Doctor Who: The Girl Who Waited – Episode Review

It’s standard fare in a Doctor Who tale when a companion gets separated from The Doctor and consequently has to be rescued. Those stories are almost universally filler episodes and since 2005, none have been particularly riveting.

The Girl Who Waited should have been one of those forgettable stand-alone episodes of Who. However, some deft storytelling from Tom McCrea uses a tired old trope to look at The Doctor’s relationship with his companions when he fails and it comes under serious stress.

When they accidentally land on a planet that’s  under quarantine, Amy gets separated from The Doctor and Rory and quarantined in a different time stream. It’s actually a fantastic concept – people under quarantine are held in compressed time, allowing them to live out their lives where ordinarily they’d be dead within 24 hours. Not only is the quarantine facility an intriguing concept, but it provides us with two Amy Ponds and a fantastic culture clash when the eventually meet!

Initially, Amy is full of her usual faith that Rory and The Doctor will show up to rescue her. However, the premise of The Girl Who Waited is to show us what happens when The Doctor lets her down. And cruelly, Amy is made to wait for 36 years for her heroes to arrive.

Now, technically, it’s not The Doctor’s fault, but the aged version of Amy doesn’t know that. And over the years she becomes increasingly bitter that she was left behind. When Rory eventually catches up with her, it’s a much harder version of Amy that he encounters. She hits out at the Time Lord in the most unambiguous way:

In fact I think I can now definitely say, I hate him. I hate The Doctor. I hate him more than I’ve ever hated anything in my entire life.

Were Karen Gillan a better actress, I think she could’ve delivered her lines with a more savage, unhinged tone. She’s been alone for 36 years, that’s bound to hit the psyche pretty hard, right? More spitting and venom, less ‘cold’ monotone. But still, to see Amy cold and bitter and hating The Doctor for abandoning her is a fantastic thing. He’d already made her wait 14 years as a girl, and now it’s 36 years.

Though the older version of Amy initially refuses to be ‘saved’, she’s talked around by her younger self. But Rory is faced with the reality of either saving the older Amy and making the younger Amy wait 36 years to be rescued, or saving the younger Amy and wiping out the 36 years the older Amy was alone. It’s a tad confusing, but a rich enough concept. Either way, Older Amy decides she wants to be saved as well.

That’s right: two Amy’s in the TARDIS. As The Doctor says to Rory: “Hey, it’s your marriage!”

And in the true spirit of the last two years of Doctor Who, concepts arise which don’t get neatly tied up by the end of the episode. The Doctor lies. He tells his companions that he can rig a paradox to allow both Amys to inhabit the same space. But when the Amys are united, he locks the older version out, causing Rory’s heart to break in choosing between the two. It’s actually Arthur Darvill who owns the Doctor-hating as he yells at the Time Lord that he doesn’t want to travel with him if he’s so reckless. When he rages that The Doctor is making Rory be like him, it’s quite compelling. And though the companions survived the episode, it’s probably not the end of that particular theme for these companions.

The Girl Who Waited – in short, it was an episode that explored some unusually deep themes, and gave Rory and Amy a chance to shine for once. Gillan and Darvill both had some touching scenes, including Gillan’s old and young Amy reminiscing over their shared past. Matt Smith did have his moment to shine as well, at the end of the episode, when The Doctor actually looked quite wretched after lying to Rory. For a split second, as Amy asked where her older counterpart was, The Doctor looked distinctly dislikeable. Dirty liar.

Interesting leftovers:

  • Anyone notice that The Doctor said that knowing your future can enable you to change it, “especially if you’re bloody minded, contradictory and completely unpredictable.” I thought this might be interesting as we approach the series finale in just three episodes time…
  • Amy made her own sonic screwdriver? Does anyone want to explain that one to me? How did she get so intelligent that she knows how to assemble a sonic device from spare parts lying around a quarantine facility? I didn’t know she was that technically gifted.
  • On the other hand, Amy’s scene where she cut down a bunch of handbots was pretty cool, wasn’t it? Brought back shades of River Song fighting at Demon’s Run, and Karen Gillan was quite convincing battling the robots.

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  1. pirho

    Bit of an oddball Episode, right off the bat everyone starts panicking right off the bat when they get separated.  Interesting job on the makeup, 36 years?  And on that same note, anyone else notice that they have toned down her sexy outfits and went for the more traditional look which in turn, I think makes her look even better.

