Monday, September 26, 2011
Review: The Girl Who Waited
Is it corny to say I'd been waiting for this episode almost above all the other's? Except for maybe The God Complex. Well, I've been waiting for this episode since I first realized that Amy gets some pretty badass sword skills and cool but strange looking white armor as seen in the trailers. What I didn't expect from this episode was how emotional it would turn out to be. Things like that seem to jump up from behind and surprise me with this show, although you'd think I'd know better by now. Guess not. "Spoilers!"
I love how innocently these episodes start out sometimes. Like this one. The Doctor wants to take them to Apalapachia, the second most beautiful planet in the galaxy. And why isn't the Doctor taking them to the first? Because apparently it's all tourist-y, too well known and covered with cafes. I automatically imagined a Starbucks on every corner.
So off they go to Apalapachia, and Amy falls behind a little because she forgot her phone of all things.
"And you want to update Twitter?"
And then Amy makes an innocuous decision and pushes the 'red waterfall' button rather than the 'green anchor' button like Rory and the Doctor chose. Which of course causes all hell to break loose.
The handbots shouldn't be that creepy, I mean, they're all white and clean looking, but they're also rather... off. I think the Doctor hits it right on the nose when he says they haven't got any eyes. And they're all metal and cold looking except for their hands which are kind of this white rubbery fleshy thing. And really strange looking. Especially since that's how they see, by waving their hands around.
My favorite part about this episode is how smoothly everything seems to be going at first. I mean, the Doctor figures out the two time streams thing pretty quickly, figures out how to stabilize the wibbly-ness of time in order to use the magnifying glass to lock on to Amy's specific time stream and send Rory in to get her. Because the Doctor can't leave the safety of the Tardis in case he catches that 24 hour plague he's so worried about. I personally don't blame him. Why risk catching a deadly plague when you can just send in the human to go save Amy? After all, it's his wife, Rory should have kept a better eye on her in the first place. Although, it's Amy so it's not like that would actually work. Come on, Rory keeping an eye on Amy? That's a laugh. Not that he doesn't try, it's just, well, it's Amy! Plus, Amy seems to rather have it made in the beginning. Aside from having to dodge the handbots and their needles and kindness, I mean, she's got rollercoasters, a garden, and that replica of Disneyland Klom!
The first time you realize something has gone completely and thoroughly wrong is when there's this madwoman swinging a samurai sword for Rory's face. And we realize that madwoman is Amy, but the wrong Amy. I don't know about anyone else, but I didn't immediately realize why Amy looked so weird. Whoever did her makeup did a fantastic job, because her aging is just subtle enough to be believable and not ridiculous (*cough* like the aging job on the kids at the end of Harry Potter: Deathly Hallows Part 2 *cough*)
One of my initial thoughts when older Amy went on her rant about how she hated the Doctor and wanted nothing to do with Rory was that she had waited a measly 36 years compared to Rory waiting almost 2,000 years for her was, how the hell can she be mad after 36 years??
Well, the way I see it is Rory knew what he was getting himself into when he volunteered to watch over Amy inside the Pandorica. He knew it would be hell, waiting all the time unable to sleep and likely being alone for most of that time. On the other hand, Amy was promised that they would be coming for her soon and she had to wait. Again. The Doctor has promised her so many times throughout her life that he'll "be right back" and doesn't always deliver on that promise. Sure, he does always come back, but wouldn't you get tired of waiting? Especially since your husband is gone as well, you're all alone running for your life every single day otherwise you get killed. I'm not entirely sure I blame Amy for being really, really cross by the time Rory shows up to save her.
This episode was probably one of the most emotional ones this season for me. And that's saying quite a lot because this season has been all over the emotional map and the other episode that nearly tore my heart out was "The Doctor's Wife". It kills me in this one because time was extra wibbly in the two stream facility they just jumped a few years ahead. And because of that Rory had to make a choice, probably the toughest choice he would ever have to make: save the Amy that is already 36 years older, or save his initial Amy which would erase the older Amy from time. I love how Rory tells Amy what bothers him the most about the whole thing: "I don't care that you got old, I care that we didn't get old together." My heart!
My heart also burst when young Amy and older Amy came face to face with one another in Rory's attempt to get her to convince herself to save herself. (Confusing enough?) "You know when sometimes you meet someone so beautiful, and then you actually talk to them and five minutes later they're as dull as a brick. And there's other people and you meet them and you think, ok, they're not bad they're ok and then you get to know them and their face just sort of becomes them. Like their personality is written all over it. They just turn into something so beautiful. Rory's the most beautiful man I've ever met."
For a while I actually thought that somehow the Tardis would actually hold the paradox and Rory would be able to save both Amys. I actually even wanted that to happen. I was right there with Rory wanting to save both of them because it wasn't fair that the older Amy had to wait all that time even though my brain was telling me it wouldn't matter because once they rescued young Amy she would cease to exist.
It's easy to say that until you have to actually sit there and watch Rory say goodbye to older Amy and realize he really can only save one of them. And either choice is going to suck.
"I love you too. Don't let me in. Tell Amy—your Amy—I'm giving her the days. The days with you. Days to come. The days I can't have. Take them please. I'm giving her my days."
I'm not the romantic sort and not even sure I believe in 'true love'. But Rory and Amy are perfect for each other and are seriously the only couple in the universe that are inseparable. Because the universe has tried and they always end back up together. The Last Centurion and The Girl Who Waited. Always and forever.