Doctor Who The Pandorica Opens (Series 05, Episode 12) Review

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What’s It About?

Summoned by River Song to Stonehenge 102AD, the Doctor and Amy discover the Pandorica. In orbit, thousands of alien vessels arrive as the Pandorica begins to open …

Review It

Wow. Seems about the most apt word to open this review with. Steven Moffat returns to the script writing with a bang. The episode is similar in feeling to the opener of his previous two parter, Time of the Angels but this is in no way a criticism as I loved the Indiana Jones feel of that episode which carries over here.

From the very start, a feeling of something epic being set up is apparent and the pre-title montage is a terrific tying in of the series’ events thus far, bringing back (however briefly) a couple of the memorable performances from this year’s Who. The “universe’s first recorded words” provided a needed giggle before the main drama kicked in. This is certainly one of Steven Moffat’s strengths – knowing when to pitch the laughs in an otherwise potentially dark episode.

The mystery surrounding the Pandorica and it’s contents was well played out and though I was close to figuring out the truth of it, I had it all backwards. And the moment of revelation, when The Doctor cottons on … superb. That also reflects the excellence of the pacing of the direction. The episode is both fast and slow, epic and low-key in all the right places and the sets and locations are spectacularly shot.

Matt Smith again shows great skill as an actor, although it clicked in watching Confidential who he reminds me of. Keith Floyd in the 1980s. But that’s a digression. Karen Gillan was given little to do this episode other than fill the traditional companion role – ask the questions and get into trouble. Alex Kingston provided the more modern companion this time around and also acted as a second investigator, working out the true nature of the Pandorica and the mystery surrounding it.

And the niggles?

OK, I had some slight issues with this episode which I’m going to list because I can and I’m a little bit of one of “those” fans. Fore-most: I’d have liked to have seen PROPER Cybermen in the alien line-up. Second, I thought the scene where the Doctor challenged the alien fleets was a bit too rock-star on stage but frankly, given what ultimately followed I can easily forgive that. And after all, if you don’t have a plan, then why not go all out and bluff the enemy … enemies… ?

Weren’t those “cyber guns” actually made by Torchwood in the other universe to combat the Cybermen? They certainly have a non-cybus manufacturer mark on them. Oh and what were the “Silurians” doing there? They have no time technology and should be fast asleep. Also, most of the races mentioned were not time-active and not space-flight capable in 102AD. I’m assuming that the alliance was made in the future and the Daleks brought all their chums back in time with them. Odd oversight for the Doctor to make though.

But (and this is a big but) … none of those niggles detracted from the episode for me and I reckon this is about as good a cliffhanger to a finale as you can get.

In summary:

What more can you ask for in the first half of a series finale? Never have the words “Get out of that one then …” seemed more apt. *applause*

Rate It: 4.75 / 5.
Dry Slaps: 1. For random alien choices and non-proper Cyberfolk.
Reviewer: WedgeDoc

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  1. Spikey_p /

    Tricky this one – I liked it but not without qualification and I will reserve final judgement until I’ve re-watched part one and even then probably defer until I have had a chance to put it in context with part two.

    This one certainly had one or two brilliant twists but overall it raised more questions than it answered and the problem I forsee is that those flaws could turn out to be plotholes rather than mysteries still to be answered.

    Firstly, what I liked – I loved the zombie rogue Cyberman, I have been literally waiting half a year for that since a less-than-a-second glance in Matt Smith’s first teaser trailer in January and it did not disappoint. The idea of Cyberevolution is addressed here in the sense that the technological aspects of their bodies are shown not only to be a lot more resilient to damage than they are usually shown to be, but also capable of some pretty drastic self-repair and capable also of replacing their organic components… This is quite unlike anything we have seen before and makes sense from a 21st Century perspective… In the 60s, plastic lungs and kidneys with a motorised heart seemed like a real threat to ones’ humanity; now you imagine that the firmware regulating all your body’s artificial functions and the software resident in all the artificial neural clusters and processor nodes become self-aware and acts more like a parasite living off your shrivelled remains and it’s intensely chilling. The Cyberhead that splits open to spew forth it’s expired occupant’s skull was one of the most memorable moments of Who this series for me, as wes the same John Carpenter-referencing Medussoid crawl of the head across the floor. The Petesworld Cyber-race has clearly been busy since they made it into space.