    Interesting how Rory got mad at Doctor made me think of what it was that River told the him in AGMGTW, he turns his companions into his weapons.  this is why they all wind up leaving him, from Susan, to Sarah Jane, Tegan and Martha.

      1. pirho

        You didn’t find it a bit lacking as far as the plot line?  And what about the River story line?  Although a humorous episode it needed more substance.

        1. Emperor Gregor

          I think that’s one of the reasons I quite like the episode. It concentrates on the character development and less on making them jump through plot hoops. It’s one of the reasons I like the River story arc. It is just that. An arc. The classic series used to have only half an hour episodes but they ran for 6 weeks or so, making a three hour story line. In just an hour you either get plot or character. We need more double episodes.

          And I’m getting awfully tired of watching Rory and Amy run up and down a variety of corridors as “plot”. It’s as if Moffat has just one plotline up his sleeve and he has to ring as many changes as he can.

          How many episodes in this current series is it now that Amy and Rory have run up and down corridor for nearly the whole time in the name of “tension”. Three? Four? I know that “running with the doctor” is becoming a sort of trade mark, but can’t Moffat find a more original way of trapping them? Because on reflection that’s all most people do most of the time – run down some sort of corridor – connecting corridors on Mars, or the endless corridors of the Tardis to name just two in the last series.

          I’m actually waiting for the end of this series with bated breath just to get a decent storyline again with time spent not running but slowing up a bit to develop relationships.

          Didn’t think I’d say it with Dr Who but I’m actually getting Bored.


  2. silveredtears

    To me this episode ending was very familiar. Using the older Amy to cross her own timeline to save her old self and undoing everything she achieved in the episode for their world to be back to normal? Donna anyone?

  3. sgreco1970

    This was at least better than the first 2 episodes. I particularly liked the surrealist element to the visual design, imo they could have even taken it farther.

    My only concern as stories like these continue is; why really WOULD amy and rory bother with the doctor any more? He has yet to really enrich their lives, he’s in many ways screwed them up. Not the least way was the loss of raising their own baby.

    I dunno about you, but I need to see rory and amy rewarded in some way that makes them feel it was all worth it; participate in some more meaningful way towards saving lives maybe, or I dont know -but as it stands now they really should just storm out of the tardis and tell him to bog off whence he came.

    1. Emperor Gregor

      Why do Amy and Rory stay? He’s promised he’ll find their baby and they aren’t going anywhere until he does.

      What I find unbelievable is Amy and Rory’s behaviour. You’d think they were looking for a lost puppy, hoping it’ll turn up, not a little baby who’s going to be tortured in that house. Every so often they drop in the subject of the baby just to make sure the viewers don’t forget, but if it were me I’d be pretty focussed. I wouldn’t stop off for a couple of adventures.

      And this week, they finally left. Sans puppy. Sorry, baby. Too much plot and not enough emotional development, I think. They’ve given us all this emotional back story and then put it on the back burner.

      1. pirho

        True, they gave up looking for River, and just accepted the fate, there was no real emotion involved.  Perhaps it was because Amy didn’t know she was expecting until the very end, and by then its like, Oh by the way your having a baby.  There was no emotional time between the mother and the baby, until after the baby was born, and even then was that the realy baby the whole time?  We have to wonder, at what point was Mel really taken away from her?  The whole story arc left me a bit bewildered.  They dropped these subtle hints all over, and then end it with a big stinker.

  4. pirho

    “Every time the Doctor gets pal-ly with someone I have this overwhelming urge to notify their next-of-kin.”  It came around to him again.  But this time does the Doctor understand what River was telling him?

    Also did anyone else catch the look on his face when he opened door #11?

    1. Gerard McGarry

      This is as good a place as any – sorry for the lack of Doctor Who review this week folks – I was hiking up Ben Nevis on Saturday and only just got home yesterday. The big question is…do we review the last ep, or just wait until next Saturday?

    2. Emperor Gregor

      I must watch again. Was young Amy in that room, I wonder and his current fear is letting her down? But that room wanted something much longer term, much deeper. I’d have thought a Dalek at least. That’s his big fear, isn’t it, or at least his great hate. That or himself. If he saw himself in there, I wonder which incarnation. Eccleston. He killed the Time Lords didn’t he. 

