Doctor Who Recap: The Angels Take Manhattan

Doctor Who Season 7 Episode 5 The Angels Take Manhattan Rory Amy Doctor Still need to catch up? Check out last week’s recap!

This week on Doctor Who: Steven Moffat tears out everyone’s hearts.

Okay, to be fair, the entire internet has been freaking out about the Ponds leaving for, like, months, so it’s not like we didn’t all know it was coming. But STILL.

We catch up with Amy, Rory, and the Doctor as they’re hanging out in Central Park. The Doctor’s reading a book, and he rips out the last page because he doesn’t like endings. Seriously, it’s like Steven Moffat sat down to write this episode and said, “How many times can I remind everyone that the Ponds are going away FOREVER?”

Rory steps away to get coffee and suddenly there are Weeping Angels everywhere! Incidentally, it seems a little weird that nobody has noticed them. There are a lot of people in New York, and you’d think that after the third or fourth statue attack, some bystanders might start getting suspicious.

Doctor Who Angels Take Manhattan Season 7 Episode 5 Karen Gillan Matt Smith

Then River Song shows up! And then some guys take Rory and her away. Amy and the Doctor figure out that Rory and River are in the year 1938, and after some TARDIS trouble, they’re able to catch up.

Meanwhile, River is being interrogated by Grayle, a crime boss and angel aficionado. I don’t totally get his role in this episode, but he puts Rory in the cellar with some creepy angel babies and lets another angel attack River, so I don’t like him. They try to save Rory from the angel babies, but it’s too late: he’s been taken to a place called Winter Quay. River, Amy, and the Doctor arrive just as an older version of Rory is dying. Basically, the angels will send Rory back in time and he’ll have to live his life alone in Winter Quay.

Doctor Who Season 7 Episode 5 The Angels Take Manhattan Arthur Darvill Karen Gillan

The only way to save Rory is to create a time paradox. Rory decides to jump off the roof, making him die twice in the same night. Voilà! Paradox! All the angels will be destroyed! In a truly heartrending scene, Amy and Rory jump together, but the paradox makes it so that they don’t die. They wake up in a graveyard with the Doctor and River. Everything is okay! Right? RIGHT?

Just as I was thinking that this whole “sad goodbye” thing was an elaborate ruse, Rory sees his own tombstone. Then a rogue angel zaps him back in time, and they can’t go back to save him because…time reasons.

Doctor Who Season 7 Episode 5 The Angels Take Manhattan

Amy decides she’ll let the angel send her back too, so that at least she and Rory will be together. The Doctor and Amy (and all the viewers) have a tearful goodbye, and the Doctor and River head off in the TARDIS.

The next episode will be the Christmas special, so we have roughly three months to mourn the Ponds and accept the new companion, Clara Oswin, into our hearts. But you only get a tiny bit of our hearts for now, Clara. And be careful of that Amy/Rory shrine in the corner.

Background photo credits (from top to bottom): © BBC (Photographer: Todd Antony/Designer: Lee Binding); © BBC/BBCWW; © BBC/BBCWW; © BBC/BBCWW.

13 thoughts on “Doctor Who Recap: The Angels Take Manhattan

  1. It’s silly though, really. The Doctor could come in 1939 or in 1938 outside of New York and travel there by other means to bring them back to their own time.
    I think that’s a better ending. (Mostly because I don’t want them stuck in the past) My ending is that the Doctor saves them by means I mentioned above and tells them that he can’t take them with him any more because they were too close to dying this time and he can’t handle them dying, because he doesn’t like endings. Better ending, everyone’s happy and Amy can still do her sweet little monologue thing at the end. ^_^

    Oswin’s the new companion…? Where did you hear that? She was a cool character but… what?

    Rory was/is the best character of the reboot hands down. Amy was/is pretty cool too. They’re definitely the best companions of the reboot. I loved it when Amy called him ‘My Centurion’ and the title of the chapter ‘A Roman in the Cellar’ so sweet! ^_^

    I get the reason why Moffat made Amy unable to have kids now, it means that because she lived her life in the past they couldn’t have kids to drastically change the present.