    Alright, that may have had the side effect of making them a bit more Borg-like and that “YOU_WILL_BE_ASSIMILATED” line I could have done without, but hey, it’s the correct technical term for what it’s intending to do and it’s a lot less daft than the whole *DELETE* *DELETE* bit… Also, it gets run through with a sword, but we later learn of course that this isn’t quite what it first seems, so I’ll allow it.

    Hey, Rory’s back! Oh no… crap. I was disappointed at first, not least because he’d got a decent and meaningful sendoff and his reappearance seemed like nothing more than a cheap, flag-waving retcon to signify “Hey, it’s the finale everybody! Look who’s back!”. Stop trying to be Mickey, Rory… No one here is going to imagine you being in Kidulthood between episodes and the only mystery here bothering us is how you managed to land up with a 3rd Century garrison which carried all the correct hair products in stores.

    We then had a quite brilliant and nearly satisfying reveal that actually this wasn’t really Rory at all and that presumably he really did get erased… The scene of The Doctor telling him to be brave in the face of Amy not remembering him was wonderfully underplayed and once again the chemistry between him and Smith was great – you get the sense every time together that The Doctor really does like Rory but never can do much to help him from any of the horrible corners the guy gets continually painted into.

    The reveal of the Auton soldiers was great – I was genuinely surprised and it made perfect sense when you realised that they were not there to defend the Doctor’s position but to keep him there until the right time. What didn’t make sense (and I suspect a plothole) was the line that stated they were programmed “from your companion’s memories”. Really? When? She doesn’t HAVE any memories of Rory by that stage, that’s the whole point… And if the suggestion was that the information was gathered before Rory vanished, why not just grab the genuine article and use him as bait, rather than use the non-existant memory of him to establish some credibility with the Doctor and Amy?

    What was also brilliant was The Doctor’s confession as to why he chose to bring Amy with him; with utter deft and subtleness, you realise that because of the crack, Rory is not the first part of Amy’s past to have disappeared into one of the cracks… And you realise why her parents were seemingly so unconcerned for a strange, barely dressed stranger to be welcomed into their house in the middle of the night by their young daughter.

    Then the big reveal – in essence, the idea is a strong one. All the monsters decide the Doctor is far more dangerous to the universe than all of them put together and resolve to lock him up for their own safety to prevent him destroying the whole of existance. You know that in practice, this alliance would last less than half a second before tearing itself apart with in-fighting and you know that the Daleks would blast every last ship out of the sky to get their hands on him first but if this really is the last stand for the entire universe and everything else had been tried, you sort of accept the soundness of the logic.

    Not that logic ever mattered overly to Daleks, Sontarans or half the races present.

    Why they wouldn’t prefer to just kill him just to be on the safe side is not much explored.

    We did at least get the welcome, if brief return of Chris Ryan as the Sontaran commander, as well as David Banks’ patented Cyberleader fist-clench. A quick “Excellent!” would not have gone amiss there. There was also official confirmation that the Chelonians, Attraxi and many more alien races are finally officially cannon, although it would have been great to have seen as well one of the silent gas dirigibles of the Hoothi.

