The most recent two episodes - Magician's Apprentice and Witches Familiar. Right at the start, the Doctor:

is having a party because he's going to die, and has sent his confessional dial to Missy. Why? (Or when?) It doesn't seem that he's got any reason to think he's dying? Do we have any further information when he sent that dial, and whether it was 'real' or if he was trying to manipulate Missy? And if it was real, what caused him to send it in the first place?

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    I think there's a decent enough chance that this may be expanded upon in future episodes of season 9, given the way that episode 2 ended.
    – nhgrif
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 12:32
  • I think there's a bunch of unexplaineds that I hope are used as "Checkov's gun" by the end of the series. This one just seemed particularly inexplicable. (Unless it was closing the loop retroactively)
    – Sobrique
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 12:33
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    did he really think he was going to die? or did he send Missy his will to make her follow him to ensure he wouldn't die? mind blown
    – KutuluMike
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 13:11
  • Well, I as wondering that too. Because he does pop off to 'do the only think I can to save my friends' afterwards. We see part of that, but not necessarily all.
    – Sobrique
    Commented Sep 28, 2015 at 13:17

1 Answer 1


Because he knew he was walking into a trap.

But his shame over his part in Davros' beginnings wouldn't allow him to refuse. His bravado to their eyestalks notwithstanding, the Doctor is still intimidated by the Daleks. He knows that Davros is looking for him because of the flash we see of him on Karn. Unless other information comes to light, my personal understanding of the timeline is that he had been following the snake-man, heard the summons while on Karn, and then sent the confession disc off and threw his party. I don't think he expected Missy to snag Clara and hunt him down. As Clara said, he wasn't assuming he'd win.

It's the same behavior we saw from Ten between Waters of Mars and The End of Time, and from Eleven between Closing Time and The Wedding of River Song: the Doctor is given reason to believe that his time is up, but he delays it as long as possible in order to have some fun, until something happens that forces him to understand that he can't put it off any longer.

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