, from both sides. Thirteen is almost crying with rage, at both the Time Lords for lying to her and the Master for showing her, and shoves him to the ground. The Master, a character who always needed his autonomy, is angry thinking their relationship is lesser now, also hates the Time Lords for what they did to her, and is still selfishly lashing out.
  • "Revolution of the Daleks":
    • Ryan and Thirteen have a conversation where he asks her to admit how she's actually feeling about the whole Timeless Child thing, and she reveals she feels angry.
    • When Thirteen is in jail, Yaz is obsessed with finding her. Thirteen comes back putting on a jovial face, and Yaz feels betrayed, giving her a fierce shove.
  • "Once, Upon Time": Thirteen's desperate breakdown about needing to see more of her past, and she takes her anger out on Dan and Yaz.
  • "Survivors of the Flux":
    • The Doctor asks Tecteun if what the Master had told her was true, and recoils when the answer is "yes".
      • Worse still, Tecteun immediately embodies many aspects of an abusive parent - she thinks of the Doctor only as an extension of herself and her experiments, doesn't apologise or even regret experimenting on her own child (trying to deflect blame by pulling a "Not So Different" Remark to Thirteen), and dismisses Thirteen's clear desire to know where she actually came from. It's bad enough Thirteen immediately says to an aside to a nearby Ood that she believes the only way this can end is with Tecteun attempting to kill her. It seems clear Tecteun never loved the Timeless Child - or at least, she didn't the minute she found out about regeneration.
    • The Doctor talks to Yaz via hologram, both admitting they miss the other even though they can't hear the other person talking.
  • "The Vanquishers":
    • Di telling Dan she doesn't want to pursue a relationship with him after everything that has happened. It's clear they're both completely devastated.
    • Thirteen drops the fob watch into the TARDIS, but can't quite let it go, telling her to not give it back "unless I really ask".
    • Thirteen starts to open up to Yaz, promising to tell her everything, and is visibly tearing up by the end of it. But when they are interrupted by Dan and Yaz goes to help him, the Doctor cries, either because of all the struggle of the last two seasons, emotional catharsis or because she has been warned that her death is coming...
  • In "Legend Of The Sea Devils", Yaz finally admits her feelings to the Doctor. The Doctor admits that she had considered it and, if she were to fall in love with anyone, it would be Yaz, but she just can't because she has lost too many people already and she would rather be numb to that pain then go through it again.

    Types of Moments 
  • The regeneration scenes, if done well enough, are double-whammy combinations of tears of sadness (the death of a Doctor) and tears of joy (the birth of a new Doctor).
    • The better examples are:
      • The First Doctor ("Ah, yes! Thank you. It's good. Keep warm.")
      • The Fifth ("Feels different this time...")
      • The Eighth ("Physician, heal thyself.")
      • The Ninth ("You were fantastic, absolutely fantastic. And you know what? So was I!")
    • In spite of how quickly the actual regeneration came and went, Eleven's proper, final death really counts, all the way from when he tells Clara he's still regenerating to when he takes off his bowtie for the final time.
  • The way the Doctor rejects his previous selves.
    • In "Time Heist", the Twelfth Doctor calls the Eleventh Doctor's bowtie "embarrassing", and in his premier episode he calls the Fourth Doctor's Scarf "stupid" (though he was in an extreme case of regeneration sickness at the time, so that can probably be excused).
    • In the same vein, going back to see the start of a new Doctor after the end of their tenure. For example, the Tenth Doctor gleefully putting his new outfit together or the Twelfth Doctor proudly showing off his new outfit to Clara, only for the next incarnation to run around in the tattered remains of said outfit and then discard it without a care in the world. Everything ends and it's always sad, but everything begins again, and that's always happy.
    • Also really standing out is the Fifth Doctor absent-mindedly tearing up Four's scarf. The iconic costume piece of the entire series is destroyed without a care as the next Doctor is still suffering from his regeneration sickness.
    • The Doctor knows that what they currently loves, whether food or fashion, they'll most likely despise once regeneration hits. They knows it's inevitable and it scares the hell out of them.
  • Companion deaths.
    • While they might pale in comparison with those who would come later, the loss of Katarina and Sara. The first companions the Doctor ever lost.
    • Adric's stands out.
    • Jack's, despite his being revived later.
    • The Doctor learning of the death of the Brigadier.
