With the mid-season finale of Doctor Who, we had to say goodbye to another set of companions – The Ponds. It is The Doctor’s curse to have to suffer the loss of companions. Like any good Doctor, though, he opens his heart wide and lets them flood in. It’s a good thing he has two hearts, because at least one of them is broken at some point.
Okay, I’ll admit, that was pretty cheesy.
Season 7 saw a smattering of episodes that, on the surface, seemed to hold little coherence as a story arc. The story went from a planet full of Daleks to a spaceship filled with dinosaurs; from a cybernetic gunslinger to an invasion of cubes, and finally to the exit of The Ponds in true Steven Moffat style. It seems pretty scattered, huh? I promise, they all shared a common theme.
This episode was meant to establish The Doctor’s new companion, Oswin Oswald, although we didn’t know she would be at the time (previews for the Christmas special have produced spoilers, I think). The Doctor also fixes Amy and Rory’s relationship. But, what we need to know is that it is their knowing The Doctor that has put strain on their relationship. If it weren’t for The Doctor, they wouldn’t have lost Melody, their baby that becomes River Song. Then again, without The Doctor, they may have never had Melody in the first place.
Boy, this is quite a pickle.
This episode saw the jealousy that Amy and Rory feel when The Doctor brings new people with him. Although Queen Nefertiti and John Riddell are not worthy companions, The Ponds feel the threat of it. Before The Doctor had picked up Amy and Rory, he hadn’t been seen for months. The Ponds were starting to feel that The Doctor had forgotten about and replaced them. From what I know about The Doctor, he usually doesn’t give his companions up willingly. But, the Ponds don’t know that.
This episode showed us the potential dark side of The Doctor. There is a moment during the episode, where he is holding Jex over the dead line by gunpoint, that we see the potential for murder inside The Doctor. If it weren’t for Amy calling him out on his actions, it is unsure what could have happened. The Doctor isn’t one to murder directly, as we saw in the previous episode. Perhaps it is this change that has been starting inside The Doctor that makes Amy and Rory think about leaving while the leaving is good.
This episode dealt a lot with what The Ponds miss as they travel through space and time with The Doctor. There comes a point when Amy and Rory even discuss the possibility of settling down and ceasing travel with The Doctor. But, shortly afterward, small black cubes begin to show up around the world. The Doctor, being worried to leave them, doesn’t do much traveling in the span of a year, which gives Amy and Rory the time they need to settle into a “normal” life. Perhaps it was this brief moment of normalcy that made Amy’s decision in her last episode all the more easy.
This episode dealt with the end of The Ponds as they take on the dangerous and deadly Weeping Angels. From the episode’s beginning, there is talk about Amy getting older, a foreshadowing of what’s about to come. As the episode unfolds, there is always hope that Amy and Rory will make it out of the episode’s events and choose to leave on their own. But, no, Steven Moffat wouldn’t allow that. After Rory is transported back to a time that The Doctor can’t travel to, Amy makes the tough decision to leave everything behind to go with Rory and live out the rest of their lives together in a time they don’t belong to.
That’s true love.
Amy and Rory had this great love that withstood many tests and trials and time itself. It withstood the fears that Rory had when he believed Amy loved The Doctor (which she very well could have, because she left with him the day before her wedding!). It withstood the birth and loss of their baby, Melody, at the hands of Madame Kovarian. Their love withstood the test of time as an Auton Rory watched over Amy through the centuries and Amy still loved Rory after he and The Doctor left her in the Red Stream at the Two Streams facility.
I know, that wasn’t the “real” Amy in that episode, but it didn’t stop me from crying!
Who knows what the future of Who will bring. Amy and Rory were the only companions I had come to know well, and I am sad to see them go. I could relate to them because I am both a husband and a father and their struggles as a couple both warmed and broke my heart. I’m sure I’ll never have that again on the show. But, I’m not sure that I want to have it, because I’d rather Amy and Rory hold a special place in my nerd heart above all the other companions.
But, as they say, onward and upwards. There’s a whole new world waiting for us out there. I’m just glad I got to catch a ride in the TARDIS while I still could.