    The problem that New Who has created for itself is that over the past five years, it has really made a rod for it’s own back in terms of endings. This can be seen both in terms of season finales and the End of Time mini-arc, each time ratcheting up the states and becoming progressively bigger in scope and more epic. Old Who had episodic cliffhangers and New Who proudly taps into the underlying trend of Scifi TV and Drama in general to tend towards tightly plotted self-contained and finite story arcs. Similarly, the trend to “seed” the finale throughout each series is a bit of a double-edged sword; whilst the first four “seeds” (Bad Wolf, Torchwood, Mr. Saxon and the bees/Medussa Cascade/DoctorDonna/Missing Planets) were by turns baffling and poorly explained, intrusive and unneccessary, blatently obvious and largely a collection of red herrings, by the End of Time, even the Doctor was on the same page as anyone who was paying attention to the clues by the end. Moffat has wisely (in one sense) retained that policy by pushing the issue of the cracks and the Pandorica front and centre but I would argue firstly that it’s probably unneccessary to do so and secondly that the individual episodes that come beforehand probably suffer as a result.

    I liked it, but I was very self-consious that I was watching just half of a whole. I have to say, in comparisson to watching something like the similarly-tasked and mega-epic Stolen Earth, I much preferred that episode, as I felt that you were 100% knee-deep in action from the get-go, whereas here we had a mounting sense of gloom and tension beuilding towards something mildly inexplicable, but nonetheless highly compelling.

    But if The Doctor spends 40 mins of the next episode in that box a la Last of the Time Lords, I’m going to be furious. Especially if they turn him into Dobbie the House Elf again.

    We shall see.

    (My Word, that was stupid…)

    • “What didn’t make sense (and I suspect a plothole) was the line that stated they were programmed “from your companion’s memories”. Really? When? She doesn’t HAVE any memories of Rory by that stage, that’s the whole point…”

      I actually think this is related to how The Doctor can remember Rory. Like him, the Daleks and other Time-Sensitives live “Outside Time” to a degree – otherwise how would they know about temporal failures etc? The Daleks took Amy’s memories from Before The Doctor even arrived in Leadworth.

      Also – Amy’s house is clearly the epicentre of the cracks in time. The Eye of the Storm as it were. The reason I didn’t pick up on the photo of Rory still being present in 2010 is because I assumed the Eye would be unaffected by the effects of the cracks, as the eye of the storm is a calm spot.

      “And you realise why her parents were seemingly so unconcerned for a strange, barely dressed stranger to be welcomed into their house in the middle of the night by their young daughter.”

      Don’t forget that Amy’s parents were already dead. She was being raised by her Aunt who didn’t give two hoots about the girl (at least that’s how it seemed in Episode 1 to me.

      “We did at least get the welcome, if brief return of Chris Ryan as the Sontaran commander, as well as David Banks’ patented Cyberleader fist-clench. A quick “Excellent!” would not have gone amiss there.”

      I loved that fist clench. For a minute I forgot these were Petes World Cyberfolk.

      “The problem that New Who has created for itself is that over the past five years, it has really made a rod for it’s own back in terms of endings. This can be seen both in terms of season finales and the End of Time mini-arc, each time ratcheting up the states and becoming progressively bigger in scope and more epic.”

      Definitely. It’s becoming expected now and there’s only so far you can push it. Be interesting to see if they manage to buck this trend in the future.

      “But if The Doctor spends 40 mins of the next episode in that box a la Last of the Time Lords, I’m going to be furious. Especially if they turn him into Dobbie the House Elf again.”

      Ha! Yeah. 40 mins in a box then 5 mins of being a Messianic figure is not what we need here.

      • Spikey_p /

        “Don’t forget that Amy’s parents were already dead. She was being raised by her Aunt who didn’t give two hoots about the girl (at least that’s how it seemed in Episode 1 to me.”

        To me too at the time, but here we have The Doctor’s final confession as to why he came back to take her away… He mentions the big house with far too many rooms and explicitly asks her by way of explanation “Doesn’t it bother you that your life doesn’t make any sense?”.

