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Doctor Who

Season 7 Episode 5

The Angels Take Manhattan

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Sep 29, 2012 on BBC America
out of 10
User Rating
249 votes

By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

In New York, the Doctor, Amy, and Rory meet River, but the Weeping Angels threaten the city as time periods overlap and time runs out for two of the travelers.

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  • I love Doctor Whople walk up inside of it.


    I love Doctor Who and why not it's better then most of the crap written here the so I'll always give it a 10 until the day it really turns to crap. Honestly I thought the whole Statute of Liberty thing was really cheesy to say the least. I also think it's sort of crappy Rory and Amy couldn't just live happily ever after. We've had Doctor Companions leave happily ever after before. Why not now ?

    Of course I feel for the doctor. He has just looss so much. But honestly, this was a loss he need not suffer. I don't see the sense of bringing them back miraculously time after time only to have them die one last time so as to write out there characters.moreless
  • Tear-jerker

    The tears are out. I promised myself I wouldn't cry at Amy and Rory's demise but I couldn't help myself. But the point of this episode is mis-direction. Admittedly, the plot twists could be seen a mile off and I predicted it the moment the trailer was released. But, it was wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey at its best and it was good to have River around without her stealing the show or being stupidly important to the plot, whilst still having some good hints towards her demise, which for her at this point, is close. Likewise, the Angels themselves, back to basics, at their best and most dangerous. But the real trick of this episode is not the fact that you're crying or why you're crying, its WHO you're crying for. When it was revealed this episode would be heart-breaking, he didn't say who for. And you expect it to be tragic for Amy and Rory, but it isn't. Just one episode previously, they were considering giving up. Now, they get to. Happy. No, this episode has you crying for the Doctor. The man who has lost so many friends, loses two more. And the moment where he is practically begging Amy not to leave him is as sad and poignant as anything this show or any have produced. Top quality but predictable entertainment.moreless
  • Not the best send-off for the Ponds

    Aw, we're back to this stuff now, then? Man, I hate this stuff. I hate Moffat when he decides that Doctor Who is not about plot or pacing or, you know, good writing, and he just comes up with random cool ideas and images and smears them all over the script.

    See, under Moffat the Doctor goes beyond the usual silly Deus Ex Machina and into the realm of masturbatory non-storytelling. Who cares if the plot doesn't make sense, or if there is no buildup to the emotional payoff? It's Doctor Who! You can do anything!

    But... you can't. You can't spend two seasons getting abusing time travel plots and then come up with arbitrary restrictions to time travel when it suits the need to write some characters off. You can't spend several minutes on inconsequential characters only to gloss over what is ostensibly the plot. The plot, by the way, is that a demented collector mob boss is seemingly feeding people to Weeping Angels who in turn have set up a human farm in an apartment building that can only be wiped out by paradoxing it out. I'd say that takes a bit more than a quick, confusingly shot chase and a dramatic declaration to resolve, right? You can't just jump straight to the end from the beginning with no middle in between, no matter how timey wimey you get.

    Or, well, you can, I guess, but then you get a half-assed episode. It's telling that the one saving grace I found here were those nice fancy glasses that actually give some personality to the Doctor's costume (and that keep very deliberately sliding down Karen Gillan's nose in a disturbingly cute way).moreless
  • Angels Statues

    This episode gave me emotional whiplash. I've been trained by the episode Blink to find the weeping angels really terrifying, so seeing one always makes me jump and squeak. A Weeping Angel Statue of Liberty? Nearly had me on the floor laughing from the ridiculous. Um.. okay. No. Just no.

    Rory dies again! At at least the freaky aspect of being stuck in a building full of moving statuary really gave me then creeps. But then the Doctor ruined it by saying that Rory never left that room. Which made me think.: "Wait, how did he get food then? Unless you're trying to say that the statues go to the market."

    I enjoyed seeing River and I like how well she just gets the Doctor. And her reaction when he used some of his regeneration energy on her? Perfect.

    Oh, I'm so going to miss the Ponds. I adored them being with the Doctor but I'm also content that they got to live their lives out together although I will always be questioning the fact as to why the Doctor can't pop over for a visit.moreless
  • The Angels apparently can keep Manhattan

    I had a lot of problems with this episode. The Doctor doesn't do anything, he doesn't solve any problems except River's wrist, he just gets whiny and angry and scared, he just reacts to the things around him and gets his mind stuck in what he can't do rather than all the possibilities of what he can or could. He doesn't try anything, he just accepts that they're screwed. Of course, Rory barely gives him time to try much of anything before deciding it's go-time.

    The idea that writing in a book makes it a fixed moment seems a little constricting, we've seen timeline changes before in this series going back to 9, and it's such an arbitrary thing. We've had Amy Pond most recently turn old and die in front of them without it becoming a fixed thing, yet Rory does it and all of a sudden it's impossible to change, "sorry sport, you're toast, enjoy the next 50 years here". The Doctor not finishing books also seems like a cheap conceit to this story rather than true to his personality.

    That actually gets me on another tanget, the Doctor's recent inability to face the state of change in the universe, all of a sudden he's incapable of letting go of things precious. The Doctor has had children and grandchildren come and go, the Doctor has watched companions age and move on and die and survive without him, but all of a sudden in the last season he's gotten incredibly immature about such things to the point where it's a driving force in this episode and it rings incredibly false.

