FINALLY DOCTOR WHO IS BACK!!!!!!
WARNING MASSIVE SPOILERS !!!!!!! (After the jump)
I have to say, I was concerned when I heard about the other episodes that were going to come this season because many of them seemed like contained stories that wouldn't really deal with this big mystery that they were dealing with. After all, with Melody missing will Amy and Rory really want to just go traveling for fun? But they tied up loose ends nicely.
I liked the crop circles to get the Doctor back. It's nearly as subtle as River writing "Hello Sweetie" on, well, just about everything. Or what the Doctor did in the first episode of this season. The introduction to Mels was nicely done. I liked the flashback scene. "Rory's gay." "No I'm not" "Yes you are. I've never seen you be interested in anyone." *Realization dawns on Amy* (Now that I've poked fun at Rory a little I'd like to point out that if this was an episode of Friends it would be called "The one where Rory is even more of a BAMF than usual"). Also, I know wish I wasn't done with high school so I could use Mels' answers. "Why did Hitler rise to power?" "Because the Doctor didn't stop him."
Then they saved Hitler by accident and he did a lot of shooting. And is a terrible shot. But that's okay! Because we learn that Mels = Melody = River! It does lead to an interesting paradox. If Amy named her child after her best friend, but her best friend was secretly her child where did the name come from? (This is actually a well known paradox, only it's usually written about someone bringing a book they wrote in the future back in time and publishing it.) Also how great is it that Rory now is not only a Roman but has punch Hitler and locked him in a cupboard?(I like that Hitler was dealt with as a more minor art of the story, rather than them dealing with River and stopping Hitler.)
Here's the problem. River is sort of evil. As in she's been brainwashed to kill the Doctor. On the other hand, the Doctor has the jump on her. Mostly. That bit where there were lots of reveals of hidden actions was very funny. *pulls gun* *shows him emptying cartridge* *goes for other gun* *secretly replaces with banana*. Alas, River came out ahead. The lipstick. We all knew it's an old trick of hers but oh well.
Anyways, the Doctor is dying but according to the little people who make me think of the Eddie Murphy movie I never saw it's the wrong time. River gets shot by Nazi's but she's regenerating so she's fine. (Except, as my dad pointed out, when we saw the Doctor die he was regenerating and was shot and that killed him. Interesting.) Also Rory punches another Nazi and can ride a motor cycle. I said he was awesome.
I liked how they cameo-ed the past companions. There were rumors that they'd be back and sure enough!
Anyway, there's a big showdown. They stop the robot. River turns good and instinctively knows how to fly the TARDIS. The Doctor dies but she uses all her remaining regenerations to bring him back. My guess is that since Time Lords are supposed to have 12 regenerations (I don't care about the throwaway line in the SJA episodes. I refuse to count it) but can gain extra regenerations by taking from other time lords that this is how they will explain keeping the show goes past Doctor number 13.
So River's off to study Archaeology. The Doctor and the Ponds are off the explore. I do hope that there will be some episodes where River has adventures with them in this current state of not knowing everything. One of the chief complaints I've heard about her character is that she's a know it all. Hopefully this will help dispel that. My only regret with what they've done is that I was hoping to get another River who would be the companion next season while Rory and Amy are on and off, but who knows. It would be easier if they could have someone else and then have her regenerate into Alex Kingston but what will be will be. I also liked her line about how she would get younger over time to freak people out. I think this may have been a way to explain why the character looks older when she's at her youngest and youngest when she should be oldest.
Next week looks really good.
I realize this is more a summary of my favorite parts than a review but... I really liked it and thought it was excellent.