Over the seven days leading up to the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who (November 23, 2013), I am a selected story from the revived series and reflecting on it.
The Pandorica Opens・The Big Bang
By Steven Moffatt
Stories from the fifth, sixth and seventh seasons of the revived Doctor Who series are going to be a little bit more difficult to write about, because not only has a new actor (Matt Smith) taken on the role of The Doctor, but Steven Moffatt has expanded on the concept of the recurring theme which permeates each season. Now, it’s a full storyline.
This season also introduces us to two of my personal favourite companions in Doctor Who history – Rory Williams and Amy Pond. A boyfriend/girlfriend pair, the interplay between the three is very comedic:
Amy: Hey, look at this. I got my spaceship, I got my boys… my work here is done. [struts into the TARDIS, head held high]
Rory: [scoffs] Uh, we are not her “boys.”
The Doctor: Yeah, we are.
Rory: Yeah, we are.
By the end of the season, we’ve been hearing about “when the Pandorica opens” for quite a while, which, of course, leads us to wonder what, exactly, the Pandorica is. A previous episode gave us a clue in the form of a painting by Vincent van Gogh: the TARDIS exploding.
Rory ends up getting killed, then erased from history, and finally reincarnates as a robotic Roman centurion. (Yes, I’m serious, but go with it, because Rory, like The Doctor’s Bow Tie and Fez, is cool.)
As storylines go, this is a darn good one too. By the end of the season, in The Pandorica Opens, we find ourselves at Stonehenge surrounded by Romans, and the Doctor must face virtually every enemy he has ever faced all at once.
Not only are both my wife and I totally satisfied with the storyline at the end of the fifth season, because we both agree the story encompassed all things – intrigue, comedy, suspense, and a blue box that’s bigger on the inside. Doctor Who has really hit its stride at this point, evolving from a quirky BBC revival of a classic, cheesy, low-budget science fiction series loved by Brit expats, their kids, and quiet, reserved watchers of PBS. It’s no longer little-known, “alternative” TV viewing, but mainstream.
The music is pretty damn good too. The track, I Am The Doctor, composed by Murray Gold is rapidly, I think, becoming as iconic as the TARDIS sound and the Doctor Who theme music.
The final episode ties every weird and mysterious thing that happens this season together, and makes perfect sense as well, bringing a truly joyful season to a successful and satisfying close.
Oh, and Rory marries Amy; and no, that’s not a spoiler.