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Published on June 6th, 2011 | by Meredith Burdett

River’s Identity Still Open?

Warning – this article contains spoilers. If you haven’t yet seen A Good Man Goes to War, don’t click on the link!

TV Overmind has written about River Song’s identity and what it means for the future of Doctor Who. Secrets were revealed on Saturday night, big secrets that will keep us asking questions until later this year. But will we really have an answer? A full and frank answer as to what has been going on? It’s probably a “no” on that count.

River’s identity has been one of the most closely guarded secrets of television for the last three years and now that it’s out there, there are even more questions as a result of the reveal. Before you continue reading, spoilers ensue!

River is Amy and Rory’s daughter. Or is she? She’s told them that but as we all know, the lady is full of deception and double bluffs so it could all be something that she’s set up for other reasons.

We’re led to believe that the little girl from this year’s opening episodes was River in her younger years but why is that the case? River seems as surprised as anyone when talking to the Doctor about the little girl’s escape from the space suit and certainly doesn’t act like a woman in the know. She shoots at the space suited person after they kill the Doctor; cryptically saying “of course” as she misses her shots but does that mean that she knows what’s going on? Probably not, if it’s down to Steven Moffat.

When Doctor Who returns later this year, we’re probably going to have more answers then we thought possible, after all, A Good Man Goes to War is the first of a two parter and we all know that second parts give more answers then the first.

What we’ve been given by Moffat is a lifeline. Something to hold us over and ease the tension whilst we try to work out other answers. It’s not about “who is River Song” but more about “who did she kill and why?” and the beauty of this whole situation is that we will find out, but we’ll be intrigued until we do.

Besides which, there’s still a bigger question to be answered from this year’s run of Doctor Who. It’s not about why the little girl regenerated or how she did it. She may well have been a young River Song but then again, she may well not have been. The bigger question is:

Who did she regenerate into?


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About the Author


What happens when an eight year old kid watches the 1993 repeat run of Planet of the Daleks? He pretty much ends up here writing about the show that grabbed hold of him and never let go!

2 Responses to River’s Identity Still Open?

  1. avatar Laz says:

    Of course we can’t be sure that River is the little girls we saw in the first two episodes and regenerates.

    She probably is, but we can’t tell for sure, you’re right. I just think that River was acting in the first two episodes, pretending not to know what was going on with the kid and the “future” Doctor. But that’s just my opinion.

    (But I think there can be no doubts about her being Melody. It would make this episode quite weird if it turned out she’s not their daughter.)

  2. avatar 23skidoo says:

    @Laz I have to agree. I don’t think we can know yet whether River is the little girl (yes, we saw flashes in the episode, but that could be a bluff, or the Doctor making a mistaken assumption). But for them to make it out that River was lying to Amy and Rory – never mind the whole “Melody Pond” bit being so obvious – I think would be cheating the audience. The fun now is finding out how River came to refer to the Doctor as “my love” in the first place.

    And another question, now that Gangers have been introduced into the Whoniverse, did River really die in Forest of the Dead?

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