The Doctor: “Appalapachia, voted number two planet in the top ten greatest destinations for the discerning intergalactic traveler!”
Rory: “Why couldn’t we go to number one?”
The Doctor: “Tedious! Everyone goes to number one – planet of the coffee shops!”
Amy: “Have you seen my phone?”
The Doctor: “Your phone?”
The Doctor: “Your mobile telephone? I bring you to a paradise planet two billion light years from Earth, and you want to update… Twitter?”
Robot: “Will you be visiting long?”
Rory: “Good question, a bit sinister – what’s the answer that won’t get us killed?”
Old Amy: “In fact, now I think I can definitely say – I hate him. I hate the Doctor. I hate him more than I hated anyone in my life, and you can hear every word of this through those ridiculous glasses, can’t you Raggedy Man?”
The Doctor: “Ah… yes…”
Rory: “This is your fault.”
The Doctor: “I’m so sorry, but Rory…”
Rory: “No, this is your fault! You should look in a history book once in awhile, see if there’s an outbreak of plague or not!”
The Doctor: “That is not how I travel!”
Rory: “Then I do not want to travel with you!”
Old Amy: “Right, okay, so this is big news, temporal earthquake time, I’m officially changing my own future. Hold on to your spectacles. In my past, I saw my future self refuse to help you. I am now changing that future, and every law of time says that shouldn’t be possible.”
The Doctor: “Yes, except sometimes knowing your own future is what enables you to change it, especially if you’re bloody minded, contradictory, and completely unpredictable.”
Rory: “So basically if you’re Amy then.”
The Doctor: “Yes, if anyone can beat pre-destiny, it’s your wife.”
Old Amy: “Macarena.”
Young Amy: “Macarena.”
Rory: “She’s doing the Macarena.”
Double Entendres/Sexy Talk
Rory: “Can you stop flirting with me? You’re old enough to be my mo--!”
Old Amy: “I’ve known you my whole life. How many games of ‘Doctors and Nurses’?”
Old Amy: “Don’t get coy now.”
The Doctor takes Amy and Rory on a much needed vacation to a paradise planet called Appalappachia (I have NO idea if the spelling is correct). As is tradition whenever the Doctor tries to take a vacation, things go horribly awry. It turns out that, in the particular era that they happened to travel to, Appalappachia is in a state of massive quarantine due to a disease that only affects beings with two hearts (aka, The Doctor). The TARDIS lands in the quarantine center, which uses time pockets that allow loved ones to visit the infected and watch them live out their lives without risk of catching disease. Amy gets caught up in one such time pocket, forcing Rory and the Doctor to use the TARDIS to hone in on her time stream. However, by the time they arrive, roughly 36 years have gone by for Amy, who has grown into a bitter old woman, battle weary from all her years battling the medical robots who benignly try to inject her with medication, despite the fact that it would kill her. The Doctor and Rory want to save their Amy, still stuck in the past, but Old Amy won’t help them unless the Doctor agrees to take her along as well. With a risk of causing a paradox even the TARDIS can’t handle, it ultimately comes down to Rory to choose between his beautiful young wife or the older, battle scarred one.
Seems like an easy choice to me, but what do I know, I’m shallow.
This episode serves as a nice counterpoint to last season’s “Amy’s Choice”, which was about Amy having to decide between not only what man she truly loved, but between realities as well. After so many episodes of Amy and Rory pulling “run and scream” duty, it’s nice to see them featured in an episode, while the Doctor, who is forced to stay in the TARDIS to avoid disease that would kill him instantly, takes the backseat for a change. Don’t worry, though, the Doctor still has plenty of screen time to keep things interesting.
I had some issues with Karen Gillan’s performance in season five, but she has improved by leaps and bounds this season, especially in this episode. She was convincing as a bitter, older version of the Amy Pond we know and love. She also kicked ass with a samurai sword. I also enjoyed some of Rory and the Doctor’s back-and-forth, especially the more tense moments, such as the end, when the Doctor forces Rory to choose between both versions of his wife. There has always been a certain tension between the two characters, due to Rory’s mild jealousy of Amy’s open admiration for the Doctor (something that is dealt with nicely in the next episode…). It’s great to get to see Rory finally vent his frustrations a bit, and do it without wearing a Centurion uniform.
The setting of the episode was interesting, though somewhat reminiscent of the video game Portal. I liked that the “bad guys”, the med robots, were just simple automatons doing what they were programmed to do – apply medication to the sick. They were just too stupid to realize their meds would be fatal. It’s an original way to keep the episode moving along, and provide a baddy without really having one. Overall, the episode was good, with plenty of tender Rory/Amy moments to satisfy the fans.
Next week…oops, oh wait, I guess I mean, last week… The God Complex