The Angels Take Manhattan was the fifth episode of the seventh series of Doctor Who produced by BBC Wales. It saw the final appearances of Amy Pond and Rory Williams, and the return of River Song. It marked the return of the Weeping Angels as well; they've appeared at least once in each season of the Steven Moffat era of Doctor Who so far. The Weeping Angels also appeared in different forms contrary to their usual female winged statue appearance. Baby forms resembling cherubs debuted in this episode, as did Angels that took the forms of unique statues disguised as iconic landmarks.
The Angels Take Manhattan is given additional closure through the complimentary webcast P.S., which shows the final fate of the Ponds. Brian Williams is also given a working narrative end point should he not reappear in the series during the foreseeable future.
A simple trip to 2012 New York goes horribly wrong when the Eleventh Doctor's companion, Rory Williams, is sent back to the 1930s by the Weeping Angels. There, he finds that his daughter, River Song, is investigating the Angels and Manhattan has become their hunting grounds. The Doctor and Amy Pond must find Rory before it is too late, but they soon find that not every point in time can be changed. And here, the Doctor must face the one thing he has been dreading — a final farewell to the Ponds.
Art collector and mob boss, Julius Grayle, has hired private detective Sam Garner, but wonders if Sam believes the reason he has been hired — and that statues can move. Sam simply says he believes what he's told to believe; as long as he's paid. Grayle sends detective Garner to Winter Quay, an apartment building "where the statues live". Once Garner leaves for the Quay, Grayle looks out his office window, and notices one of two statues standing outside his mansion has disappeared when he wasn't looking. When Garner arrives at Winter Quay, he notices the residents of the Quay and the surrounding apartment buildings watching his arrival with dread. A little girl sees him from the window of a building across from the Quay, mimicking weeping; he ignores this, thinking the girl is playing games. Garner enters the Quay, unaware of a Weeping Angel sitting on a plinth near the building awakening as he enters.
Garner enters a room in Winter Quay that has his name on it, unaware of the Angels stalking him through the building. He encounters an elderly version of himself, who warns him that "they" are going to send him back in time now he is there. Garner is then attacked by the Weeping Angels. He manages to avoid them, as something large is heard approaching Winter Quay from outside. When he finds the Angels have blocked the stairwell, Garner is forced onto the roof and comes face to face with the snarling Statue of Liberty, revealed to be a Weeping Angel of gigantic size. As he succumbs to his fate, someone is writing about Garner's demise on a typewriter.
In 2012 New York City, the Eleventh Doctor, Amy Pond and Rory Williams are having a picnic in Central Park. Amy is annoyed by the Doctor's habit of reading his pulp paperback novel, Melody Malone: Private Detective in Old New York Town, out loud, while he in turn is perturbed by Amy's use of reading glasses. The Doctor tells Amy that he doesn't like her glasses because they make her eyes look "all liney". After taking Amy's glasses off, he realises that the lines are minor wrinkles in her skin and that her eyes look better with the glasses. Amy then starts arguing with the Doctor about how she looks, asking Rory (who is a safe distance away from his wife) if there are lines around her eyes. Rory claims he never noticed them, walking back to his wife, who happily kisses him. Rory goes off to get more coffee for them as Amy tells the Doctor to tell her a story. The Doctor is amused she has changed her mind. The Doctor tears out the last page, telling Amy that he hates endings. The story will never end now, for him.
On Rory's way back, he hears the sound of children giggling, as a small statue under Angel of the Waters disappears. As Rory passes an archway and enters a darkened terrace, the giggling gets closer and closer. In the meantime, the Doctor's book says Melody saw a thin man appear on 3 April 1938, and followed him until he noticed her; the Doctor is shocked by what the thin man says to Melody: "I was just getting coffee for the Doctor and Amy. Hello, River." "Hello, Dad," River Song replies. The Doctor and Amy run to the Doctor's TARDIS, while in 1938, Rory questions River about how he got there as he was just walking under the archway in the park. River tells him she has no idea, but he better put his hands up; armed men are surrounding them.
