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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

‘Doctor Who’ blogging: “Amy’s Choice”

(all spoilers! don’t read till you’ve seen the episode! and no comments from party poopers — this is a love fest only / previous: “Vampires of Venice”)
This is how I do my Doctor Who blogging: I watch each episode three times. The first viewing is just to enjoy the novelty of a new episode. The second is to catch things that might not have been meaningful the first time around but now make more sense knowing how things turn out. Those first two viewings I enjoy from the comfort of my sofa on a Saturday evening, usually with wine and other comestible goodies close to hand, and while I’m starting to formulate what I’m going to write about the episode, I’m only just thinking about it. The third viewing, on Sunday, is the intensive one: I’m sitting at the computer, taking notes, grabbing screencaps from the episode, really finally doing the work of hewing some sort of sense out of the episode.

I can’t remember another episode of Doctor Who where my perception of it changed so dramatically from the first viewing to the second. The only other TV experience that even comes close to how a second viewing changed everything is the episode of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine“Whispers” — in which Chief O’Brien suspects everyone around him of keeping a big secret from him, perhaps even conspiring against him, and at the end of the episode we learn that he’s not the real O’Brien at all but a “replicant” sent on its own mission to do bad.

The first time around, it appears that “Amy’s Choice” is just another villain-of-the-week episode, someone/something evil being mean to the Doctor and his companion just because it’s a fun way for an evil entity to pass the time. But there’s no villain, it turns out. There’s no bad guy out to do bad. There’s just the Doctor… and this is all his doing (however inadvertent). This is just the Doctor not merely talking to himself but berating himself. I’ve noted repeatedly that Doctor Who was never about the Doctor in the classic show, and what made the reboot so enjoyable and so different is that it’s actually about the Doctor as a character. And the reboot has never been more about the Doctor than it is in “Amy’s Choice.”

We don’t know how much about the Doctor these two dream scenarios are: Are Amy and Rory contributing psychically to the dreams? Are the dreams really drawing on their imaginations, as the Dream Lord says? Or are Amy and Rory merely participating in scenarios that the Doctor’s imagination has created entirely on its own? I mean, the whole thing about Rory’s ponytail does seem more like something the Doctor would imagine for Rory, because he thinks Rory is a twit, rather than something Rory would imagine for himself. (Though perhaps we don’t know enough about Rory to know that for sure.) And there doesn’t seem to be enough of the reverse — Rory imagining something twitlike about the Doctor — like we might expect if all their imaginations are involved. Or maybe it’s mostly the Doctor and just a little of Amy and Rory…

We can’t know, either, whether those bits of psychic pollen allowed the Doctor some sort of direct access to Amy’s mind. Can he really have “seen [her] dreams, some of them twice,” and that they’d make him “blush”? Or is he only supposing this, based upon what she’s said and done (like attacking him in her bedroom)?

In any event, though, even if the Doctor, Amy, and Rory are each contributing equally to the form the dreams take, the fact that the Dream Lord is a manifestation of the Doctor’s personality is more than enough to make this the most significant insight into the Doctor’s psyche that we’ve ever seen. (I had guessed, somewhere along the way, that the Dream Lord might be a future Doctor; I wasn’t too far wrong there.) It’s interesting that early on, the Doctor appears to assume that the Dream Lord is the Master — “I know who you are… No idea how you can be here, but there’s only one person in the universe hates me as much as you do” — but then we learn, in a roundabout way, that the appearance and demeanor of the Dream Lord means that the Doctor hates himself.

I suspected that already anyway, since the beginning of the rebooted show. But here’s him saying as much about himself. We already knew he was totally flummoxed by ordinary life — here he turns “white as a sheet” at the prospect of Amy going into labor. We already knew he was delusional about himself: “You know me: I don’t just abandon people when they leave the TARDIS.” But here’s the first evidence that he’s not unaware of what a mess he is, and that he doesn’t like it.

I think this episode is a little bit about, too, responding to fans who don’t want to think about the Doctor as a man, who aren’t enjoying, for instance, the innuendo that isn’t even innuendo about the Doctor having a sex life. “Don’t be jealous,” the Dream Lord tells Amy, “he’s been around, our boy.” The same could be said of the fans who want him, for some reason, to be “pure.” And the Doctor hints at the same thing, that he is a man with physical desires and needs of all sorts: The Dream Lord, the Doctor says, before he has caught on to who the Dream Lord is, may be motivated to do what he’s doing “because he’s got no physical form. That gets you down after a while. So he’s taking it out on folk like us, who can touch and eat and feel…” The Doctor is more like us than some fans want to think about, though I’m mystified as to why they would prefer not to think of the Doctor that way. Isn’t it more interesting if he’s a man and not a monk? And wouldn’t a man with a physical form — that is, the Doctor — get a bit down after a while if he wasn’t able to enjoy all the perks that come with being corporeal?

And yet it’s the only dark side of the Doctor — the Dream Lord — who suggests that he’ll “keep” Amy (“our companion,” he calls her, and maybe that’s when the Doctor catches on), and that “anything could happen” between them:

(echoing Jackie Tyler’s clumsy come-on to the Doctor…)

I don’t think, however, that the Doctor has any trouble at all propositioning anybody he fancies. I don’t think the Doctor would be very much bothered by the notion that Amy might be engaged back home. If the Doctor was interested in Amy in a sexual way — and I don’t think he is — the idea of Rory at home would not stop him. There has got to be something much bigger going on. This episode cannot — simply cannot — be about the Doctor waiting for Amy to choose him over Rory. If it is, then these two scenarios do not resolve the matter. First off, we can’t know if Amy had “chosen” the Doctor, and that’s why Rory “dies,” or if that was just the Doctor hoping (and as I said, I don’t think that’s the case) and so, because his mind is constructing the dream, that’s what he “makes” happen. It does appear as if Amy hasn’t chosen the Doctor — “if this is real life,” she says, with Rory dead, “I don’t want it.” Except we all know that people may consciously say one thing while subconsciously wanting something else. But how on Earth could Amy be married to Rory for five years and never told him she loves him? (Or are real people more horrible than even cynical I believe?)

What is clear, I think, is that the Doctor is conflicted about Amy, but it’s not about romance. It’s about reality. I’ve been assuming for a good few episodes now that Amy is not merely a victim of the crack in the universe but is the crack in the universe herself. But what if it’s even more insidious than that? What if Amy is a manifestation in the crack in the universe, and the Doctor is starting to realize this, and everything that has happened since he met Amy is suspect?

I started assuming somewhere along the way during this episode that both scenarios — Upper Ledworth and the frozen TARDIS — could both be dreams. And so it turns out was the case. I usually end up thinking, midcourse through new episodes, too much about what I’d do if I were the writer, if I were Moffat… and now I’m wondering something new: What if everything this season has been a dream?

