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Best of Matt Smith: The Angels Take Manhattan

best-of-matt-smith-manhattan

Across the next couple of months Doctor Who TV is running a series of polls to celebrate Matt Smith’s era. We want you to cast your votes on every story and at the end we’ll be comprising a list to find the top scoring.

We continue Series 7 with The Angels Take Manhattan. All you have to do is rate the story with your score out of 10, so get voting and join us again tomorrow for the next episode.

Step back in time...

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226 comments
MeglosProductions
MeglosProductions

Very good, but you have to look past the plot holes to enjoy it. 7.5/10

Polyphase
Polyphase

2/10. The statue of liberty was too much as was the ending

DawnTime
DawnTime

Just a 7 from me - not keen on the beginning - I don't like the atmosphere created by how it was filmed. Not keen on 1920's style of films at the best of times, so good line's in it however, "wait until my husband gets home" etc - Matt was particularly good in this very sad at end.

DW_girl
DW_girl

10/10. Utterly heartbreaking, and also a very exciting plot. The whole atmosphere throughout was very dark, which was probably more due to the fact that we have the Pond's departure looming over us, but the weeping angels were very scary (not as scary as they were in Blink, but definitely quite frightening). The 'battery harvest' concept was very good, and very gruesome, and it really inflicted a lot of emotion. The ending was simply undefeatable- an excellent ending for a pair of excellent companions, and the acting in that scene is tremendous. Can't fault.

Jamie Reviewer
Jamie Reviewer

The Angels Take Manhattan... 

It Was A Dark Episode For The Weeping Angels And The Last Episode Of Amy And Rory Farewell And It Was Sad For The Eleventh Doctor To Lose Both Of Them  





I Give It For All A 10/10..... 









JailBanksters
JailBanksters

The only thing wrong with this one was the Statue of Liberty, that was a bit silly.

But apart from that a classic happy, sad, angry with a happy twist.


Maryanne123
Maryanne123

Not as perfect as A Christmas Carol, not as iconic as Time of The Doctor, better than Wardrobe but boy oh boy what a wonderful Christmas stocking bursting with treasures. Goes without saying that Matt was wonderous, gorgeous music, loved the scenes in the cloud, hooray for Strax, fabulous guest stars REG and Sir Ian blooming McKellan if you don't mind. Sets up the arc for Season 7 B wonderfully, brimming with wit and emotion and then we have my favourite incarnation of Clara - sweet, wise , sassy, strong and inquisitive. As much as I adore Clara Prime and she's already my favourite ever companion behind the Ponds, I wish this Clara had travelled further with Matt. They ooze chemistry and just a little flirt on the side. Beautiful and sweet ending. Just delicious. And on to 7B. My least favourite of the Moff era but still it ends on three superlative notes with the Of The Doctor trilogy. Maybe a rewatch may firm up my views on a couple of the episodes which I only found warranted around a 7.

JJ2000
JJ2000

7 - Good. It was a really good episode. One of the best. The episode is probably in my Top 20. It was sad that Amy and Rory left, but it was a great episode and a great send off to them and I think it was the right time for them to go though. Looks as though they left just in time, whilst the show was still on a high. Goodbye Ponds!

LaraHarris
LaraHarris

Another awful one with holes you could drive a bus through. So disappointed with this episode. Supposed to be the farewell of the Ponds but managed to make me not care one jot and ruin a brilliant villain,

Shadowbomb
Shadowbomb

The episode gets a 7 out of me, it had some really high points that made it a watch but other bits such as the convoluted fixed time and the book reading creates fix points didn't make sense as it seems to contradict itself in the episode. Matt Smith here is in good form and I like seeing the cynical doctor as there are a lot of routes to go with that character. Whereas Karen and Arthur give it there all for a goodbye (I do feel sorry for Arthur as he didn't get a goodbye just sapped)




TheCyberDoctor is Undead
TheCyberDoctor is Undead

9/10 - A brilliant episode and an emotional farewell to the Ponds. Smith's, Gillan's and Darvill's performances were magnificent; as was Kingston's. I loved the scenes with the Doctor and River Song together and their relationship at this stage was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic! The double-ending for the Ponds was quite unusual, but bitter-sweet too as it made their farewell even more emotional. Yes the focus was more on Amy, but it showed how much they had changed since the beginning and how much they loved each other. The Angels were far less scary in this episode than they were in 2007 or 2010, but Moffat still managed to add to them here. Just one more thing; There aren't any plot-holes!!!