In the meantime, the Doctor and Amy have boarded the TARDIS as Amy continues reading from the book, which has River saying the TARDIS cannot land in New York during this time because of several time distortions. Comparing it to trying to land a plane in a blizzard, she says even she couldn't do it. An annoyed Doctor attempts to land the TARDIS, but it is bounced back to 2012 New York by a wall of temporal energy. Landing in a cemetery, the Doctor tells Amy to stop reading ahead in the book because reading the events written in it causes them to become fixed in time. However, Amy has read that River and Rory have been taken to Grayle's mansion (406 94th Street, Manhattan), where River comments on the mob boss's taste in Qin artefacts. Hearing this, the Doctor figures out how to get "landing lights". Going back to 221 BC, he leaves a message on one of the vases: "Yowza!" (in period Chinese).
As River is led into Grayle's office, Rory is placed in the basement with "the babies". Grayle tells River that "they" are everywhere, but no one seems to notice. He then shows her the prize of his collection: a chained and damaged Weeping Angel. River says she's met them before, and that the Angel is screaming out in pain to its comrades; this is why Grayle has so many locks on his doors. However, Grayle quickly turns the tables on River by briefly turning off the lights long enough for the shackled Angel to grab her wrist. Grayle demands to know everything River knows about the Angels.
In the meantime, Rory has been tossed in the basement and given a box of matches by the guard, who tells him that he'll last longer with them because the lights are out. Left alone in darkness, Rory hears the giggling again, scaring him into lighting a match. He comes across several stone cherubs, and during the time Rory takes to light another match after the first one has gone out, the cherubs move closer and begin to attack him. He repeatedly lights the matches, but they keep extinguishing. Down to one match, Rory watches as a cherub that got close to him blows it out. Above, as Grayle attempts to threaten River, she hears the TARDIS trying to materialise and tells her captor that he'd better watch out "when her husband gets home". With a shockwave, the TARDIS lands, knocking Grayle out.
In the TARDIS, the Doctor is busy fixing his hair for his wife, annoying Amy. Once done, they depart and find River. He asks her how Stormcage is, only to learn that she was pardoned years earlier in her timeline, because her alleged victim, the Doctor, apparently never existed. She has received a posting as a professor of archaeology. The Doctor tells River they either have to break her wrist or the Angel's to get her free. Unfortunately, Amy read ahead again and knows that River breaks her wrist to get free, so it's the only way now. However, Amy has a brilliant idea to know what's ahead without details or spoilers: they read the chapter titles. Reading one, Amy learns where Rory is and rushes off. After she does, the Doctor reads the table of contents and sees the last chapter is called "Amelia's Last Farewell". An upset Doctor then angrily leaves River to find a way to escape the Angel's grip without breaking her wrist.
Amy checks the basement, only to find Rory gone. She returns to the Doctor, who is now sitting on the stairs, deep in thought. River emerges from the collection room with her scanner, saying that Rory is atWinter Quay, having only been moved in space, rather than time. The Doctor is delighted to see River didn't have to break her wrist to get free. As he grabs her hand however, River grimaces in pain, revealing that she did indeed break it. He heals her hand with a little of his regeneration energy, being scolded by River for wasting the energy. Amy asks River why the Doctor is in a bad mood and River subtly says they should never let the Doctor see them age. They then commandeer one of the mob's cars and drive off to get Rory. However, they leave the doors open, which the two statues outside seem to see. As Grayle comes to, he finds the statues are now inside the mansion, and tries escaping only to get trapped.
The Doctor, Amy and River arrive at Winter Quay, where Rory has been exploring on his own. They find him on the exact same floor where Sam Garner arrived. At the end of the hall is a Weeping Angel. The way out is blocked. Rory discovers a room marked "R. Williams" and enters with Amy. River and the Doctor linger, only to see the Angel is smiling. Inside the room is an old man who calls to Amy and is revealed to be Rory's future self. Amy holds the older Rory's hand as he passes away.
