The Husbands Of River Song

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  • #50111

    @puroandson

    God I am hard to please! :)

    I blame the drugs.

    #50112
    Anonymous @

    Hoor-rah! @pedant

    But seriously, the issue with feminism as ideology creeps me out a bit. It has the capacity to be a space of its own. I understand its necessity from 1890 onwards (random date) but now, it needs to be a new ‘thing’ otherwise like all ideologies with their ideologues it can become ‘the second’, the ‘arguee’ and thus slip.

    Mm. Ponder.

     

    #50138
    DoctorDani @doctordani

    New poster here! I’m also incredibly late to the party with this episode. What an absolute flipping triumph though! Genuinely had me in tears at the end. Not least because River has always been one of my favourite characters ever since she rocked up on Ten’s watch.

    Does anybody else kind of think it’s a shame that Moffat seemed to close her arc before it’s the end of his tenure though? I get that it was because he thought he’d be leaving at the end of Season 9, but it almost seems wrong that her story seems to have been all tied up whilst he’s still at the helm. To me, River Song defines his time on the show almost as much Eleven and Twelve do. I’d be a shame for us not to see her again before Capaldi regenerates because not only was his chemistry with Kingston plain bloody brilliant, as this episode demonstrated, Twelve is River’s Doctor. I don’t expect her to be back for a ton of episodes, but come on, Moffat!

    #50142
    winston @winston

    @doctordani    Welcome to the site and I hope you enjoy it. I also liked River from her first appearance and would love to see her back. The scenes with her and Capaldi were mint and I would like to see more. Whether that will happen or not, I don’t know. We can only hope.

    #50287
    GrannyM @grannym

    Greetings Whovians everywhere! I’ve been a lurker for a few years but Season 9, especially The Husbands of River Song, has driven me out of the closet 😉 I just added the forum to my start page rss feeds so maybe I’ll be more inclined to comment from now on. I’ll try.

    THoRS is the first (Amazon Instant Video) stand alone episode of any show that I have ever purchased! Even though I have streaming apps with access to everything ever made, there are some things I just have to own & this episode is one of those! There are so many perfect moments in it I hardly know where to begin.

    In addition to being an outstanding Christmas Special/episode it is now part of a great trilogy to watch on a chilly New England Sunday afternoon:
    The Husbands of River Song/Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead

    From the first moment of The Doctor admonishing his TARDIS for trying to cheer him up with “hologramatical antlers” all the way through to the best/sweetest declaration of love ever:

    “When you least expect it…but always, when you need it the most…there’s a song!”

    When I’m having a bad day just playing the last 20 minutes of THoRS is always a perfect pick-me-up and never fails to bring a smile & a tear. @arbutus describes the scene when River declares her love and finally becomes aware that The Doctor is actually beside her, beautifully! Then when he says “Hello Sweetie” I just melt into a happy puddle of goo 🙂

    I firmly believe/wish/hope that #12 & River can/should/will have a few more adventures. I also expect him to give her a new diary.

    River: I told you, it’s almost full. I worry.
    Doctor: Don’t!

    River: If this is our last night together…
    Doctor: I didn’t say that!
    River: …you always give me that smug little smile and save the day…so how long are the nights on Darillium?
    Doctor: (with a smug little smile) 24 years!

    I’d say that with 24 years together they can surely pop back and forth to that night any time they want to and have more adventures together. Seriously, how could the powers that be  be dumb enough to waste the chemistry that AK & PC have as these character! I hope they’re paying attention to what people are saying.

    I do want to give kudos to SM…something I never thought I’d say. After watching this episode numerous times, I now believe him to be a bona-fide genius. The way he wrapped everything up and made it blend so perfectly with SitL & FotD was some of the best writing I’ve seen in all of Whostory! Actually, S9 as a whole falls under this accolade. Besides the fact that Peter Capaldi may be the most brilliant actor to play The Doctor, S9 even got me to like Clara (after hating her in S8) and I even cried at Face The Raven. There was hardly an off note in all of S9. Great writing, directing and acting all around. It was just named best reviewed series on TV for 2015 by Rotten Tomatoes.