    Rory and Amy's leaving was such a cheap-out. For this season we've been watching them grow closer to wanting a real life, to struggling with the idea of living the lives they had against travelling with the Doctor, and they were nearly ready to give it up last episode until at the last second they didn't. Here, they're back to where they were last season except not really obviously since this is "it". And what a cheap out it was, too, like Radar bursting in and letting us know that Col. Blake's plane was hit and spun in. What happened with wanting to have a normal life? And why would Weeping Angels from the past magically appear right where they need to in the present to zap Rory? Wasn't their plan to zap them to the hotel? That's gone now, it never even happened, so this is a random Weeping Angel. The ending also smacks of a copy of what happened to Rose Tyler - beloved companions are forced by circumstance to go somewhere that the Doctor cannot ever follow.

    River shows up out of the blue, it's a fun surprise but it has no substance, there's no reason for her appearance there, so she's just there because the shoddy script says she should be. The episode introduces us to 3 characters - the detective, the crime lord, and the thug - and none of them get any time to be anybody, they're just cardboard characters there to set the plot in motion and then disappear. The crime lord is given a token piece of character-business but it goes nowhere. Then they all disappear, leaving just our heroes and some statues. I'm also disappointed lately in how little action the TARDIS gets, under Moffat lately it's become a mere one-room conveyance and nothing more, there's barely a thought given to the fact that it was challenging for the TARDIS as well.

    The weeping angels also really are on my last nerve now, they've become peek-a-boo zombies, all they really are are monsters playing 'red light, green light' to little effect. In Blink they were horrifying, yet every instance since has taken away more and more of what makest hem unique. What was the point of the giant statue of liberty? That should have been something awe-inspiring yet instead it is just a backdrop, it just walks up, looks scary, and threatens nothing - towards the end it doesn't even obey the angels' rules, as no characters are looking at it yet it still just stands there enthralled by Rory and Amy having a soap opera moment. There's also not enough thought put into the torturing of a captured angel, shouldn't something like that resonate with the storyline, or at least piss off the Doctor who hates stuff like that even when it's done to his enemies? Instead it gets a grimmace and a vengance ending and is forgotten.

    Revisiting early 20th century Manhattan didn't really use the city well, there was a street, a bridge, the crime lord's house, and the hotel, but almost nothing about being in the 1930s or in New York mattered to the story at all. Streets and buildings were empty, there wasn't much period-specific activity, and once we were back in time there wasn't that New York flavor, so why were we there? This felt like yet another dropped intention to do something more.

    So what does work here? Aside from a no-parking sign they should have removed, the 1930s setting looks good and is fun to play with. The real Manhattan looks great and adds flavor to a Doctor romp. The acting was full tilt, even if they did pair off characters too often.moreless
Michael McShane

Michael McShane

Julius Grayle

Guest Star

Rob David (II)

Rob David (II)

Sam Garner

Guest Star

Bentley Kalu

Bentley Kalu


Guest Star

Alex Kingston

Alex Kingston

River Song

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (11)

    • Sam Garner: New York. The city of a million stories. Half of them are true. The other half... just haven't happened yet. Statues, the man said. Living statues that moved in the dark.

    • River: The Angels are predators. They're deadly. What do you want with them?
      Grayle: I'm a collector. What collector could resist these? I'm only human.
      River: That's exactly what they're thinking.

    • River: Turns out the person I killed never existed in the first place. Apparently there's no record. It's almost as if someone's gone around deleting himself from every database in the universe.
      The Doctor: Umm, you said I got too big.
      River: And now no one's ever heard of you. Didn't you used to be someone?
      The Doctor: You might be the woman who killed the Doctor.
      River: Doctor who?

    • The Doctor: But how did you get your wrist out without breaking it?
      River: You asked, I did. Problem?
      The Doctor: You just changed the future.
      River: It's called marriage, honey. Now hush, I'm working.

    • The Doctor: Why did you lie to me?
      River: When one's in love with an ageless god who insists on the face of a 12-year-old, one does one's best to hide the damage.

    • The Doctor: It would be almost impossible.
      River: Loving the almost.
      The Doctor: But to create a paradox like that takes almost unimaginable power. What have we got, eh? Tell me, come on. What?
      Amy: (taking Rory's hand) I won't let them take him. That's what we've got.

    • Rory: I always wanted to visit the Statue of Liberty. I guess she got impatient.

    • Amy: Rory, stop it, you'll die.
      Rory: Yeah, twice. In the same building on the same night. Who else could do that?

    • The Doctor: What the hell are you doing?!?
      Amy: Changing the future. It's called marriage.

    • River: What matters is this. Doctor, don't travel alone.
      The Doctor: Travel with me, then.
      River: Whenever and wherever you want. But not all the time. One psychopath per TARDIS, don't you think?

    • Amy: And do one more thing for me. There's a little girl waiting in a garden. She's going to wait a long while so she's going to need a lot of hope. Go to her. Tell her a story. Tell her that if she's patient, the days are coming that she'll never forget. Tell her she'll go to sea and fight pirates. She'll fall in love with a man who'll wait two thousand years to keep her safe. Tell her she'll give hope to the greatest painter that'll ever live. And save a whale in outer space. Tell her this is the story of Amelia Pond and this is how it ends.

  • NOTES (3)