I’m increasingly unable to buy Amy as a real person. Can she really be so naive as to imagine, as the Dream Lord taunts her, that she’s “the only girl in the universe to whom the Doctor tells everything”? Since the Dream Lord is the Doctor, could it be that this is the Doctor questioning the veracity of Amy as a person?

And the more you turn over just about every other line of dialogue in this episode, the more it all sounds like it’s taunting us, the viewers:

= “Look for all the details that don’t ring true,” the Doctor says, part of which is noting elements of his clothing changing from moment to moment:

Which is what we’ve been doing with every episode, from the apparently wrong date on Rory’s hospital ID badge to the Doctor’s missing/not missing jacket. “Trust nothing you see, hear, or feel,” the Doctor says. Well, we’re not trusting anything.

= “What’s this? Attack of the Old People? Oh, that’s ridiculous,” says the Dream Lord, which sounds like a commentary on the absurdity of Doctor Who plots in general. Also: frozen sun.

We’re used to accepting the most ridiculous things on Doctor Who. And now the show is telling us that they are, indeed, ridiculous, and not to be believed.

= “Who’s your friend,” one of the old ladies asks Rory, “a junior doctor?” Which could well be the pinnacle of all the “Matt Smith is too young to be the Doctor” criticisms. What if he is too young to be the Doctor? What if he isn’t the Doctor? What if when we come back next season, Matt Smith-the-actor is still portraying the Doctor but the Doctor is entirely unlike what we’ve seen during the first season, because he was only a projection of the crack in the universe? “What is the point of you?” Amy wonders. A real person doesn’t need a point, but a fictional character does. What if this is a fictional version of the Doctor — within the metafiction of Doctor Who — who has no point?

Even the Doctor mightn’t know that everything since he regenerated could be a dream: “I can’t know everything” (even though he usually acts like he does).

Could it all be “dreams, delusions, cheap tricks”? There was birdsong in seemingly inappropriate places in “The Eleventh Hour.” Could it all have been a dream?

What if Steven Moffat is tweaking the very foundations of the metafiction by positing that the Doctor and Doctor Who have no point at all?

Random thoughts on “Amy’s Choice”:

• Toby Jones is made of awesome. That is all.

• I love how the Doctor, when he comments that “this is gonna be a tricky one,” has a little smile for himself:

He loves the tricky ones…

• Matt Smith is working so well as the Doctor in small part because while he may be very young, he doesn’t have that bland, unfinished, characterless face that many young people have (through no fault of their own: older faces simply get more interesting through all the living they show the evidence of). It’s only once in a very rare while that it’s suddenly, strikingly obviously how young Smith is. Like in this moment:

Adorable.

• That jumper:

is criminal. It’s like something Mrs. Weasley would make Ron for Christmas, and he’d be forced to wear it at Hogwarts lest Ginny report to home that he didn’t appreciate all the love and effort that Mom put into it.

• The plaque under the console, which the Doctor has to hit to open, because the handle breaks off:

All I can make out is:

TARDIS
TIME AND RELATIVE DIMENSIONS IN SPACE

BUILD SITE: GALLIFREY BLACKHOLE[?] SHIPYARD

TYPE 40 BUILD DATE: 1963
AUTHORIZED FOR USE BY GALLIFREYAN TIME LORDS ONLY[?]
BY THE [UNINTELLIGBLE]

[UNINTELLIGBLE]
[UNINTELLIGBLE]

I tweaked the image in Photoshop to crisp it up, but this is as good as I could get. Anyone got a clearer screengrab?

• Sarn Residential Care Home. The name “Sarn” set a Doctor Who bell ringing in my head, and sure enough: Planet Sarn was a former colony of Turlough’s homeworld of Trion, and it’s the planet the Doctor and Turlough visited in “Planet of Fire.” It’s probably just a coincidence — there’s also a village in Wales called Sarn — but Steven Moffat has taught us not to ignore what appears to be coincidence…

• Oh, gosh, we’re more than halfway done already with Matt Smith’s first series? How can that be?

• Great quotes:

“If you had any more tawdry quirks, you could open up a tawdry-quirk shop. The madcap vehicle, the cockamamie hair, the clothes designed by a first-year fashion student… I’m surprised you haven’t got a little purple space dog, just to ram home what an intergalactic wag you are.” –the Dream Lord, to the Doctor

“There’s something that doesn’t make sense. Let’s go and poke it with a stick.” –the Doctor

“This is so you, isn’t it? A weird new star, 40 minutes left to live, and only one man to save the day?” –Rory, to the Doctor

“Is no one gonna mention Rory’s ponytail? You hold him down, I’ll cut it off?” –the Doctor, to Amy

“If we’re gonna die, let’s die looking like a Peruvian folk band.” –Amy

“Loves a redhead, our naughty Doctor…” –the Dream Lord (I will note again that I have red hair, and it’s not even dyed or anything to get it that way)

“Ice can burn, sofas can read: it’s a big universe.” –the Doctor

(next: Episode 8: “The Hungry Earth”)


MPAA: not rated

viewed at home on a small screen

official site | IMDb
  • NickT

    I don’t think they’ll go with the ‘whole season has been a dream’ plot. Telling people that the whole season has been a waste tends to generate bad feeling. I’ve had that feeling with some sci-fi shows from single episodes, I’d feel incredibly cheated if a whole season did it to me. Apart from anything else, you’re giving up a year of built-up continuity for a single plot point.

    I’m also pretty sure that the plaque says Qualified Time Lords, rather than Gallifreyan, which raises a question.
    Is Time Lord a species or a vocation? Presumably there are people on Gallifrey who aren’t blessed with massive intelligence and super-powered time ships, are they Time Lords too, or just humble Gallifreyans?

  • Ken

    TARDIS TIME AND RELATIVE DIMENSIONS IN SPACE

    BUILD SITE: GALLIFREY BLACKHOLE[?] SHIPYARD

    TYPE 40 BUILD DATE: 1963
    AUTHORIZED FOR USE BY GALLIFREYAN TIME LORDS ONLY[?]
    BY THE [UNINTELLIGBLE]

    I think it says:

    AUTHORIZED FOR USE BY QUALIFIED TIME LORDS ONLY
    BY THE SHADOW PROCLAMATION

  • Magess

    … By the Shadow Proclamation?

  • Ken

    I’m trying to figure out what it is that the Doctor takes out of his pocket and throws through the Dream Lord when he first appears. I think it’s a rubber duck, but can’t be sure

  • There was a Time Lord Academy where you had to study for 300 years to qualify for basketweaving. Graduate studies on temporaspatial mathematics with a minor in gravometrics were for 6 months and got you a Certificate of Awesome with the Seal of Rassilon. Summa Cum Reverente graduates qualified for a TARDIS after bribing the driving test instructor with a 5 pound note. And that, my friends, is how you get your very own TARDIS!