      1. pirho

        Yeah, young Amy was in it, sitting there waiting for him as she always was.  It was cool the way he had to let her down to disapoint her in order to save him, and the minute he did, he had to cut her loose.  He said it was because he didn’t want them to die, but if you listen he also said its because he needs people to admire him, to look up to him (basically stroking his ego).

  5. pirho

    looking back on the past episodes of Dr Who, and I must say that the story lines for Tennant, were much better than the ones they have had for Smith.



    1. Emperor Gregor

      The pace varied, and slowed up now and then to give us some emotional development, so we learned a lot about the Doctor as the episodes. Like he’d killed all the Time Lords, felt guilty, was homesick, lonely, and wanted to save the Master. Like at the end of Gridlock, when Martha sat down and refused to move until the Doctor told her about his world and what had gone wrong.

      There isn’t TIME for that in these episodes. Too many corridors.

      And, yes, better scripts with Tennant. And I do rather wonder if that’s partly because he was the better actor and he could carry the emotional arcs. Or it might be that Rose, Donna and Martha interacted better with the Doctor. Maybe that’s why I like River so much. Smith wakes up when she comes on board. 

      1. pirho

        Excellant point Emperor.  I think Tennant was a much better actor then smith.  His supporting cast were also better at, well supporting him, then Amy and Rory.  Anyone of them at any point could stand on thier own with out his help. (in fact they all have at one point or another)  Can’t really say the same for Smiths compainions.

  6. Emperor Gregor

    Another plot line they’ve set up and got everyone wondering about then abandoned is that woman played by Clare Bloom who appeared when Tennant copped it. I thought we’d see more of that plot development but that’s another dead end. She was clearly important to the Doctor – he was to her, after all. Why have we not seen that loose end tied up nicely with pink ribbon and a big bow?

    Speaking of bows – wasn’t he wearing a black bow tie this week?

  7. Emperor Gregor

    The final episode is when the doctor goes to meet his certain death and things don’t turn out as well as he expected.

    That’s the 1103 yr old doctor. But they set out with 909 or so and they haven’t been travelling for four or five years. 

    Is that why they got rid of Rory and Amy?

    Because they have to switch the doctors if he’s to be 1103 and die.

    Is 1103 the one going to meet the star of the Lodger (forget his name, it’s late)?

  8. The Time Lord Victorious

    pirho, I think the Doctor saw himself when he opened door 11. Regardless of whether it was what he feared or what he believed in, it could have been both or either. We know the Doctor hates himself and has a very dark perception of himself (a la The Dream Lord), but we also know he believes in himself…thinking that only he can save the universe. He even admits it in The God Complex (well, the title sort of gives it away!), telling Amy that he is vain and wants to be adored. I don’t think that was one of his ‘clever lies’ to free Amy from the minotaur, I think he really meant that. It is true…all the Doctors have am arrogance to them, but Smith’s I feel has it reaaaal bad. Regenerating out of the Time Lord Victorious did something very bad for the Doctor’s ego, and we’re starting to see it now.

    1. pirho

      Wonder what Tennant’s dark fear would have been?  The Time Lords returning?  Disappointing his mother?  Finding out that Rassilon was his father?  “Doctor, I am your father!” 

      1. Emperor Gregor

        Doctor I am your father. LOL

        He felt guilt and didn’t see the possibility of absolution. A room full of all the people he failed to save. 

        And I don’t believe the storyline that he leaves devastation in his wake. That’s Smith’s long dark night of the soul because of Amy and Rory’s baby, and River telling him that. I think she has her own agenda for that, too. The hints are that she has one last big secret. 

  9. Emperor Gregor

    Amy has one big secret she hasn’t told Smith yet so it has to be something for her return next season. It ought to be something pretty big. I think she ought to be the Master in disguise or something.


      1. Emperor Gregor

        I like that one. I remember the pounding in the head line, but missed the implications. 

        I still feel either Amy or Rory ought to be a Time Lord. The whole River Song story arc hinges on the fact that they conceived a baby inside the Tardis which could then be raised to kill the Doctor. That implies that the Silence knew, in advance, where to get such a baby and set the whole thing up very carefully. I suppose if they have access to the future they would know River happened to have Time Lord qualities to her genes they could utilise to they altered history to abduct the baby and use it as a weapon.

