33.05: The Angels Take Manhattan

Dave

Non Bio
Staff member
Joined
Jan 5, 2001
Messages
21,795
Location
Way on Down South, London Town
I'll bite since there seems some reluctance to start new threads here.

I found this to have a very different feel to the other episodes so far this season and while I wouldn't say I'm loving Dr. Who at the moment, I'm still watching it. On checking this was a Stephen Moffat penned episode which probably explains it.

What all the episodes this season all have in common was the "What If?" premise and this was no exception - What if the Statue of Liberty was a Weeping Angel?

Good use of the New York architecture and gargoyles - that gave the story a different feel and it was a real reason for filming there. I'm not sure some of the other stories set in the US were anything but an excuse for a foreign holiday.

I also thought the new Cherubim Angels were creepy. I foresee weeping angel cavalry soldiers on horseback climbing down from pedestals in Trafalgar Square and Whitehall next. Though someone said here that the angels are being overused now and that is probably true.

The concept that they were inside a story book was interesting, though I'm not sure I followed it fully and expect that there were some holes in that plot. The 'not reading ahead' and 'the missing back page' are all a bit clichéd but that concept could have been taken further and become a whole episode story in itself.

It was fitting that Amy would willingly follow the man who had waited 2000 years for her. I didn't understand the "fixed time" business to explain why Rory and Amy can never appear in the series again. I didn't understand the "fixed time" concept when used before since whatever rules are set are frequently broken whenever a story requires it, but I'm glad that if they are really going this time that they are not going to keep popping up again. Their goodbye has already taken far too long in any case.

Did that conversation mean that Alex Kingston is to become a regular companion? I expect not, given the spoilers that have already come out.
 

thaddeus6th

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Messages
6,964
Location
UK, Yorkshire
I had mixed feelings. The Angels remain excellent and I'm glad that they've decided against showing them moving. I also agree that the 'babies' are delightfully creepy.

However, the paradox kills Angels line didn't seem to make much sense to me. It's also a bit stupid that the Doctor said it was 'nearly impossible' and it took Rory five minutes to work out killing himself would do it.

There's a case of diminishing returns with the Angels, but it did work well, as you say, with the architecture in New York. It could work very well with Roman/Greek architecture too, but hopefully not for a few years.

Whilst the Ponds' departure was far too prolonged it was still a thousand times less annoying than Tennant taking half a bloody episode to die. I'm hoping River Song doesn't become a full-time companion (although she was less annoying than usual in this episode).
 

chopper

Steven Poore - Epic Fantasist & SFSF Socialist
Joined
Feb 4, 2005
Messages
2,269
Location
Sheffield, SoYo
I had mixed feelings. The Angels remain excellent and I'm glad that they've decided against showing them moving. I also agree that the 'babies' are delightfully creepy.

However, the paradox kills Angels line didn't seem to make much sense to me. It's also a bit stupid that the Doctor said it was 'nearly impossible' and it took Rory five minutes to work out killing himself would do it.

Not so daft with a bit of reflection: the Doctor is, historically, violently against violence and death (if you get me). It makes sense that he would not reveal to Rory the one certain way of creating the paradox.

Meanwhile, how the heck did he get that copy of the book? That bit doesn't make sense to me, and thinking about it topples the whole plot...
 

thaddeus6th

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Messages
6,964
Location
UK, Yorkshire
Except that the paradox meant he didn't actually die.
 

MemoryTale

Good with a stick
Joined
Sep 27, 2011
Messages
783
Location
Gainsborough
What annoyed me a bit about this ep was how all the emotional focus was on Amy leaving, when Rory was the companion the Doctor failed to save in this story, an episode after receiving a thinly veiled threat from Rory's dad at that! It was like "Oh, Rory's gone. Well snap, come on Amy. TARDIS. Heel girl!"

Nitpicky thought: How does Libertangel move without anyone seeing it? Seriously, that thing moves, people are gonna be gawking.