  • Max

    Dream lord jumps around like the Valeyard; but 11 isn’t as cocky as 6 was. A Doctor unsure and in doubt is scary

  • Kenny

    Ok.. so I recorded the episode from BBC HD, and, with the aid of sky plus live pause and a decent sized HD TV I am pretty sure I have the whole plaque right (Apart from the last two words, which I just couldn’t make out.)

    TARDIS TIME AND RELATIVE DIMENSIONS IN SPACE
    BUILD SITE: GALLIFREY BLACKHOLE SHIPYARD

    TYPE 40 BUILD DATE: 1963
    AUTHORIZED FOR USE BY QUALIFIED TIME LORDS ONLY
    BY THE SHADOW PROCLAMATION

    MISUSE OR THEFT WILL RESULT IN EXTREME PENALTIES AND [can’t make out last two words]

  • Kenny

    *EDIT*

    Ok I got it now.

    TARDIS
    TIME AND RELATIVE DIMENSIONS IN SPACE
    BUILD SITE: GALLIFREY BLACKHOLE SHIPYARD

    TYPE 40 BUILD DATE: 1963
    AUTHORIZED FOR USE BY QUALIFIED TIME LORDS ONLY
    BY THE SHADOW PROCLAMATION

    MISUSE OR THEFT OF ANY TARDIS
    WILL RESULT IN EXTREME PENALTIES AND POSSIBLE EXILE

  • stegmi

    I’m intrigued by the plaque.The TARDIS was indeed ‘built’ in 1963 by the BBC and it looks as if we are travelling down the route marked meta-fiction.Hoping it won’t be an extended dream sequence but…remember this is the guy who wrote Blink which surely must be the only instance of a titular hero existing primarily as an Easter Egg in mass produced dvds.(Try imagining an episode of Columbo where the guest star solves the murder with jottings left behind by a holidaying Columbo.)Blink was voted second best story ever so the possibility of a successful storyline that destroys conventional narrative structure has already been proven.
    Its late,must go.Thanks for the review.It improved my viewing of the episode.Will have to watch it again now….

  • “I’m surprised you haven’t got a little purple space dog, just to ram home what an intergalactic wag you are.” …ouch.

  • Mo

    Five seasons, a handful of specials, and in that time a small but fair number of older episodes I’ve managed to see. Never once has the Doctor himself creeped me out a little bit until now. Not even in Waters of Mars, really. I’m not quite sure what to make of that.

    I guessed that they were both probably dreams very early on- they both used dream logic and I’ve had a version of that split dream one too many times myself. (I’d be rubbish in this exact scenario- I always choose the dream when the outside world starts leaking in because what’s happening is too important to leave and it’s always more real than reality. And then people wonder why I have so much trouble waking up some mornings…) But I never saw the Doctor as the Dream Lord thing coming, though. It’s a very human thing in a way, that nasty little voice most people keep stuffed away and hidden in the back of their mind. But this: “…but there’s only one person in the universe who hates me as much as you do” Ouch. It’s too sad. Man, what crap does he have to live with?

    For those more familiar with the older series, who or what exactly is the Valeyard? I’ve seen people connect him to the Dream Lord on other boards, like this is his genesis or something? I guess he’s an evil Doctor from the future who showed up in the past? It would explain why the Doctor recognized who he was so quickly if he had met a version of him before. (If I understand it right it certainly opens up a lot of interesting future plot possibilities, doesn’t it?)

  • Lady Tenar

    I don’t think, however, that the Doctor has any trouble at all propositioning anybody he fancies. I don’t think the Doctor would be very much bothered by the notion that Amy might be engaged back home. If the Doctor was interested in Amy in a sexual way — and I don’t think he is — the idea of Rory at home would not stop him. There has got to be something much bigger going on. This episode cannot — simply cannot — be about the Doctor waiting for Amy to choose him over Rory.

    I’m curious as to why you think this since I’d hardly describe the Doctor as an alpha when it comes to sexual matters. He waited around an entire season for Rose to take notice of him “that way.” And in the romance between him and Renette, she definitely made the first move. And “Rory at home would not stop him?” I think that was one of the things that DID stop him when Amy threw herself at him. If he wasn’t interested, why wouldn’t he just say he wasn’t interested? That would probably be a far more effective way of getting a randy woman to back off than a lot of mumbo-jumbo about getting married in the morning. We are led to believe this season that the Doctor may have been quite the scoundrel at one time (the multiple references to Elizabeth I) but, as he himself says this episode, he’s “getting on” and I think he has plenty of moral considerations about where he puts his “other parts.” He’s lost some loves and broken some hearts and I think it’s made him aware of the fact that wreaking havoc on the life of a woman to whom he can never really give everything she needs (just like he can’t with any woman) is not okay, and Rory just drives that point home.

    At any rate, I definitely interpreted this episode as stating pretty clearly that the Doctor has a repressed attraction to Amy. Doesn’t necessarily mean that the whole episode has to be about the Doctor waiting for her to choose him over Rory because I don’t think that’s what he’s doing. I think it’s more about the fact that there’s always a conflict between his desire for companionship and/or sex and his ability to actually sustain a functional relationship with any companion that he might desire or even love, given the whole obsessive danger-seeking 900-year-old last Time Lord thing. The Dream Lord is the Doctor untempered by these moral considerations. He just wants what he wants. Making it a conflict about Amy’s reality just seems a bit contrived. And rather unlikely, since Karen Gillan is on the show for at least one more season after this. Not that I have any idea where they’re going to take that relationship beyond this point, so I will happily eat humble pie if you turn out to be right.

    And personally if they do some kind of Dallas-style “it was all a dream” thing, I will be very pissed off.

    But yay for us natural redheads! I’ll fight you for him. :-P

  • Bunny

    A couple of questions about 1963 – the Time Lords use a human calendar? Not just human, but Christian?

    And wasn’t the Tardis old and in need of repairs when the Doctor took it?

    Looking forward to watching this one many times!

  • Chris

    Smith’s Doctor has always seemed a bit guilty. Tennant had that pain about him, but not guilt (at least maybe not until the end)

    I think this is a season where the Doctor really starts attacking himself. The “Dream Lord’s” lines about him not really having friends, and the almost sneering way he asks amy if she thinks she’s the only one (thinking of Rose, Martha, Donna, Sarah Jane and all the others he has more or less abandoned, even if not by choice). And last episodes mention of destroying yet another species.

    I think he is finally coming to terms with the Time War, and with the way he has lived his life.