As the group discuss the situation, the Doctor explains that Winter Quay is a "battery farm" for the Weeping Angels to keep their victims imprisoned in and to send them back in time over and over. He also sadly informs Rory that their meeting with the elder Rory means the Angels will send Rory back in time and keep him imprisoned in the Quay until he dies, as they've seen. Amy won't be sent with him, explaining why the older Rory was so pleased to see her. Rory decides to defy this. If the Angels aren't able to catch him, he won't die there. However, the Doctor notes that Rory will have to run for his entire life then. River then realises that if Rory escapes, the subsequent negation of the timeline in which the Angels trapped Rory at Winter Quay will create a paradox, which will in turn poison the time energy the Angels feed on and kill them.
Something large is heard approaching Winter Quay, forcing the group to decide that Rory and River's plan will work. Amy and Rory run out, but the Doctor and River are forced back into the room by two Weeping Angels. Amy and Rory enter the stairway, seeing an Angel is blocking the way out downwards. Thus, they climb up to the roof, where they are confronted by the snarling Statue of Liberty. Back inside, the Doctor causes a distraction that allows him and River to escape the Angels and use the same route as Amy and Rory. Back on the roof, Rory sees the only way out is to jump and commit suicide, thereby preventing the Angels from sending him back in time to become the aged Rory who just died, creating a paradox which would kill the Angels and keep him from having been sent back. Amy tries talking him out of it, but Rory defends the idea by reminding her that he has died and come back to life numerous times before. Amy decides to jump with Rory just as the Doctor and River reach the roof. Before the Doctor can stop Amy or Rory, the two jump from the roof, and embrace as they fall to their deaths. The paradox Rory's death has created then begins to take effect.
The group awake back in the cemetery in 2012 New York with the TARDIS, relieved to be alive, and the Doctor happily explains that Winter Quay's negation from the timeline by the paradox meant that they never went there in the first place. Rory complains that when they came to New York, he wanted to go to a pub. The Doctor decides they can all do that; a family outing. However, as everyone boards the TARDIS, Rory notices a gravestone with his name on it, and immediately vanishes; a surviving Angel has sneaked up behind Rory and sent him back in time, and the group notice that Rory's gravestone now reads that he was 82 years of age when he died.
The Doctor explains to a distraught Amy that he cannot go back for Rory; creating another paradox in New York will destroy the city. Amy asks the Doctor if she would end up in the same time and place as Rory if the Angel touched her, of which he cannot be certain. River, however, encourages her mother, believing her plan to be sound. Despite the Doctor's attempts to talk Amy out of it, his mother-in-law approaches the Angel. Amy holds her daughter's hand behind herself and addressing her by her birth name, Melody, tells her to take care of the Doctor. The Doctor tells Amy that by doing this, she will have created a fixed point in time and he will never see her and Rory again, but Amy assures the Doctor that she will be fine and live with Rory. The Doctor, in tears, begs her to come back into the TARDIS. Amy turns, crying, to the Doctor, and says, "Raggedy Man... goodbye," as the Angel sends her back with Rory. The Doctor sobs in agony as Rory's gravestone now also reads Amy's name and that she died aged 87.
In the TARDIS, River comforts the Doctor, knowing that he can never see Amy and Rory again. The Doctor apologises to River, as Amy and Rory were her parents. River says that it's okay, and strictly reminds the Doctor not to travel alone. He then asks her to travel with him and River says she'd be more than willing to share adventures with him, but not all the time; "one psychopath per TARDIS." Heading up to a room to begin writing the book, River tells the Doctor that while he may not listen to her, he may listen to Amy. After giving her the story for publishing, she'll make sure Amy leaves a message for him in the book's afterword.
The Doctor remembers that he tore out the last page from the book and rushes back to Central Park immediately after their picnic. The Doctor grabs the page and reads Amy's message: "Afterword, by Amelia Williams. Hello, old friend, and here we are. You and me, on the last page. By the time you read these words, Rory and I will be long gone, so know that we lived well, and were very happy. And, above all else, know that we will love you, always. Sometimes, I do worry about you though; I think, once we're gone, you won't be coming back here for a long while, and you might be alone, which you should never be. Don't be alone, Doctor."
Amy has just one more request from her "Raggedy Doctor"; to go back to her seven-year-old self sitting in the garden and tell her a story: "And do one more thing for me: there's a little girl, waiting in a garden; she's going to wait a long while, so she is going to need a lot of hope. Go to her. Tell her a story. Tell her that, if she's patient, the days are coming that she'll never forget. Tell her she'll go to sea and fight pirates, she'll fall in love with a man who'll wait two thousand years to keep her safe. Tell her she'll give hope to the greatest painter who ever lived, and save a whale in outer space."
