The Angels Take Manhattan

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The Angels Take Manhattan

We bid farewell to The Ponds.

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Wow you disliked that a lot more than I would have possibly thought. I found it incredibly sad, Rory and Amy are by far and away my favourite companions (although as a Newvian that's not such a huge thing) and this was a fairly incredible send-off, although heartbreaking (and it was heartbreaking twice darn it :( )

I disliked most of it as the only thing I hate more than Amy and Rory is River Song but here is my biggest problem with it. The Doctor cannot go back to 193 whatever New York or he will blow up Now York right? Ok. Go to any other place in the USA. Then get on a train to NYC, find Amy and Rory, get on another train back to where you parked the Tardis and off you go. Problem solved.

I liked this episode a lot, though it would have been better if they'd thought out a couple of parts (like the Statue of Liberty angel) better before putting them in. Never mind, I thought it was a fitting send off for the Ponds.

As for the Doctor's personality, I wouldn't necessarily call him "the opposite" of a child. Yes he's ancient and has seen more than we could ever imagine but he also has a naive excitable streak that's best described as childlike.

Gizmo1990:
I disliked most of it as the only thing I hate more than Amy and Rory is River Song but here is my biggest problem with it. The Doctor cannot go back to 193 whatever New York or he will blow up Now York right? Ok. Go to any other place in the USA. Then get on a train to NYC, find Amy and Rory, get on another train back to where you parked the Tardis and off you go. Problem solved.

The problem then is that you might well have two Doctors running around, especially if he tries to see them before they grow old. Thats always put a bit of a strain on the timeline (which is why multi-Doctor stories have always been a special occasion thing). And with all the paradoxes and rogue temporal stresses already in place, having two Doctors in the same time and location, even if they never meet, could do exactly what he says it might

River was upset at the Doctor for wasting his regeneration power because they have a limited number of regenerations (remember that River used up all of her regenerations to cure the Doctor from poison). So he basically killed one of his "lives" to cure something that would have healed on its own in a couple months.

Emotionally, yeah, this was a good episode. ESPECIALLY the rooftop/paradox scene.

Plotline wise? Yup, a mess. In a Radiotimes, Moffat talks about doing numerous drafts of this episode, and I'm afraid to say that it shows. The paradox-Amy&Rory-jumping-together-cause-they're-a-couple should have been the same event as the event that got them trapped in the past away from the Doctor. Instead, the final five minutes of the episode feel kinda like "Hang on, didn't we just do this?"

I enjoy timey-wimey episodes, which is something the Angels do best, but this just felt, well, like too much 'wimey' and not enough 'timey'. We've seen the Dr trick fixed points in the past - why-oh-why couldn't he this time?!

Pallindromemordnillap:

Gizmo1990:
I disliked most of it as the only thing I hate more than Amy and Rory is River Song but here is my biggest problem with it. The Doctor cannot go back to 193 whatever New York or he will blow up Now York right? Ok. Go to any other place in the USA. Then get on a train to NYC, find Amy and Rory, get on another train back to where you parked the Tardis and off you go. Problem solved.

The problem then is that you might well have two Doctors running around, especially if he tries to see them before they grow old. Thats always put a bit of a strain on the timeline (which is why multi-Doctor stories have always been a special occasion thing). And with all the paradoxes and rogue temporal stresses already in place, having two Doctors in the same time and location, even if they never meet, could do exactly what he says it might

Would he not know? Say he chooses the day after they are sent back. If he had already visited that day would he not remember and choose the day after that? Or a day afetr his past self had left? This is the problem with using time travel as an excuse for why he can never see them again.

I feel like it was the worst handled "oops I suddenly died" scene since Sirius Black tripped and fell through that conveniently placed magical death curtain. Or even more relevant, like in Season 5 when Rory tripped and fell through the crack in time. Dammit Rory, just PAY ATTENTION, GEEZ.

Azuaron:
River was upset at the Doctor for wasting his regeneration power because they have a limited number of regenerations (remember that River used up all of her regenerations to cure the Doctor from poison). So he basically killed one of his "lives" to cure something that would have healed on its own in a couple months.

Eh, I don't buy that he used up a whole regen just to heal her wrist. But even if he did, they're his to use.

To be fair the writer changeover with the arrival of old boney-face Matt Smith saw a massive slide in the quality of writing for the show.

They couldn't kill off Amy and Rory by having them jump off the roof in a suicide pact, in show that is aimed at 7-70. Which left Moffat (great name for star wars villain) with a problem, hence the tacked on feeling of the ending. I suspect if I was more engaged with Amy and Rory, I would have been on more of an emotional roller coaster and over look some of the plot holes. As it was I was just sad that we wont be seeing more of Rory's Dad than anything else.