    SPOILERS for anyone who didn’t see Face The Raven or Hell Bent:
    Maybe I should put this on the Hell Bent page but…
    I have one comment on the whole memory wipe thing-I think The Doctor will/does still remember Clara. If not all at once then surely in bits & pieces. For one thing, I expect that it would come up in conversations with other people occasionally. It is absurd to think that in all of time & space he will never run into anyone who hasn’t seen them together! And also, HE’S A TIMELORD! If Amy can remember Rory then I will never believe that a Timelord’s memory could be so completely wiped of just one person and especially, a very important person to him! Plus I think that sadness at losing her is imprinted on his hearts, and he will eventually figure out why he’s feeling sad. Personally, I think they should have let her stay dead and let him deal with it in whatever way he could.

    So that’s my .02 cents worth on that subject.

    I know I’m forgetting something but I should probably stop now. Sorry this is so long. Briefly, I’m a senior citizen and full time Whovian! I love to re-watch all my favorite episodes. Even though the show wasn’t available in the US till I was an adult, I have watched every episode. When the 50th anniversary was approaching I set myself the task of re-watching Doctor Who from S1Ep1 all the way through, in order! It took me about a year and a half but I finished in time for the Day of the Doctor! I even liked the reconstructed episodes that some amazing people created from the missing ones. Jon Pertwee & David Tennant were 1 and 2 on my top 5 list but Peter Capaldi has zoomed past both of them straight to #1! Even in the worst episodes of S8, he was always amazing. Hitting all the right notes from funny to deadly serious! Thanks for bearing with me on my first post 🙂

    #50293
    Anonymous @

    @grannym

    LOL. Rarely do I write that! But it was wonderful to read -your love for the show really sparkles thru.

    Absolutely you’ll have a fine time here so welcome from the Hybrid -Puro and Son (we’ll have to address the Doctor forgetting on Hell Bent on the actual thread and that he has actually forgotten…apart from that you’re totally right!  -<oops> it’s my perverse humour!)

    Check out the Thread. Great stuff to read and ponder over.

    Kindest to you

    Puro & Son

    PS: New England sounds wonderful. We’re here in sunny, hot, drought infected, bush fire doomed Oz and lovin’ it.

    <swallows>

    #50295
    Anonymous @

    @grannym

    did you say “worst episodes of Season 8?” 🙂

    Oh No. I loved Season 8. They were interesting. If you have some time check the threads from last year: discussion is just as interesting as the actual ‘sodes.

    But it’s big house here and if you didn’t like it, that’s OK. Glad you enjoyed this past season and watching all of the original BG episodes was a massive task: very accomplished. Many of those I actually can’t bear to watch. But I do try and when I do, I learn an awful lot about the original show and all that went into it -it very nearly didn’t get off the ground.

    But yes, tHoRS is a fantastic bravura piece: stylish, poignant and restorative.

    Exactly what this difficult January in 2016 needs.

    <I am positively on the wrong thread so will disappear before modded off>

    PuroSolo.

    #50296
    ichabod @ichabod

    @grannym  @purandson  I have to admit that I haven’t looked back at BG Who much — I saw most of the classic series as they aired, and enjoyed them for the novelty of this shape-shifting (within limits!) space grampa and his traveling companions, in what passed for outer space on tv in those days; and for the UK wit, which has always appealed to me (Goon Show, anyone?).  Re-watching them just doesn’t work for me now.  Maybe I’ve been fatally seduced by the much more polished and detailed look of AG Who (despite signs of budget constraints here and there — goofy looking skovox blitzer etc.), and by faster pace and more sophisticated filming savvy.

    And I thoroughly enjoyed “Husbands” — partly because of the moments in that story that harked back specifically to the loss of Clara (he hasn’t laughed like this in a long time . . . and things that end because they must).  What a neat way to move us forward (by going backward into the past), seeing how the Doctor is coping with the loss of his  friend and his bleached-out memories of her.  He’s traveling alone, no idea for how long since those events, and he’s managing pretty well (so bring on S10 — he’s not prostrate with sorrow and regret; he’s ready to go).