The Doctor appears to honour Amy's request as young Amelia is seen waiting for him in the garden and looks up as the sound of the TARDIS is heard; as this happens, Amy finishes the story by narrating "Tell her: This is the story of Amelia Pond — and this is how it ends."
- The Doctor - Matt Smith
- Amy Pond - Karen Gillan
- Rory Williams - Arthur Darvill
- River Song - Alex Kingston
- Julius Grayle - Mike McShane
- Sam Garner - Rob David
- Hood - Bentley Kalu
- Foreman - Ozzie Yue
- Old Garner - Burnell Tucker
|Executive Producers Steven Moffat and Caroline Skinner|
|Not every person who worked on this adventure was credited. The absence of a credit for a position doesn't necessarily mean the job wasn't required. The information above is based solely on observations of the actual end credits of the episodes as broadcast, and does not relay information from IMDB or other sources.|
- The Statue of Liberty is revealed to be possessed by a Weeping Angel.
- During the first scene in the park, a building in the background which says "Essex Hotel" can be seen.
Cars and trucks Edit
- The Doctor adjusts his hair before exiting the TARDIS, using a brass plaque as a mirror. The plaque reads "Type FD 12 MK V11 Rolls Royce Motors Crewe England". It has a space in which to list a NATO stock number.
Foods and beverages Edit
Sports from the real world Edit
- The front page story from the newspaper that Amy is reading in Central Park is "Detroit Lions Win Superbowl."
- Amy plays Pooh Sticks on the bridge in Central Park.
- River tells Rory that the TARDIS Translation circuit 'sticks around' when he sees writing on ancient Chinese vases being translated.
Theories and concepts Edit
- By changing his future and creating a paradox Amy and Rory's actions wipe out the Angels' Winter Quay building.
- The Doctor says that there are significant time distortions around New York City.
- If someone learns of their personal future by reading about it, it becomes a fixed point in time and therefore cannot be changed.
- Due to the paradox created by Amy and Rory, the Doctor cannot travel back in time to visit them without destroying New York.
Story notes Edit
- In-universe, Melody Malone: Private Detective in Old New York Town is written by River Song based on what happened to her in New York just before and during the events of TV: The Angels Take Manhattan. PROSE: The Angel's Kiss: A Melody Malone Mystery is an e-book tie-in novel, written by Justin Richards, that segues into the events of River's book and TV: The Angels Take Manhattan. It was released on 4 October 2012.
- This is the first episode to feature River Song that is neither part of a two-parter nor at least preceded by a cameo appearance of River in the previous episode.
- As with all of the Series 7 part 1 episodes, this episode has individually stylized opening credits: the time vortex appears blue and grey, and the Doctor Who logo resembles the Statue of Liberty in colour and pattern.
- This story features the last appearance of the Matt Smith title sequence that debuted in The Eleventh Hour. Beginning with The Snowmen, a new title sequence was used, and overall this is the last revived series Doctor Who story title sequence to feature only the time vortex - a concept which had been used since 2005.
- Amy asks the Doctor to return to meet a young Amelia Pond the morning after he left her waiting in the garden in The Eleventh Hour to tell her about the adventures they will have together. The older Amy was dreaming about that morning when the Doctor came back to pick her up the night before her wedding at the end of The Eleventh Hour. Steven Moffat said of the scene, "After showing Amelia Pond in the garden as a young girl in The Eleventh Hour, Karen's first episode, the final shot in Saturday's The Angels Take Manhattan is a punchline I have been waiting to tell for two and a half years."
- The text inside Melody Malone: Private Detective in Old New York Town is visible for a second just after the Doctor and Amy bounce off 1938 and land in the graveyard. The book used in the episode is actually The Thin Man by Dashiell Hammett. Melody/River refers to her father as "the skinny guy" when describing his arrival in 1938. Hammett wrote hardboiled detective stories, and the film of one of them, The Maltese Falcon, is the original film noir, a genre which this episode pays extensive homage to.