Other than that I thought it was a very well done episode. Moffat's still thinking up new ways of using the Angels, so I don't think they're in danger of overuse just yet.
 

steve12553

The Enigma of Steel
Joined
Feb 5, 2006
Messages
1,292
Location
Moved my books to the deep south. I have a loft/li
... I didn't understand the "fixed time" business to explain why Rory and Amy can never appear in the series again. I didn't understand the "fixed time" concept when used before since whatever rules are set are frequently broken whenever a story requires it, but I'm glad that if they are really going this time that they are not going to keep popping up again. Their goodbye has already taken far too long in any case.. .
Makes me think of the tearful goodbye to Rose only to have her show up later in the arc about the stolen planets.

...Did that conversation mean that Alex Kingston is to become a regular companion? I expect not, given the spoilers that have already come out.
Sounds like an opening for an occasionally guest appearance.
 

andy1988

Andy
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
6
I thought this was a good solid episode, and like Dave said, was very different to the others we've had in this series. While I was watching it I was thinking to myself, "this is good, but not great", but somehow the plot and the farewells stayed with me for hours afterwards. I suppose that's a sign the episode gave the Ponds' an effective leaving episode. I found the ending quite emotional, but I think it's only been in this series we've seen a mutual and equal love between Amy and Rory, making it feel abit rushed due to now having only 6 episodes in a series.
 

TheDustyZebra

Zebra. With snow.
Staff member
Supporter
Joined
Nov 26, 2009
Messages
9,166
Location
Colorado
This one was ok. The ending of Amy and Rory was nicely done and full of emotion (meaning I got a lump in my throat like the Doctor said I would in the "behind the scenes" thing).

I don't buy the Statue of Liberty part, although she was very scary. There can't possibly ever be a moment when nobody is looking at her, and even if that moment actually came, as mentioned above, as soon as she started walking across town with all that thumping, everybody would be watching again.

The "babies" thing is a bit off, too, in the basement. Do they not start moving until you've seen them first? Rory is in the dark, nothing. He lights a match and sees them, then the match goes out and they move. Why didn't they just get him before the match?

I think it's still open for the Doctor to be able to see Amy and Rory again, if he wants to. He said he could never take the TARDIS back there -- and "there" was 1938 New York. They died in their 80's, and they probably didn't spend their whole lives in New York, not to mention that time kept moving and they wouldn't have been in 1938 the whole time, either. Wherever that cemetery was, it wasn't New York (was it?)-- though they were not buried there, because the headstone said "In Memory of". Where do you suppose their bodies went? And Amy wrote the afterword for the Doctor, so obviously River got the manuscript to her somehow, and she was able to communicate in a message. There's still room for cameos. And I'm sure there are still River cameos to come, as well.

thaddeus6th said:
However, the paradox kills Angels line didn't seem to make much sense to me. It's also a bit stupid that the Doctor said it was 'nearly impossible' and it took Rory five minutes to work out killing himself would do it.

I agree with Chopper, here. The Doctor would never have told Rory to kill himself, even if he'd known for sure it would work -- and nobody seemed completely sure that it was going to work until it did.

All in all, it was ok, with a few moments of greatness. I'm disappointed that it was only five episodes before a long break, but looking forward to Christmas and a new companion! I do wish they'd call her Oswin, though. That's much cooler.
 

HoopyFrood

It's me! Hurrah!
Joined
Jul 13, 2006
Messages
5,518
Location
The Cloud
I think I'm always going to think of her as Oswin. The name's stuck!

A good episode. When I saw the Statue of Liberty I knew what they'd do and felt it was a bit jumping the shark-esque. Especially as it didn't actually do anything, really.

This week, what with the Angels making a return, I guessed what would end up happening to make Amy and Rory leave. I think the angels returned somewhat to their previous freakiness at least -- not like that previous poor two parter.