    • Amy and Rory's death leads to a deep depressive retirement.
    • Although he was not a companion, the death of Danny Pink.
    • Clara, who dies on screen, right in front of the Doctor's eyes, the first non-robotic companion to do so permanently since Adric. Emphasized by the fact "Heaven Sent" features a Doctor experiencing the same raw emotion of having just lost her over and over for billions of years. The fact she is pulled out of time in the next episode, "Hell Bent" and spends an unknown length of time adventuring after that actually emphasizes this because we know she eventually returns to her timestream and meets her maker.
  • A few non-violent companion exits also count. "The Green Death" and "Warriors' Gate" come to mind. Especially "Warriors' Gate". The fact that the Doctor spends the next two stories wandering around like a lost old widower does not help.
    • Just try watching Leela's departure, knowing the Time War is coming.
    • Tegan departing in tears, because she's just so tired and so sick of all the death and pain, the Doctor begging her, "Please, don't leave, not like this..."
    • Donna's departure is a huge Tear Jerker.
    • Rose's first departure in "Doomsday" remains one of the most emotionally wrought scenes in franchise history, rivalled only by the death of Clara.
  • Hell, just the Fridge Horror of how young the Doctor really is is a real downer. First died of old age at 450, and Eleventh is about 1100 (give or take a few decades). That means that right now he's barely past the point where his second incarnation should be dying of old age. He's sacrificed millennia of his life for the sake of protecting the universe. To make things worse, he hasn't seen any of his family since his first incarnation.
    • Actually, his second, third and fifth incarnation saw Susan again in "The Five Doctors". But still, that's likely over half a millennia ago from the point of view of the Eleventh.
    • The Doctor often lies, and does so unfailingly on topics he's not sure of, like his own age; add to this Word of God has confirmed the Doctor is far older than he states. Still, the concept of the Doctor losing track of his age is a Tear Jerker in and of itself. Because of the life he chose he can't even have such a simple luxury as celebrating a birthday - all the time travel means he doesn't even know when it is, let alone the precise number. Not to mention anyone who would know is long dead.
    • If one adds up all the mentions of his age from the series, then First aged to 450, Second and Third aged between 100 and 200, Fourth through Seventh lived between 50 and 70 years. This adds up to being 1009 when Eight was "born". Think about that: it took six lives to live the span he should have lived in 2 1/2. The fridge horror above still applies. This is continued in the new series, where, while Nine's age is a total mystery with no credible indications whatsoever, Tenth lived 6 years! Which is probably why he freaked out so much about "dying". It has taken him until his Eleventh life to return to Second/Third's standard. This is somewhat balanced out by Eight, who lived about 1000 years by himself, including the novels.
    • Nine is probably the most tragic. In "Rose," he looks at himself in the mirror and makes comments about his face and ears that imply he hasn't really seen them yet which would mean this is very, very early in his incarnation. At the end of the episode, Rose Tyler joins him as a companion and stays with him on the TARDIS until "The Parting of the Ways" where he dies. That means that Rose was with the Ninth Doctor for practically his whole life. Given Rose doesn't noticeably age that much by the time Nine regenerates into Ten, it's a good bet Nine didn't live very long at all, possibly even a year or less.
    • Actually, Nine lived about 100 years offscreen, as the War Doctor in "Day of the Doctor" states that he's 800 but Nine's age is stated as 900. That small moment between him leaving and returning in "Rose" was about a century's worth of adventures for him. But that is a Tearjerker in itself; Rose was the first living face he ever saw, and he came back for her even after a whole century.
      • It's not necessarily 100 years. The Doctor does not know his own age so it could be any amount of time.
    • All of the above was written prior to the Twelfth Doctor's arrival, in which he states he is more than 2,000 years old.
  • A special award for breaking hearts has to go to composer Murray Gold. Just go listen to "Doomsday", or "This is Gallifrey: Our Childhood, Our Home". You'll understand.
    • Donna's flashback music that plays both in "Turn Left" and "Journey's End"
    • The Tenth Doctor's theme itself is absolutely heartwrenching.
    • The music from the time of the Eleventh Doctor is often especially heartbreaking. The tracks "Melody Pond", "36 Years" and "Forgiven" are of particular note.
    • And then there's "Together - Or Not At All" and "Goodbye, Pond". Otherwise known as the tracks that bid farewell to Rory and Amy.