  • Chris

    And while I agree that the Doctor has repressed feelings for Amy, I would frankly be glad of a few de-romancified episodes. I loved Donna, and her relationship to the Doctor was the most entertaining IMHO. And they didn’t need to shoehorn romance in to do it (not that they’re shoehorning it in here)

  • Max

    Flames burn brightest before they die. There’s so much history, but in general – the Doctor’s first 4 regenerations were either natural or ‘controlled/anticipated.’ Ever since 5 died unexpectedly, the Doctor and his companions have been very ‘mortal.’ 6 especially resented 5 and even 5’s companion as a constant reminder that is life was nearly half over and that he was overcompensating with so much bluster.

    7 got darker, 8 (we presume) used The Moment to do the unthinkable, and we have seen so much pain and anger that has grown all around the lives of 9 and 10.

    Each sorrowful act by an older Doctor made it possible for the Valeyard to be created. It was only recently that 11 realizes history can be rewritten – his history. Maybe, 11 is preparing for time that he will rewrite his history so that he can die in peace instead of being reborn older, angrier, and even more dependent on his companions that he used to when he was younger.

  • Karl

    I’m suprised that no one mentioned that the “monsters” this week were elderly aliens preying on youth. Sort of like what The Dream Lord accuses The Doctor of doing.

  • Kenny

    *Double edit* Permanent… not possible. :D Knew I’d get it.

  • “I’m surprised you haven’t got a little purple space dog, just to ram home what an intergalactic wag you are.” …ouch.

    According to the good folks at Television Without Pity, not even poor Sarah Jane is allowed to use the little purple space dog too much due to legal issues.

    She did get a brief appearance from him in the first season of her series, though.

    For those more familiar with the older series, who or what exactly is the Valeyard?

    He’s a mysterious entity who shows up in the Colin Baker episode “Trial of a Timelord” to prosecute the Doctor for such-and-such and this-and-that. Eventually he is revealed to be a future incarnation of the Doctor who has gone bad. I’m surprised that he hasn’t shown up in an episode since then…

    I think this episode is a little bit about, too, responding to fans who don’t want to think about the Doctor as a man, who aren’t enjoying, for instance, the innuendo that isn’t even innuendo about the Doctor having a sex life.

    This is an odd statement for you to make, MaryAnn, considering it was not too many years ago when you were hinting that a sexual relationship between the Doctor and a human was the Gallifreyan equivalent of bestiality.

    After all, it seems silly to equate the relationship between the Doctor and a human companion with that between a human and a trained chimpanzee and then wonder why more people don’t automatically think “Don Juan” when they see Matt Smith’s interpretation of the Doctor.

    There was birdsong in seemingly inappropriate places in “The Eleventh Hour.”

    I can’t help thinking of the old Deborah Kerr film The Innocents whenever you bring up this bit. I doubt Moffat is shooting for the same type of ending that movie used but I wouldn’t be a bit surprised to find out that he has seen it a time or two.

    And am I the only one who thought of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman series when the Dreamlord first introduced himself? Does this mean that Death will be appearing quite soon in the form of a young girl?

    “Loves a redhead, our naughty Doctor…” –the Dream Lord (I will note again that I have red hair, and it’s not even dyed or anything to get it that way)

    It’s only because I love you in a sisterly way, MaryAnn, that I’m not only going to make the obvious response to that statement.

    I will cop to having an obvious soft spot in my heart for Donna Noble. And she’s a natural redhead too. Didn’t have to dye it or anything…

  • Isobel

    I’m currently wondering what the point of Rory is. He’s interminably dull, there’s no chemistry between him and Amy, she really doesn’t seem to give two hoots about him (I completely didn’t buy her being willing to die to get out of a reality that didn’t have Rory in it). We’ve done the whole Doctor/companion/companion’s boyfriend thing before with DT, Rose and Mickey.

    There’s got to be some point to Rory that isn’t immediately apparent? He’s got to be involved in all the cracked universe weirdness somehow?

  • NickT

    A couple of questions about 1963 – the Time Lords use a human calendar? Not just human, but Christian?

    And wasn’t the Tardis old and in need of repairs when the Doctor took it?

    I can fan-explain this one, easy. For the human calendar, remember that the TARDIS translates everything – speech, writing, foreign speech into other foregin speech, etc. Here’s it’s translating the date into the Human equivalent.

    As for the age of the TARDIS, no-one said when the Doctor actually stole it from. If it was built in 1963, nothing says he didn’t steal it in 2542.

  • BBQ Platypus

    I actually find Rory a lot more likable than Mickey. Less obviously and outwardly cowardly and/or stupid – klutzy and not quite able to keep up, sure, but he’s more “there” than Mickey was. The dynamic might be similar, but I think they’re actually doing a better job here.

    His function in the narrative is as a contrast. We find out who this new Doctor is in relation to him and by virtue of his reactions to him. In my opinion, his introduction to the TARDIS is the best thing that’s happened all season.

  • BBQ Platypus

    Also…no chemistry? Are we watching the same show?

  • Isobel

    BBQ – you think there’s chemistry between Karen Gillian and whoever plays Rory? That’s interesting, it’s actually the first time I’ve heard someone say that!

    Ach I dunno – the whole Rory thing is really not working for me. Too much more Rory and it’ll ruin this season for me, I think, which is how intensely irritated I am by that character. Conversely, I quite liked Mickey and thought that the relationship between Mickey and Rose was much more believable. He wasn’t the brightest but he was actually quite brave when he needed to be and he was loyal.

    Is this an Atlantic divide? Most people on the UK sites I look at seem to be commenting on the lack of chemistry

  • But how on Earth could Amy be married to Rory for five years and never told him she loves him?

    This may be Rory’s imagination taking charge in the dream.

    I’m currently wondering what the point of Rory is. He’s interminably dull, there’s no chemistry between him and Amy, she really doesn’t seem to give two hoots about him

    Rory’s brilliant! I love his coment when he first comes onto the TARDIS. “An extra dimensional space, very clever.” which annoys the Doctor in that he has no sense of wonder “I LIKE when people say ‘It’s bigger on the inside'”

    And this is what makes Rory so much fun. He has NO sense of wonder. He is all about the practicality of a situation. How do we get out of this? What do we do to solve this. He does not pause (like Amy or the Doctor) to marvel at the fact that there are Vampires in Venice. Or that there is a Cold Sun or old people with Aliens in them.

    He just accepts it and moves onto the next part.

    And Amy really does love Rory. He played “Raggedy Doctor” with her when he was a boy (and was likely the only one). He was her best friend. He was the companion she told all her secrets to (sound familiar?). Amy has had Rory around for so long that she can’t imagine a life without him. He’s part of who she is, and I don’t think that that was really clear to her until she thought he wouldn’t be there any more.

