Okay. Okay. Oh lordy, I don't even know how to start. My heart and my brain and my emotions are just all mushed together in a conglomeration of auuughbbnndaaRIIIVVVERRmmnngfffRORYYYKIDRORRRYYYaaaahhhfFEEELLINGGSSSSauunnnggg
That was an emotional smorgasbord, I don't know how I came out of it at the end with all my vessels intact. I love River, and the role she got given in this episode, I thought I'd died and gone to wonderland. There's no word for what Moffat's done. It's off the chart. It's never been seen or done or dreamt before. The way he's woven this plotline, this particular thread, ever since Silence in the Library back in season four, goes beyond masterful. Oh, where do I even the book! The archaeology! The theme of spoilers! Rule 1, the Doctor lies! WHY, MOFFAT, WHY DO YOU GIVE ME THESE THINGS, THESE WONDERFUL THINGS, THESE BEAUTIFUL NUANCES AND HINTS AND FORESHADOWINGS. He's everything I want in a storyteller. Thank you, BBC gods, for putting him at the helm of the new Who.
This gem of an episode earns its rightful place amongst my favourite Whovian wonders, not only for the abundance of River, but for just pelting me with wonderful (I'm running out of adjectives) little snippets and moments that I just want to cut up and tuck next to my heart. LITTLE RORY. LITTLE RORY AND LITTLE AMY. Karen and Arthur all dolled up as highschoolers! Amy realising that Rory's never looked at another girl because he loves HER, YOU DOLT. And way to rip my heart out with flickering images of bygone companions. Rose. ROSE. DONNA. I MISS YOU SO. And the Doctor! Berating his TARDIS for showing him images of people he's hurt! And Amelia! Saying she's not Amelia! STOP IT, CAN'T YOU SEE HE'S HURTING.
My heart was pulled in so many directions I can't think of any more metaphors to describe how it feels. I'm still too happy and too giddy to start seriously poking at the more questionable patches in the episode, but I'll lay down one that struck me as more than a little odd. Amy. Her reaction to the fact that Melody was Melody her daughter. Wasn't really much of a reaction. As a mother, wouldn't she have been more than a little emotionally torn that, in fact, she never raised her daughter? She watched her daughter grow up, but, through hindsight, in an extremely bizarre way? And now her daughter is lost, and is grown up, and looks like the River she knows, and tried to kill the Doctor. And Rory is also awfully chill about the whole situation. (Or maybe that's just me trying to cram a few more feelings into this episode, as if it needed any more.)
It'll take me quite a while to come down from this high, and whatever episode follows this one, I can't see how it can possibly measure up to the air above the glass ceiling Moffat's just punched a crater through.