In the episode "The Big Bang" the TARDIS is blown up by the Silence to kill the Doctor presumably.

But why would that result in the whole universe ceasing to exist? How can a single TARDIS contain that much power to destroy time itself, and why was that specific day so important? The 26th of June 2010, the day that Amy gets married. Why does the TARDIS have to blow up exactly then?

And why is that the base code of the universe?

  • Well perhaps time and space are linked, known particularly as space-time. This is beacuse they must co-exist? I clearly don't have the answer to this question. Maybe this question should feature in the TV show, Whovians. The following link is quite related, nonetheless: scifi.stackexchange.com/questions/11169/…
    – Mr Pie
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 15:34
  • I'm mostly talking about how a tardis could even blow up all of space-time. even if you tried to get it to do that, you'd think it'd be harder to erase the whole bloody universe.
    – Virgilius
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 15:47
  • Hahah. Well unfortunately, I have no idea, but I will try doing some research and seeing what I can find :) ..... I found something: denofgeek.com/tv/doctor-who/25432/…
    – Mr Pie
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 15:49
  • I think they just had the idea of the universe exploding for the finale and just wrote in a nonsensical way for it to happen. even moffat probably doesn't know.
    – Virgilius
    Commented Feb 25, 2018 at 16:03
  • 1
    @Virgilius: “I think they just had the idea of the universe exploding for the finale and just wrote in a nonsensical way for it to happen.” — nonsensical compared to what? Compared to whether a real Tardis could blow up the universe? Commented Feb 26, 2018 at 20:40

2 Answers 2


There are a number of possible ways a faulty time machine could destroy a universe. These can be catalogued under three headings:

1) preventing it retroactively, this is the opposite of a boot-strap paradox as instead of part of a universe causing itself (and the universe it is in), part of a universe anulls itself (and the universe it is in). Consider Dirac's hypothesis of the universe as a particle moving forward and backward in time, interacting with itself until all matter is woven from it - then blow that particle up, before it interacts with itself the first time. [Not in Doctor Who, but in other science fiction Barrington Bayley has a short-story in which this happens].

2) blowing all of it up at once, for example in Douglas Adam's unmade Doctor Who film "Doctor Who and the Krikkitmen" [recently novelised by James Goss], and the ultimate weapon works by opening space-time conduits between the cores of all suns causing simultaneous hypernovae. As the destruction of the TARDIS explicitly causes the cracks in the universe, one hypothesis would be that they link suns in such a way.

3) Affecting space-time itself. A hypotheis explained here: https://cosmosmagazine.com/physics/vacuum-decay-ultimate-catastrophe suggests that if our universe is of a certain kind, specific interactions could collapse the vaccuum itself. Such an effect would propogate at apparent faster than light speeds and would conceivably unravel space-time.

None of the above is expressly stated within the fiction, but all are possible without postulating infinite energies within the TARDIS itself.

Additionally, although this is not true in Doctor Who, in which time travel exists as a mature technology, Larry Niven has hypotheised that all universes in which time travel is possible destroy themselves through cumulative paradoxes leaving only those universes in which time travel is impossible.

  • "Doctor Who and the Krikkitmen" wasn't going to be a film, it was a regular serial. Later adapted into Life the Universe and Everything.
    – OrangeDog
    Commented Jul 5, 2019 at 12:48

I got this from Wikipedia I think it will answer your question completely.


The extrapolator and the TARDIS begin to rip open the Rift.

The extrapolater is like a surf board in the TARDIS.

The tribophysical waveform macro-kinetic extrapolator — or extrapolator to "save time" — was a long, flat device. It could be ridden like a surfboard. It would wrap the user in a protective bubble, enabling them to ride the energy from a vast explosion.

So maybe the reverse would cause an explosion through time that would decimate reality.

In "Boom Town", the Ninth Doctor refers to the Rift in the plural, indicating that there are others elsewhere. In series 3 episode "The Sound of Drums" (2007), the Master (John Simm) also refers to the Doctor sealing the rift at the heart of the Medusa Cascade, deep in space. The Daleks later planned to make use of this rift in spreading their Reality Bomb ("Journey's End", 2008). When explaining the prevalence of foresight abilities in Pompeii, the Doctor explains Mount Vesuvius temporarily opened a Rift in time and space, which accounts for this, in the episode "The Fires of Pompeii" (2008). In the series 6 episode "The Doctor's Wife" (2011), the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) travels through a time rift to a location "outside" the universe. He comments that his TARDIS should refuel by virtue of being exposed, as with the Cardiff rift, to temporal energies.

  • "the reverse" of what?
    – OrangeDog
    Commented Jul 5, 2019 at 12:50

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