Series 7 so far: TDTWATW - 7/10; AOTD - 10/10; DOAS - 8/10; ATCM - 7/10; TPOT - 7.5/10 (8) 

Heisenberger
Heisenberger

8/10. Interesting episode, but sometimes it felt like it was forcing you to cry. Good sendoff for Amy, but not really for Rory.

IzzyG
IzzyG

I liked how this ep leaves us with more mystery.  Amy and Rory have a whole lifetime we'll never get to see (except for a quick glimpse in the PS that was never filmed).  If they stay in New York, they'd be older, but they'd still be there in 1969 when little Melody regenerated in an alley.  I saw someone point out that in a new epilogue to the Summer Falls Dr. Who tie-in novel, Amelia Williams hints that she is searching the streets for a little girl.  Who says River didn't grow up with the Ponds in New York?  River affirms Amy's decision to follow Rory after all.  TATM could have a hidden happy ending for the whole sad Amy/Rory/River relationship.  

TimeLord22
TimeLord22

I love this episode as I love Amy and Rory, but it lost a mark for the way it felt more like Amy's goodbye, not Rory's. I would've preferred if the Doctor shouted both of their names when they jumped off Winter Quay.

AztecsDaleksAndCavemen
AztecsDaleksAndCavemen

Reasonably alright. It was a great appearance from the Angels and an interesting setting. Worked as a mid-series finale because it wasn't massive in scale (despite being set in a big city)  

7/10

Zakk Williams
Zakk Williams

Easily a 10/10. One of the best episodes of Doctor Who, ever!

MaraBackman
MaraBackman

I really hate this story. There is actually little real point in elaborating why, because people who love the episode will just counter with "But that is what made it the bestest thing ever!", just as with my reasons for hating AOTD. Anyhow, beyond my dislike for the Angels being there and River Song's function post Series-5, the main reason for why I despise this episode is because the aggressive tearjerking didn't work on me. I could clearly see where I was supposed to bawl like a baby and at what points I should pretend to be a fan of Twilight, but the episode tried way too hard to make me cry and had thus the opposite effect from what was intended, like many other tearjerker moments in Series 6 and 7. Because I preferred the Ponds' very simple exit in TGC and the episode went too far in trying to be tragic, TATM feels to me like artificially sentimental tripe on par with a cheap romance novel. This is a completely subjective feeling based on personal taste, so just because it doesn't feel genuine to me doesn't mean that I can't squint my eyes and turn my head sideways to understand why some other people would actually react as was intended. Because this episode annoyed me so much and because it caused me to briefly rage-quit the entire show, this episode gets a 3/10 from me.

sontaran17
sontaran17

Absolutley 10/10 - Season 7 continues its roll of excellent- and theres even more brilliance ahead!!!!!!!!!!! ATM is heartbreaking, but just so good!!! River is brilliant, Amy is  brilliant, 11 is brilliant, Rory is brilliant, the Angels are brilliant, the plot is phenomonal!! I really cant see how anyone would dislike this episode! 


As for the so called "Plot Holes" I seek audience with the Moff himself: In normal circumstances the Doctor might have gone back and said, ‘look we’ll just put a headstone up and we’ll just write the book’. But there is so much scar tissue, and the number of paradoxes that have already been inflicted on that nexus of timelines, that it will rip apart if you try to do one more thing. He has to leave it alone. Normally he could perform some surgery, this time too much surgery has already been performed

And as for the Statue of Liberty?? 

The Angels can do so many things. They can bend time, climb inside your mind, hide in pictures, steal your voice, mess with your perception, leak stone from your eye… New York in 1938 was a nest of Angels and the people barely more than farm animals. The abattoir of the lonely assassins!


In those terrible days, in that conquered city, you saw and understood only what the Angels allowed, so Liberty could move and hunt as it wished, in the blink of an eye, unseen by the lowly creatures upon which it preyed. Also, it tiptoed.