    • The Eleventh Doctor's regeneration theme, "Infinite Potential" is guaranteed to bring on the waterworks.
    • Gold's leitmotif for Clara is guaranteed to do this, especially after it becomes part of the in-universe canon in "Hell Bent" as we learn that it was composed by the Doctor as an attempt to remember some aspect of Clara. Which renders every use of the music going all the way back to "Asylum of the Daleks" foreshadowing of her fate.
  • The very, very end of "Voyage of the Damned". It's an incredibly death-filled and tragic episode, with all of the deaths being heroic sacrifices. And just when you think your heart's been broken enough, a screen displays "In memory of Verity Lambert OBE, 1935-2007". Cue the waterworks. It happens again with "The Waters of Mars", which is dedicated in the memory of Barry Letts. Damnit, producers, stop dedicating the really tragic episodes to people!
    • One name: Lis Sladen.
      • Considering how Sarah Jane is more or less The Quintessential Companion, you can't possibly imagine how badly the fandom needed series 6 to start and help ease the hurt. And then Moffat gave us an episode that kills the Doctor in the first ten minutes.
    • Although it would have been nice if they'd done an on-screen caption for Nicholas Courtney as well. It was rather upsetting that they didn't. Instead, "The Wedding of River Song" has the Doctor's telephone call during which he learns of the Brig's death — and "The Power of Three" took the extra step of introducing the Brig's daughter the following season. The Brig comes back from the dead in "Death in Heaven" as a Cyberman (specifically a Cyber-LEADER) who defeats the Master one last time, salutes the Doctor before, then blasts off to go on new adventures.

  • In the incredible Tenth Doctor IDW comic "The Forgotten", toward the end, the TARDIS is projecting an image shapeshifting into the Doctor's various companions. It manifests as Adric and grabs a canister of Nitro-Nine, then runs toward an attacking Clockwork Robot. The following dialogue ensues:
    The Doctor: ADRIC! NO!
    Adric: Doctor! Get out of here! I've got this!
    The Doctor: No! I'm not going to let you die again, Adric! I can dismantle the droid- we could use it as a timing device!
    Adric: Don't worry, Doctor. The calculations are right this time. The timer's not real. It's not a pointless death. I'm not real, after all...
    (Adric explodes alongside the robot)
    The Doctor: Adric. Not again. Not like this.
    • And at the end, the Doctor requests to see one more companion before he leaves the Dream World.
      The Doctor: WAIT! Before you go, I may never get a chance to come back here... and there's one companion I'd really like to see again. One last time. It- it's been hard. These years of travelling. Always alone, except for scattered moments of companionship. Please, you know who I want- who I need to see.
      Martha: Of course, Doctor.
      Susan: Grandfather?
      The Doctor: Susan. Oh, Susan. It's so good to see you again. Look, I know you're not real, but bear with me, okay? All these years I travelled, I never regretted leaving a companion as much as I did with you. But you were young and in love- you needed to make your own way- not follow a doddery old fool around. And by the time I realised that I needed to say this- to apologise- you were taken away from me. Everyone was taken away from me.
      Susan: Grandfather, I always loved you. And I know that in your heart of hearts you made the right decision. But now it's time for you to move on, time for you to be left behind and start a new life. Look to the light, Grandfather. Ignore the darkness ahead. Goodbye.

  • There's a somewhat unexpected Tear Jerker at the end of the novel The Glamour Chase: Rory was talking about how unfair it was that Shell Shock sufferers of older times didn't get proper treatment or understanding, the Doctor spontaneously hugs him, telling him how important that compassion is... Then on the very next page he makes a throwaway comment about going to Rio and we realize what's going to happen to Rory next...
  • The book Slipback (based on the radio programme from the 80s) was divided into two parts. The first part did not feature the Doctor or his companion at all and told a bizarre story of a starship captain whose hypochondria was so severe that his body could actually physically create diseases. It ends with the captain manifesting the most deadly communicable disease in the universe. His long-suffering first-mate realizes that if he doesn't stop him, the captain will infect (and therefore kill) everybody on the planet they're heading towards, as well as anyone leaving that planet for somewhere else — resulting in, potentially, a galaxy-wide pandemic. To stop this from happening, the first-mate kills the captain and sets his body on fire, then, realizing that he's probably already infected himself, leaps into the fire as well. In describing the final moments of the first-mate's life, the final sentence says, "He died the way he had lived, in confusion and pain, not really understanding anything."