        I hate co-incidences in a story plot. Much stronger story line if one of them really is a Time Lord in hiding and that the house is a Tardis.

        Goodness, that would mean that the Doctor marries the master’s daughter!

        1. The Time Lord Victorious

          I’ve always thought the best twist ever would be that the person in the astronaut suit was The Master’s and Lucy Saxon’s child. It would be so WTF and left field that you kind of couldn’t argue with it! Haha. But then we could have an episode titled ‘The Master’s Daughter’ and it would be too awesome for words. (Really I just want John Simm back.)

          But there does need to be some other Time Lord connection. In The Lodger, The Doctor said someone was trying to build a TARDIS. When he springs Amy from The Silence’s grip in Day Of The Moon, he references the machine in The Lodger, saying they are very similar. So, The Silence seem to be connected to machine in The Lodger, which is simlar to a TARDIS. How do The Silence know about TARDISes or building one unless they have some connection to the Time Lords?

  10. pirho

    Interesting notion, but we havent seen any hints of that.  I know there is one more episode with “Mels” in it 2 episodes in total left for the season (not including the X-mas special)  I hope they pull out allt eh stops, this season is getting to be a real downer.

  11. Emperor Gregor


    Yes, Mels is back, and thinking about it, she’s the one in the space suit. I wonder if the Silents can time travel, or have humans in the future who can time travel. If Mels fails to kill the Doctor it’s logical she’ll try again in another time stream if the Silents can get a message back to her earlier time line. I’m working on the assumption that River/Mels can’t cross her own time line and travel back herself, so that an earlier version of herself has to try to kill the Doctor. And succeeds, one assumes, if the miniaturised people’s database has her on record as the person who kills the Doctor.


  12. Emperor Gregor

    One version of the story line emphasises how the Doctor leaves destruction in his wake and gets other people to kill for him. I don’t buy into that. He always turns up when there’s an already existing mess and sorts it out. We did get to see one instance, on the game station, where he leaves and afterwards his intervention makes things worse but generally speaking I’d say he always leaves worlds better places. That’s consistent with his death record – the biggest war criminal of all kills the Doctor. Therefore he must have been seen as a Hero, capital H. River does, of course, say that he is being seen not as a healer but a great warrior and wants him to change direction. And we’ve seen he has a god complex, thinking he must always be saving people. Which can make you arrogant but not a mass murderer. And for that, Tennant already saw that the Time Lord Victorious was wrong and stopped.

    I don’t think the Doctor does have a god complex. I think he has a guilt complex. He killed all the Time Lords who were planning to end the universe. Amy once said he needs to be forgiven. I think he’s trying to atone for that act, and goes round saving people to do it. And I suppose to give his life some meaning. If you’re 909/1103 then you constantly need to look for new stimulus, and even that must get tedious after a while, and you “see everything turn to dust”. Tennant said you forget because you must. He leaves people because they grow old and he doesn’t. They die or get killed and he regenerates. A taste of his life is more than most could ever manage, I should think, and the Doctor won’t want to watch companions grow old in front of him.

    He knows that won’t happen with River because he’s seen her die, and knows the exact date, and her age. It’ll hurt to see her for the last time, but he doesn’t have to see her die (Ten does that and doesn’t have to live with the significance of it).

    Do you think he knows Rory and Amy’s futures too? That he popped in to find out?Or would it hurt too much? 

    1. sgreco1970

      well, depending on what his name actually turns out to be, it could be very important.

      what if his name is Rassilon?

      But after seeing how poorly handled the big questions from episode one were handled in episode 12 I doubt the payoff will be any good.

      Im personally very disappointed. The second half of this season was terrible. I hope Moffat hands this over to a talented writer – this season could have been the best yet.

  13. The Time Lord Victorious

    I agree with greco. I am not impressed at all. Really? The tesilator (sp?)? Pulling out the ganger Doctor would have been way better. It was a very sloppy, behind-the-back plot twist that left me really unsatisfied.

    I think part of it is that I’m really tired of River Song. So finally we’re done with her trying to kill The Doctor (right?)…maybe we can get back to a more interesting story arc. Like…why did the TARDIS explode in series 5? We still don’t know that. I’m guessing now it has something to do with the Fall of the Eleventh or whatever new story arc Moffat has set up for himself…

    Moffat, you need to work a lot harder. 

