Everyone knows The Ultimate Enemy was an insanely hard
episode to follow.  Time travel is a
bitch, after all, but I’m here to tell you, I have an explanation!  And in order to illustrate this in the best
way possible…

Let’s examine this episode from Dan’s point of view.

From the very beginning… when he WAS Danny~

Okay, so, the CAT Test is coming up.  Danny is nervous and worried he might not do
well, he’s feeling under pressure and trying to study even though he has very
little time to do so.  His big sister is
super smart and TRYING to help, but he’s frustrated, obviously!‏

Then, one day out of the blue, a ghost named Box Lunch
appears and tries to kill him with no explanation.  She drops a weird medallion, and in the
scuffle, Danny somehow acquires the CAT test answers.  Hell yeah!‏
He thinks seriously about cheating.
It’s a big temptation, after all.

But then, another attack comes from Skulktech.  Danny still has no idea why these ghosts are
after him, but they keep talking about another “Phantom."‏  Sam and Tucker help him defeat Skulktech,
they teleport to Clockwork’s lair, meet Clockwork…

It’s literally all the same from Danny’s POV.‏  All the way from the beginning, even the
ghostly wail

and coming back to kick his evil older self’s butt‏.

He defeats his older self, captures him, and turns around to
see his family about to be blown up.  He
runs, but he can’t go ghost!  

He falls, and the restaurant explodes.‏

Emergency teams arrive on the scene soon after.  Danny rambles to them about what really
happened, but no one believes him about the ghost, or the timeline, and when he
opens the can to show them, Dan has disappeared without a trace.‏

Danny is left completely alone, with this haunting not-quite
knowledge in his brain that no one else believes…‏

So, he goes to the only person left on the planet who could
hope to understand his situation; Vlad Masters.
Unfortunately, Vlad doesn’t believe him either, thinking he’s suffering
from post-traumatic stress, like all the others.  Danny eventually falls into depression, and
anger, and wants all of it to just go away.
He asks Vlad if there’s any way to do that.

And Vlad says – with regret – yes, there is.‏

In the back of his mind, Danny suspects what might
happen.  But he is in serious
depression.  At this point – when people
are telling him left and right he was just dreaming – he can’t even think
about that anymore.  His mind was already
wrecked, this just destroys him further.
He doesn’t care. 

He just wants the hurt to go away.

He’s put under anesthesia, and Vlad rips out Danny Phantom
from Fenton.  Phantom is furious that no
one believed his story and sent him into depression, and rips Vlad apart too.  "I’ll show them,” he thinks.  "I’ll show them all.“

Phantom takes Plasmius, and they fuse, FINALLY forming that
irrevocable PROOF that Danny needed to show everyone that the killer of his
family DID exist.  “I’m NOT crazy,
LOOK!  HE’S REAL!  I’m… I’m real… wait, not… not yet…”

There’s still that little bit of human weakness quivering in
the corner.‏  That’s what his problem is…
that delicate little bag of flesh that represents all the pain he’s been put
through.  All his depression.  All his horrible weakness.  His only fault…

“…Squash it.  Snuff it
out.”‏

And so he does, now with no connection to humanity to hold
him back.‏

Once that’s done, he feels… AMAZING.  He doesn’t hurt anymore.  He feels EMPOWERED.  Invincible.
So invincible he is DRUNK on the power, and now?  Corrupted by Vlad’s evil side?  He has nothing to stop him from showing that
power to the world.‏

And off he goes to start his ten-year reign of terror.  For those of you coming from the TUE
chronology review, this is how Bad End would be achieved.
(not done with this yet though, so yeah)

HOWEVER‏.  

The story isn’t over yet.‏

Soon enough, by using his new double-helping of brains and
deduction of reasoning, Danny figures out that his existence is LITERALLY a
paradox.  In order to ensure that he goes
through the exact same process, he has to REENACT it, down to the final act.  After all, under normal circumstances, it
would have been impossible for all these different elements of the “accident”
to come together without interference from an outside force; AKA Dan.  So, he keeps his Ghostly Wail a secret,
training by himself, until he hits the ten-year anniversary of his turning.

And then, it’s open season.

He unleashes the Ghostly Wail on Amity Park, and sets the
ball rolling.‏

The Observants, finally, are forced to take action.  They call Clockwork.  They tell him "in order to save the
future, Danny Phantom must perish.”

‎Meanwhile, from Dan’s POV, he’s just playing around in the
wreckage of Amity Park, making noise and waiting for his past self to show up
due to the thing that he remembers from 10 years ago.  It could’ve been days or WEEKS before Danny,
Sam, and Tucker finally show up, but eventually, they do.

And when they do, Dan vows to reenact this whole horrible
play the exact same way it happened.
Cheating on the CAT,

(You’ll notice the only time he wasn’t there as a kid to
witness a crucial event, was the scene when he – as Dan – was alone with Jazz,
which is the first time he admits to having not known something from this
timeline.)

trapping Danny’s friends, family, and Lancer,

and even the fight with Danny, where he knew he was
defeated, he says his lines with a bit of real fear mixed in because obviously
he’s about to get very hurt…

…and finally he is sucked into the thermos, just how he
remembers it happened.  He waits to
reappear back in HIS era, LAUGHING as he does…

Only, he didn’t count on one thing.‏

CLOCKWORK interfering on his young self’s behalf.‏

Yeah, CW stole that.
Danny doesn’t have it when it appears in the CAT Testing room.

Soon, Dan will come to realize that he’s trapped in a
thermos and pulled out of time, not back in his own era like he assumed he had
disappeared to after the explosion.  DAN
– as a CHILD – remembers trying to show people what was inside of the thermos
right now!  But no, he’s not back in his
era.  He’s a prisoner of Clockwork.  And now, somewhere on the edges of the
multiverse, his future is lying in shreds, pulverized by the very paradox of
his existence.

He has no era.

Not anymore.

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