        For me, that was really a “Holy sh*t!” moment when you realise what he means – on the face of it, he is referring to the multiform beast and it’s perceptual filter around the last doorway she never noticed in her house… But then you realise that not only was she seemingly made an orphan REALLY young, but both parents died at once, she’s had long enough to get over it, it happened since they moved into that house and she lived (with them) in Scotland long enough after learning to speak to be able to pick up a pretty intractable Scots accent and the conclusion is obvious – never ignore a coincidence unless you’re busy, after all.

        Amy’s parents disappeared into the crack in her wall before the TARDIS even crashed into her garden – they got erased and never existed. She never mentions her parents or how they died but at the same time, her brain rationalises on some level that she must have had parents but with no memories to attach to them, she has no reason to think of them or consider this strange. That’s why there are no pictures of them in the house and far too many rooms and why Amy as a child made so many paintings and drawings of the Doctor… She had no parents or even the memory of them to recreate, which is what you would expect from an 8 year old who lost both their Mum and their Dad shortly after moving to a new place barely one or two years before. It’s also why her Aunt lives down the road and how Amy is able to pay the mortgage on such a huge, empty house without renting out any of the rooms. It’s probably why Rory never moved in. It’s certainly why no-one redecorated, repaired the shed or tended the garden for ten years… no grown-ups around.

        We all know that the Doctor and the nature of his lifestyle can make him into an absolute f*cker sometimes. This goes in ebbs and flows and how much he is in denial or embraces it is core to each regeneration’s character. There was a real backlash for a while to the 7th Doctor’s manipulations but, New Adventures aside, I would say that he never went too far but consequently the 8th Doctor was always portrayed in the extended media as much more the wild-eyed innocent… His sit-down chat with Davros in Terror Firmer is therefore very weird… When the show came back, the “Angry, Lonely God” motif was played to the hilt, with the traumatised survivor’s guilt of the Ninth Doctor (his abuse and attempted murder of the supposed last Dalek in the universe is still incredibly unsettling) to the grief and righteous anger of the Tenth.

        The overall theme of this series and this Doctor I have noticed is that he is decidedly hands-off… Almost as if he has had enough of dealing with the big stuff, getting his fingers burnt every time and having to carry the can for the whole of creation – the Tenth Doctor was heard to lament at the end “and this is the thanks I get” and you know that he meant it. What has been clear since the beginning of Matt Smith’s era though is that the Tenth Doctor stuck around too long and the universe is paying the price. Hanging onto life until the last possible moment, the regeneration was exceptionally violent and traumatic, it burned and gutted the interior of the TARDIS and forced an extreme and destructive crash-landing behind little Amy’s house. The last of the Time Lords and the last TARDIS in existance could do untold damage to the universe, in fact the Doctor mentions as he leaves the first time that the ship is just seconds away from a huge explosion before nipping away for 10 years.

        As I mentioned, this Doctor, while being totally hands off with the Big Stuff has taken the complete opposite approach when it comes to compassion at a personal level. To say that he’s more “touchy-feelie” would be wrong, but he seems to move both heaven and Earth to avoid messing any one person’s life up in a way that he was previously either oblivious to or just added on to his personal tally of guilt. Look at his recent track record – he messed Rose up so much that she felt that she could not live without him (novel solution to that one); before even speaking to Mickey, he managed to put him through two years of hell, getting him accused of murder with dog-dirt shoved through his letterbox, as well as generally being a complete git to him (which he never really deserved), called him an idiot in front of his woman and other people on several occasions, abandoned him in another dimension for 5 years and then sent him back there the first chance he had; he openly acknowledged treating Martha like second best and constantly taking her for granted and completely abandoned Jack to his 100 year long existential crisis and as for Donna…

        Little wonder that the Tenth spent his last few hours zipping all over the place apologising to people and generally making amends. It’s the least he could do, really. (Although personally, I feel he could also have nipped back to see Adam and taken that flip-top skull out, rescuing him from whatever UNIT/Torchwood/ vault he had been condemned to for the rest of his natural life and/or disection)

        It’s telling that Eleven has never whispered through gritted teeth “I’m sorry, I’m so, so sorry…”, because he’s never put himself into a situation where he has needed to… Those days are over. When seemingly pressed into that corner again in The Beast Below, he positively rants at the universe for the unfairness of it all, placing him back in that position.