  • Jackie

    The bit where the Doctor bent down with his hands ready to catch in case a high-velocity baby hurlted out of Amy was comedy gold. Especially as Amy was still wearing her tights.

    Also loved the careful examination of the lack of pigtail at Rory’s neck the first time they seemed back on the Tardis after Ledworth.

  • sophiasol

    I think this episode is a little bit about, too, responding to fans who don’t want to think about the Doctor as a man, who aren’t enjoying, for instance, the innuendo that isn’t even innuendo about the Doctor having a sex life. “Don’t be jealous,” the Dream Lord tells Amy, “he’s been around, our boy.” The same could be said of the fans who want him, for some reason, to be “pure.” And the Doctor hints at the same thing, that he is a man with physical desires and needs of all sorts

    I generally really enjoy reading your reviews of Doctor Who, but this is where I take issue. What you are doing here is implying that people who don’t experience sexual attraction aren’t real men (or, by extension, women). I am asexual. There are other asexual people in the world too. And we are real, whole, and complete people who basically NEVER get to see people like us on the tv screen. One of the things I’ve loved so much about the Doctor is that he is one of us: that is, as I have always seen him, he is asexual too. And there are so few characters like that, that I am going to grab and hold on to the few that I can find. (even if the new showrunner seems determined to make him sexual….)

    So please don’t go saying that just because some of us like seeing the Doctor as uninterested in sex, we don’t like seeing him as a complete person.

  • Vanessa

    Very helpful review, thanks! I’ve only watched it once and guess I need to again. If the doctor is the one who is tripping, is he creating a dream situation and taking the real Amy and Rory with him, so their thoughts and reactions are true to the situation? In that case why wouldn’t they react to suddenly being in Upper Leadworth, married and pregnant, since they didn’t live the intervening years? Instead, they look like they totally inhabit their new time as if it were real.

  • Chris H.

    I’m going to be the pedantic Old School Who fan for a moment and point out, re: the Valeyard. He’s not a “future incarnation” of the Doctor, but rather an amalgamation of the darker sides of the Doctor’s personalities from somewhere between his 12th and final incarnations. Which seems a lot more interesting actually…

  • I thought I was the only one watching too much Ashes to Ashes. As this series goes on I’m increasingly wondering if Stephen Moffat has been spending too much time in that alternative reality too. If you’re interested, this is what I was thinking before I read your excellent review.

  • Ken

    I’m going to be the pedantic Old School Who fan for a moment and point out, re: the Valeyard. He’s not a “future incarnation” of the Doctor, but rather an amalgamation of the darker sides of the Doctor’s personalities from somewhere between his 12th and final incarnations. Which seems a lot more interesting actually…

    I’m not sure if it’s ever been explained that the number of a Time Lord’s regenerations are a physical limitation, or something that their society has chosen to limit. But this episode, and the origin of the Valeyard, raises an interesting possibility; maybe there’s a point at which regeneration continues to repair the body, but starts to break down the mind (at least, the part of the body that can be said to constitute the mind), and the Time Lords instituted limitations to address the negative consequences of this.

  • MaryAnn

    I’m curious as to why you think this since I’d hardly describe the Doctor as an alpha when it comes to sexual matters.

    I don’t see the Doctor as an “alpha” male, just as someone who doesn’t necessarily subscribe to the same morality as we might.

    He waited around an entire season for Rose to take notice of him “that way.”

    Right. She was plainly not at all interested in him, didn’t see him as a man. He’s not going to force himself on someone who’s not interested in him.

    And in the romance between him and Renette, she definitely made the first move.

    So? I don’t see how that negates the idea that the Doctor would have no trouble making a move — she barely gave him a chance, for one thing, she was on him so quick.

    And “Rory at home would not stop him?” I think that was one of the things that DID stop him when Amy threw herself at him. If he wasn’t interested, why wouldn’t he just say he wasn’t interested?

    Because he’s a gentleman? I think that if he were interested, and Amy demonstrated that she were interested enough not to care that she was supposed to be getting married in the morning (and as she points out here, she can be “getting married in the morning” for as long as she wants!), the Doctor wouldn’t care, either.

    We are led to believe this season that the Doctor may have been quite the scoundrel at one time (the multiple references to Elizabeth I)

    At one time? Whatever happened with the Queen happened after Donna! Like, just yesterday!

    This is an odd statement for you to make, MaryAnn, considering it was not too many years ago when you were hinting that a sexual relationship between the Doctor and a human was the Gallifreyan equivalent of bestiality.

    I think that’s what Gallifreyans would think. It doesn’t mean I think it. (And I’m sure I pointed this out then, too!) The Doctor is clearly a renegade from his society, and I find it fascinating to consider that he might be considered insane, from the “proper” Gallifreyan perspective. You know: Heroism is in the eye of the beholder, and so is insanity.

    Is this an Atlantic divide? Most people on the UK sites I look at seem to be commenting on the lack of chemistry

    I don’t see any chemistry between Amy and Rory, either. Clearly he adores her, but I don’t see her adoring him. Just because someone was your best childhood friend doesn’t mean there’s any sexual chemistry or interest there. In fact, it’s an excellent indication that there *won’t* be any.

    What you are doing here is implying that people who don’t experience sexual attraction aren’t real men (or, by extension, women).

    No, I’m not saying that at all.

    One of the things I’ve loved so much about the Doctor is that he is one of us: that is, as I have always seen him, he is asexual too.

    But was he asexual because he was actually asexual, or was he asexual because he was the hero of a children’s show that didn’t want to touch the subject of sex?

    I don’t think there’s any evidence at all to suggest that the Doctor is actually asexual. I agree that it would be refreshing is such a character did exist in pop culture, but the Doctor isn’t it.

    So please don’t go saying that just because some of us like seeing the Doctor as uninterested in sex, we don’t like seeing him as a complete person.

    Do you seriously believe that the vast majority of those who are complaining about this side of the Doctor are complaining because they themselves are asexual and merely want to see a character they can relate to? I cannot believe this is the case. Most people *are* sexual. That does not deny the reality of your experience, but I don’t think your experience is applicable to what’s going on here. Do you? Honestly?

    And wouldn’t you rather see a character who was avowedly asexual? Instead of one that simply avoided the topic altogether?

  • Lady Tenar

    So? I don’t see how that negates the idea that the Doctor would have no trouble making a move — she barely gave him a chance, for one thing, she was on him so quick.