- A short teaser for the then-unnamed 2012 Christmas special was shown at the end of this episode, the first such teaser since the sneak peek at The Next Doctor at the end of Series 4 finale Journey's End four years before.
- Prior to the airing of this episode, executive producer Steven Moffat posted a message on Twitter declaring his intentions to write Amy and Rory out of the series, stressing very seriously that it would mark a permanent end to their characters.
to be added
Filming locations Edit
- Central Park, New York City (as itself)
- Box Cemetery, Llanelli, Wales (as New York City)
- Glamorgan Building, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales (as Julius Grayle's mansion exterior)
- North Building, Queens Complex, Cardiff University, Cardiff, Wales (as Winter Quay entrance)
- HH Wills Physics Laboratory, University of Bristol, Bristol (as Winter Quay foyer and staircase)
- Upper Boat Studios' parking structure's roof (as Winter Quay roof)
- Upper Boat Studios
Production errors Edit
- The Photoshoot PA who was credited did not appear in this episode, but instead appeared in Asylum of the Daleks.
- Just after Amy and Rory jump off the roof of Winter Quay, and the Doctor is looking down at them, River is in the background standing normally, looking at the Doctor. In the very next shot, she is leaning on the ledge, looking down at Amy and Rory.
- As the Doctor examines River's broken wrist, she says it is "pretty bad, too". In this shot, the Doctor has his mouth open as if showing the pain of seeing her hand. But in the next shot, his mouth is closed.
- When Amy and the Doctor leave the car and enter Winter Quay, they leave River behind, but in a couple of shots later, she is back in the lift with them.
- The Doctor had previously cut off his ties to the Ponds in The God Complex because he feared the alternative would be for him to eventually stand over their graves after they died - as comes to pass here.
- Amy Pond calls the Doctor "Raggedy man" for the last time. (TV: The Eleventh Hour, et al.)
- The Doctor used some of his regenerative energy to repair River Song's hand. He did something similar when recharging the last power source in the TARDIS after it travelled to Pete's World. (TV: Rise of the Cybermen) River previously did the same for him in a more extreme way, saving his life and depleting all of her regenerative energy. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)
- In response to the Doctor healing her hand, River exclaims, "You embarrass me!" much as the Doctor previously said to her. (TV: The Wedding of River Song) She also tests out the healed wrist by spitefully slapping the Doctor, leaving him with an astonished, gaping expression once again. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut)
- The afterword Amy wrote in Melody Malone: Private Detective in Old New York Town was a message for the Doctor, which made reference to various adventures the Doctor and Amy had had together: saving a whale in space (TV: The Beast Below), fighting pirates (TV: The Curse of the Black Spot), inspiring a great artist (TV: Vincent and the Doctor), and falling in love with a man who would wait two thousand years for her. (TV: The Big Bang)
- Amy asks the Doctor to return to meet a young Amelia Pond the morning after he left her waiting in the garden to tell her about the adventures they will have together. The older Amy was dreaming about that morning when the Doctor came back to pick her up the night before her wedding. (TV: The Eleventh Hour)
- River mentions that she was pardoned from prison because the man she killed never existed. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut, The Wedding of River Song) Oswin erased the Doctor from the Daleks' memories in TV: Asylum of the Daleks. The conversation between River and the Doctor (and the fact that Solomon couldn't find info about the Doctor or his TARDIS in TV: Dinosaurs on a Spaceship) implies the Doctor is responsible for the other erasures, as he was "getting too big". One of these erasures was indeed caused by him, involving a memory-proofing of all the Inforarium data archives about him. (HOMEVID: The Inforarium)
- This is the time the Eleventh Doctor has been shown to be aware that River had been pardoned, and would thus appear to be the latest story in her timeline prior to her final date with the Doctor as shown in Last Night.