        I’ve been quite vocal in pointing out that the Doctor has barely (if ever) saved someone, at least successfully. He saves the world in Episode 1, but only by appealing to Amy’s faith in him to do so. In both The Beast Below and Victory of the Daleks, Amy again does his job for him and his attempts to prevent the Daleks actioning their plan end in total defeat. Amy rescues herself from the image of the Angel and the Doctor’s bungle not only leads a whole squad of clerics into harms’ way but gets them all killed or erased but their personalities are stripped by the Angels to mock him and berrate him for the failure. Rather than having a masterplan to defeat the advance of the angels, blind luck and good timing brings about their demise without him having to do a thing.

        Which is where the guilt and sense of personal responsibility kicks in again. In the face of overwhelming evidence and protents of impending doom, he decides instead to “fix” Amy – he rebutts her romantic advances and refuses to allow her crush to deepen and ruin her life the way it had Rose and Martha and all around them. He brings Rory into the game (again, ruining his stag but with the best of intentions… he does at least realise the impact of what he’s done) and does all he can to set things on their right path without him in their lives… He even explains the problem and how it will ruin them as people.

        Now, Rory is a spanner – he’s meant to be that way, neurotic, terrified of all that’s around him and constantly trying to please Amy. He’s not there to do the heavy lifting like Ian or Steven or Harry Sullivan, he’s not there to see the universe or escape like Adric or Turlough and he’s certainly not there to have sex with it like Captain Jack. He’s the purest companion in a sense, because he’s meant to be us. Realistically, most of us would either scream like a girl when we saw our first dead body (as Mickey did) or we would throw ourselves into the path of a sword-wielding vampire to protect our girlfriend in the full knowledge that you’re barely up to the task. Rory tries to deal with everything in contemporary Earth terms, the full-on Arthur Dent approach and when he gets himself in danger, he panics and clearly knows that he’s going to get hurt. It’s annoying, but it’s real and in a testament to the actors, it totally works purely on the basis of the chemistry.

        Whilst I’m not therefore the biggest fan of Rory himself and indeed I really felt he stayed around a couple of episodes too long (whereas Mickey Smith in space, I could have really gone for more of that), he’s emblematic of the whole focus of the Eleventh Doctor’s character… In stark contrast to Mickey, it’s clear that he really likes Rory and reaches out to him constantly to try and repair the damage he is totally inadvertantly having on the guy’s life but which he is totally aware of. Smartly, they mirror that in quite an unexpected way… there was much sniggering at the start of the series about Rory’s “You made me dress up as him!” line, but I don’t think that was intended as a sexual innuendo any more than it was a reference to their childhood friendship and playing dress-up when they were nine or so. If RTD was still around, I’d probably think differently on that one. But it’s portrayed in such a way that Rory seems to view the situation as if he’s engaged to the world’s biggest Narnia fan since the age of five and then Aslan turns up at her house the day before their wedding…

        It’s framed as if The Doctor knows this, knows that she will always be preoccupied with him and his world, overshadowing and diminishing their marriage and is staight and upfront with both of them from the get-go. The problem there is that although Amy does fancy The Doctor, I don’t buy the idea that she “wants” him to complete herself or that she would give Rory the heave-ho just to persue her own happiness the way that Rose would. Here again, Moffat’s superior characterisation shines through brilliantly in making Amy a fully rounded character, a real and believeable woman who doesn’t define herself in reference to a man and isn’t a complete slave to her emotions or hormones. The pass she makes at The Doctor just before her wedding seems more like a ploy to sabotage her own wedding whilst allowing Rory to blame her and avoid confronting her over it… As subsequently shown, she likes him and she has love for him, but she could never be said to be in love with him in the same way he is with her. She doesn’t want to hurt him but she doesn’t want to marry him either, which says more about the weight of expectation in small rural communities than it does about her seemingly selfish/slutty and therefore out-of-character behaviour… She’s probably thought about marrying her since the age of ten, never even looked twice at another girl, just assumed it was going to happen one day but ended up defiantly in the Friend Zone. So despite The Doctor’s good intentions, and the trust and cooperation his eventually gains from Rory in helping the guy out, he was really just papering over the cracks and working really hard to resolve an issue that wasn’t even the real problem.