Nice, not drawn out goodbye from Amy and Rory -- but I guess their leaving has really been over the last fair few episodes. And because it was condensed, it was quite emotive. That and the bit where they're about to jump. I think I'm getting soft in my old age but Amy and Rory are a squishy pair and I liked their leaving. That Amy doesn't need to think about going after him. That she makes that choice.

Felt like a short episode but I guess because we knew what it was leading to and was just waiting for that.

Rather looking forward to Oswin. I'm intrigued as to how she's going to be explained!
 

PTeppic

Reetou Diplomatic Corp
Joined
May 31, 2001
Messages
3,337
It was fitting that Amy would willingly follow the man who had waited 2000 years for her. I didn't understand the "fixed time" business to explain why Rory and Amy can never appear in the series again. I didn't understand the "fixed time" concept when used before since whatever rules are set are frequently broken whenever a story requires it, but I'm glad that if they are really going this time that they are not going to keep popping up again. Their goodbye has already taken far too long in any case.

Did that conversation mean that Alex Kingston is to become a regular companion? I expect not, given the spoilers that have already come out.

I saw it (only on one viewing so far though) that it was a combination of "fix point in time" and "shattered time" (the stuff that stopped the TARDIS landing) that was the problem. Except there at least two solutions: travel earlier and wait or pick them up again afterwards (as already mentioned).

As for River, she herself basically said no (not as a permanent companion) but yes (as required).
 

PTeppic

Reetou Diplomatic Corp
Joined
May 31, 2001
Messages
3,337
As for me, I thought it was a good episode throughout, pretty much, except for the finale. All the emotion of the chase, the paradox, the non-death and ZAP, with such a paltry excuse. "It must have escaped" (the paradox). Really? In a single half-sentence you lose your two companions and that's the best you can offer?
 

TheEndIsNigh

...Prepare Thyself
Supporter
Joined
Mar 16, 2008
Messages
3,279
Paradoxically speaking - it was utter rubbish. Since when has (as Who himself said) the TARDIS not been able to do anything it wants. In any case it might not be able to get back to that time but Who could have gone back to the next day and rescued them or are they trying to imply that the block lasted for 60 years. In which case all those episodes )Most of the Who episodes in fact - including last week) would be impossible since they were in that period. So the Daleks never landed the Cybernauts never got here and Torchwood never existed. etc. etc.

Will 'The Dad' now mount a campaign lasting throughout time to track down and 'Do for Who after breaking his promise to keep them safe.

Didn't get the bit about the last page but the chances it was still there fluttering in the wind (where is wasn't left would be nil.

The cherubs in the dark - a bit close to offensive.

The Statue of Liberty - OTT.

But worst of all :- River is back. Please can we send her back to her mother.

Oh, and how did she get back to tell Pond what to do with the book if the TARDIS coudn't and why didn't she bring them back.

Plus the bracelet thing - Come on, Capt Jack was pushing it but a magic bracelet -please.
 

Kylara

Ghosting
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
1,621
I miss the SF aspect of the early Dr Whos...this one was cringe inducing cliche ridden and annoying. I did a load of studying on paradoxes for a project I ended up ditching due to time and stress but will one day be revived, and I absolutely HATE it when people use it as a get out card. Rory and his paradox yes, it would probably work, but not for all of it, only his life would be affected - also foreshadowing by seeing his "in memory of" earlier kinda fails a little - the paradox already occurred so they shouldn't have had an issue.
The babies bugged me - why on earth did you hear them run and giggle? Definitely overuse of the angels now, no longer terrifying. Also I'm pretty sure cameras count as watching, so yeah...most big cities are covered in them. Statue of Liberty? Really? Why did we hear the footsteps? The scariest part of the angels was their speed and silence. Not to mention them fluffing about in the ledge not even looking at the stupid statue...

Watched the ending without any sound too and worked out that whoever wrote that music is a genius, the emotive aspect was all down to that, beautiful piece of work...

Still I think I will probably miss Rory, couldn't care less about Amy going, and really hope River doesn't pop up too often...she really bugs me...