    PuroSolo — I love S8 more now than I did when I first saw it!  “Bravura” is a good word for that whole series, IMO,  Taking chances, hitting it out of the park, fizzled connections and all.  Perfect set-up for S9’s change of tone, and now “Husbands” has completed the deck-clearing we needed for whatever comes in S10.  Whatever it is, it will be a surprise for me, because I can’t even begin to imagine (partly because I don’t *want* to imagine — I’d much rather be surprised when the time comes).

     

    #50297
    Missy @missy

    @grannym

    Hello there, a pleasure to greet another senior citizen and paid up to date, almost fanatical Whovian.
    I was bginning to feel lonely.
    Like you, after THoRS I went straight to “Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead.”
    Unlike you, series 8 shone, it was bold and brilliant. Now the 9mpossible, series 9 burns even brighter.
    Also like yourself, I’ve been watching DW from 2005 onwards, relishing the difference between Doctors and performances. I actusally watched the very first DW in 1963 and never missed an episode from then on.
    Peter Capaldi has taken the shine off the aforementioned – not much, just a touch. If only he’d been the Doctor earlier.
    Still, we must be grateful for small mercies, and to comment on everything you’ve posted would take time, so I’ll leave that to others.
    In the meantime, can you even imagine a life without the Doctor? I can’t and don’t want to, it’s flippin’ wondeful.

    Welocme (should have said that first, *rolls eyes*

    Cheers,

    Missy

    #50301
    Anonymous @

    @missy @ichabod @grannym

    yes, I’d go with bravura again for S8. It took incredible risks: I suppose I’d liken it to some of Mozart’s  comic buffa works like The Magic Flute -not the way in which they’d now be ‘revered’ but the way in which they were originally favoured but also considered suspect. Beethoven’s pianistic accomplishment, the Waldstein – the 3rd movement, or Rondo, is one of the most risky pieces over which he equivocated. The transition caused outraged audiences. Not because it was poor music or even too different -it was in fact so outstanding other composers (and concert goers) were enraged: “why didn’t I think of that chord? Those elegant rises in arpeggios?”  At the time it was said about the Rondo: “this cannot be composed by man. It is the work of our God in Heaven. He abides with us.” John O’ Conor explains this at every master class (for me he is the living link to Beethoven -like River’s to the Doctor or Clara!).

    Moffat isn’t God and he wouldn’t want to be compared to one -I’m fairly sure he’s an atheist which is fine by me. But bravura works 🙂 Aaand I should stop lecturing.

    Kindest, PuroSolo

    #50302
    ichabod @ichabod

    @puroandson  PuroSolo, lecture your heart out, I know just about enough to follow and enjoy.  Have you ever read an old SF novel by Edgar Panborn called “A Mirror for Observers”, SF/fantasy, beautifully written and containing as a crucial element, as I recall, a performance of the Waldstein?  I think I learned to aspire to write evocatively about music from that book.

    As for God the composer — I recall a comment from someone during an intermission interview at a Met performance of Cosi, in which the man speaking (some sort of music scholar, think — this was years ago) said that when as a child he first heard this music, he thought the duet between the two ladies on the subject of their two adoring suitors was angels singing to each other, and what a bleak enlightenment it was to learn later that it was two women singing about their boyfriends.  Mozart understood the art of angels, lived and breathed it, whatever they are (and I speak as a longtime atheist here, who nonetheless can’t deny the existence of sublimity).

    #50303
    Anonymous @

    @ichabod

    that’s a worry! I don’t know the Panborn!

    But yes, I know exactly who you mean with respect to the Mozart and it was Fiordiligi and Diorabella in Cosi Fan Tutte who as mezzos brought about angelic sentiment. Not my favourite of his operas, but in a way it’s comparing brilliant with outstanding: it really doesn’t matter 🙂

    #50307
    ichabod @ichabod

    @puroandson  PuroSolo  Damn.  I left off the “g” — Pangborn, not pan-born!  Yes, that’s the duet.  And if you know Mozart, you really don’t need to know Pangborn, just to keep things in perspective . . . !

    #50318
    Missy @missy

    I do apologise for my typing errors, I got carried away.

    Cheers

    Missy

    #50848
    Missy @missy

    You all probaly know this, but just in case.
    On Youtube,there’s a section of clips about River Song.
    One is entitled: Doctor + River(vertical line) Hello from the other side. This is followed by more.
    If you like River and her meeting’s with the Doctor (especially Capaldi) I recommend them.

