River Song herself Alex Kingston has spoken of trauma of ‘watching her parents die’ in this Saturday’s climactic episode The Angels Take Manhattan.
With Amy and Rory’s story coming to an end, River finds herself observing what is set to be a heart-breaking farewell for both her and the Doctor.
Speaking to The Daily Beast on the eve of the Upstairs, Downstairs‘ return to PBS’ Masterpiece on 7th October, Kingston commented:
River is basically seeing her parents die, seeing them go. God, Steven could have written a whole episode just about that, about the complexities and psychology of that, but he didn’t. It is about Amy saying goodbye to the Doctor… and [River] stays much more in the background. But, oh my gosh, I found it hard. I didn’t think I would, just observing them. It was quite emotional.
With characters departing; is this likely to be the last time that we see River Song too? Everybody…Spoilers…
Whether River’s journey will come full-circle, I don’t know. How many more episodes or seasons River has, I don’t know that either, but the way that Steven writes, he lays out threads that can be picked up way down the line. For her just to not reappear would be a little strange.
Reflecting on the impact of River Song; what has been most meaningful to Kingston has been how younger viewers of Doctor Who have embraced her character:
They don’t look at me or at the character or River Song and say, ‘Well, she shouldn’t be on this show because this show is about young people. That’s fabulous and I wish there would be more writers daring to write roles that are in a sense ageless.
For more on Upstairs, Downstairs, Kingston’s career and the Doctor’s dermatologist head over to The Daily Beast.