  • The novels have always been darker, but the writers for the Eighth Doctor Adventures simply seem bent on destroying their hero. The Eighth Doctor is thrown in prison, tortured, emotionally abused and Catch 22'd to levels that would drive most people insane, and the better novels note the fact that yes, there are sequels. By time of the first "Gallifrey" arc his fear of confinement has reached phobia levels.
  • Past Doctor Adventure The Indestructible Man. The Doctor is shot and Jamie and Zoe are separated and spend months stranded on a dystopian Earth, each thinking the other is dead. Madness, grief and suicide attempts galore. Jamie's breakdown is particularly bad — when he finally meets the Doctor again, he believes he's an impostor and threatens to kill him.
  • In the PDA Illegal Alien, Ace is locked in a cell by the Nazis and talks to a man for a few minutes in the cell next to her. As the Nazis take him away to torture him to death, he tells her his name: Sid Napley. What's so bad about this is that he WAS innocent, but the Nazis tortured him anyway.
    • The Cybermen kidnapping loads of people, including children and the elderly and converting them into Cybermen is horrible. They even convert a goddamn baby.
  • ''The Shroud of Sorrow" is just a heartbreaking book, which is a given since the Doctor goes up against an alien that feeds on sadness and despair and picks the day after Kennedy was shot to feed on the Earth. The entire thing culminates in one of the saddest scenes in Doctor Who's history where the Doctor attends the funeral for the Brigadier. Over and over, in all his incarnations to date... Excuse me, I have something in my eye...
  • Seventh Doctor book Love and War, courtesy of the Doctor Who New Adventures line. It's not exactly a happy book to begin with, but the ending is what firmly puts it into tear-jerker territory. After a fungus-infested Jan (whom Ace was in a relationship with) regains enough willpower to blow up the Hoothi sphere, a greiving Ace puts two and two together. The Doctor knew that Jan was infected and counted on him going up to the sphere and sacrificing himself, even shouting out Jan's true name so that he'd regain enough free will to do it. He gave up Jan for the sake of the universe and didn't bother to tell Ace about it, and so she runs off screaming in tears. It isn't until the last minute that the Doctor realizes the emotional consequences of just what he has done and desperately tries to stop her from leaving, but to no avail, and she storms off a broken mess with all the Doctor being able to do is watch her go.
    • It gets worse; several books later Ace rejoins the TARDIS crew after spending years in the 26th century fighting the Daleks, and she's a hard-bitten Sociopathic Soldier who's convinced Violence Is the Only Option and is deeply resentful towards the Doctor. It takes a long, long time before the Doctor can even start to repair their friendship, and even then it's never quite the same between them...

  • As frightening as the Daleks are, their entire existence is a Tear Jerker, in a strange way. I mean, these are an entire species dedicated only to war, domination and destruction. They're convinced of their own supposed "superiority" and as such, they don't make friends, they don't have bonds or relationships with anyone else, they hate any "impure" Daleks which shows that even among their own kind, they aren't merciful and worst of all, they're specifically engineered to feel this way! Meaning that it is literally impossible for them to comprehend any other meaning in life beyond simple "extermination": they can't comprehend love, friendship, compassion, creativity or any other emotion that humanity and most other species feel. And that is freaking sad.
    • The Doctor sums up their existence very well in "Doomsday".
    "Sealed inside your casing, not feeling anything. Ever. From birth to death, locked inside a cold, metal cage, completely alone. And that explains your voice. No wonder you scream."
    • It can however go into some Heartwarming (as "heartwarming" it gets for Daleks anyway...) that Twelve saving Davros in "The Witch's Familiar" ended up actually instilling one thing in Daleks: Mercy. Considering Davros created the Daleks, there's a possibility they themselves have mercy.
  • The Doctor and the Master's relationship is frequently this, especially in Revival Who when the Doctor was alone except for the Master as The Last of His Kind. Ten is especially desperate to reform the Master, which is followed up with Twelve getting the closest of anyone to succeeding, as the Master - now Missy - travels with him for awhile. Missy did want to stand with the Doctor but wasn't able to, and the Master - driven mad once by the sound of drums - is apparently again driven to madness by a revelation about Gallifrey. With Thirteen, all their progress with the Master is lost and they are back to being enemies and worse - the Master himself has destroyed Gallifrey, once again driving a wedge between them.