The doctor says he can't leave because then nobody will be there to help them. Why doesn't the Papal mainframe just take over? Then the doctor can leave and not die.

  • The Papal Mainfram was already protecting Christmas even before the Doctor arrived though.
    – Saturn
    Dec 30, 2013 at 8:49
  • @Voldemort Nothing tangible was at stake until Handles translated the Mysterious Message. The détente was a very different kind of thing before the translation.
    – BESW
    Dec 30, 2013 at 9:53

2 Answers 2


The Doctor's presence makes the other armies cautious.

Remember, Tasha Lem admits that any of the armies could crack open the shield if they wanted to--but none wants to be first.

The Daleks alone could easily fry the world, Mainframe or not, but razing Trenzalore is not an option so long as the Doctor can summon the Time Lords with a single breath.

The instant the Doctor left, the Mainframe would be unable to stand against the Daleks and other armies for long. Trenzalore would have burnt long ago if the Doctor hadn't been there with his finger on the "mutually assured destruction" button.

  • But how would the doctor be able to tell if they were about to raze the world?
    – Beatrix
    Dec 30, 2013 at 6:05
  • 5
    @user20755 The burning and exploding would be a good tip-off.
    – BESW
    Dec 30, 2013 at 6:06
  • well, i mean i'm thinking more like big red button planet-go-boom kind of thing. Because even if there were signs of what was happening, it would be too late, right?
    – Beatrix
    Dec 30, 2013 at 6:08
  • It takes a single breath for the Doctor to summon the Time Lords. Not even the Daleks would be confident enough that he wouldn't be able to manage it. Remember, it's less about reality than about perception here.
    – BESW
    Dec 30, 2013 at 6:10
  • 1
    Much as Moffat keeps trying to explain thing to us, Doctor Who has a long tradition of ignoring continuity and logic whenever the story would be better without them. And sadly, often when it wouldn't.
    – BESW
    Dec 30, 2013 at 6:27

The Papal mainframe alone are incapable of fighting off the several forces that had gathered around the planet. They have limited resources and manpower. Also they were infiltrated by Daleks half way through the war. So... They were literally running out of resources and people. The Doctor was the catalyst that allowed the Papal mainframe to defend the town.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.