The way they have spun the current character of the doctor is as an adrenaline junkie, perhaps with a touch of PTSD. They have done this in order to give a reason for the Dr needing companions. As the article points out he is an entity with almost god like powers why does he need anyone at all. If the companions are there to give him emotional support, it moves them away from being just convenient plot deceives. The companions originally were away of allowing the Dr someone to have expositionary conversations with and to rescue from peril. The companions also were away of either giving someone for the kids to identify with (Adric and Ace) or someone to keep the dads interested (Leela or Romana). I don't think they have got the right tone yet, currently the Dr seems way to needy and like the guy who you hope doesn't sit next you.

Overall I enjoyed the episode, but I do agree with the rather poorly thought out paradoxes and "wibbly-wobbly, timey-wimey" stuff. Blink did it amazingly. For example the doctor recording the video based on the conversation that Sally Sparrow had with the doctor on the video. It seems that Moffet focused all his effort on the emotional plot points with Rorya dn Amy leaving. Those were good, but it wasn't a complete episode. I was especially disapointed at how River showing up and the collector weren't even attempted to be explained.

Still it was a good send off. I liked Rory and Amy, but one of the things I liked about the first 4 seasons was that the companions never stayed too long. Rory and Amy were getting stale. They were great characters, but it was past time for them to move on. I look forward to seeing how Oswin gets worked in as the new companion after she was (supposedly) killed when the asylm of the Daleks blew up.

Hey Susan, what's your opinion on the mid season break?

Back OT: Yeah, the Statue of Liberty was a bit silly. If the bit was the size of the Moon. But on the other hand, how creepy is a Weeping Angel 'farm'?
And that paradox...that moment...

Also there's a subtext that coffee is evil!

Like I said in another thread on this episode, it feels like they tried to cram too much into 45 minutes. It should have been a less complex story, or a two part episode. For me, the drama of the story was somewhat dampened by the confusing, way too high paced plot. Also, the Liberty Angel was seriously pointless and am I the only one to think that this was by far the least scary episode featuring the Weeping Angels?

It's weird, but I actually ENJOYED this episode.
Maybe even more then the previous ones of their particular season/series.

Yes, it was cramped, full of 'stuff', but I enjoyed how things never really 'stopped'.

Though, I do have the same issue with The Doctor being 'the guy we all pity'

But, it's not like it's anything new.

I mean, the first Doctor was basically being 'cared for' by his granddaughter.

I think companions are supposed to be the Doctor's moral compass. The Doctor has shown to not be using his own over the past couple of years. Even beforehand in Tennant's years Donna was very much a guide for the Doctor's actions (Fires of Pompeii for example where she forced him to go back and rescue someone, anyone, because that was better than nothing). The Doctor even tells Rose that the clone grown from his hand that genocided the Daleks was him before they first met, and "You (Rose) made me better". Especially after the events he had to shake off regarding the Time War.

With the regards to the actual story, the whole reason behind the paradox and the Doctor not being able to go back to rescue Rory at the end is explained near the start of the episode when the Doctor tells Amy she can't read to the end of the book because it forces the events to happen. Rory found out that he was going to die in that apartment building so they had to force a paradox to stop it. He saw his own name on the gravestone just before being zapped by the Angel so the Doctor couldn't go rescue him as it would cause another, bigger paradox. Amy's name wasn't originally on the gravestone but after she made the choice to follow Rory back, the Doctor could no longer follow because he knows her fate and can't change it without making a bigger mess.
The same point is made throughout the episode, the Doctor is originally ecstatic that River managed to free herself from the Angel without breaking her wrist as he had been told by Amy that he would "break something", so he thought he could change predetermined future without much effort. The fact that River had to break her wrist in order to free herself reinforced the idea the episode created about forced futures through knowledge.
Whether you agree with the science behind idea presented in the episode or not, it's reinforced throughout to explain the story.

11's reaction to losing Amy and Rory is what I think is most important about the episode, something I've seen very little other reviewers or fans talk about. Smith's Doctor is openly distraught at the turn of events at the end of the episode, much more so than Tennant. Who either a) Appeared emotionless to Rose and didn't even cry until she was gone. b) Didn't even try to stop Martha (yeah she didn't die or anything but he still could have showed some sadness). c) The Doctor-Donna's death by his own hand had him show very little outward emotion. Even the obvious sacrifice he made for Wilf was drastically underpinned by his "It's just not fair. This is my reward" speech. Which was more general shouting at the universe and not getting his own way.
11 looks for the first time since the series started again, genuinly upset at the loss of Amy and Rory. Maybe something to do with the whole "First face this face saw. You are seared onto my hearts forever" thing.

