Peter Capaldi as the Doctor: S9 E13 The Husbands of River Song

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Peter Capaldi as the Doctor: S9 E13 The Husbands of River Song

Sum­mary: Will River Song’s attempts to get ahead be her downfall.

Plot: River Song has need of a Doc­tor a sur­geon to be pre­cise to oper­ate on his hus­band to extract a price­less dia­mond what she gets is a Doc­tor who she doesn’t rec­og­nize and a head­less mur­der­ous king out to kill her. Will she and her com­pan­ion that she doesn’t rec­og­nize man­age to get away or will they be sur­rounded by some of the most mur­der­ous folk in the uni­verse, or both?
— — — — — — — — — — — –

Writ­ing: Mof­fat loves him­self a River Song story and all of the best of his magic comes into play. This episode keeps mov­ing at a blis­ter­ing pace and never stops the viewer from smil­ing, except for two moment which are so sen­ti­men­tal that only the most heart­less could fail to be moved. Infi­nitely rewatchable.

Act­ing: If the mak­ers had real­ized that Capaldi & Kingston had his much chem­istry then Mof­fat might have changed the end­ing to ensure they would be paired up again. The sup­port­ing comic roles are all played well, spe­cial men­tion to Matt Lucas (Nardo) Rowan Polon­ski (Flem­ing) and Greg Davies (King Hydroflax)

Mem­o­rable Moments: Doc­tor Song to you, Lying down peo­ple, Need a mop, Is this what you’re like, Why is every­thing sexy now? He’s never noticed before, avoid deck seven, shouldn’t do that in a restau­rant, hello sweetie, spouse list, last christ­mas, 24 years.

Doc­tor Who Flash­backs: The Diary ref­er­ences of course, The library, Steal­ing a TARDIS (an unearthly child) Stor­age in the roundels (Castrovalva)

Odd­i­ties: You would think that if River Song was going to hire a sur­geon she would know what he looks like While it a given that this is the only Capaldi/​Kingston pair up as the nights are 24 years where they are doesn’t that leave plenty of time for Trou­ble to come look­ing for them there?

Pet Peeves: The prov­able mur­der of “mul­ti­ple inno­cent life forms” is required to get on board that ship, so how is River there or do I want to know?


Great Quote(s)

Doc­tor: You’re talk­ing about mur­der­ing some­one.
River Song: No, I’m not. I’m actu­ally mur­der­ing some­one

***************************************************

River Song: It’s a time machine. I can take it, do what­ever I want for as long as I like and pop it back a sec­ond later. He’ll never know it was gone.
Doc­tor: Yes, he will.
River Song: How?
Doc­tor: He’ll just know.
River Song: Well, he’s never noticed before.

**********************************************

Doc­tor: You’re doing it wrong.
River Song: I am cer­tainly not.
Doc­tor: Not those levers.
River Song: Hush.
Doc­tor: You prob­a­bly want to press that but­ton.
River Song: Why? That evac­u­ates the waste tank on deck seven.
Doc­tor: Does it?
River Song: What is wrong with you?
Doc­tor: Bet­ter avoid deck seven then.

**********************************

River Song: I don’t sup­pose you could fetch that over for me, could you?

************************

River Song: When you love the Doc­tor, it’s like lov­ing the stars them­selves. You don’t expect a sun­set to admire you back. And if I hap­pen to find myself in dan­ger, let me tell you, the Doc­tor is not stu­pid enough, or sen­ti­men­tal enough, and he is cer­tainly not in love enough to find him­self stand­ing in it with me!
(She meets the Doctor’s eyes. He smiles and the penny finally drops for her. Long pause.)
Doc­tor: [as he sees dawn sud­denly strike on mar­ble head] Hello, sweetie.

*******

Doc­tor: So, King Hydroflax?
River Song: Oh, how many times? I mar­ried the dia­mond.
Doc­tor: So you say.
River Song: Eliz­a­beth the First.
Doc­tor: Ramone.
River Song: Mar­i­lyn Mon­roe.
Doc­tor: Stephen Fry.
River Song: Cleopa­tra!
Doc­tor: Same thing.

********

River Song: How long is a night on Dar­il­lium?
Doc­tor: Twenty four years.
River Song: I hate you.
Doc­tor: No, you don’t.


Final Ver­dict: 5 stars If I had more starts to give this would get it

Rank­ing of Sea­son: 1st of 13 Not only was this one of the fun­ni­est episodes but it was a wel­come relief after the heavy pre­vi­ous episodes despite a slightly heavy end­ing. Reviews else­where might dis­agree but I don’t watch Doc­tor Who for high tragic drama, that’s not what it’s for and never has been. This is exactly that the series is meant to be, at least to me.

1st. The Hus­bands of River Song
2nd. The Girl who Died
3rd. The Witch’s Famil­iar
4th Hell Bent
5th. Face the Raven
6th Heaven Sent
7th. The Magician’s Appren­tice
8th. The Woman who lived
9th. Before the Flood
10th. Under the Lake
11th The Zygon Inver­sion
12th. The Zygon Inva­sion
13th Sleep no more

Top 10 Rank­ing in the Capaldi Era: 1st With­out a doubt my Favorite Capaldi episode, in con­tention for best in the revised series and eas­ily one of my top 10 since I dis­cov­ered the series in 1976 & started watch­ing reg­u­larly in 1981.