    1. Emperor Gregor

      Two things at least, I think.

      Firstly a lot of people feel Moffat over hyped the story arc then didn’t deliver a spectacular pay off.

      Secondly, too many people didn’t like the stand alone story lines. Personally, I find that even at about an hour, with the faster pace of story telling, some of the stand alone stories still needed more than one episode to develop the story arc properly, and probably a better script editor as well. Didn’t Moffat say he does that. And write some of the episodes. And create and write Sherlock.

      Spreading himself too thin methinks. He needs to delegate more.

    2. sgreco1970

      im not tired of River Song, Im tired of what she’s become -a confusing, flimsy 2 dimensional piece of fluff. She was once fascinating. man he really dropped the ball on this series. Maybe THIS second half of the series is why there’s only going to be 4 mini movies next year? I just dont get it. All the revamping, the upgrade in visual quality, the specials designed to catch people up with the storyline, an american preamble before the credits to keep newcomers up to speed, and all that hype after Astronaut –and then he threw it all away. Im nonplussed.

      1. pirho

        Please don’t tell me they are going the way of Torchwood style episodes.  I will be very upset.


        As for the visual effects, I think it may be because of budgetary reasons.  They have a fixed amount to spend, and its use it or loose it.  So pull out all the stops for the last few episodes.

    1. Emperor Gregor

      Didn’t he say that he hadn’t realised that “it was his silence, his death”. He doesn’t know why he has to die. He presumably knows he own name (he told it to River after all). He must know what significance that has – that he’s Omega, or Rassilon or something else. But he doesn’t know why he has to die. So that means he doesn’t know that this inner meaning is in conflict with the Silence and all they stand for. Or why.  He doesn’t know that speaking his name will cause the end of either the universe or the end of his life. I’ve always favoured the end of his life. That ties in with Shakespeare Code – it gives people power over you and they can kill you.

      The interesting part of the riddle is that it’s the oldest question in the universe. The first question.  We’ve seen him go forward to the furthest reaches of the end of the universe (where he met the Master), and to the end of the earth (where he met Cassandra). I presume he also has to go to the beginning of the universe as well, or at least to the beginning of sentient life in it. It’s arranged so that no-one can speak his name for fear of silence falling for him ie he’ll die. The future him is going to do that because he doesn’t know the meaning of “silence will fall” in the present.

      None of which explains why the Silence has been in unremitting war with him since the beginning of time or why they want to kill him.

      But in the Silence, Moffat has certainly created a new long-running enemy for the Doctor – a private war where he isn’t saving the universe or mankind every other week.


      1. pirho

        He is not Rassilon or Omega, we say Rassilon at the end of the 10th Doctor, if it was Rasilon he would be trapped with the rest of them.  He isn’t Omega, due to that fact that we have seen and he has battled Omega on many occasion and he is trapped in the Anti-Matter universe.  We do know that he is the Valyard, and that the Valyard is not so much a nice guy.  With the stupid things that Moffat comes up with I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if it turns out that to speak the ture name of a time lord undoes creation itself.  Like from Warlock, knowng the true name of God and speaking it backwards.

        1. Emperor Gregor

          I agree about Rassilon. Apart from anything else if he’s Rassilon he crossed his own time line when Ten died.

          Speaking the name of a time lord can’t undo creation because he’s told his name to River. There is only one time he could possibly tell her his name, and we haven’t seen it yet. So that’s another question hanging in the balance.

          Others include:

          Who is prisoner zero and why does he know about the Silence when the Doctor does not, and know that “Silence will fall” – ie he is going to die?

          How come the Daleks know about the Silence – Smith dug all the information they had on them out of the Dalek eye stalk? (though that answers one question for me – the Daleks aren’t behind all this otherwise that information would have been in the Dalek eye stalk).

          Who took control of the Tardis and made it explode when River was inside it?

          Why does the Doctor have to die? Did we get an answer and I missed it?

          1. pirho

            Did he tell his name?  Remember River said she lies all the time, “spoilers”.  He never whispered his name to her in this past episode, he whispered to her “look into my eye”.  And technically she didn’t marry the Doctor, she Married the robot.

          2. Emperor Gregor

            Technically she married the robot ….

            But who controlled the Robot? If it’s the Doctor, then technically I suppose it’s a marriage by proxy. They’ll have to confirm the marriage when they meet up again, or something.

