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Best of Matt Smith: The Wedding of River Song

best-of-matt-smith-wedding

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 6 with the finale, The Wedding of River Song. 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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145 comments
RobertLythgoe
RobertLythgoe

Absolutely crap. A horrible cop-out ending to a mediocre series and very badly written. Better than A good man goes to war and Let's kill Hitler but that's not saying much. 3.5/10

ericbfg
ericbfg

Super series. Better than 5

DawnTime
DawnTime

.............cannot resist it has to be a big fat...............10 ! so much to like in this ep, the skulls are very effective especially the noise they make when they turn all at the same time. Love this one.

WhoFanNo565
WhoFanNo565

9/10 A great finale, I have no idea why most people don't like it!

TheCyberDoctor is Capaldi
TheCyberDoctor is Capaldi

10/10 - This episode was brilliant and emotional. I loved the fact that all of time was happening at once; seeing the returning characters was amazing. The build up to 'Lake Silencio' was epic, and the tribute to the Brigadier was really heart-warming. And it made the Doctor realize that he couldn't run from his death any longer. The scene were he tells Churchill about Amy and Rory, stating that his "friends have always been the best of" him, was moving too. That scene when we arrive at the lakeside where River attempts to convince him to run was touching. Also, the scene on top of the Pyramid was poignant and shows just how much she loves him. Equally, the scene with Amy, River and Rory was fantastic; Amy's sudden realisation that she is the Doctor's mother-in-law was great (her face!). Additionally, the final moments of the episode was magnificent and we finally knew what the question was. Exceptional writing from Moffat; a great end to a very up-and-down series.

Series 6:


ACC - 10/10; TIA/TDOTM - 10/10; TCOTBS - 4/10; TDW - 11/10 (10); TRF/TAP - 9/10; AGMGTW - 10/10; LKH - 10/10; NT - 7/10; TGWW - 9/10; TGC - 7/10; CT - 7/10; TWORS - 10/10; Overall - 9.5/10

Series 5:

TEH - 10/10; TBB - 8/10; VOTD - 7/10; TTOA/FAS - 9/10; VIV - 7.5/10 (8); AC - 7/10; THE/CB - 6/10; VATD - 8/10; TL - 10/10; TPO/TBB - 11/10 (10); Overall - 10/10


DW_girl
DW_girl

5/5. My least favourite finale, I have to say. I find the idea of time being re-written predictable and repetitive in Moffat's era, as it seems to be his way of getting out of his own complicated twists. I also found it to be slow, and the bringing back of some of the old characters was deemed unnecessary in my eyes. I liked the very end though: "Doctor Who?"

WhoPotterVian
WhoPotterVian

8/10- Not as great as it could have been but still pretty enjoyable overall.

Master Michael Moon
Master Michael Moon

5/10. It's actually a decent enough finale, but it was very predictable. We all knew what Series 6 was building to in the end; how the Doctor 'survives' so it was dominated by exposition. Definitely should have been a two parter with Closing Time. Instead of those terribly written Cybermen, the Silence should have featured trying to steal electricity to fix their ship that had crashed beneath the department store, the one we saw disappearing in The Lodger (and that featured in Day of the Moon). The cliffhanger would still have been intact and so forth. 

KingOrokos
KingOrokos

You have to hand it to Moffat - many writers would struggle under the weight of the complex and even a little convoluted story arc that Series 6 weaved for itself, but he was able to craft an enjoyable and clever resolution that answered a lot of questions whilst still providing an interesting piece of television. 


First off, the performances; Matt Smith (does it even need saying?) was on top form, showing us a more reserved side to his Doctor in the scenes with Chruchill, and highlighting the particularly moving moment that was the phone call to the Brigadier. Gillan and Darvill were also excellent despite their limited screentime, presenting us with an amusing alternate-timeline development of their relationship. And Alex Kingston, of course, the titular star of the story, was brilliant, giving us each and every side of the River we've come to know and love. One minute psychotic, the next flirtatious, her interactions with Smith sparked as the pair of them fired off Moffat's notoriously speedy dialogue with style. 