    Cheers,

    Missy.

    P.s Make sure the tissues are handy.

    #51326

    Sometimes it is easy to forget how subtle Moffat’s wit can be:

    River: “Don’t use my name. Ever.”

    c/w a certain whisper in 10’s ear.

    #51421
    Missy @missy

    I recently received the series 9 Box set, and last night I rewatched the above.

    It was a delight!

    Although this has probably been said before, from the moment the Doctor said “River!” there was instant chemistry.

    How I wish that Rvier could be the companion on a regular basis. *sigh* A double act made in heaven.

    Cheers,

    Missy

    #51422
    Torchwood3 @torchwood03

    I think that river should actually join Torchwood! Could you imagine Capt.Jack and River working side by side to stop alien invasions! What a team up!

    #51424
    winston @winston

    @torchwood3   Welcome to site and I hope you like it here.  River and Jack together would be great. I am sure it would be a funny and dynamic pair up.

    @missy I can’t agree with you more. The chemistry between the two make me long for another few episodes with them together and since they have a 24 year night to spend they have lots of time for adventures. I would watch a whole series with them together again, it would be “fantastic”.

    #51425
    Torchwood3 @torchwood03

    @winston Thank for the welcome. Lots of stuff to do on here!This is one of the better forum sites for sure.

    #51441
    Missy @missy

    @torchwood03

    Hello there and welcome to this site extraordinaire. *waves*

    Yes, I can imagine River and Capt Jack together, especially with Peter Capaldi trying to control the pair of them.

    Alex Kinston did say that she thought all was over for River after the Name of the Doctor, but then RM brought her

    back. She more or less added – ‘so who knows what the “great” Steven Moffat has in his head.” Words to that effect.

    Who nose indeed. *grins*

    Viva Moffat.

    Cheers,

    Missy

    #51518
    dailyboother @dailyboother

    Check out dailyboother.com a new social media web site.

    #51530
    dailyboother @dailyboother

    Please go to dailyboother.com and like the Dr. Who video posts I posted. I have some haters that are trying to dislike and I need you fellow fans to support. Thanks for your help…!

    #52258
    KBranagh @kbranagh

    I just saw ”The Husbands Of River Song”

    Riveeeer!

    Delicious Christmas special.

    A nostalgic and melancholy Moffat. After a second goodbye to Clara in “Hel Bent” he did the same thing to River just one episode later. Wonderful to see River (post Manhattan) again for the last time and most importantly the chemistry with Capaldi is incredible!! How good is the scene when River realize the truth about the Doctor? A truly magic moment.

    a few weeks back I predicted the hybrid glasses-screwdriver and i was right. wonderful.

    #52264
    ichabod @ichabod

    @kbranagh  Yep, lovely, isn’t it?  A light-hearted romp with a sad but accepting ending.

    #52268
    Missy @missy

    @kbranagh A Kleenex moment if ever I saw one – loved it. As you say, the chemistry was solid and immediate.

    @ichabod The superb and haunting theme written by Murray Gold, made the final scene a champagne moment.

    River. “I hate you!”

    Doctor. “No you don’t.”

    *sniff, sniff,* sorry everyone, but those final words really got to me.

    Ttfn

    Missy

    #52270
    ichabod @ichabod

    @missy  Nothing to be sorry about.  *sniff*

    ichi

    #52281
    Missy @missy

    @ichabod

    Thumbs up.

    Missy

    #52289
    ichabod @ichabod

    Hmm; what was the episode in which CapDoc told Clara *not* to explain (?) something to him, because since he knows so much about everything, it would be a lovely change to be the one who *doesn’t* have the answers for once?  No wonder he seems a bit chastened in mood at Darillium: he has his wish now, doesn’t he?  There’s this “Clara” shaped mystery in his recent memories about whom he knows nothing, no matter how hard he’s tried to learn more.  Be careful of your boastful wishes, Doctor.  The Moffat-Whoniverse has some sharp, ironical edges in it . . . It’s nice that CapDoc sometimes behaved like an offensive ass in S8; makes this comeuppance feel — earned.  How much more amazing S8-S9 look now — a wild, perhaps sometimes completely out of control, gnarly and beautiful aberration in the long DW story!  I think I’ll love it forever; have always been charmed by the vagaries that come out of Left Field.

