Alex Kingston last appeared as the beguiling River Song in Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead in 2008 â€“ in which she perished to save David Tennantâ€™s Doctor. Kingston reprises her role alongside Matt Smithâ€™s time traveller in a battle against the Weeping Angels, last seen in Blink in 2007.
In this current two-parter (The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone) River is decidedly not dead. Sheâ€™s a younger version of the one who previously met, and admitted to having intimate knowledge of, the Doctor. Time travel can be confusing, but it does give the Surrey-born actress something of a unique perspective on the whole Doctor Who phenomenon, having played opposite both Tennant and Smith.
When she first took on the part, she spoke of the Doctor being her lover but now sheâ€™s not so sure. â€œI was absolutely certain. Thatâ€™s what Iâ€™d assumed. But when I was reading The Time of Angels, I suddenly thought, â€œMy God, sheâ€™s his mother!â€™ â€While Kingston, 47, and Tennant, 39, couldnâ€™t have pulled that off, Smith is 20 years her junior. So is that how sheâ€™s playing it this time? A mother/son relationship?
â€œWell, no, the flirtation between them still indicates they have a much more intimate relationship further down the line â€“ and I sort of hope it is that. I hope theyâ€™re married,â€ she laughs, â€œOtherwise, if sheâ€™s his mother, the flirtation isnâ€™t quite appropriate!”
The new Radio Times is out now.