Moffat also deserves plenty of credit, if only for the ingenious concept of Everything Happens At Once. It was a clever idea, and realised spectacularly by the production department, especially impressive in those opening shots of train lines, balloon cars and BBC interviews with Charles Dickens. Admittedly, the strange parallel-dimension-esque setting of the story means it feels as if Moffat pulls something of a reset switch at the climax - a trick he's managed before in The Big Bang - and this takes away from the much of the action surrounding the episode's second half. 


Keeping on that train of thought, it could perhaps be said of this story that the resolutions it presents for the series arc as a whole are a little underwhelming. The Teselecta is a fine explanation, sure, but it lacks some of the flair of Moffat's previous endings; looking back at the trapped Angels in Blink, or the supercomputer powered by a child's mind in Silence in the Library, it's difficult to accept that Moffat would simply turn around and give us the simplest, easiest solution to this problem he has crafted. In fact, if I could really make on criticism of The Wedding of River Song, it would be that the story feels like a distraction; instead of creating a story where the Doctor figures out how to avoid his own death, we get this alternate-timeline aside, a fancy show with talented actors and beautiful production design to make us forget that - ultimately - the resolution for the Doctor's death was nothing more than a quick conversation with a robot full of tiny people. 8/10.

KingOfTheInterWebs has Kidneys
KingOfTheInterWebs has Kidneys

I loved this episode a lot but felt it needed to be 2 parter. But then I was like meh and gave it a 10/10 anyway. :P It's a shame though, they made a brilliant distorted world but only explored it a tiny bit. Still brilliant episode. I find some people complain about the ending one of the complaints was 'It completely removes any emotional build up' my emotional build up wasn't removed at all, in fact I can't see the ending happening any other way. The only other thing I could propose is actually having The Doctor die at Lake Silencio and ending the series, but that's just silly. What's odd is the person in question didn't have an issue with the ending at first. How someone can suddenly believe out of the blue that it removes any emotional build up after not having any emotional build up removed when watching it?

Balatsoukas Pavlos
Balatsoukas Pavlos

Not sure about this one, even after all those months of first watching it. Probably an 8 out of 10. High, just because of the crazy sci-fi element, low because I didn't particularly like the elements that Moff included in the show's universe.


Yeah, that's about it then.

grumpyoldcow
grumpyoldcow

I really wanted to like this so much more than I did. It had the best pre-credit sequence of the Smith era. Loved the Teselecta reveal. I remember laughing when the miniaturised TARDIS was shown in the Teselecta ending so much speculation as to just where the Doctor's TARDIS was, lol. The music played at River's wedding is one of the most emotional pieces, ever. What should have been joyous is almost funereal, just another spin on this happy/sad wedding.

I tend to use the word ambitious too much, but it does fit this most ambitious rebooting of the series - as of Wedding, anyway. And, I liked the bookending of Series 6 connecting The Impossible Astronaut with this episode.

So why don't I rate it a 10/10? Don't know, it's a mystery to me.

AztecsDaleksAndCavemen
AztecsDaleksAndCavemen

Despite all his successes, Steven Moffat's finales aren't great. I did like The Name of the Doctor, but I think I was biased on account of seeing all the past incarnations. They all seem too connected to the other episodes. I think if they're going to do finales, I reckon they should be individual.


Still at least he puts his mark on them

Ninjauthor
Ninjauthor

the best season finale of the moffat era 10/10

PeterGecko2
PeterGecko2

I don't know why, but I didn't like this episode much. Even so, it had a great ending. 6/10

The Living Angel
The Living Angel

9/10, it would have been 10, but i do feel like there was one too many things thrown into this episode. Maybe it should have been a two partner. Overall though a brilliant episode.

blueboxgirl
blueboxgirl

Surprised to find so much love for this episode! Dont get me wrong, it's one of my favs - audacious, entertaining, clever - for me, it's brilliant. But, got to admit, i thought i was pretty much on my own. So nice to see others love it too!