        There was a point to this seemingly endless rant and it was this:- at some level, the Eleventh Doctor came into being by swearing off large-scale interference with the universe, having been brought nothing but grief from it – themeatically, there is a link back to The Waters of Mars as the point at which he realised he was continually going too far and overstretching himself. The Tenth Doctor took some great liberties with the fabric of the universe, from all the stuff with The Void and PetesWorld, through to the steampunk CyberKing, right up to to meddling with events and historical figures that even a rampaging Dalek had taken a quick scan of and gone “Oh, hang on… Better not, actually…” before blasting them.

        It’s hardly surprising that the Daleks are acting so seemingly responsibly in this last episode, given the 7th Doctor’s comments about their understanding of established history and the fact that as we see in the likes of Planet of The Dead and Journey’s End that the Tenth Doctor’s attitude is “Here’s a gaping hole in the fabric of reality, lets poke it with a stick to see what it does”, it’s not surprising that spacefaring race left in the universe has come to regard him as “The most fearsome being in all of creation”. It’s hardly a difficult sell and he is always around when this sh*t happens. His speech on the top of the rock to the assembled fleet ironically confirms all of their prejudices.

        But the thing is, he’s NOT the Oncoming Storm anymore, not lately. The Ka Faraq Gatri has taken his eye off the ball, tried to stay away from all the cosmic malarky and now things really have gone t*ts up in his absence. Quite right they should want to lock him up in the face of a cataclysm undeniably linked to him that he seemingly is trying to do everything to avoid addressing. Whereas before he would sacrifice the personal in favour of the cosmic, now it seems that by focussing all of his care and effort into the lost cause of Amy’s realtionship, everything is falling apart without his guiding hand. It’s got so bad that not only have his enemies run riot in the interim (Dalek empire rebuilt, PetesWorld Cyber-race leaves Earth and goes nomadic), they’ve actually got to step in and do his job for him… And if the last shot of the episode is anything to go by, they completely ballsed it up.

        As I mentioned before, it’s not hard to make the case that the cracks are his fault, if for no other reason than they appeared after a particularly violent regeneration that almost severely damaged the TARDIS in the process… but for the fragment of the newer version of the door, you could almost conclude that the “Exploding TARDIS” getting referenced is actually the older outer plasmic shell and interior that got pulverised in episode 1 and broke time along with it. The event was so violent, it even broke the sonic screwdriver, for godsake. Although maybe that was the swimming pool water. Whatever. The point is, he knew what was happening and did nothing to either solve, understand or prevent the problem other than just trying to avoid the problem. Just never go to Stavro Meuller Beta, remember that denial is just a river in Egypt and everything will be just hunky dory.