    S10 — so tantalizing, off in the distance . . .

    #52302
    Missy @missy

    @ichabod

    I second all you say. It’s a terrible thing at my age to widh one’s life away.

    The Hollow Crown, Sherlock and Doctor Who 10 all out this year!

    My cup runneth over.

    Ttfn

    Missy

    #52317
    winston @winston

    @missy   I know what you mean about wishing the next year away. I too am at the age where I want to slow down time not rush it. Darn you Moffat!

    @ichabod  Today I watched Deep breath again and was entertained and thrilled all over again. I have loved these past 2 series so much and series 10 can’t come soon enough.

    #52319
    Missy @missy

    @winston

    Isn’t it a pain in the rump?

    @ichabod

    I forgot to mention Doctor Strange, out in November.

    Ttfn

    Missy

    #52321
    ichabod @ichabod

    @winston   Thinking about re-watching some Who this summer, when it’s too hot to go out in the evenings . . . I’m glad to hear that DB paid off for you, again.  I think those two seasons will age very, very well.

     

     

     

    #52322
    ichabod @ichabod

    @missy  I’ll certainly be on the watch for Doctor Strange, since I enjoy watching Cumberbatch — he looks to me like an alien, himself — something to do with — physical proportions?  Not sure . . . but he’s intriguing.  Now he’ll be Strange.  I’ll be interested to see what that means, character-wise.  I usually don’t have much tolerance for the very crude, obvious character style of the comic book super hero, but mix it with Cumberbatch and who knows?

    #52382
    KBranagh @kbranagh

    Murray Gold is a true god, a few call back to. “The Rings of. Akhaten” in this work.

    There is no thread dedicate to Murray Gold?

    #52395
    Missy @missy

    @kbranagh

    Odd, but I’m not so keen on the Rings of Akhaten.
    All the scores from DT and MS are a treat, and Heaven Sent is superb.
    We could talk about him on the Music thread if you like?

    ttfn

    Missy

    #52464
    KBranagh @kbranagh

    yes sure, thanks again!

     

    the next month by the way i start the rewatch of the series..(with something from the classic shows, still new for me) we see in the old topic!

    #52746
    Missy @missy

    I’ve watched this several times and rate it as one of my favourites – I know, a favourite is a favourite not several – but I still have difficulty working out why River didn’t twig that the Doctor was THE Doctor.

    She’d obviously sent for him and  sent Nardole to look for a blue box. He found it, with a man inside who was ‘sort of’ a Surgeon – who else could he be?

    Even though she thought there were only 11 regenertions, common sense should have prevailed, especially when he faced her and said that he was The Doctor. Where did she think her Doctor was?

    Talk about slow on the uptake. I felt that this was the only bum note in the episode – a bit contrived.

    What do the rest of the members think? Am I being unreasobable.

    Missy

    #52750
    GrannyM @grannym

    Missy, I haven’t watched it in awhile but I recall that she sent Nardole to find the “capsule” that the surgeon they sent for was supposed to arrive in. He seemed to be looking at a note in his hand which may have had some coordinates to the general location he would find it. I think he just assumed that the TARDIS looked like a capsule since it was near that location and when The Doctor indicated that he was the surgeon, I think he said “close enough” or something, Nardole just took him to River. Also they showed the real Surgeon walking through town right afterwards very close to the area where The Doctor and Nardole had been.

    I do agree that River should have caught on quicker but I just have to think that it never crossed her mind that The Doctor would ever show up with a new regeneration. In that case, she had no reason to interpret his actions and hints of his identity as anything but this weird, unknown doctor’s eccentricities. It made her eventual realization that much more emotional.

     

    #52758
    Missy @missy

    grannym: Yours won’t paste either – sorry.

    River is a wonderful, strong character and supposed to be smart. Therefore she knew the ‘capsule’ was there, so the Doctor had to be there. You’d have thought she’d at least have queried the Surgeon’s credentials. Especially when he actually tells her who he is.

