Monsters and Wank
Monsters: yes – Weeping Angels, hundreds of them
Emotional Wank: 2 out of 10 – some about trust and some about sexual attraction
Intended Destination: pursuit of the Byzantium
Actual Destination: crash site of the Byzantium, Alfalva Matraxis, 51st century
While visiting a museum with Amy, the Doctor finds and then steals a starliner flight recorder that has a message for him burned into its case. Patching it into the TARDIS, he finds security footage wherein River Song, mystery woman from his future, gives him coordinates where he can collect her as she blows an airlock to escape some people with guns. He does so, and she sets the TARDIS into pursuit of the starliner, the Byzantium. They find it crashed on Alfalva Matraxis, where River summons the Clerics, military of the 51st century, to meet and begin the mission to subdue the Weeping Angel within. The spaceship has crashed into a disused temple, and the party will enter through catacombs full of statues. While preparing, Amy has an encounter with the image of an Angel from security footage, wherein it gains entrance to her mind because she looks it in the eye. The group enter the temple and work their way up to the crash site, as individual troops are picked off one by one, and the Angel from the starliner kills one, Bob, to take his voice to communicate, to disrupt the Doctor’s equilibrium. The crew are nearly to the top of the catacombs before the Doctor and River simultaneously realize that the statues are not statues; the inhabitants had two heads each but the statues have only one apiece. Angel Bob taunts the Doctor about being trapped as the crew find themselves far below the surface of the ship, illuminated by a glowing gravity globe. The Doctor tells everyone that they must jump on his signal, then fires a gun at the gravity globe.
Flesh and Stone begins with the group realizing they’ve become attracted to the ship’s artificial gravity and are now standing on its hull. They maneuver themselves through parts of the ship until they reach a forest air factory, where Amy’s condition becomes critical. The Doctor finds that she can buy time by closing her eyes. Leaving her under heavy guard, the commander of the Clerics, Bishop Octavian, escorts the Doctor and River to the command center. While Amy’s guards vanish into mysterious light one by one, leaving the others unable to remember them, Octavian is captured by an Angel and killed. When the Doctor and River reach the bridge, they hail Amy, who is now alone. She must keep her eyes closed, walking as though she can see, guided by sounds from her communicator. The Angels, fleeing the light, begin to catch on, but River fetches her by repairing a teleport just before the Angels get her. Angel Bob pleads for the Doctor to throw himself into the light, which is a crack in time, because it will seal the crack and save everyone else. But the Angels are draining the power from the ship, and its orientation causes them to fall into the crack as the artificial gravity fails. The crack seals and our friends escape. River reveals she must go back to prison to see if she has earned a pardon from her sentence for murder. Amy takes the Doctor home to show him her wedding dress, explaining that she’s been running from her impending wedding, and she now wants him and tries to have her way with him. He realizes the current date as the origin of the crack in time and whisks her away to get her sorted out with Rory.
- Oh he looks so smug when River says she was taught by the best. I love it when she bursts his bubble. I suspect he’s actually the worst TARDIS pilot ever, and he only gets where he wants to go sometimes because Sexy the TARDIS Matrix loves her thief. But we’ll get to that another time. In fairness, I think TARDISes are designed to have six pilots at a time, so it takes someone of exceptional attention and athleticism to do it alone. She’s it. He’s exceptional in other ways. Yes, I know he’s fantastic at the footy and used to be a cricket champ, but I still think River Song has him beat there.
- She makes him sooo uncomfortable. It really shows when he sonics her.
- Love the effects in these episodes. The Byzamtiun especially is fantastic, both inflight and crashed, inside and out.
- Repartee with Angel Bob.
- Really, really love these handheld computers. River uses one of these in many episodes. It’s got sensors or contacts or something on the side so you can snuggle it up against something and it can detect stuff about whatever it is.
- Love the communicators too. This ain’t your grandma’s walkie-talkie.
- The detail with the Doctor’s jacket. He’s got it off in the forest but he’s got in on when he’s asking Amy to remember, which becomes important later in the series.
- Matt Smith’s hair in these episodes is wrong-o-wrong. The whole right side is off. Dislike intensely. Actually the left side is pretty bad, too.
- Not a big fan of changing the Angels’ MO and capabilities.
- Just how the Doctor gets away from the Angels in the secondary bridge. His back is turned to them; they should be moving.
- Any of the slow-moving Angel shots.
- Marco turns mysteriously into Pedro.
Comments, Questions, Speculation
- In the Clerics’ capsule is a spacesuit helmet just like in the Library episodes.
- How extra horrible it must have been for Octavian, when the Angel took Bob. Bob is a sacred name to him, and for such a creature to become “Angel Bob” … Well to us it sounds kind of nice, but context matters.
- Sometimes the Doctor is very alien, and sometimes he is very like a human. In Flesh and Stone, his rage and fear frequently overpower him in a human fashion and he’s really hard on the people nearest him. Sometimes I hate this, and sometimes it’s okay. It depends on where I am in my own heart and mind at the time.
Raw Caps: 618 for The Time of Angels and 826 for Flesh and Stone
Finished Caps: 131 for The Time of Angels and 120 for Flesh and Stone
There are three shots where the Doctor has the computer upside-down, then turns it over, then looks at Amy and River. I argued with myself over whether I need all three shots, and the camp that argued for yes finally won. I try not to keep too many similar shots, but each of these evoked just enough distinction of feeling to keep. He was trying to pretend he wasn’t listening to what the women were saying about him. Busted.