          3. pirho

            True.  Side note, she did say when she was with 10 a few things that have already come true, the tardis doors opening at the snap of his fingers, as well as his name.  Anyone remember what that list was?

          4. Emperor Gregor

            What a lovely excuse to watch Library and Forest again.

            When Ten first meets River, she checks her diary. Asks about the crash of the Byzantium then asks if they’ve been to the picnic at Azgard. She won’t let him check the diary – his rules forbid it. 

            River tells one of her party that she trusts the doctor to the end of the universe, and “actually, we’ve been”. 

            River knows the equipment on the Tardis is ancient and prone to go wrong. Also that he has 2 hearts. And of course she tells him his name – there is only one reason the doctor would tell anyone his name, only one occasion he could.

            When River knocks the doctor out she handcuffs him. The doctor asks why she travels with handcuffs and is told “spoilers”. Before she dies she tells the doctor the very last time they met he turned up on her doorstep with a new haircut and a suit and took her to the singing towers at Beryllium (Derillium?). It was a fantastic night: the towers and he cried and gave her his screwdriver. He obviously knew she was going to die but didn’t tell her.

            River’s screwdriver which has a red setting, and dampers – she tells him . And I think it “does wood”. Ten’s doesn’t (Question: does his sonic screwdriver do wood yet)?

            Her last monologue is about how sometimes, some days, nobody dies and everybody lives. The Doctor then opens the Tardis with a snap of his fingers.

            We have had the end of the universe (if that’s the series finale), the crash of the Byzantium and he can open the Tardis with a snap of his fingers. I think the screwdriver now does wood.

            We haven’t had either the picnic at Asgard yet (unless it’s at Lake Silencio in Utah) nor the singing towers. And I don’t think he’s told her his name yet (though he knows he is going to). I think it has to be a stunning reason – Ten looked gobsmacked. 

          5. pirho

            Very nicely layed out Emperor.  Too bad there is no real Lake Silencio in Utah, that would have been uber cool.  We could have made pilgrimages there like they do in Portmeirion, Whales for the Prisoner.

          6. pirho

            I think he made it up to fit the circumstances.  Lake Silencio, to fit with the whole “Silence”  business.  I still would like to know what they are, and where they come from, we know really nothing about them.  Why recruit, Madame Kovarian?  Who is Madame Kovarian anyway?

        2. sgreco1970

          no im sure he’s not, but it was an example of how shocking his true name could be. I never meant to indicate I thought he actually was rassilon, someone just asked what could be so important about his name?

          It is a valid question; doctor who? Its something we’ve wondered about for decades, and there have been tantalising references to the fact that should we know his name it would be shocking during tennant’s and I think even eccleston’s years.

          Hopefully, he will hire some good writiers -bring back the fellow who wrote The Doctor’s Wife! Someone, ANYONE, who can make a solid season.


          And I want it to be GOOD.

          1. pirho

            I agree, I would love to see Alex as a regular on the show, not just some cheap stunt Moffat throws in to boost raitings.  She is a great actress, and has fantastic chemistry with Matt, I know they would be great together.

            The one thing that always throws me is the age difference between Alex and Karen.  I know that she can be any age because of who she is supposed to be but it is so difficult to keep in your head that she is the daughter of Amy. 

            But like I said I think Alex is a great addition to the cast, and would love to see her as a permanent addition.


          2. Emperor Gregor

            Yes, Alex K would be a terrific addition to the cast.

            For one moment there, in the middle of the finale, I thought we were going to have the next companion as a head in a box. Gives a whole new meaning to the term “talking heads”.

          3. Emperor Gregor

            Me too – I do want to see the romance betweent he doctor and river and want it to be good. The trouble with this series is everything had to fit the plot, and the writers weren’t up to the job. Get a script editor, Moffat.

            Whatever his name is, and how shocking the revelation is going it be – it doesn’t ever seem to have occurred to the Doctor that this is what it is all about.

  14. Emperor Gregor

    Does the Astronaut suit not only hide River’s identity but also insulate her from reality and her own time line?  Day of the Moon has the information that the human race went to the moon so that we developed the space suit for some purpose. Was this what it wanted the space suit for – so River could cross her own time line and kill the Doctor? 

    Because if so – how did the Silence know River would be there?

    That’s the trouble with over complicated plots – they are full of holes.