The Mind Probe
The Mind Probe

A solid 8/10 - not the best episode ever, but an intelligent, engaging and moving script. 





I don't understand the hate for the resolution. The way I understand it, when we saw it in The Impossible Astronaut the Doctor DID actually die. In The Wedding of River Song he's come up with a simple but effective way to rewrite history, so that Amy, Rory and River still SEE exactly the same, regardless of whether the Doctor is flesh or android.


TheDreamer
TheDreamer

10/10 - Solid episode. I was hooked from "imagine you were dying. Imagine you were afraid and a long way from home and in terrible pain. Just when you thought it couldn't get worse, you looked up and saw the face of the devil himself. Hello, Dalek" and pretty much held my breath all the way to the end. Loved the live chess scene... And then, there's "nothing happened. And then it kept happening. Or if you'd prefer, everything happened at once and it won't ever stop" - great line, that!



Some scenes actually made me tear up, something that doesn't happen very often. When the Doctor found out the Brigadier had died was one of them, the talk with River at Lake Silencio is another ("and you are forgiven, always and completely forgiven" gets me, but also the mirroring of what she told him before dying in Forest of the Dead)


The scenes with Dorium were excellent, too... and the Silence and the Trenzalore prophecy finally detailed, not only tying everything up nicely but also giving us a glimpse of what was to come.


The wedding scene was very well executed. The interactions between Matt and Alex were just perfect throughout the episode. I liked how they "reused" the "honey I'm home" and "what sort of time do you call this" lines from series 5's finale, with a different tone. 


I found the Teselecta resolution clever... it made perfect sense to me, seeing as the Teselecta was established earlier in the series. Not that I saw it coming or anything, but once it finally came, it was one of those "ah ha! Of course! Brilliant!" moments for me.


The episode provided the perfect solution to the problem outlined by River in "A Good Man Goes to War" - the Doctor beginning to step back into the shadows, trying to stop the escalation of hostilities between him and his enemies. Even if we know it's only a matter of time before it comes all back to haunt him.

Nightmarish
Nightmarish

Need to rematch before I vote, my memory of this is a bit fuzzy. I remember it being meh when I first watched it.

Deus_Ex_Machina
Deus_Ex_Machina

So I'm one of those clinically insane people who actually liked this episode. I literally applauded at the "Look in my eye" part, I never saw it coming, and yet it was so obvious as is often the case with Moffat. I feel this story could have benifited from being a two parter, but it was still great. 8/10.

Doctor Capaldi
Doctor Capaldi

I'm actually really undecided on this one and as such can't give it a score without rewatching it first but this time with a critical mindset. I enjoyed it and thought the plot was good but it did have flaws and issues...

sontaran17
sontaran17


Ok, here it goes! The Wedding of River Song to me is one of the greatest episodes of New Who out there. Its funny, its heartbreaking, its romantic and its action packed. Its a prime example of how great Doctor Who is, and how brilliant Moffat can write it. After countless rewatches, the initial excitment still remains. A stunning 10/10


Maryanne123
Maryanne123

I find season 6 just shades season 5 overall but maybe on reflection there are more good stories in 5. I think one of the reasons that season 5 often comes up with fans and critics as the best one in NuWho is that it just burst onto our screens with Matt becoming The Doctor immediately. The Eleventh Hour removed the sour taste of the Tennant years with words and actor chiming perfectly. Because of the contrast with the awful drag to the end of RTD's tenure, season 5 overshadows the season which followed. 7A rocks my boat though although I honestly love every one of Matt's episodes. He just can do no wrong.

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

If you go back and read reviews at the time, it's a straight 5 star across the board. When people hate on Moff, just do yourself a favour and google reviews by professional TV writers and respected SciFi mags.

