Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Angels Take Manhattan review by @cheezypeas

So, it finally happened; the Pond's departure. This episode had possibly been one of the most eagerly anticipated (and dreaded) storylines to date.

Oh Moffat, you really got the heart strings pulled to breaking point with this one. Its never a happy moment when the Doctor loses a companion or 2 (although there have been a few which we've been pleased to see the back of).

Also the reprise of the Weeping Angels and the return of River Song made the story appealing to all fans.

So, the beautiful Big Apple. A detective finds himself investigating for a collector some statues that appear to move in an apartment in battery park. Here he finds his name on the door and an identical wallet with his identification in. He then discovers a old man who is him! His older self warns him the statues are coming to get him. He runs up to the roof to escape the approaching angels only to find the statue of liberty waiting for him.

Central Park. The trio are enjoying some time chilling out and reading a detective book. The Doctor demonstrates some rather strange book OCD by ripping out the page. He tells Amy its because he doesn't like endings. Well, Doctor, prepare yourself for a massive one.

Whilst grabbing some coffee Rory vanishes, which then the Doctor reads out from the passage he's reading to Amy. They get into the TARDIS to 1938 where Rory is in the book. Whilst they are doing this they learn from the book that Rory has met up with River in this time period, and the statue collector. River warns Rory that the Doctor will find it impossible to land the TARDIS due to time distortions.

The collector demands Rory is placed in the basement with his babies, who turn out to be cherub angels who turn on Rory. Meanwhile the Collector is keen to learn more about the angels and tricks River into being held captive by a damaged one in order to get information by force.

By a clever trick of using a homing beacon and a vase, the Doctor is able to land the TARDIS safely without too much trouble from the time distortions. The Doctor asks River to set herself free from the Angel without breaking her wrist as the book says she does. He also notices the last chapter title being about Amy's farewell and almost loses his temper. They find out where Rory has gone to- an apartment block. River has managed to free herself but has broken her wrist. The Doctor uses regeneration energy to heal her which causes an argument between them, typical married couple!

They find Rory, but also his old self as well. They watch the old Rory die and the Doctor knows his fate is sealed. But fiery and defiant Amy wants to outwit the angels and stop this happening. They run away from the approaching angels and find themselves up on the roof with the statue of Liberty angel awaiting them.

Now, in this next scene you cannot say that Rory isnt a strong character. He proposes jumping off the building to his death, thereby preventing the angels keeping him there and creating a paradox. Amy wont let Rory go so she decides to jump with him. The Doctor and River arrive just as the leap off the building.....

....then the Ponds find themselves back in present day in a cemetery. The Doctor mentions due to the paradox he cannot travel back to that time. As he's explaining this Rory finds a tombstone with his name on it and an angel appears to take Rory away again. Amy is devastated and decides to let the angel take her as well so she could be with Rory. The Doctor doesn't want her to go and tries to persuade her not to but River agrees with her mother. Amy says goodbye and vanishes.

The Doctor is distraught and River says he shouldn't travel alone. He asks her to travel with him. He finds the last page he ripped out of the book and realises its Amy telling him she and Rory are ok and together.

So, what did I think? Well, overall a fantastic story with a bittersweet ending. I felt it was a little rushed in parts and could have done with being a slightly longer episode to make it flow better. Thought it was clever putting in the bit where the Ponds jump to their death as it fooled you into thinking that was it at that point. Now I don't want to upset anyone whos a big River fan but I also think Moffat needs to consider when her character has served her purpose before potential overkill.

I think Moffat got the ending perfect with the happy twist as the Ponds are together. Its only the Doctor who is the unhappy one, I believe he will never find happiness and with all the companions in the universe to chose from he will always be alone.


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