    1. pirho

      I don’t think it protected her from anything other than being equiped to kill a time lord, and to allow her to breath underwater.

      1. Emperor Gregor

        I can’t quite remember how this “crossing the time line” works. Rose went back to her past and saw herself as a baby and met her parents. She could look but not interfere. It was interfering and saving her father that caused mayhem.

        Is that why River was told she couldn’t touch the Doctor or interfere – because she was crossing her own time line?

    1. Emperor Gregor

      Love her or hate her, Moffat has left the door open to do either.

      When River talks to Amy she says she has “just climbed out of the Byzantium”. We left her being air lifted back to prison, or maybe a pardon. River could mean the Byzantium incident was the event in her time line, and yes, she got her pardon. It might also mean she has, literally, just climbed out and that time has been rewritten. She may never go into the library. 

      At that time she calls herself his wife. Doesn’t Rory drop the suggestion in to Confidential that it might not have been a real wedding? 

      That wedding and the episode title was one thing I DID like about the finale. River didn’t want him to die with just his three closest family by him. She wanted him to die knowing (after he sees himself as someone who destroys so many lives) that in fact he is owed so much by so many. Moffat, when he is bad, is horrid but when he’s good he’s very very good. After he realises this fact that, then she gives the Doctor permission to kiss the bride and restart time.

  15. Emperor Gregor

    Just watched it again. Liked it better second time around. Much better than some of the “filler” stories.

    One thing I did notice. Before the Battle of Demon ‘s Run, River said “he will rise so high then fall so far”. Dorum is still talking about the Doctor falling. I don’t think he’s actually fallen yet.

    And River knows it. Providing they haven’t completely rewritten their ownfutures, River knows more about the Doctor’s future and his coming fall. I am beginning to think the “fall” is more than his death. 

    I think we haven’t seen the last of River Song. Hope not. I like her.

  16. Emperor Gregor

    Dorum reveals the question that should not be asked is Doctor Who.

    Well well, so Moffat has rebranded the name and given it a meaning. Of course, it might be that the question that should not be asked or answer given might only apply to one place at one time.

    Now we know about the question – does it make it important that the Doctor has revealed it to River and that she has whispered it into his ear, followed by an abject apology for speaking it: she says “I am really very very sorry)? That River knows the answer to Doctor Who and why he has been running all his life?

    1. pirho

      I was just rewatching it, and then it hit me.  The fall of the the 11th, he is the 11th, river said he will rise up and then fall further then ever before.  I can’t believe I missed that!

      1. Emperor Gregor

        I know. I caught it second time round too. It’s all those 11’s. Matt Smith is Eleven. The opening episode was The Eleventh Hour. He went into Room 11 in the Hotel.

        If River meant the fall of the 11th is when he will fall further than before, that’s got implications. Big ones. It means she knows what is coming and we haven’t seen the last of her by any means. Which is reasonable as we haven’t seen the singing towers or Azgard yet.

        But …

        Presumably it means that her conditioning, while it was interrupted by her escape, included the reasons why she has to kill the doctor as part of that conditioning. In other words, she knows the question, and that Eleven must not go to wherever it is he is going to fall. (forget where). Which leads us to the sixty four thousand dollar question.

        Does River know the answer!!!! To get Ten’s trust she whispers his name in Ten’s ear. He assumed he will tell her his name in the future, and can only imagine one time he could, and is amazed. We never questioned that. But … what if he never did tell her his name. What if the Silence did as part of the conditioning process?

        Rule 1: The Doctor lies.

        Rule 2: So does River.

  17. Emperor Gregor

    Still thinking through the implications of River knowing the Doctor’s name and also knowing that he is going to Fall.

    NB Just noticed I typed The Fall in caps. We know what that is – Paradise Lost. And what was it the Doctor said to the Dalek?  That it was injured and alone and in pain and it looked up and saw … the Devil. The Doctor meant himself not the Dalek. I think we have a new theme coming up.

    Back to falling so far – further than he ever has. I assumed it was psychological. Go back to the Battle of Demon’s Run and look at Eleven’s face when they tell him of course the Silence know they can use a time lord as a weapon – they’ve seen him. Stricken doesn’t begin to describe it. Eleven went on a 200 year farewell tour running harder than he ever has before (to quote him in the Impossible Astronaut). But there comes a time to stop running. He finds out why he must die and accepts his fate.