- River says that she is a professor now. (TV: Silence in the Library)
- While on the roof contemplating jumping, Rory makes a reference to his history of having died multiple times and coming back to life each time. (TV: Amy's Choice, Cold Blood, The Curse of the Black Spot, The Doctor's Wife)
- The Doctor sent a coded message to River from the past ("Yowzah" in Chinese), as River had done with him on Planet One (which was itself a relay of Vincent van Gogh's message in his painting, The Pandorica Opens), through the black box of the Byzantium, (TV: The Pandorica Opens, The Time of Angels) and as she and/or Amy did via the Melody Malone book. Amy and Rory - and (presumably) unwittingly River - likewise contacted the Doctor through a message in the past in Let's Kill Hitler. Amy left the Doctor a message at his instruction in The Lodger. He waved to Amy and Rory from the past in The Impossible Astronaut.
- The Doctor uses the extractor fans once more. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)
- River tells Amy that the Doctor doesn't like to see his companions age. The Doctor once indicated the same. (TV: School Reunion)
- This is Amy's fourth encounter with the Weeping Angels. (TV: The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone, TV: Good as Gold, PROSE: Touched by an Angel and PROSE: Magic of the Angels). If the 'fake' angel that was generated as a representative of Gibbis' worst fear is taken into consideration then it would be the fifth encounter (TV: The God Complex).
- When trying to materialise in 1938, the TARDIS makes the same malfunctioning sound it made in TV: Spearhead from Space, The Eleventh Hour, and The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith.
- While in this episode a paradox leads to the Angels' destruction, in PROSE: Touched by an Angel, the Angels try to create a paradox to feed. Since zapping a person into the past creates a paradox, it seems there are good and bad paradoxes. Good paradoxes involve the creation of time energy and alternate realities through transporting people through time, while bad ones change the timeline of the angels, poisoning their food.
- River encourages Amy to go ahead with her plan to join Rory in the past. River was in New York City in 1969 at an earlier point in her adult life, before she was pardoned. (TV: Day of the Moon)
- The Doctor stated that he liked the picture on the cover of Melody Malone, unaware that it was an drawing of his wife and her décollage. (TV: The Wedding of River Song)
- Melody/River is depicted on the book cover blowing the powder smoke from the muzzle of her revolver, just as she did in front of the Doctor upon shooting his Stetson, although her wrist is not rotated as it was in the earlier occurrence. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut)
- Just before Rory and Amy are sent back in time from the cemetery, River asks the Doctor if the bulb atop the TARDIS needs changing, to which he replies that he just changed it. He is shown changing it outside of her parents' house in Webcast: Pond Life, Part 5. She will later be distracted out of the TARDIS by the Doctor (earlier in his life) asking her to check the bulb. (TV: Last Night) One of the questions which River's mother, Amy, rattled off when first stepping aboard the TARDIS is if the bulb on top ever needed changing. (TV: Meanwhile in the TARDIS 1)
- Amy's married name is seen on her grave stone. She had previously signed a divorce document as Amy Williams. (TV: Asylum of the Daleks)
- Melody Malone's lipstick is described as being "combat ready". Melody/River had used an extremely poisonous lipstick in an attempt to kill the Doctor. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler) She used hallucination lipsticks against a corrections officer, one or more Roman centurion(s), and a Byzantium guard. (TV: The Pandorica Opens, The Time of Angels) The Tenth Doctor also gave Sarah Jane Smith two sonic lipsticks. (TV: Invasion of the Bane, Enemy of the Bane)
- While the Doctor's reading, Amy is reading The New York Record. The New York Record was previously seen in TV: Daleks in Manhattan, when it reported on the missing men from Hooverville.
- Amy is surprised that the Doctor wants to do a final check before exiting the TARDIS; on her first trip to another planet, the Doctor ignored warnings to do environment checks, rattling off information about the planet's atmosphere. (TV: The Time of Angels)
- River says, "There's a car upfront. Should we steal it?". She once stole a bus as Mels and stole a car too. (TV: Let's Kill Hitler)
Home video releases Edit
to be added
- ↑ http://www.sfx.co.uk/2012/09/27/doctor-whos-first-e-book-exclusive-inspired-by-the-angels-take-manhattan/
- ↑ http://www.doctorwhonews.net/2012/09/melody-malone-270912171508.html
- ↑ Peter Dyke; Katie Begley (30 July 2012). DOCTOR WHO: WHAT A LIBERTY. Daily Star. Retrieved on 29 September 2012.