        I think the point to take forward from here is that I have NO IDEA what will happen, or can happen next. The cliffhanger is amazingly obtuse… the Doctor is locked in the box, presumably outside of time and space, all the suns explode and the Earth fades into darkness. Is it destroyed or just left in eternal night? If it is, that might better explain the weird decision by the grand alliance to turn up to Earth in person rather than just relying on the Nestene soldiers to do their dirty work for them. If Earth is the last safe place, it really is every man for himself in the race to get there. But the explosion supposedly happens in Amy’s time, on 26th June 2010. That puts the burden back on River and the TARDIS and on whatever force has seized control of it. But is it back in Amy’s time? Is it embedded in solid rock as it seems? And when (and if) the universe gets put back, how much of it will be the way it was? The Cracks already serve to “eat” history and continuity; I’m afraid the Earth-Prime Cybermen may have already gone that way (in no small part due to the 1986 Mondas incursion and all the Troughton era 21st Century attacks on Earth), along with problematic UNIT dating and most of the RTD era present-day large-scale invasions. And it seems odd to spend an entire episode recreating the Daleks from the ground up and then hit the reset button again straight away… Although if we get rid of those wobbly Power Rangers props and back to bronzed heavy metal, I won’t complain. Amy is dead by Auton-Rory’s hand but this will certainly be undone by River’s tinkering with her past in the TARDIS.

        But who is orchestrating this? Who is the malevolent voice in the TARDIS? I’m betting against a resurrected, ghost-in-the-machine Master, as I’m actually perfectly happy for The End of Time to stand as the final ever Master story. He’s done. It could be some extra-dimensional force like Fenric or the Gods of Ragnarok or even the Toymaker but it does not tally with the silence motif. The Black Guardian is a distant possibility, as it certainly fits his M.O.

        There’s been talk of the Valeyard, particularly after Amy’s Choice, but I’m wary of that… The dark side of the Doctor’s mind never seemed quite so smarmy before. I’m all for it if we get back the superb Michael Jayston but the whole thing is an exposition nightmare for anyone unfamiliar with Trial of a Time Lord. Or perhaps not, actually…

        What would be great would be to see that situation as yet one more unintended consequence of the Tenth Doctor’s selfish desire to hang around, if somehow the trauma split him in two, preoducing the meek and mild and hands-off Eleventh Doctor with the angry, bitter and arrogant God-complex shadow banished into the darkest recesses of the TARDIS databanks… Or even, at a stretch, the MetaCrisis Doctor, angry, abandoned and alone in PetesWorld, full of rage and human restement when Rose dies of old age and denied his herritage and lifespan by his better, calmer former self… He could even marry River.

        What an ending that would be…

      • Oddly, can’t reply to your reply.

        But just wanted to say – nice discourse. Thoroughly good read as always.

  2. Spikey_p /

    I do hope Rory stays dead though, whatever happens.

    • With you there. I liked the guy, but sometimes consequences need to stick.

      • Spikey_p /

        Mais oui, merci beaucoup – chalk it up to too much time on my hands and unrestricted access to an esspresso machine.

      • Spikey_p /

        It’s a weird situation here, though – although as geeks, we are used to being about the only people in the world who say things like “I really hope he stays dead, it would really suck if they brought him back” in reference to people we actually like…

        In this case, in the last 5 seconds, the entire universe blew up. Seconds before, Amy got shot and was clearly meant to be definitely dead.

        We can surmise that causality is out of whack and whoever is controlling events clearly is doing so with the intention of remaking the universe in their own image and it’s a fair interpretation to surmise that (as of this moment, in story terms) nothing exists apart from the Doctor in the Pandorica (which is isolated from the flow of time) and the inside of the TARDIS, including River (ditto).

        From the very little we know, it seems as if this is not going to be exactly true *yet* and that River can in some way change Amy’s personal history so that events from this episode unravel differently… So the Universe can be retroactively saved along with the Doctor, who therefore never gets put in the box but that will be REALLY messy paradox-wise and will almost certainly hit the reset button back to the begining of episode 1 at least.

        Under those circumstances, it’s hard to see how they can NOT resurrect Rory in the process.

        The only way to do it therefore and have it be any good would be to bring him back and then have Amy immediately dump him.

        That would have the bitter ring of truth to it.

        Either that or she remembers him and he forgets HER and goes off to have a really happy life with some other girl he meets once she gets erased. A companion with no strings and no trips back to see her Mum – yay!

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