The first novel in the new Doctor Who multimedia story Time Lord Victorious opens with a grim note by having the Tenth Doctor commit an act of genocide against death itself.
The many incarnations of the hero have all faced this decision before, of course, to determine the fate of opposing races across the cosmos, which usually ends with the Last of the Time Lords choosing one over the other. After all, very rarely can a Doctor preserve the lives of both sides like the 12th did in “The Zygon Inversion,” and that was basically one of his best days. Now, the new story arc Time Lord Victorious, which will be told through different mediums, has once again put the Doctor in an impossible situation.
Remember “Genesis of the Daleks,” the classic story where the Time Lord traveled back in time to the birthplace of the Daleks and grappled with the choice of annihilating them there and then to avoid further bloodshed for the universe? Well, in that instance, the Doctor decided to spare the Daleks. But the recent Big Finish audio story, “Out of Time,” which serves as a prequel to Time Lord Victorious, features a scene where the 10th meets up with Tom Baker’s 4th Doctor and scolds him for saving the Daleks.
Coming out of “The Waters of Mars” episode, it seems that the Tenth is in a dark place, following the same logic that led to him destroying both his people and the Daleks in the Last Great Time War. Only now, the first novel in Time Lord Victorious, titled “The Knight, the Fool, and the Dead,” shows him committing another act of genocide, but this time against creation itself.
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Over the course of the novel, David Tennant’s 10th travels back to when the universe was young, meeting an immortal alien race called the Kotturuh. It’s then revealed that they were the ones who introduced the concept of death to creation. Learning this great secret, the Doctor turns their power against them, and their entire race is wiped out of existence.
While the Kotturuh are hardly portrayed as paragons of virtue, this decision will have massive repercussions for the cosmos. In fact, the new Doctor Who novel ends on a terrifying note, where two past incarnations of the Doctor arrive to stop him from destroying death. With creation itself now at stake, the 8th, the 9th, and the 10th will have to wage war over the nexus of death to preserve the world.
Time Lord Victorious promised to show the Doctor losing it again at the cost of the universe, and it seems that the creators are willing to deliver on that promise by pulling out all the big stops in terms of epicness and scale.