So many episodes recently have been so fucking complicated that you need to take notes to work out what's going on, and I really can't be bothered. I don't do plot; I do relationships and character and emotion, and Rusty had that nailed. Steven likes to be more complicated and it doesn't really work for me. Tonight's episode was deep, and very interesting, but one of the things I liked most about it was that you could watch it and enjoy it for itself.
So. My main reaction tonight was that there were some very dark themes going on - eugenics, ethnic cleansing and euthanasia just for starters - along with some huge issues of trust. Rory totally fell for ganger!Jennifer, Amy was misled by ganger!Doctor and we were all in the dark about ganger!Amy. (And was it just me, or did Rory really fall for Jennifer? There seemed to be more going on there than Rory just being a decent chap. And he totally is a decent chap - I love him more with each episode. He should have his own series, maybe where Rose, Martha and Donna all fall in love with him.)
Then there was the whole trust thing, and the nature of identity, and is self-knowledge actually accurate. Are we really who we think we are, etc. And the heap of half-melted gangers looked like something out of Belsen or Srebrenica to me, although I guess that will have gone over the heads of most kids.
The Doctor’s relationship with his own ganger, though, was a total revelation. They were so in love. Total trust, both ways; finishing each other’s sentences; agreeing to work together to test Amy. That whole bit with the two of them really emphasised how, despite the constant parade of adoring companions, the Doctor really is forever the lonely angel.
All in all I thought it was a very well-done episode and I enjoyed it quite a lot. Congratulations to Matthew Graham - quite a sophisticated piece of work, I think. My only criticism would be that the "messages" - the deep thoughts for us to ponder over - were layered so thickly that they overpowered the story.