    • The Doctor can’t go back to get them because their death is now set in stone–the gravestone in the graveyard. And he can’t visit them because Amy’s afterword says they never see him again, and it is now an established fact that time can’t be rewritten if it’s actually written, actually read. (see: the entire book by our dear “Melody Malone”)

      As for Oswin, it is known that Jenna-Louise Coleman, the actress of Oswin Oswald, will be playing the next companion. She is seen in the teaser for the Christmas special. Some sources suggest her name is now “Clara”. It is not yet known if she is the same character, a different character, or some timey-wimey mix between the two. But we’ll certainly find out.

      And speaking of the Christmas special, Moffat has said that Madame Vastra and Jenny will be returning, so that’s pretty neat.

      • Yeah but, back in ye olde days of David Tennant, he saved the life of the people on the Mars space station when their deaths were pivitol to the beginnings of proper human space travel. Yes, that woman killed herself anyway, but she had significance unlike the Ponds. The Doctor LOOKS AT THE WEB PAGE ABOUT THEM AND IT HAD BEEN CHANGED.

        Also, two people could have assumed Amy and Rory’s lives after they left and so it was their gravestones, not the Ponds.

      • HOLY FREAKING DUDE JENNY IS COMING BACK?!? I HAVE BEEN RAVING ABOUT HER FOR LIKE, EVER! haha i’m totally writing a fanfiction with her in it, cause i thought they forgot about her. it has an original character, too. but, seriously. Jenny needed to come back. she really, really, did.

        *interesting tidbit, the actress that plays Jenny is one of the classic Who’s daughters, and she married David Tenant (the 10th Doctor). neat, right?

    • It’s the same actor who played Oswin (Jenna Loiuse Coleman) But I don’t think it will be the exact same charater; Oswin Oswald.

  2. OMGGGGG… this sounds like such a good episode! its so sad, i love the ponds… but then again, i also loved david tennant and martha and rose, and look how that turned out. the only thing bad about having this awesome tv show run for so long is that they break your heart so many times.:,( anyway, great recap of the episode, youre an amazing writer. keep up this whole doctor who recaping. love it.
    *due to annoying parents and internet issues, I am unable to watch doctor who, xept on netflix. and these new episodes havent come out yet. poop. so you are doing me a huge favor, and dont even realize!!! thank you so much*

  3. You know as much as I appreciate a good Rory Death joke, I appreciate them far less when he is making them while standing on the ledge of a twenty story building.


  5. That part where Rory is determined to jump made me cry more than the part when the couple actually had to say goodbye. I know I’ve been preparing myself for a really sad goodbye when it comes, but darn it.

    Have you seen the behind the scenes shoot about their last day on the set? Ironically their last shot was was not in the Angels Take Manhattan, but in Power of Three. I find that very poignant.

    Still a bit confused about why the Doctor can’t go back. I have to watch it again to understand.

  6. Figment just got a billion times cooler by being Doctor Who fans. This episode was heartbreaking as DW is wont to be. I thought bringing back the Weeping Angels as this episode’s villains was a fitting end for the Ponds, and to set it against the backdrop of 1930s New York to boot!

    Whomever decided to put babies/cherubs and Weeping Angels together has serious life issues. I was watching it on live stream and it was about 3am where I was, and let me tell you, cackling cherubs and 3am are not a good combination.

    I was hoping for a bit more regarding Lady Liberty being a Weeping Angel (good luck NYC Whovians!), but I suppose their budget was already stretched a bit tight. Hope to see Figment recap Doctor Who and Jenna Louise Coleman this Christmas when it returns!

  7. Wait… Amy and Rory DIE?!?!? I haven’t seen it yet- in fact, I didn’t see any in this series except the first- but this I was NOT expecting. That is not fair. Not at all. Amy is awesome. And not just because she is a redhead like me.

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