    So I suppose, it was contrived, to make – as you say -the penny dropping moment more emotional.

    I love the episode anyway.

    Missy

    #52766
    Mudlark @mudlark

    @missy  It is an interesting theory, but I’m afraid @grannym  is right; the text doesn’t support it.  River is clever, but even the cleverest person may be blind sided by their assumptions and expectations.

    River had contacted a surgeon specifically, and was puzzled and irritated that the person she assumed to be the surgeon in question had evidently not received any information about the case.  The Tardis – who probably knew exactly what she was doing – had arrived close to the location where the surgeon’s capsule was expected to land, and when Nardole mistook the Tardis for the capsule and the Doctor for the surgeon, the Doctor went along with it, probably out of curiosity.  As he and Nardole were disappearing round a bend in the street, a man carrying what looked like an old-style doctor’s bag emerged from a side street and asked a passer-by if they were expecting a surgeon.

    We later learn from River’s conversation with Ramone that they had also been looking for the Doctor (code name ‘Damsel’), but this was a quite separate quest.  River may have summoned the Tardis, which would explain why she was not surprised to find it, but what prevented her from recognising the Doctor himself, despite his attempts to make himself known, was the fact that, as far as she knew, the twelve regenerations rule was inflexible.  Even though she was hoping, or even expecting the Doctor would turn up in the vicinity of the Tardis, she took it for granted that it would be either one of the incarnations which she had known in the flesh, or one which she recogniised from her intensive research following the events of ‘Let’s Kill Hitler’ – one of the twelve whose pictures she showed Ramone.  Since she evidently knew nothing of how the war on Trenzalore ultimately played out, the last thing she could have expected was for him to appear with a new face.  That it took a while for the penny to finally drop is therefore not surprising, and it does not mean that she was being uncharacteristically obtuse.

     

    #52777
    Anonymous @

    You know it’s funny, but when I watched it, I thought River Song was faking not knowing him, as a joke, that she was teasing him (as well as protecting him at one point), which given her sometimes mischievous character seemed a reasonable conclusion at the time. Oh well, either way, I thought it was excellent.

    #52792
    Anonymous @

    @Stitchintime @mudlark

    Miss Lark good to see you back in form. I agree completely. River knew only of ‘the twelve’ and, without awareness of the Trenzalore situation, Eleven’s 2000 year stint to protect its people and the re-generation by the High Council, had no expectation that Twelve could appear.

    Also, such a different man, imo.

    I don’t think it was a joke (although that would have worked in its own way very well had the actors been dealt that particular script, Stitch) nor a type of confused muddled-ness on behalf of River -she’s a lot of things, but muddled, rarely!

    PuroSolo

    #52793
    Anonymous @

    @missy

    the post above was also for you -in answer to your specific question about whether River was “slow on the uptake.”

    I think it was a nicely done comedy. Possibly a bit retro, a bit ’50s screwball but considering half of America and a good portion of Australia would like a return to the “good ol’ days” then it was bloomin awesome.

    But seriously, River was completely muddled -for awhile!

    PuroSolo

    #52814
    Mudlark @mudlark

    @StitchInTime  @Puroandson

    There is another point to consider.  Apart from all the other pointers in the text, the possibility that River knew from the first that it was the Doctor, and was simply teasing by pretending not to recognise him, can be ruled out by the consideration that, if such had been the case, it would have removed all the impact and, indeed, made nonsense of that pivotal moment of realisation when, in the silence following her hyperbolic rant, she became conscious of the intent regard of the person beside her, turned and finally understood Who it was, even before the Doctor’s murmured ‘Hello, Sweetie’.  It was wonderfully acted and a real tear-jerker, as many people noted at the time.

    #52832
    Missy @missy

    To all who answered me.  thank you.

    I quite agree that it would have definitely lost impact had River been  pretending.

    I think what threw me, was the fact that the bloomin’ Tardis was right there in front of her.  so who else could have landed it there?

    As my OH loves to say, “it’s in the script!”

     

    Missy

    #52872
    janetteB @janetteb

    @missy River was aware of the Tardis and expected the Doctor/codename Damsel to be there. She had sent her cute husband out to look for him giving him the images of the twelve earlier incarnations. Doctor points to his face but she ignore the gesture assuming it is the warm up routine for his demented stick insect dance.