Yeah the Statue of Liberty thing was a bit much, but it only appeared twice and didn't end up being a stupid end boss or anything so it didn't bother me too much. Other than that I much enjoyed this episode, very emotional by the end.

Azuaron:
River was upset at the Doctor for wasting his regeneration power because they have a limited number of regenerations (remember that River used up all of her regenerations to cure the Doctor from poison). So he basically killed one of his "lives" to cure something that would have healed on its own in a couple months.

That was retconed out. Time Lords can regenerate an infinite number of times now.

Edit: Actually I think they made the limit 502 or something silly like that

Lectori Salutem:
Like I said in another thread on this episode, it feels like they tried to cram too much into 45 minutes. It should have been a less complex story, or a two part episode. For me, the drama of the story was somewhat dampened by the confusing, way too high paced plot. Also, the Liberty Angel was seriously pointless and am I the only one to think that this was by far the least scary episode featuring the Weeping Angels?

The Time Of Angels was even less scary. Mostly because the statues in that one moved while we were looking at them which broke the meta imagery holding the viewer in place.

1) Never watch Dr.who for serious plot progression

2) The Weeping Angels are overdone. Simplicity made it the best.

Dr who and deus ex machina are best friends.

There is only so many times you can create a paradox. A minor paradox at that. So I didn't really have any problems with the notion of a second paradox might have dire consequences.

Yeah complete mess of a plot. Why couldn't the Doctor go to 1940 or Boston or something and catch the Ponds that way?

And how are the Angels opening and closing all the doors? And is the image of the Statue of Liberty in the lift an Angel? [And I hope we aren't supposed to believe that it's the Baby Angel on screen that blows out the match, because that would be moving!]

Susan Arendt:
Eh, I don't buy that he used up a whole regen just to heal her wrist. But even if he did, they're his to use.

If you recall Rise of the Cybermen, the Doctor gives some of this life to put into the TARDIS crystal to regenerate it, which is basically what is happening here. River doesn't want him to give up a part of his life for her.

To be picky (and why not?) the first time Amy met River was in The Time of Angels, but the first time River met Amy was in The Impossible Astronaut. Or maybe Let's Kill Hitler if you want Alex playing the role. Or maybe during Wedding of River Song if you want her more River-like. Time of Angels for River happens much later.

Yeah...I just never really got into 11 and his companions.

See I LOVED Tennant because he could be charming and silly but dark and terrifying at the same time.

I mean Smith is good, but I cant ever take his anger seriously since he comes off like a child being mad. Where as Tennant can really show rage and anger and act like the master.

"The Waters of Mars" did what they are trying to show here much better. That the doctor loses focus without humans around him. That he starts seeing things as BENEATH him much like the Master does.

I dont hate 11, but I do prefer 10 a bit more.

tmande2nd:

I mean Smith is good, but I cant ever take his anger seriously since he comes off like a child being mad. Where as Tennant can really show rage and anger and act like the master.

"The Waters of Mars" did what they are trying to show here much better. That the doctor loses focus without humans around him. That he starts seeing things as BENEATH him much like the Master does.

Hmmm...as much as I love Smith, I have to agree with you on this point. Tennant does angry far better than Smith, but then Tennant gets too emo at the other end of the spectrum. Take Smith's happy and Tennant's mad, and I think you have the perfect characterization.

Chrono212:
Hey Susan whoever can be bothered to answer, what's your opinion on the mid season break?

Strictly Come Dancing is starting this week on the BBC and i guess the Director General (or whoever) doesnt want the two to clash.

Besides, its a convienient excuse to drop the mandatory christmas special in as a part of the series.

mad825:
Dr who and deus ex machina are best friends.

Going by that logic, then the Doctor's archnemesis is Diabolus Ex Machina.

...Yeah, that works the more i think about it.

I appear to have enjoyed it much more than you did Susan. Mind you, I'm in the mentality where I don't even question the logic of Doctor Who any more. It's not Star Trek. It's not supposed to even sound theoretically possible. It's just supposed to be having fun with these far off, nigh unknowable concepts such as time travel, and sometimes that's all that's necessary. After the most deep and touching episode of series 5 centered on the idea of all the UK being on a spaceship that rests on the back of an enormous, vacuum-breathing whale, all impetus to take the actual 'science' part of the science-fiction seriously left the show with a jovial tip of the hat, and I honestly think it made it better. I loved Russel T. Davies' writing on the whole, but it was always at its most cringe-worthy when it was trying too hard to make things sound even half plausible (the end of series 3 where the Doctor is 'un-aged' by everyone in the world just thinking his name... somehow, and it being played completely straight, springs to mind).

vallorn:
snip

That's true, though the dead soldier talking over the radio for the angels was quite neat.
I just feel this episode didn't take the time to be scary (like I said, too much going on), instead focussing on the drama of Amy and Rory. The same goes pretty much for the mystery surrounding the book at the beginning of the episode. I thought it was really intriguing and made for a great setup, but they just sort of rushed through it.

