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Tear Jerker / New Series Adventures: Engines of War

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This story is a major tear-inducer; it brutally justified why the War Doctor almost always travelled alone- companions die far more easily in wartime. And the Doctor is to the point where he lets people actively carry weapons onto the TARDIS.

  • The Doctor feels like becoming his war incarnation was a Senseless Sacrifice for failing to end the Time War.
  • Time Lord society has fallen away so badly that their system of power is a joke, and their Lord President Rassilon (who like The Master was only resurrected to help fight in the war), once heralded as the great hero and innovator of their civilization, believes the death of billions is alright if it means defeating the Daleks. Challenge him and you are automatically an enemy of the Time Lords. That's all the Doctor did to be considered their enemy. He worked with the Time Lords for nearly all of the war, but a single refusal of their demands was all it took to destroy that alliance.
    • Rassilon is terrifyingly tyrannical. Disagree with him to his face and get wiped clean from history. The rest of his followers are willing to discard the entire physical universe altogether as a last resort to stop the Time War and quantum lock those who don't approve of the sanction like Weeping Angels as monuments to their shame — or are too scared and subjugated by Rassilon to question him. Coupled with the above point, they effortlessly live up to Cass's views of the race, and reveal why she treated the Eighth Doctor so harshly. The Time Lords really have become as bad as Daleks.
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    • Rassilon's fall is really depressing if you've only ever seen him in the television series. He goes from a wise, though admittedly intimidating figure who actually helped the Doctor, to a complete monster. Makes one wonder if his resurrection at the hands of the other Time Lords unhinged him in some fashion. On the other hand, even in the classic series, there were suggestions that Rassilon wasn't quite the benevolent hero history made him out to be.
  • Daleks are actively killing humans and aliens as experiments to create superweapons. Or worse, turning them into Daleks.
  • Vice versa, Time Lords have tried to screw with the Dalek race's evolution in every conceivable alternate reality, only for it to have Gone Horribly Wrong on all counts. Cinder sees this as the universe declaring it practically wants Daleks.
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  • The Doctor has become so far removed from his namesake that the Daleks actually think about making him the ultimate Dalek. Which they call the "Predator Dalek". "Asylum of the Daleks" just got a lot more upsetting.
  • Cinder's backstory, the fact she was served the fate of the Mauve Shirt after seeming to have a positive effect on the War Doctor's personality, and how the Doctor had a chance to reverse her death, but had to pass it up for the greater good of the universe.
    • Worse, a Time Lord named Karlax murdered her in cold blood after getting a new lease on life through a regeneration and the Doctor anticipated a move like this, showing how far the Time Lords have fallen. And what does the Doctor do as an act of retribution? Demateralize the Time Lord into a circle of the nastiest Daleks out there at the time and let fate take its course. Yes - he sincerely lets the Daleks have a free kill after spending nearly every encounter with them trying to do the exact opposite.
  • Borusa's Heroic Sacrifice. A moment of Death Equals Redemption where he finally amended for his foolish quest toward immortality and got even with Rassilon for being painfully turned into a possibility engine.
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  • After Cinder dies, the Doctor takes great care to learn her real name so that she's remembered and honoured. This makes the Hostess's death in "Midnight" heartrending by retrospect.
  • Cinder's family wasn't just killed off, they were killed off in such a way that they had to be abandoned and left to rot in the spots where they were exterminated without proper burial, until nothing but dingy skeletons remained. The War Doctor makes a personal journey in his TARDIS to go and bury them with Cinder, erecting a proper grave for the whole family.
  • The ultimate clincher in this story? Cinder's death was the last straw for the War Doctor. Her sacrifice had such a profound impact on him, it made him declare "NO MORE." To be clear, Cinder getting killed caused the War Doctor to steal the supreme weapon of mass destruction - the Moment.


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