VictorWong1
VictorWong1

6 out of 10. I got thrown out of the episode the minute I saw the Statue of Liberty as an Angel. Not even the angst shown when Rory and Amy passed could get me to rate this any higher.

Jono81
Jono81

I weep for hours after I watch this episode. Every time. It may have some ridiculous plot holes, but for the most part it's emotional brilliance. 10/10

ahunter8056
ahunter8056

9/10. A brilliant episode for the Ponds to go out on. It's such a shame they had to go.

Baker Street is excited for Series 8!
Baker Street is excited for Series 8!

9/10. One of the most tense, action-packed and well-performed episodes of all time. The masterful Nick Hurran creates the most uneasy and scary atmosphere possible, the script is packed full of some great ideas and lines (take the "reading ahead" idea and the really unpleasent "battery farm" idea for example), the Angels are drastically improved from their previous episode in my opinion and are much more terrifying and varied/evolved (although Liberty wasn't great), and Karen and Arthur steal the show. Don't get me wrong - Matt and Alex are as great and as charming/funny/solid as ever, but Karen and Arthur give scene-stealing, emotional performances. The rooftop scene is stunning, and actually I believe that Arthur gives his best ever performance. But credit to Nick Hurran and Moffat here too - the slow-mo fall and "It's called marriage" are amazing. Oh, and Murray Gold - "Together or Not At All" is one of his greatest scores.

The reason this episode doesn't get full marks from me is because of two things: the Angel of Liberty and the ending. Now, the Angel of Liberty needs no explanation as I'm sure many people know why it wasn't popular, but I'll explain my annoyance over the ending. Firstly, Rory, who had grown to be one of my favourite companions and had just given his best performace ever (well, Arthur had), didn't get a goodbye. He had seen a lot of development over the previous two years and had proved that he was as worthy of the companion status as Amy was, but he was brushed aside. Even if he had read some of the afterword I would've been happy, but no. Secondly, I can't really emotionally invest in Amy's goodbye, because the crying isn't needed. There are so many ways in which the Doctor could go back to get the Ponds, and if losing them would cause the depression he is in afterwards then why doesn't he? So for these reasons the episode loses a mark, but the overall quality and plot isn't greatly affected.

A tense, dramatic and dark episode that sees high quality acting, writing and directing. The Angels are mostly used well and are developed nicely, and the episode has some truly brilliant scenes in it. However, a few obvious, annoying plotholes and no goobye for Rory stop this episode from being perfect.

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

Oh dear my device is having a fit and posted this in the wrong place. Just assume this was posted against the Snowman. Whistles and walks away.

DW_girl
DW_girl

I agree :) And finally, someone who doesn't pick apart the episode for non-existent plot holes! :)

IzzyG
IzzyG

Found it:  'And that's why the late nights. Research. Imagine that - me, a crazy old bag lady wandering the streets of New York looking for a lost girl. But yes, I do go looking for her.' What, I ask - do you really think the heroine of your book is out there? A little lost girl with magic at her fingertips? She puts down her sandwich and looks at me. There are tears in her eyes. 'I do.'  -- from Summer Falls      Therefore, if Amy and Rory are appx 31 when they are sent back to 1938, Amy dies at age 87 in 1994 . . . just about the time little Mels needs to be in Leadworth to grow up with her parents.  I don't expect we're ever going to hear more about the Ponds or River on the actual show, so I'm going to choose to believe they got this happy ending.  





Shadowbomb
Shadowbomb

@IzzyG  I have not read Summer Falls, but if that is in the book then that is a truly touching way of looking at the Ponds :,)

Diana van der Pluijm
Diana van der Pluijm

I sort of quit the show before the start of this half of the season, but after a while I came back and watched the remaining episodes. However, I just couldn't set myself to watch TATM, because of what I'd seen and read beforehand (about The Weeping Angel Statue of Liberty). When I watched it my blood pressure spiked due to how much illogical things happened straight at the start. To this day I still cannot watch it again. I know exactly how you feel when it comes to having to defend your opinion on not loving each and every one of the show's episodes since the reboot. It's gets so very frustrating after a while.