I personally love Amy and Rory, but I feel like their departure would have been a lot more meaningful if BBC wasn't shoving it in our faces every 5 minutes that they were leaving the show. Did we really need a commercial telling us that in the middle of damn episode where it happens?

TimeLord:

With the regards to the actual story, the whole reason behind the paradox and the Doctor not being able to go back to rescue Rory at the end is explained near the start of the episode when the Doctor tells Amy she can't read to the end of the book because it forces the events to happen. Rory found out that he was going to die in that apartment building so they had to force a paradox to stop it. He saw his own name on the gravestone just before being zapped by the Angel so the Doctor couldn't go rescue him as it would cause another, bigger paradox. Amy's name wasn't originally on the gravestone but after she made the choice to follow Rory back, the Doctor could no longer follow because he knows her fate and can't change it without making a bigger mess.

But what about the other people he's met that he knew the fate of? All those historical figures. He hung out with Winston Churchhill and Charles Dickens. Hell, he even took Van Gogh to the future. Why couldn't he do the same with Rory and Amy? If it's the tardis landing in New York, I believe someone mentioned the possibility of bus travel?

I understand that Karren Gillian and Arthur Darvel wanted out, but I still feel there were too many inconsistencies with the explanation. When Rose left they made it pretty clear that alternate dimension = one way trip (Although that explanation started to not work when they kept having people pop through). Martha just wanted to leave, and Donna no longer had any memory of the Doctor. This one just felt a bit more forced than the others, I guess.

I still liked the episode though. The Weeping Angels are always creepy, and I dont buy the idea that they've been used too much. They've been in, what? Four episodes? Plenty of room to explore them more (Although sparingly keeps the creepy factor high). I will miss Amy and Rory though. They're probably my second and third favorite companion, just behind Rose.

The issue wasn't that he couldn't land in New York; the issue was that he'd read their tombstone. That means if he were to rescue them it would create a paradox in which he's seen that they die in the past and yet they don't die in the past. The paradox earlier in the episode to kill off the rest of the angels already weakened the fabric of reality in that spot and there's a line of dialogue there that "One more paradox would blow the city apart" or something like that.

The way I saw it was that he could go to 1930s New York if he wanted, but the fact that the Ponds live out the rest of their lives in the past is a fixed point that the Doctor can't change without either summoning those reaper things from Eccleston's season, or ending time like in the last season finale.

The shift in the role of the companions could be explained in-universe by each incarnation having his own personality, and maybe this one just happens to need more caretaking than the others, either simply from age (btw when did he jump from 900 to 1200 years ? I must have forgotten about that) or simply centuries of fucking with the Universe and always losing everyone he cares about finally starts taking its toll.

Out-universe, that gives a good reason for him to return to Earth so often despite the rest of the Universe seems way more interesting and it gives more weight to the companions instead of being dead weights he carries around.

Gizmo1990:
I disliked most of it as the only thing I hate more than Amy and Rory is River Song but here is my biggest problem with it. The Doctor cannot go back to 193 whatever New York or he will blow up Now York right? Ok. Go to any other place in the USA. Then get on a train to NYC, find Amy and Rory, get on another train back to where you parked the Tardis and off you go. Problem solved.

You'll save yourself frustration if you accept some parts will just be illogical/they needed plot devices: the currents seasons are not one of those shows where you can build on the premises to guess the range of what might happen next or what options are available.

I'm pretty much a total Newvian. The only episodes I have seen are these last five and the two previous weeping angel episodes, so I definitely do not know as much about the series as many others.

I will say thought that I thought the statue of liberty being an angel was ridiculously stupid, but I forced my suspension of disbelief to allow it because I thought the rest of the episode was great.

And the end. Oh god, the end. I honestly don't think I've cried as hard since my brother left for the military when I was like 8... People may find Amy and Rory annoying I guess, but I love them from what I've seen so far.

EDIT: Oh yeah, I also wish it wasn't so damn televised that the ponds were leaving this episode. Like, if it had just been a total surprise, then it would've been even better. My heartstrings would've been more than just tugged on, but as it stands, I knew they were leaving this episode, so it wasnt as shocking.

TimeLord:
That was retconed out. Time Lords can regenerate an infinite number of times now.

Edit: Actually I think they made the limit 502 or something silly like that

From the Extended stuff I read, at the beginning of the Time War each Timelord had their number of regenerations reset. So Eccelston was 1, 12 to go. Though I think Tennant used up two in his run.

I wonder if we will still be stuck with River. Most likely.

Lady liberty is copper, but the Angels are stone.

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