Doctor Who News River Song

Published on January 12th, 2014 | by Christian Cawley

Moffat On River: Capaldi & Kingston “Hilarious together”

River Song, possibly the most divisive character in Doctor Who‘s 50 years, probably won’t be returning – unless Steven Moffat can mine more from a story that he has already told DWM is “probably done.”

While tempted, Doctor Who‘s big chief wonders if there is really anything new to matching Alex Kingston with new Time Lord Peter Capaldi.

I’m slightly tempted, because I imagine Peter Capaldi and Alex Kingston would be absolutely hilarious together…

She could certainly have met other Doctors. So there’s nothing stopping us… But is there anything new we can do? Or is the new thing that Peter Capaldi and Alex Kingston would be very sexy together? Is that enough? We’ve always had fun with the fact that they don’t look like a couple.

Peter Capaldi and Alex Kingston would look like a couple – that’s the thing.

Alex is just great fun to have on the show. It’s when you want to throw the Doctor a bit, because what River does so well is to make him a bit on the back foot and a bit flustered.

One thing is for sure: dropping the “Mrs Robinson” aspect of the relationship would help. What do you think?


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About the Author


A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.

16 Responses to Moffat On River: Capaldi & Kingston “Hilarious together”

  1. avatar vortexter says:

    River did say in ‘The Time of the Angels’ that she had pictures of all the Doctors which I assume means Capaldi as well as a kind of spotters guide.
    But to be fair, I don’t see what bringing her back would bring to the table. She gave a very effective goodbye to her husband in ‘The Name of the Doctor’ and I think she should be left alone now.
    Unless there is a Valeyard-like persona for her wandering around the Universe. It’s possible as she was really a Timelord. What would the dark side of a psychopath be like I wonder?…

  2. avatar John Shandler says:

    River needs to meet 12, the ‘older gentleman’ she mentioned in SITL/FOTD, in his ‘new suit’ and for him to give her the screwdriver needed for that plot strand to be resolved and to make some kind of sense. What’s the betting it is not?

    • avatar ivriniel says:

      River and Eleven already went to the Singing Towers.

  3. avatar DonnaM says:

    I’d not mind her coming back (and I’m not a great fan of the character), maybe for an episode in Series 9 rather than this coming year. It’d be fun to see River on the back foot for a change, dealing with a Doctor who knows more of their story than she can…

    Plus, of course, a Capaldi/Kingston double act is potential dynamite!

  4. avatar rickjlundeen says:

    There’s this fan theory going around that Tasha Lem IS River—a future version where River’s consciousness was uploaded into her from the Library. This is because of some of the lines that character spoke in Time of the Doctor, such as her driving the Tardis and the Doctor mentioning how she was fighting the inner psychopath all the time. Still, I’m really hoping that isn’t true—seems like a disservice to River— and just a case of Moffat repeating himself again, this time with another flirty woman involved with the Doctor from his past.

  5. avatar Ian says:

    “One thing is for sure: dropping the “Mrs Robinson” aspect of the relationship would help.”

    How very narrow-minded and ageist of you.

    • avatar Geoff says:

      I don’t think Christian was saying older women can’t be attractive or that they shouldn’t be free to date younger men but in the context of Doctor Who and Matts Doctor particularly I didn’t think it worked, it was a bit seedy.

    • It’s nothing to do with being narrow-minded, ageist or any other insult you care to pull out of your bag.

      There are many occasions in Matt’s era where the relationship simply didn’t work. It was unconvincing. At least some of this must be put down to Moffat having settled upon a plan back in 2008 only for his hoped-for leading man to decide that no, actually, he wasn’t going to stay on.

      Alex Kingston doesn’t look 50+. Matt Smith easily plays older than 30. He gives you the old man in the young man’s body. But there is something in their relationship that doesn’t click, that feels forced in a way that it was completely natural with Tennant and may be completely natural with Capaldi.

      And I can say “Mrs Robinson” because the Doctor does. Steven Moffat was obviously implicitly aware of the problem – he included it in the script of The Impossible Astronaut.

      Would you care to not be so unnecessarily reactionary in future, Ian?

      • avatar Bazz says:

        I thought it was the best doctor/companion relationship there has been. The Riversong episodes are all my favourites. Don’t know what you missed in the chemistry, Christian. I really hope they keep bringing her back. I was hoping for a spin off myself.

        • avatar DonnaM says:

          Just goes to show how different folks see different things. I didn’t get the chemistry between the two at all!

  6. avatar TimeChaser says:

    While the bulk of River’s story was tied in with Eleven, Amy and Rory, it would be nice to have her back from time to time to meet future Doctors. Although at some point I’d imagine they’d have to recast her, because, just like the old Doctors, Alex won’t remain a spring chicken forever.

  7. would much rather see the return of Polly, Zoe, Leela or Jo..

  8. avatar dr jon says:

    If river would return in a story I think it should tie up all the loose ends from other story’s,it has to be a final ending where it ends for all the right reasons. Its no good bringing river back to pop up and say hello sweetie you have regenerated again and have a mediocre story. River song deserves a good story,the same can be said for captain jack if he were to come back. Give them a good reason.

  9. avatar Al says:

    Part of me wouldn’t mind her coming back, but I agree that she had her goodbye in Name of the Doctor, which finally alllowed the show to catch up to her in the post-Library afterlife. Although I can understand people being upset at it being tossed away on a minisode, the fact remains that “Last Night” from the Series 6 box set covered off the “last visit before the Library” event (and we didn’t need to be told why the Doctor would have given her a special sonic). The only way I could see River coming back is if Capaldi’s Doctor has further encounters with the postmortem River in the computer. But even then, the whole point of her scenes in Name of the Doctor was the Doctor and River letting go of each other. I wouldn’t put it past Moffat to come up with some clever story (maybe Capaldi meets a still-alive River who doesn’t actually recognize him as the Doctor?) but to his credit he clearly has his doubts, so he won’t just throw her into the pot willy-nilly. Personally, I want to learn more about Tasha Lem and if she ends up being River Song 2.0 that could be cool, not to mention rather ironic given she’s technically a Dalek now.

  10. avatar hyncharas says:

    It’s hard to know whether to pair River with Capaldi’s Doctor, given fans really know nothing about the character; you can’t decide on something without a point of reference, and his is practically non-existent right now.

    I think she might be better off pairing with Clara when the Doctor is cut off from her, given the friendship between the two characters has steadily developed.

  11. avatar TonyS says:

    Steadily developed? They’ve met once!

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