Adric the Genius
Adric the Genius

@MaraBackman My biggest complaint, aside from the plotholes, is that Rory was sidelined and it was more about Amy's goodbye.  More interesting would have been to have Amy notice the grave and be sent back in time; Rory would get a proper goodbye and the Doctor would have had to deal with the tragic loss of both of his companions.

sontaran17
sontaran17

@MaraBackman  Sorry you didnt enjoy the episode, each to our own I guess, but I wouldnt generalise people who did get affected by the tearjerking moments as babies or "fans of twilight" ... people react in different ways, and there reaction should be respected just as much as yours

DW_girl
DW_girl

@sontaran17 I agree with everything here. I also like how you've seen the good side out of the whole Statue of Liberty thing, because everyone else hates on it because they want to be too pedantic.

DalekSupreme1
DalekSupreme1

@sontaran17  I've never quite understood people who think that think that Steven Moffat is a bad writer compared to RTD and then use the Statue of Liberty as an example of this! What about a giant CYBERKING stomping across Victorian London!!!! I mean what sort of a creature name is Cyberking anyway???? "So far the Cybermen have had a very cold and logical hierarchy: Cyberman, Cyber Leader, Cyber Controller. It is therefore time to introduce a piece of Cyber Artillery! What to call it? It's got to be unimaginative and untheatrical... I know! Cyber King!!!" WHAT???????

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

I'm with you! I love season 7. Another all time classic coming up next.

grumpyoldcow
grumpyoldcow

I hear you, Maryanne. I love the Snowmen, too.

My device seldom behaves as it should, so I understand.

MaraBackman
MaraBackman

Because the intention of the emotional manipulation tends to be really obvious and even clumsy and shallow in its execution, as if there is a sign saying "cry here", it doesn't look like the audience gets that much respect either if they are expected to fall for it. And frankly, the show has taken a more melodramatically sentimental direction for each year since 2005, culminating in TOTD causing diabetes, so I'm not really in the mood anymore to be apologetic to the majority for having a dissenting opinion.

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

You're right of corse. The Cyberking was one of the silliest ideas ever used by RTD? I think people forget about it because The Next Doctor is not a well regarded episode overall and pretty well forgotten whereas manhattan is a favourite with a lot of people and pretty iconic in Moffat's era as it's his first one farewelling his own creations. But people seem to like taking irrational pops at Moffat and it's probably the only (minor) thing which could be criticised in an otherwise perfectly pitched episode. I don't think you can otherwise compare the two episodes. Next Doctor is 3 or 4 oiut of 10 tops, whereas Manhaatan is at least 9 out of 10 even if you were worried about the Statue of Liberty.

Antee991166
Antee991166

@DalekSupreme1 @sontaran17 I personally feel that Moffat is a better writer, but Davies was a better showrunner. That's not to say that Moffat is bad at running the show and Davies has written some amazing scripts. But your right the Cyberking was pretty stupid, but Davies did also give us the Midnight entity.

DW_girl
DW_girl

@Maryanne123 Was the Cyberking thing ever explained? I mean, didn't they ever explain why no one remembers a massive robot stamping through Victorian London?

DW_girl
DW_girl

@Antee991166 @Maryanne123Agree with most points here. Moffat always goes too complicated with his scripts and then the endings seem to fall flat (except in series 5, and his episodes through the RTD era). Why don't you like series 2?

Antee991166
Antee991166

@Maryanne123 My point still stands. I felt that RTD managed to keep the overall consistency of the programme more continuous than Moffat does. Series 2 is the only RTD series that I have big problems with. Series 6 & 7 are mixed bags for me. Moffat may create better monsters and write better scripts, but IMO he fails to make sure the series maintains consistency.

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

Yes but he also gave us farting aliens, plastic Mickey, Peter Kaye in a fat suit, dobby Doctor and walking fat. Moff gave us weeping angels, clockwork droids, gasmask zombies, vashta nerada, whispermen, the silence etc. hardly the right metric to compare the two eras. These comparisons don't hold up. The only thing in which RTD currently has an edge over Moffat is his longevity ( which is unlikely to hold up too much longer) but otherwise it's a pretty one- sided matchup.