Something else - Rory, the plastic warrior man who waited 2000 years for Amy, why does he die? Pretty much immortal I'd say...and why on earth didn't the angels go for the TARDIS again? *sigh* The episodes are getting far too sloppy lately, and much less SF...there are a load of other issues I had, but I can't be bothered to go into them, I just hope that they start getting better and start thinking of decent new enemies...although the number of cameos has dropped which is a relief, that dinosaur one had way too many in one go!

The music definitely made up for it though, some excellent stuff in there...
 

thaddeus6th

Well-Known Member
Supporter
Joined
Sep 15, 2007
Messages
6,964
Location
UK, Yorkshire
Kylara, I've got to say that that's a very good summary of what's most annoying about New Who. Sometimes (too rarely) well-plotted episodes use sci-fi to great effect (the two-parter with The Silence at the start of the previous season, or Blink) but too often (and it was worse under RTD) they just make stuff up and pretend technobabble is an adequate substitute for a plausible plotline (probably best exemplified in the bloody awful season finale with The Master ruling the world, which also saw them **** up a classic Who character).
 

Perpetual Man

Tim James
Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2006
Messages
6,379
Paradoxically speaking - it was utter rubbish. Since when has (as Who himself said) the TARDIS not been able to do anything it wants. In any case it might not be able to get back to that time but Who could have gone back to the next day and rescued them or are they trying to imply that the block lasted for 60 years. In which case all those episodes )Most of the Who episodes in fact - including last week) would be impossible since they were in that period. So the Daleks never landed the Cybernauts never got here and Torchwood never existed. etc. etc.

Right one of my attempts to answer the point with my usual crap! I can't really answer why the Doctor did not go back a few weeks later and rescue them. It struck me as odd as well, unless their going back created something of a fixed point - something that the Tennant Doctor went on about. The fact that the grave existed and the book indicated that they HAD to be in past and live their lives. But the Doctor could have gone to visit.

Will 'The Dad' now mount a campaign lasting throughout time to track down and 'Do for Who after breaking his promise to keep them safe.

It depends if dad can accept that they lived out a happy life in the past...

Didn't get the bit about the last page but the chances it was still there fluttering in the wind (where is wasn't left would be nil.

Unless the Doctor travelled back to just after the point he left and picked it... nah even I'm not buying that one.

The cherubs in the dark - a bit close to offensive.

Probably depends on the watchers point of view I guess, I found it creepy. Not much but a little.

The Statue of Liberty - OTT.

Oh I could not even remotely defend this one. The only straw I would grasp at is that it might not have been the Statue of Liberty rather a prop or something...

But worst of all :- River is back. Please can we send her back to her mother.

Am I the only one that likes River?

Oh, and how did she get back to tell Pond what to do with the book if the TARDIS coudn't and why didn't she bring them back.

Plus the bracelet thing - Come on, Capt Jack was pushing it but a magic bracelet -please.

It's the same thing that Captain Jack had. She bought it off the blue chap last season

I miss the SF aspect of the early Dr Whos...this one was cringe inducing cliche ridden and annoying. I did a load of studying on paradoxes for a project I ended up ditching due to time and stress but will one day be revived, and I absolutely HATE it when people use it as a get out card. Rory and his paradox yes, it would probably work, but not for all of it, only his life would be affected - also foreshadowing by seeing his "in memory of" earlier kinda fails a little - the paradox already occurred so they shouldn't have had an issue.

The babies bugged me - why on earth did you hear them run and giggle?

I thought that as well. I thought it made them slightly scarier, but it did not really fit with what has gone before

Definitely overuse of the angels now, no longer terrifying. Also I'm pretty sure cameras count as watching, so yeah...most big cities are covered in them. Statue of Liberty? Really? Why did we hear the footsteps? The scariest part of the angels was their speed and silence. Not to mention them fluffing about in the ledge not even looking at the stupid statue...

Yeah. I thought they were a bit more scarier, like they had been, but still they need a break.