    I watched again this morning and enjoyed it thoroughly. It is a episode that always proves to be more enjoyable than I expect. I don’t know why. It is such a change of tone from the previous three episodes too. Almost like watching a different show altogether, yet under all the humour and silliness of giant fighting robots and felt antlers there is the gut wrenching human drama that underscores Moffat’s writing.

    Capaldi is so brilliant as the Doctor. Long may he wield the sonic.

    Cheers

    Janette

    #52874
    MissRori @missrori

    It is a huge tonal shift from Series 9, which great as much of it was did have a frequent case of the glums, even with all of its fun dialogue and humorous setpieces.  There weren’t any just-for-fun/low-drama episodes like “Robot of Sherwood” or “In the Forest of the Night”; the ones that came closest to those (“The Girl Who Died”, “Face the Raven”) turned out to be setting up extremely sad events.  That was probably because of the focus on multi-part stories, since it’s difficult to make a low-stakes plot exciting enough to span two or three episodes.

    Frankly, I was glad to finally see poor Twelve get thrown a bone in this story, after he was put through the wringer and turned into a punching bag for other characters from “Face the Raven” onwards.  It really, really would have helped if a significant character besides Clara actually cared about what he was going through and/or tried to help him, especially since all of them are in his and/or Clara’s debt.  Instead, I wound up despising the ungrateful, cowardly Time Lords, coldhearted Ohila, and snotty Ashildr, and hoping he calls in his favors to Rigsy and Anahson and her mum sometime!

    “The Husbands of River Song” is actually the one Series 9-related story I’ve watched the whole way through more than once so far, in part because it manages to be goofy and funny, yet poignant and romantic.  It’s the best Season 17 story we never had, and I’m with those who regard it, and not “Hell Bent”, as the real Series 9 finale!  😉

    #52895
    Anonymous @

    @missrori

    I think Ashildr’s snottiness, per se exists partly because the Doctor thought it advisable to bestow her some good ol’ fashioned immortality….I’d get pretty pissy too…

    I liked Ohila – a sister of Karn has to be tough I think. In fact, I love the tough women in Who – many years ago they just looked good in tight fitting clothing. 🙂

    Also, I think I watched every episode about 10 times -crazy, I know: waaay to much time on my hands. I loved the Husbands  -light and comedic as well as poignant.

    Kindest,

    PuroSolo.

    #52897
    ichabod @ichabod

    @missrori  @puroandson  I also think of “Husbands” as — not exactly the S9 finale, but it denouement or coda: here is the fully developed result of the massively painful and wrenching events of S9, some time after the dust has settled and the final departures have been made.  Here’s the Doctor showing his acceptance of those departures, not in the heat of the moment of the “hybrid” revelation and necessary consequent actioin, which he may not even remember with any clarity if at all, but after reflection; after searching for whatever memory scraps he could find, and probing the nature of his feelings about what he thinks happened; after being the Doctor again for a while, the lone traveler who often picks up passengers.

    Heck, he states it outright, the chief lesson of that hazy resolution to S9: “Some things end, because they have to.”  Implying that you don’t always have to know exactly why they had to (or can’t remember), but it’s a damned good thing to recognize when fighting to turn things around, to avoid an ending, is fruitless and should be let go (way better, IMO, than “never give up, never give in”, which I’m pretty sure was also a mock-heroic motto in the comedy “Galaxy Quest”).

    “I’ll never, ever stop!” is right for Heaven Sent, because the castle is a Groundhog Day trap that he’ll never escape unless he punches his own way out; but “Some things end” in that quiet voice is right for “Husbands” because there was nothing left to punch against.  In terms of the Whoniverse, they’d come to the only alternative ending for them to spiraling into causing universal destruction. The difference is huge, and accepting that “some things end” is as legitimate as “Never, ever stop”.

    I enjoyed the comedy too, of course; but I loved the lesson.  I know the Doctor has learned it (and taught it — MotOE) before, but when you’re that brilliant and that powerful, surely you have to learn it over and over again.  And I agree that Ohila is a very strong character — I’d like to see more of her in future.

     

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