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Doctor Who, “A Good Man Goes to War” (6.07)

“Demons run when a good man goes to war.” It’s the mid-series finale and indeed, there’s a rather important topic to cover in the review. Read on after the jump…

“Please, point a gun at me if it helps you relax. You’re only human.” -The Doctor

Before we go on, I have to note that when I first watched this episode, it was in, let’s say, less than ideal conditions. First off, the satellite signal I was watching was going in and out. Plus, after I deciphered the DaMoffat Code half-way through the episode, someone else on Twitter pretty much confirmed my theory before the show did. I might have been bitter if I wasn’t proud that I figured it out. Either way, the reveal was less shocking for me. But I let it all simmer for about a day, re-watched it in full and here’s what I thought.

How’s the Doctor?

He decides to call in a few favours in his fight to find Amy. It looked like something out of an actions movie…

He said he retired for good.

But that all changed…

Amy (in slow-mo): “Doctor!”

Now. He getting the old team back together for

One.

Last.

War.

Arthur Darvill. Karren Gillan. Alex Kingston. Crime-fighting Lizzard Chick. Fat Blue Black Market Dealer. Sontaran Nurse. Thin-Fat Gay Married Anglican Marines.

And Matt Smith as…

Doctor Who.

In theatres everywhere June 2011.

But in all seriousness, the Doctor finds himself stepping over the line in this episode. As the episodes starts, he somehow wipes out a fleet of Cybermen just to get them to talk. The whole army base where Amy’s being held appears to be training to fight him. And when he does make his entrance he nearly provokes a holy war between the army (who appear to be the same religious army who were escorting River last season – more on that soon) and the Headless Monks. He even forces the army colonel not just to retreat but to, in those words, run away. But his arrogance and anger get put in check when he ends up losing Amy’s baby with, to Eye Patch Lady’s delight, the same Flesh switch-a-roo trick she did with Amy. In the ruins of defeat, River makes her entrance to scold the Doctor and to show him what he’s become: he went from the man who helps all to the one who makes armies fear him and weaponize children against him. But it seems he’s ready to change things as he runs off, alone, to save Amy’s girl.

How’s Rory and Amy?

Hell yeah! That scene with the Cybermen and then his stand against the monks! The Centurion is indeed back! That’s a good run of three episodes of him being in varying ranges of good to f-ing badass. Now Amy’s going to have to step it up too. Granted, I’ll give her a while to get over that whole “seeing your kid melt through your hands” thing. She did have some (misguided) badass-ness against River at the end. On the topic of River…

How’s Melody?

The secret’s out: River Song is Melody Pond, Amy and Rory’s kid. I can’t wait for them to have their first family chat! As odd as this is, it’s a pretty elegant solution to the River Song question. It makes sense and explains a lot. Since Amy and Rory got their freak on in the TARDIS (Never forget your condoms during time-space sex), River has a few odd time-lord-esque features. Likely, one of them is regeneration and now we need to plug this info into the Plot-O-Tron:

So, first off: River is probably the little girl we saw in the spacesuit as well as the one we saw regenerate in this series’ two-part opener. And since River is is in prison (by the same religious army we’re seeing now) for having killed a “good man,” I think it’s clear that River, as a child stuck in the spacesuit, is the one who killed the Doctor at the start of this series. Now, since the Silence were holding little girl River in the suit and Eye Patch Lady is the one who wants the Doctor dead, they (her, the Silence, and the army) are probably all in on this. And River is still probably in prison (however faulty the security is) since they fear what she might do if she were to be let free.

Now for the rampant speculation: The Doctor knows he dies and there’s a good chance he has already realized that Eye Patch Lady succeeded in getting River to kill him. Even if the Doctor can save baby River this time, he might not be able to ultimately save himself. Using hard “what happened, happened” time rules, River killed the Doctor and whatever happens now won’t stop that or it might even cause that to happen. This show breaks its own rules often since “time can be rewritten” but some “time-locked” events must stay the same. The show could undo the Doctor’s death but let’s say it doesn’t. Matt Smith has at least one more series with us. Lets say next series we get some more Doctor-River love fest and at the end, for some reason, the Doctor accepts his future and we loop back to the death we saw. Now, River (either played by Alex Kingston or regenerated into someone else) takes on the role of the Doctor and flies off with the TARDIS for series to come until she ends up needing to face the music herself (If she regenerated, she’d just turn back into her “Alex Kingston” self to make the timeline work). Again, that’s just speculation. But I really hope they commit to killing the Doctor. It’s sad, sure, but it would feel in vain if it was all just erased.

In Conclusion

Action! Suspense! Revelations! Surprises! There’s not much bad with this episode: Rory’s awesome, the Doctor receives a helping of humble pie and we know who River is. The biggest problem with this episode is this: Why do we have to wait 2 1/2 months for more? WHY?

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Comments
2 Responses to “Doctor Who, “A Good Man Goes to War” (6.07)”
  1. DragonWolf says:

    You forgot about the “Flesh” Dr Who. The original Doctor said that he (the Flesh Doctor) may retain his molecular memory. That means there could be two doctors. <>,

    • Stéphane says:

      Hmm. True. Although the Doctor Ganger is kind of “dead” right now, they could bring him back somehow. But I’m still hoping they’re going to do more with River and try for a female Doctor (or Doctor substitute).

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