Wednesday, May 4, 2011

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Amelia?

By Meghan B.

Now that the massively epic two-parter start to Doctor Who's sixth season is over, we can get down to brass tacks.

What in the blazes is happening to Amy Pond?

The spunky, sexy Mrs Pond has seemingly gone through everything. She lost her fiancé, forgot he existed, was shot by him, trapped in the Pandorica and then managed to bring her parents, Rory and the Doctor back all in time to dance at their wedding. The Girl Who Waited quickly became the best companion since Donna Noble (while the Doctor is always lamentably non-ginger, he seems to pick up quite a few redheads to ride in the TARDIS).

So why does season six Amy seem so... blah?

Spoilers after the jump, Sweetie...

 The big shock of the two-parter, apart from the Doctor's death, was the idea that Amy Pond may be pregnant. Possibly. Sorta. Ish. We aren't sure yet. It's very quantum. Schroedinger's fetus. You know how it goes, what with the timey and the whimey...

There is nothing I hate more in sci-fi (or any medium for that matter) than the trope of the random female pregnancy. It seems every so often a producer or writer realizes "hey, we have a female character! You know what we should do? Boom, pregnant!". I can even see the meetings in my head discussing it. There is something about each pregnancy that seems to compromise the actual female character, and Amy doesn't seem any different.

In season five, Amy had a fake pregnancy. It was the trick of an enemy aboard the TARDIS and Amy seemed rather miserable with her new home and ponytail'd husband and new bundle of joy on the way. Hopefully this will also turn out to be just a clever fake out by Stephen Moffat, but I'm not so sure and that has me nervous.

I know, Amy. I want to scream too.
The first two episodes of the new season fell short of my (rather high) expectations and one of the main reasons was Amy. While River and Rory gave outstanding performances (especially Rory on the dam), Amy seemed different that her season five self. She was still funny and snarky, but she lacked her usual spunk and sense of adventure. The death of the Doctor took the wind out of her sails and she never regained it. The daughter angle just made it worse.

I hope the normal Amy comes back soon, full of piss and vinegar, ready to give the Doctor a hard time instead of falling by the wayside. In the "Day of the Moon" episode, she spent a fair amount of time screaming, running and sobbing over the com-link. While being kidnapped is a grand companion tradition, it was almost cringe-worthy to listen to Amy cry.

Perhaps I'm making a mountain out of a molehill, but I can see a marked change in Amy this season and I'm not sure I like it. I want my brave Amy back. I have my worries. Oh, and Moffat? Get another shtick. The pregnancy thing is way overdone.
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  1. Maybe she's having the Doctor's baby? There is a little Time Lord running around...

  2. I think the change is bound to happen in a universe where the characters grow and develop. Eventually, I reckon Amy will pop out on top. Moffat has some dark sensibilities, but he's good at happy endings, too. He likes his fairy tales - and people are happy at the end of fairy tales.

  3. Knight_of_Pentacles here from io9: I'm somewhat in agreement with you about Amy being sidelined in these first two episodes. However, I'd hold on till we see her in Episode 3, "The Black Spot". From the previews we've seen so far, it looks like she's going to be involved in some serious swashbuckling! Pirate regalia and swordplay! Seems like she will have a significant role in saving The Doctor and Rory from something bad.

  4. So very much in agreement with your pregnancy sentiments! Whenever I hear a sci fi female utter "I'm pregnant" what I'm really hearing is a male writer saying "I ran out of ideas". Possible exception? Zoe explaining to Wash how a little space baby would mess up there lives. More Zoe, less Amelia.