Watched the ending without any sound too and worked out that whoever wrote that music is a genius, the emotive aspect was all down to that, beautiful piece of work...

Still I think I will probably miss Rory, couldn't care less about Amy going, and really hope River doesn't pop up too often...she really bugs me...

Something else - Rory, the plastic warrior man who waited 2000 years for Amy, why does he die? Pretty much immortal I'd say...and why on earth didn't the angels go for the TARDIS again? *sigh* The episodes are getting far too sloppy lately, and much less SF...there are a load of other issues I had, but I can't be bothered to go into them, I just hope that they start getting better and start thinking of decent new enemies...although the number of cameos has dropped which is a relief, that dinosaur one had way too many in one go!

Agree with most of this other than Rory. Rory reverted to human when the Universe reset in the Big Bang. So he IS human. Why is another question entirely

The music definitely made up for it though, some excellent stuff in there...

Finally something that stood out for me, so much show that I made Missus Perp jump when I blurted it out during the episode. How did the Doctor heal River?

I'm guessing it might be something to do with the shared regeneration energy, but it's a pretty big leap.
 

Kylara

Ghosting
Joined
Jul 16, 2012
Messages
1,621
He used up some of his regeneration energy to heal her, which is stupid because it is a finite resource, and major flaw with that is the whole why doesn't he heal everyone else, and also ridiculously sentimental and non Doctor-y.

Rory thing, still doesn't make sense, turning him back human never made sense to me, massive deus ex machina style thing.

Also I am hoping that there will be more in the episodes now, I don't know why but nothing much seems to happen in them, they seem much less complicated but in a way that is very convoluted - they are trying to make less content do more... -_-
 

Brian G Turner

Fantasist & Futurist
Staff member
Supporter
Joined
Nov 23, 2002
Messages
25,809
Location
UK
Finally watched this - very nicely done, very effective film work, and a nice setting.

BUT ... Moffat. Cannot. Do. Continuity.

Firstly, the Doctor was upset because it was a "fixed point" that Rory dies in that room, and this could not be changed. And yet Amy suddenly decides they can and they do change this fixed point.

The doctor also makes the argument that once something has been observed, it is fixed and cannot be changed - but we've seen a number of times where the doctor has turned up somewhere and there's something wrong about the set up. In other words, we have time periods that have been observed and - by the doctor's logic, fixed - and yet these periods end up changed and the doctor has to fix them regardless.

Then Rory and Amy go back into the past - and somehow this is a bad thing? The Doctor is a *time traveller* for goodness sake! And they've all already been to the past! And in the very first angels episode, Tennant and Piper were both sent back in time via the angels. So where's the big problem with Rory and Amy being back in time (again?). Is it that they are finally known to die? But that wouldn't make sense either, as the doctor know they aren't immortal!

The whole thing was nicely filmed, and while it's nice to *finally* see rory and Amy go, it was very weakly executed and made little sense. Too little too late ...
 

Perpetual Man

Tim James
Supporter
Joined
Jun 13, 2006
Messages
6,379
Although I agree with Brian on this, I have mulled over the 'fixed' point in time, and The Doctor seemingly unable to go back and see/rescue Amy and Rory. It seems odd, but I wondered if it had anything to do with the book.

As the book was an integral part in working out what was going on, perhaps Amy and Rory in committing things into the written word, made their time in the past fixed. Because The Doctor read what was going to happen, it had to happen the same way or the book would not have been written.

Or as the Doctor might have put it, some timey-whimey stuff.

Incidently there is a rather interesting epilogue to this story available on the DW website, dealing with the threat Brian made to the Doctor at the end of the previous episode and his discovery of what happened to Amy and Rory.
 

IanK

Member
Joined
Jan 22, 2013
Messages
11
Time of Angels/Flesh & Stone left me feeling somewhat cold to be honest and I didn'rt think it did much for the Angels. But Angels Take Manhatten was fantastic and a brilliant send-off for the Ponds.
 

Similar threads


Top