1st The Hus­bands of River Song
2nd. Last Christ­mas
3rd. The Care­taker
4th. The Girl who Died
5th. The Witch’s Famil­iar
6th. Hell Bent
7th. Mummy on the Ori­ent Express
8th. Face the Raven
9th. Into the Dalek
10th. Dark Water

Summary: Will River Song’s attempts to get ahead be her downfall.

Plot: River Song has need of a Doctor a surgeon to be precise to operate on his husband to extract a priceless diamond what she gets is a Doctor who she doesn’t recognize and a headless murderous king out to kill her. Will she and her companion that she doesn’t recognize manage to get away or will they be surrounded by some of the most murderous folk in the universe, or both?
———————————–

Writing: Moffat loves himself a River Song story and all of the best of his magic comes into play. This episode keeps moving at a blistering pace and never stops the viewer from smiling, except for two moment which are so sentimental that only the most heartless could fail to be moved. Infinitely rewatchable.

Acting: If the makers had realized that Capaldi & Kingston had his much chemistry then Moffat might have changed the ending to ensure they would be paired up again. The supporting comic roles are all played well, special mention to Matt Lucas (Nardo) Rowan Polonski (Fleming) and Greg Davies (King Hydroflax)

Memorable Moments:  Doctor Song to you, Lying down people, Need a mop, Is this what you’re like, Why is everything sexy now? He’s never noticed before, avoid deck seven, shouldn’t do that in a restaurant, hello sweetie, spouse list, last christmas, 24 years.

Doctor Who Flashbacks: The Diary references of course, The library, Stealing a TARDIS (an unearthly child) Storage in the roundels (Castrovalva)

Oddities: You would think that if River Song was going to hire a surgeon she would know what he looks like While it a given that this is the only Capaldi/Kingston pair up as the nights are 24 years where they are doesn’t that leave plenty of time for Trouble to come looking for them there?

Pet Peeves: The provable murder of “multiple innocent life forms” is required to get on board that ship, so how is River there or do I want to know?


Great Quote(s)

Doctor: You’re talking about murdering someone.
River Song: No, I’m not. I’m actually murdering someone

***************************************************

River Song: It’s a time machine. I can take it, do whatever I want for as long as I like and pop it back a second later. He’ll never know it was gone.
Doctor: Yes, he will.
River Song: How?
Doctor: He’ll just know.
River Song: Well, he’s never noticed before.

**********************************************

Doctor: You’re doing it wrong.
River Song: I am certainly not.
Doctor: Not those levers.
River Song: Hush.
Doctor: You probably want to press that button.
River Song: Why? That evacuates the waste tank on deck seven.
Doctor: Does it?
River Song: What is wrong with you?
Doctor: Better avoid deck seven then.

**********************************

River Song: I don’t suppose you could fetch that over for me, could you?

************************

River Song: When you love the Doctor, it’s like loving the stars themselves. You don’t expect a sunset to admire you back. And if I happen to find myself in danger, let me tell you, the Doctor is not stupid enough, or sentimental enough, and he is certainly not in love enough to find himself standing in it with me!
(She meets the Doctor’s eyes. He smiles and the penny finally drops for her. Long pause.)
Doctor: [as he sees dawn suddenly strike on marble head] Hello, sweetie.

*******

Doctor: So, King Hydroflax?
River Song: Oh, how many times? I married the diamond.
Doctor: So you say.
River Song: Elizabeth the First.
Doctor: Ramone.
River Song: Marilyn Monroe.
Doctor: Stephen Fry.
River Song: Cleopatra!
Doctor: Same thing.

********

River Song: How long is a night on Darillium?
Doctor: Twenty four years.
River Song: I hate you.
Doctor: No, you don’t.


Final Verdict: 5 stars If I had more starts to give this would get it

Ranking of Season: 1st of 13 Not only was this one of the funniest episodes but it was a welcome relief after the heavy previous episodes despite a slightly heavy ending. Reviews elsewhere might disagree but I don’t watch Doctor Who for high tragic drama, that’s not what it’s for and never has been. This is exactly that the series is meant to be, at least to me.

1st. The Husbands of River Song
2nd. The Girl who Died
3rd. The Witch’s Familiar
4th Hell Bent
5th. Face the Raven
6th Heaven Sent
7th. The Magician’s Apprentice
8th. The Woman who lived
9th. Before the Flood
10th. Under the Lake
11th The Zygon Inversion
12th. The Zygon Invasion
13th Sleep no more

Top 10 Ranking in the Capaldi Era: 1st Without a doubt my Favorite Capaldi episode, in contention for best in the revised series and easily one of my top 10 since I discovered the series in 1976 & started watching regularly in 1981.

1st The Husbands of River Song
2nd. Last Christmas
3rd. The Caretaker
4th. The Girl who Died
5th. The Witch’s Familiar
6th. Hell Bent
7th. Mummy on the Orient Express
8th. Face the Raven
9th. Into the Dalek
10th. Dark Water