    Haha, well that is true but I just don’t understand why you feel so strongly that he has no problem making a move since we haven’t really seen him do it. Which isn’t to say that he isn’t interested, but he doesn’t seem terribly proactive. (and understandably so since it is kind of a moral minefield.) Even after Rose reciprocated his interest and it was clear that there was erotic love between them, there (frustratingly) never seemed to be any, er, consummation, just a constant unsatisfied longing. So it seems odd to say that he wouldn’t have a problem propositioning any woman he fancies when he’s already fancied several women without any propositioning (that we’ve seen.)

    Because he’s a gentleman? I think that if he were interested, and Amy demonstrated that she were interested enough not to care that she was supposed to be getting married in the morning (and as she points out here, she can be “getting married in the morning” for as long as she wants!), the Doctor wouldn’t care, either.

    I think some people would care and some people wouldn’t. The Doctor may well care since he believes that her sudden horniness comes mostly from just having just narrowly survived a danger (which he’s kinda used to doing.) He might think it’s sleazy to do something with her that she could well regret once her mind has settled down. And it would kind of be taking advantage of her from his point of view. That’s a gentlemanly instinct as well. (I personally see nothing ungentlemanly about gently establishing to her that his feelings for her are purely platonic if that were the case). Plus, the marriage wasn’t the only concern. It was also the I’m-a-900-year-old-Time-Lord different lives thing.

    At one time? Whatever happened with the Queen happened after Donna! Like, just yesterday!

    Wait, did I miss something? (I’ve only watched the episode once.) How do you know that his dalliances with Elizabeth I were recent and after Donna? All along, I’ve been assuming that that happened a long time ago.

    Do you seriously believe that the vast majority of those who are complaining about this side of the Doctor are complaining because they themselves are asexual and merely want to see a character they can relate to?

    Completely 100% with you on this one. I’m also confused by the amount of hostility that’s been directed at the exploration of the Doctor’s sexuality in the new series. I can’t decide if it’s puritanical or just infantile. Sci fi/fantasy fandom is weird in that is seems to have a pronounced antisexual streak and a lot of general grumpiness about the fact that recent sci fi and fantasy has tended to include more romantic and sexual elements. I think this is a good thing. I love my Tolkien as much as the next geek but even (or perhaps especially) reading it and other “classic” fantasy and SF as an adolescent, I wondered why all these guys seemed to have just decided together that the vast and complex realm of human experience known as sexuality does not exist. Now people like Davies and Moffat (and eminent writers like Philip Pullman) are changing that. I regard this as a problem finally addressed, but it sure seems to getting a lot of backlash. Sometimes I suspect there’s an undercurrent of misogyny going on, because I think that the inclusion of sexuality in sci fi and fantasy is an inevitable result of including women that aren’t competely one-dimensional or stock characters (screaming damsels, princesses, nondescript wives…). If you have well-developed, heroic female characters that are always right there with the men in all the action, sooner or later there’s going to be, well, action. Omitting that potential would just be downright weird at that point. And considering all the hate I’ve noticed among a lot of Who fans, specifically for “fangirls” and their derision of the romantic and sexual subplots in Who as “soap opera” (and other such comparisons with stereotypically feminine fiction), I wonder if all this freaking out isn’t a manifestation of the fear of the historically male-dominated world of sci fi/fantasy becoming “feminized.” Just a thought.

  • Alli

    I’m currently wondering what the point of Rory is…there’s no chemistry between him and Amy, she really doesn’t seem to give two hoots about him.

    I liked Rory more in this episode than I did last week. Still, I have to agree with you about the lack of chemistry. However, I’m not sure if it’s just the two characters that lack chemistry, or if it’s the two actors lacking chemistry too. It could be a combination of both. I’d argue, that the “point” of Rory is to expose Amy’s character. We’re getting into “Why-do-nice-guys-finish-last?” territory here with Rory’s lack of self-respect, which leads into this:

    But how on Earth could Amy be married to Rory for five years and never told him she loves him? (Or are real people more horrible than even cynical I believe?)…

    I’m increasingly unable to buy Amy as a real person. Can she really be so naive as to imagine, as the Dream Lord taunts her, that she’s “the only girl in the universe to whom the Doctor tells everything”? Since the Dream Lord is the Doctor, could it be that this is the Doctor questioning the veracity of Amy as a person?

    I think this episode reinforces Amy as a deeply troubled person. Everyone she has ever cared about has left her. We don’t know what happened to her parents. We know Amy remembers her mother, so we can assume they weren’t sucked into the crack, but can we really assume she died? We’re not even sure if her Aunt really exists either.

    So by the age of seven, she has serious abandonment issues. Rory is the only person who has stood by her. She decides to marry him, not because she loves him, but because she can’t be alone. It’s a nasty thing to do to someone, yes, but lonely, insecure people “settle” all the time (not saying this is right, just that it happens). She takes off with the doctor because she knows she’s settling. I’d like to think her second thoughts are really about hurting Rory, but I doubt it. And yes, she really does naively believe that the doctor tells her everything: he is the amalgamation of every loved one she’s ever lost and desperately wants back.

    That doesn’t mean, of course, that Amy isn’t awesome. She’s feisty, smart, hilarious and sexy as hell, but she’s also a very damaged little girl.

    As for the Doctor/Dream Lord, is it safe to say that River Song is the only woman in the universe that the doctor really trusts since she knows his name?

  • VT

    Wait, did I miss something? (I’ve only watched the episode once.) How do you know that his dalliances with Elizabeth I were recent and after Donna? All along, I’ve been assuming that that happened a long time ago.

    At the Very beginning of “The End of Time”, the Doctor tells Ood Sigma that he’s been taking his time responding to Ood Sigma’s call, and one of the things he had been doing was getting married to Queen Bess, and that her nickname could no longer be…well, you know. So definitely post “Waters of Mars”.

    Also @Lady Tenar, interesting point about the hysteria among the fanboys about adding sex possibly being a reaction to “their” world being invaded by women. I bet that has a lot to do with it.

  • KarenP

    So – did we see the crack in this episode? I didn’t notice it and nobody has commented on it thus far.

  • sophiasol

    I don’t think there’s any evidence at all to suggest that the Doctor is actually asexual. I agree that it would be refreshing is such a character did exist in pop culture, but the Doctor isn’t it.

    Well, the lack of any demonstrated interest in sex in Classic Who would count to me as evidence. Sure, the purpose of that might have been to keep the kiddies from being corrupted by sex. But the result was a character who was by all appearances asexual.

    Do you seriously believe that the vast majority of those who are complaining about this side of the Doctor are complaining because they themselves are asexual and merely want to see a character they can relate to? I cannot believe this is the case. Most people *are* sexual. That does not deny the reality of your experience, but I don’t think your experience is applicable to what’s going on here. Do you? Honestly?

    Oh, I’m well aware that there are probably plenty of people out there who have other opinions about why the Doctor shouldn’t have sex. I’m just saying that I do have a valid reason, and that your broad statements were excluding me and the people like me.

