A really ‘Pond’ farewell

It’s September 30th and now begins the lull between doctor who’s mid-season finale and the Christmas special. Luckily for me, Merlin is filling the Saturday-night gap, although its the same as a good old who hurrah… but I digress. Boo, waiting!

I apologise for the over-used phrase as the title to this post, but I do like a pun and it is rather fitting. Until Asylum of the Daleks I’d never cried at a who episode (although in recent years I have become slightly more invested in the show than previously) so even though the words ‘heartbreaking’ and ‘tear jerking’ were thrown around a lot in the build-up too, I wasn’t really convinced. I mean, I got through Rose leaving unaffected, and Martha and Donna (as well as Ianto, Owen and Tosh in Torchwood) so why would now be any different. I was wrong.

I suppose the difference is time. Although Rose had two seasons herself, her seasons were with two different doctors, whereas eleven/Amy/Rory and to some extent River have been a real solid presence in the show for a long time. But here we are, their last episode shown and I was absolutely heartbroken.

Oh and it’s Earthshock all over again! (an episode I have only recently watched due to my age). Well, not quite Earthshock – Adric was a bit of a twat really – maybe more of a Hand of Fear. A combination of the two I suppose, (I should probably clarify. The love felt for Sarah Jane, combined with the shock of Adric’s death,) is the only way I can explain watching “The Angels Take Manhattan”.

The episode started with a creepy typewriter (which continued to be interspersed throughout the episode) and an American voice-over which didn’t actually sound fake (unlike that of A Town Called Mercy two episodes previous). This was followed by idiocy that is usually reserved for blonde cheerleaders in American horror films from a character who gets in a lift that mysteriously opened and then the angels ahh!

I bloody hate the weeping angels. They really are fantastic creatures and its the fear and the dread they create in me that genuinely makes me want to sleep with the lights on. Something fantastic about The Moff is that he knows people and emotions and he knows every so spectacularly how to provoke them.

This season has been a bit bad lets face it, not bad as in Love and Monsters bad, but just not as brilliant as I’d hoped (as someone put it on Facebook ‘Colin Baker syndrome’ i.e good doctor, bad writing) and the only two episodes that have been outstanding? The ones penned by Moffat of course. I do get furiously angry when people insult him, because its episodes like these that truly show why he’s fantastic. Rather than making the Ponds just go on their own accord, which throughout the season we’ve seen they can’t do, he coerced the audience into thinking they were in danger, and then safe again for a lovely blissful few minutes before… taking that blanket away.

It’s really the only way the Ponds could have gone for me. They love the doctor, and travelling with him and he’s been a part of all of Amy’s life. She spent her childhood waiting and she couldn’t hold down a job when offered safety from the Doctor and I would never have believed her just giving him up. And even if she did, she might then turn up later, which for Rose was a disaster.

I loved the way this episode went, ignoring the contradiction of the doctor hating endings when eleven himself has previously said “everything’s got to end sometime, otherwise nothing would ever get started” and ignoring the couple of times when nobody was looking at the bloody angels. I loved the Soundtrack, I loved the emotion of it all, and I loved the brilliant acting.

I adored the way River’s voice broke when the doctor shouted at her, the way The Doctor was so cute and excited about seeing River and how hopeless he is at being in love, and I love how we saw that Amy has changed, from the S5 girl in love with the mysterious raggedy man, to the S7 woman in love with her husband. While S5 and 6 were about Rory loving Amy more, S7 has truly shown their love is equal and that Amy is a more complex character than first assessed.

Basically, I am a ball of emotions. But at the same time – I can’t wait for the show to move on. What many people forget about Who, and what is so brilliant about it, is the integral part of it is change.

As the 50th anniversary approaches, it’s wonderful to be reminded of this fact. Change has happened and is still coming, and the show wouldn’t be the same without it. Pond’s I’ll miss you, but Oswin/Clara/Oswald/ a name probably not on this list, I’m ready for you, with open arms.

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2 responses to “A really ‘Pond’ farewell

  1. Great episode and a great storyline. Although I felt that the Ponds story was not concluded, I mean they live until they’re old, in the past. From the Doctor’s perspective they are gone, and he can’t get back, but some visual of them together, perhaps? Okay, this would dampen the goodbye, but surely something a bit less paradoxical than the Doctor telling Amelia about her adventures (explain that one Moffat, it would never work!). She’s a journalist, a newspaper clipping, maybe (yes, I’ve seen a mock-up example of that).
    I cried, but purely because of the emotion of the moment and not because they had gone. That works with Rose, who will continue to pop up, but with the final farewell of two characters? You get rid of Rory, leaving Amy to have her ‘Raggedy Doctor’ moment… I’m not Moffat-hating, but my opinion on his writing is really jumpy, it just left me (and us) again to ask questions.
    That said, it’s the only fault I have with the episode. River was fantastic, as always. Now I wish I could have seen their family outings.

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  2. I think they probably spent most of the budget on going to New York :p Probably didn’t have enough money to do another old-age death scene haha!

    And I thought he wasn’t telling her – I think he was just flying by to give her hope, as he couldn’t have told her could he? It’d be absurd… And also he already kind of told her in the big bang with the bit by her bedside?

    I think there was probably a lot to fit in, which is why I imagine it came off as jumpy to you? I got a sense that a lot of the angels stuff has been stuff Moff has been wanting to include since Blink…

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