    River, though, doesn’t let Eleven die. She saves him and is prepared to ensure he doesn’t die even if it means the death of millions of others. Though she does qualify it and say she couldn’t let him die without knowing he was loved – because she does know the effect that statement at Demon’s Run had on him. After all, she added a log or two to the fire herself.

    It does seem heartless – unless you realise that River knows that if he lives the Fall is coming.

    So then she will have a second objective. She prevented him dying. Now she has to prevent him Falling more than he has already. With all the emphasis on Falling with a capital F I bet the plotlines are going to continue to be Dark.


    1. pirho

      I just thought of something. Dorium Maldovar said “On the Fields of Trenzalore, on the Fall of the Eleventh, when no living creature can speak falsely or fail to answer, a question will be asked. A question that must never ever be answered.”

      Now hold on to your seats.  We know River knows the Doctors real name, and she told him that he is going to fall, how much you want to bet she is going to be the one to ask his name at this time?  It all fits together perfectably!  He didn’t tell her his name when they got married, and since “no living creature can speak falsely or fail to answer” you know she is going to ask to get rid of the silence once and for all.  They didn’t say the Silence will fall when the Question is answered, they said Silence will fall when the Question is asked.”  And if you take it the way I wrote it notice how the Q is capitlized, indicating a noun, as in a person, (i.e. The Doctor), meaning someone is going to ask him his name directly.  “And because no living creature can speak falsely or fail to answer” he must speak his name.


      1. Emperor Gregor

        That’s a really interesting idea – that the Question is a proper noun, otherwise known as The Doctor.

        The Silence are determined that the question shall NOT be asked and that the Doctor must NOT ge tot Transalore. Therefore, of course, he will do his utmost to get there and get the question asked. 

        Which is interesting. We’ve assumed Silence falling is a bad thing. Yet it is going to follow the question being asked, and it will be asked if the Doctor goes to Tranzalore. And you bet he is going to go there. 

        If it isn’t a bad thing … what is the Fall, and why the hints about the Fall of Lucifer?

        I can only think that it is River’s help which saves the Doctor, time and again, and that if she goes to Tranzalore then asks the question, she will learn his name. If she learns his name she can go back to Ten, whisper his name to him and earn his trust and start the cycle. 

        More Timey Wimey tricks.

        Is this, as Ten said,  “only time that he ever could tell anyone his name.” 

  18. pirho

    Damn you Moffat!!  Why did you have to but som many little clues in the series!!!


    Anyone have any insite on the X-Mas special?  Maybe a skeletal hand with a screwdriver?

    1. Emperor Gregor

      Only heard the publicity material: that it takes place in wartime Britain. 

      “The special, set during World War II, sees Madge Arwell and her two children, Lily and Cyril, evacuated to a draughty old house in Dorset, where the caretaker is a mysterious young man in bow tie, and a big blue parcel is waiting for them under the tree. They are about to enter a magical new world and learn that a Time Lord never forgets his debts…”

      What’s the betting that “draughty old house” is the house where River was brought up. They supposed to be filming an extra episode there, weren’t they, and it hasn’t turned up yet.

      Looks like a fun cast including Bill Bailey (just love his Dr Qui dinner jazz version of the theme tune, on his Guide to the Orchestra – look on YouTube) and Alexander Armstrong.

      The hand and the screwdriver seem to have disappeared into the woodwork.

  19. zappy wagner mk 2



    I auditioned this year dressed as Wagner and appeared to be doing really well getting through to the 3rd audition at the initial first auditions in cardiff. I was chosen to perform in front of the crowd., had one on one interveiw with Dermot O Leary and they even filmed my friends in the waiting room after doing promotional filming too. Unfortunatley because i didnt learn my songs very well and cracked up in front of the main 3rd audition, I was rejected!!!


    I will try again next year but prepared however to help raise my profile i would love to get on the talk talk adds strutting my stuff so Mr O leary and company will have a flash back and remember me!


    What i require is for anyone who is a member of facebook or twitter to click on this link, watch the silly dance clip i recorded with talk talk and vote for me please using the vote button provided on the screen. i only have a few days left to get my votes in and hopefully i will get on the adds for all to see!



    Many thanks to all who helps, ill put a shout out for you in the future if you leave a message saying you have done this for me.




    Regards Karl.

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