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Doctor Who: Flux's Avatar Of Time Explained

Contains spoilers for "Doctor Who: Flux" Episode 6, "The Vanquishers"

Throughout its decades-long tenure, "Doctor Who" has made a point of treating time like a highly complex, yet perfectly understandable and even somewhat malleable force of nature. Sure, there are "fixed points in time," and every time the Doctor tries to explain the intricacies of the flow of time to a layman, they tend to revert to clumsy analogies like "big ball of wibbly wobbly, timey wimey stuff." Still, at the end of the day, time is basically a primal thing that the Time Lords can navigate, but virtually everyone else is just in for the ride. 

Well, that's how things used to be, anyway. Going into "Doctor Who: Flux," the 13th incarnation of the Doctor (Jodie Whittaker) is not a particularly happy camper. She's still dealing with the news that she's the mysterious Timeless Child, when an entity known as Swarm (Sam Spruell) and the mysterious Flux draw her and her companions Yaz and Dan (Mandip Gill and John Bishop) in a brand new adventure that involves enemies both old and new ... along with a revelation that just completely changed the show's very concept of time. Let's take a closer look at "Doctor Who: Flux's" Avatar of Time. 

Time is up to no good, and looks oddly familiar

As "Doctor Who: Flux" Episode 6, "The Vanquishers," reveals, time in "Doctor Who" isn't quite as innocent as viewers have been led to believe. Instead, Time is a living thing, and not a particularly nice one. On one hand, it has plenty of reason to be antagonistic, considering that the Doctor — as the Timeless Child — was apparently instrumental in imprisoning it, and giving the Time Lords their time-conquering powers. On the other, the Doctor had plenty of reason to do so, considering that this version of Time is a force of entropy and destruction, as opposed to pretty much everything that the Doctor has historically represented.

As it stands, Time is restrained by the Temple of Atropos on the incredibly appropriately named planet of Time, and doesn't appear to have a form of its own, using the likenesses of Swarm and the 13th Doctor instead. Should this terrifying, evidently sentient force be unleashed, its destructive clouds of entropy could erase everything that exists. In other words, unless there are some serious smoke-and-mirrors shenanigans at play, "Doctor Who: Flux" just introduced the most powerful and terrifying villain that the show has ever seen ... and considering that Jodie Whittaker will soon become the latest Doctor to leave the role behind, it seems incredibly unlikely that the 13th Doctor will survive the ordeals that await her in the upcoming three special episodes.