    And wouldn’t you rather see a character who was avowedly asexual? Instead of one that simply avoided the topic altogether?

    Oh, believe me, I would LOVE to see a character who openly admits to being asexual on TV. But barring a single soap opera from New Zealand that just does not exist. But it’s not just about having him say the magic word “asexual” or something along those lines. I mean, I am avowedly asexual, and I admit it online. But in real life? That doesn’t happen. I just tend to, well, avoid the topic altogether. It’s just so much easier that way, rather than having to trot out the huge long explanation every time it’s brought up, and half the time having people secretly not believing that asexuality actually exists after I’ve finished explaining what it even means. So having a character that just doesn’t say anything about it is in fact very true to real life asexuality.

    But it’s not even just about that. It’s that, back in the days before I even found out there was a term for what I am, or that there were other people like me, I identified with the Doctor. He was awesome and intelligent and had adventures, and had close and non-sexual relationships with people. I didn’t even think about it in those terms at the time, but that’s basically exactly what I aspired towards.

    So I’m perfectly okay with you reading him as a sexual person, since different people see canon differently. (There are always a number of things in any given episode that you interpret differently than I do, but both interpretations are totally valid) Just please don’t dismiss the validity of my reading of him. That’s all I ask.

  • MaryAnn

    Just please don’t dismiss the validity of my reading of him. That’s all I ask.

    I’m not. I’m just saying that your reading of him is not the reading that most people have.

    Well, the lack of any demonstrated interest in sex in Classic Who would count to me as evidence. Sure, the purpose of that might have been to keep the kiddies from being corrupted by sex. But the result was a character who was by all appearances asexual.

    So, then, logically, you must read every adult character in a children’s story as asexual.

    I bet you don’t, though…

  • I know that, for me, there was a pretty nice thing about the era of Rose Tyler. Here’s young Billie Piper: Fecund and lush, already a hottie pop star and with sex appeal that can only be acquired by making a deal with Satan. Even so, the Doctor Who folks put her into hoodies and baggy jeans, downplaying her almost irrepressible sexuality so that viewers can focus on her place as a person in a story. Even at the end, her final moments with The Doctor at Bad Wolf Bay were about tying together four years of plot strands and closing the door on her once and for all. Though there are many differences, it reminded me of the final kiss between Hawkeye Pierce and Hotlips Hoolihan (where the kiss was less sexy than it was a landmark to end an era and let the characters come to rest). I think this courage to avoid the trap of building Rose up as a sex kitten is what built her into one of the most important female characters in sci fi history.

    And so there’s the writing crew throwing Amy at the Doctor… not even in a love-struck declaration of undying commitment but, instead, like an alley cat trying to rub herself against a stationary object to get some relief from The Hornies. I’ve never seen anything like that in Doctor Who before. It’s not just incongruous… it changes the nature of the show.

    This is why I, like MaryAnn, don’t buy it. To quote River Song: This is the Doctor we’re talking about. Do you really think it could be that simple?

    :)

  • Keith

    If the who season is just a regeneration induced dream (to explore what happens in the Doctor’s mind during a regeneration phase), then the cracks could be reality trying to intrude on the dream world occurring in the Doctor’s mind. Previous regeneration instances usually had the Doctor unconscious for a while.

    Prisoner Zero might really have been the Doctor’s subconscious mind taunting the rest of his mind about what it already knows.

    Moffat may be taking a cue from the recent Star Trek reboot. With a little slight of plot you can have the same story develop twice. The latest Doctor may be laying unconscious at Amy’s somewhere and their real adventures will begin next season.

    After this episode, I wouldn’t put it past Moffat. We’ll find out in a few weeks.

  • VT

    @sophiasol: Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory seems to be completely asexual. I mean, he’s also a gigantic weirdo, but definitely asexual.

  • I’m going to be the pedantic Old School Who fan for a moment and point out, re: the Valeyard. He’s not a “future incarnation” of the Doctor, but rather an amalgamation of the darker sides of the Doctor’s personalities from somewhere between his 12th and final incarnations. Which seems a lot more interesting actually…

    D’oh! Sorry.

    It has been a long while since I last saw that episode.

    So does that mean there exists an entity which is an amalgamation of the lighter sides of the Doctor’s personalities from somewhere between his 12th and final incarnations?

    And could this entity and the Valeyard be in any way related to the Black Guardian and the White Guardian?

    Yes, I know. Questions like that are what we have fan fic for…

  • Max

    The Black and White Guardians are probably on par with the Eternals: the ones who are so dismissive of the Doctor and timelords (“there are lords in realms so small?’). The Valeyard was only a threat on Gallifrey, and then only in the Matrix. With the Matrix gone (probably), the Valeyard is also probably gone, too.

    As far as the Doctor’s relationships with humans, I believe he has already commented that he is above and will never be ‘that close’ to anyone ever. Remember the wedding couple in Father’s Day: He them that he has never had the lives these two people have; they are two ordinary people with a potentially happy future, and that makes them special. He promises he will do everything he can to save THEM.

  • I found this episode to be quite a relief. I’ve found the character of Amy particularly entrancing (to the point of distracting me from the plot) and was getting more and more upset at her treatment of Rory. I mean, trying to get into the Doctor’s pants the night before her wedding?? It got to the stage of me practically yelling at the TV, “For God’s sake either get your act together with Rory or break up with him and put him out of his misery!”. (OK so maybe i have some of my own issues to deal with here…)

    So seeing her finally acknowledge how she feels about Rory was great. Then again, she would act the same way if faced with the death of her best friend, so it isn’t really proof that they’re soulmates or anything…

    I do agree that their ‘chemistry’ has been lacking, but this is perhaps because she was taking him for granted the whole time. Hopefully now we’ll get an explanation for why they are a good match.

  • @sophiasol: also, there’s an Australian film called Strange Fits of Passion that deals with asexuality to a certain extent.

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0201951/

  • sophiasol

    I’m not. I’m just saying that your reading of him is not the reading that most people have.

    Okay.

    So, then, logically, you must read every adult character in a children’s story as asexual.

    I bet you don’t, though…

    “Do I contradict myself?
    Very well then I contradict myself,
    (I am large, I contain multitudes.)”

    @VT: Yeah, I know! And I think that’s awesome. Unfortunately I have a terrible embarrassment-squick that keeps me from being able to watch sitcoms of any variety.

    @Stuart: Ooh, thank you! I will have to look that up.

