Ten Thoughts About Doctor Who: The Pandorica Opens

"There's one thing you don't put into a trap – and that's me!" – The Doctor, Flesh And Stone

Okay, spoilers warning for anyone who hasn't seen The Pandorica Opens episode of Doctor Who yet. Go boil your head for a couple of weeks.

Thanks for the appreciative notes from American watchers, who tell me they've been checking Bleeding Cool for these Thought pieces the second after they've watched the episode on BBC America. Thanks all.

1. Why Not Just Send A Time Pigeon

This is how you send a message. Transmit a signal to a psychic painter to bury it in a wall where it will be seen by a future Prime Minister who will then use a phone to three thousand years in the future so a prisoner can steal it from a future Queen, write a message in a cliff at the beginning of time so that the Doctor can make it to early Britain.


Though how come the Dalekbot isn't on the run and hiding, I've no idea. Did they really cut off Jack Harkness's hand? Some kind of limb swappage scheme considering he palled around with the Doctor's hand for ages. And what Liz 10 is doing in the 52nd century, when she's from the 26th is anyone's guess. Also, River Song seems a little out of time, she's meant to be knocking around/imprisoned in the 51st. Also that scene with them both was never filmed with them together…

2. Tying In The Disparate Elements

One of my favourite bits from Buffy was, preparing to battle Glory and despairing of their chances, Anya turned around and picked up a couple of items off the shelf from previous episodes, and they're just what's needed. And so Moffat picks off Gogh, Churchill, Liz 10, River, taking all the various loose strands and pulling them together, whether this was the design or not. I wouldn't be surprised if Moffat won't be satisfied until he's done this with the show's fifty year-long history.

3. Wasn't This Nicked From Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy.

It was a bit, and "We Apologise For The Inconvenience" was a bit funnier. But it was also nicked from a Russell T Davies short story in a previous Doctor Who Annual…

And far away, across the universe, on the planet Crafe Tec Heydra, one side of a mountain carries carvings and hieroglyphs, crude representations of an invisible War. The artwork shows two races clashing, one metal, one flesh; a fearsome explosion; and a solitary survivor walking from the wreckage. Solitary? Perhaps not. Under this figure, a phrase has been scratched in the stone, which translates as: "you are not alone"…

Not any more it doesn't.

4. Hang On, Stonehenge Didn't Look Like That Then

It looked more like this.

But I did rather like The Doctor, Glastonbury style, giving us a "Hello Stonehenge!!"

But at least we've got Romans. Or as the Doctor seems to see them as, cannon fodder. How deliciously ironic.

5. Hang On, If Rory Was Erased From History What Is This Photo Still Doing There?

But the Doctor's single minded focus and inability to see what's in front of his eyes is, as always, hilarious.

6. The Gang's All Here. The Ones Not CGI That Is.

Russell T Davies wanted to do this kind of scene at the penultimate episode of the fourth series but didn't have the budget. Note the lack of CGI characters…

7. Hang On. Wouldn't The Daleks Want The Universe To Be Destroyed?

The ultimate extermination, even if it involved themselves, would be a price worth paying.

8. The Pandorica Is A Bit Like That Bit In Steven Moffat's Jekyll Isn't It?

You know, trapping Jekyll in that thing.

9. I Always Thought Rory's Acting Was A Bit Plastic.

Still what's more shocking is that, for once, the power of love failed to save the day. It worked on a Dalekbot, why not a RoryAuton too? But this certainly gives a certain thought from my Cold Blood rundown a little extra depth. Thought number 9 by the way.

10. Now This Is What John Byrne Calls Superboy Syndrome

River Song exploding and the universe getting sucked into the cracks.

Still, we know the universe isn't destroyed, as River Song survived to get rearrested and make it to the Byzantium. Although there's still that thing about killing the best man she ever knew.

But is rather nice and Vincent Van Gogh-ey, the dying universe…


Text whited out…

Next week's episode has cast member for Amelia Pond, Mr Pond and Aunt Sharon. And look forward to The Doctor using that portable Time Vortex thing to amend his own past. And why is Amy's house too big anyway – maybe it's full of ducks from the duck pond!

About Rich Johnston

Chief writer and founder of Bleeding Cool. Father of two. Comic book clairvoyant. Political cartoonist.

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