KingOfTheInterWebs has Kidneys
KingOfTheInterWebs has Kidneys

@The Mind Probe The way I see it is he appeared to have been killed on the beach but he was in the Teselecta and the universe recorded that he died that day. Therefore everyone thought that was his death and everyone including himself for a time believed he had to die there. When actually it was the Teselecta being shot and giving the appearance of his death that was the fixed point. Though he could've easily died in place of doing that. It's like the Gallifrey time lock. People believe time was rewritten but that always happened, they sealed Gallifrey in the stasis cubes and everyone believed the Time Lords and Daleks were locked in the Moment because they appeared to all vanish from blowing each other up and being sealed in pocket universe. Then The Doctors (Bar the 11th and possibly the 12th) all forgot this because of the timeline being shorted/out of sync. Thus causing The War Doctor, The 9th Doctor, The 10th Doctor and for a time the 11th Doctor to believe they had in fact used the moment as The War Doctor to end the Time War.

Amy the Consulting Key Ring
Amy the Consulting Key Ring

@The Mind Probe  Actually, history wasn't rewritten at all. "The Impossible Astronaut" was always a deception, and we know that because we see a post-Series 6 River in "The Time of Angels" (she is in jail for killing "a good man"), and then that same River appears at the end of this episode and explains to Amy that the Doctor's death was faked. So the Doctor met a future iteration of River who had assisted the Doctor in faking his death before he ever faked his death, making it a loop (because the Doctor would eventually have to fake his death in order to meet that River, and as we know, once you have interacted with your own future, it must happen). The fixed point was just misinterpreted by everyone in the story; it was always that the Teselecta (with the Doctor inside) would be shot by the lakeside.

Maryanne123
Maryanne123

Perhaps for Matt's era they should just do a poll to find which ones *don't* deserve 10/10.

This is a bravaura episode with eveything in the mix and Moff is the man to make it all look ss though it is precariously balanced and about to fall apart and damn but he goes and pulls it off. Moff just never lets you down with his finales as that big brain of his has been turning over all the pieces for months and then blam!

Pandorica is my fave finale 11/11 but this may just about be the next greatest but then Manhattan is awesome and Name of the Doctor is amazing and Time of the Doctor is just about perfect in the last 10 minutes. Shakes fist - damn you for making me choise.

DW_girl
DW_girl

Everyone has being saying this and it has given me a new perspective on the episode, but I still find it slightly confusing, and slow-paced.

DW_girl
DW_girl

I am still very confused. So The doctor met future River who had helped future doctor fake his death, and so he decided to fake his own death because river had told him he would fake his death? Is this right?

l0stdaydreamer
l0stdaydreamer

@sontaran17 I'm starting to think that the reason of some of those votes is to purposely lower the avarage score. I get not liking an episode but 1 is for a complete disaster on every single level: acting,score,script,concept,graphic, not *one* single good scene at all etc etc. I mean, seriously?!

RhonDOH
RhonDOH

@Amy the Consulting Commentator @RhonDOH@The Mind Probe Oh! If you're a paradox fan, I've got one for ya...


This statement is FALSE!    xD!!!


(don't think about it, don't think about it, don't think about it)


(Yes, gamers. I know I totally just ripped off GlaDOS. Still funny though, right?) ;)

Amy the Consulting Key Ring
Amy the Consulting Key Ring

@RhonDOH @Amy the Consulting Commentator @The Mind Probe  Paradoxes have always fascinated me (even as a kid; there's a reason why "Babylon Squared" was always my favorite episode of Babylon 5 when I was younger - it's the one with a stable time loop), so I love to analyze them and see how they work. The universe reboot from Series 5 was probably the most thought I ever had to put into working one out, but it actually turned out to be much simpler than I had expected. :P But thank you, nevertheless. <:)

sontaran17
sontaran17

@l0stdaydreamer @sontaran17  Of course they are- its just bitter people trying to show how bitter they can be! 1/10 is like looking at the wall for 2 hours- its a joke