  • Vanessa

    Just as an aside–

    Is it me, or does this series seem to be orally fixated?
    There are many aliens who look human/benign till they open their mouths (Prisoner Zero in TEH, the Vampires in VOV, the Pensioners in AC, and even the weeping angels got big nasty teeth this time around)

    Maybe it is a product of budget cuts–less CGI if aliens look human most of the time.

    or Maybe it is a design decision to use body parts in general (the eye of the Atraxi and the eyes of the angels playing important parts)

  • Dave

    Had a heck of a weekend so wasn’t able to watch till last night so I’m getting in on the tail end of the discussion.

    For people worrying about the plaque meaning that it’s all a dream things like that are what keep set designers from going completely crazy. I’m sure what was on the plaques in the Star Trek tv shows is online somewhere. Moffat may be devious but I don’t think he’d make people have to use freeze frame and image enhancement to get his clues.

    Now onto the Doctor’s sexuality. I do think that the Doctor is a sexual being that’s been pointed out several times in the last few seasons, but in many ways the Doctor is less than a year old while being over 900 years old at the same time. He doesn’t know what kind of food he likes after regeneration is it crazy to think other parts of his personality might also change? He seems like he is very naive about alot of sexual things (turning white when she fakes labor, finding a girl in a bikini and talking to her about her diabetes, not finding it strange to climb into the cake, the whole ew thing from Vampires, the panic when Amy throws herself at him)

    I see this current Doctor as being attracted to Amy but wanting to do the right thing. This is reinforced by the obvious attraction of the Dream Lord to Amy.

  • On the metafiction theme: no one has yet commented that the Doctor drove an (ahem!) fire engine red VW camper van to rescue Amy and Rory and mysteriously entered via an upstairs window. How very like ‘The Eleventh Hour’. (Loved Rory’s line just prior, “I’m afraid you may experience some bruising.” – Still playing ‘doctor, and he was in a hospital last time. Is that going too far?) The aliens with the single eyeball were rather like the Atraxi in ‘The Eleventh Hour’ too, no? I think this and ‘The Beast Below’ are my favourite episodes so far.

    Just watched it for the third time. Gets richer with each viewing, and there’s very little you can say that about.

    I still think the Doctor is Amy’s father, and this is hinted at in the ‘monsters from the id’ theme. “Forbidden Planet” and “The Tempest” are both partly about the jealousy of a single father for his only daughter when she meets a lover. Who is the gooseberry? Ferdinand or Prospero? What does Miranda choose?

  • bronxbee

    I still think the Doctor is Amy’s father, and this is hinted at in the ‘monsters from the id’ theme. “Forbidden Planet” and “The Tempest” are both partly about the jealousy of a single father for his only daughter when she meets a lover.

    may i just say… squik making… although disturbingly compelling as an argument. the one episode i really totally disliked was “The Doctor’s Daughter.” it’s really one of those i think we should pretend never happened. to have it be brought up again — and take a whole season to bash us over the head with…

    but wait! how did she turn up as a little girl (and Amelia was never 7 when she met the Doctor — 9 or 10 maybe) and from scotland and living with an aunt…? no. i say to you, Dave Weeden. just … no.

  • Ricki

    Although this episode aired a few weeks ago, after reading your comments I felt that I had to add my two cents…

    At the Very beginning of “The End of Time”, the Doctor tells Ood Sigma that he’s been taking his time responding to Ood Sigma’s call, and one of the things he had been doing was getting married to Queen Bess, and that her nickname could no longer be…well, you know. So definitely post “Waters of Mars”.

    I had missed that as well!! And that would also explain why, upon seeing DT in “The Shakespeare Code”, Queen Elizabeth I refers to him as “my sworn enemy.” Glad that loose end was finally tied up.

    About the relationship between Amy and Rory…. I think that they really, truly do love each other, they just have completely different ways of showing it. As some of you have stated (on other reviews), Amy has had a difficult childhood, and this makes it difficult for her to show her emotions in a traditional way (the scene that pops out to me is when she punches Rory’s arm in “Vampires in Venice,” which is a friendly but not very romantic gesture). I think that Rory and Amy have no less chemistry than Mickey and Rose; in both cases the male counterpart was more expressive of emotions than the female. Rose and Amy are very different characters, and therefore I believe that their actions towards their boyfriends should not be compared apples to apples. I think that all that Amy and Rory have done for each other (particularly Amy declaring that she does not wish to live without Rory in this episode) show that they both truly do love each other. I think that their lack of traditional chemistry is deliberate, and that it shows their relationship is not traditional and that they are two very different people, yet they are still in love.

  • Janus

    This has been bothering me for a few days now, but….is the Doctor really vegetarian? Or was this just the Dream Lord taunting him?

    Becuase….if he’s vegetarian then why was he eating Fish Custard in The Eleventh Hour?? This is driving me crazy!

  • Wrapped In Plastic

    My understanding is he went veggie in the older series, but it apparently didn’t stick (he order steak in “Boomtown”).

  • bronxbee

    i don’t ever remember the Doctor saying he’d “gone vegetarian.” and vegetarian is not the same as vegan, in which case he might not eat fish… or eggs… etc.

  • bronxbee

    i don’t ever remember the Doctor saying he’d “gone vegetarian.” and vegetarian is not the same as vegan, in which case he might not eat fish… or eggs… etc. but in either event, i don’t think that’s in the canon. old or new.

  • 1995dream

    Started skimming comments because my poached eggs arrived, but…has anyone commented on the several “size” comments, i.e. Rory’s vs The Doctor’s flashlights? Two (I think)references to the Doctor’s equipment implied to me a marked awareness of the Doctor’s sexuality.

  • Dr. Rocketscience

    It’s difficult to comment here given that I’m 2 (no, now 3) weeks behind. Seriously BBC, and BBCAmerica. Do you not know who your target audience is? Do you want me to start watching “pirated” torrents?

    Given that, my first impressions of “Amy’s Choice” are that this is intended as a stand-alone episode, written to give us some insights into the characters, but not linked to the series arc.

    As to Amy having “never told [Rory she] loved him”, I don’t think she literally means that. She probably said “I love you” many times, but now realizes that she was just reflexively reciting the words.

  • Re: vegetarianism, at the end of The Two Doctors the sixth Doctor says to Peri: “From now on I think it’s a strict vegetarian diet for both of us.”

  • Just posting to let Proper Dave know he has the best online name I’ve seen in any Doctor Who conversation to date. :)

  • Why, thank you! :)

  • James L

    As far as the whole Amy/Rory chemistry thing, I have to admit one thing… at the end, when he’s asking her how the work up from the one dream, and she started getting all… shy… and unable to say what she meant, two thoughts ran through my head.

    One was: Damnit, she really does love him.

    The other was quite simply, “OMG, woman, you’re gorgeous!” Because in that one moment, when she wasn’t trying to be all take-chargish and actually showed what was under that mask she wears… she was absolutely beautiful. :D

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