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Professor River Song: Archaeologist!


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#1

meemalee

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Posted Jun 8, 2008 @ 4:26 AM

Thought we should have a thread to show the River Love or Hate or just to speculate!

Personally I loved River - Bristow took the words right out of my mouth (from the episode thread):

It was wonderful to see the Doctor having a relationship with an equal. Instead of finding River Song to be shrill, I liked that she was so capable and seemed to be the human equivalent to the Doctor. An adventurer and scientist, solving great mysteries on other worlds, etc. Nice pairing! I am sad that The Doctor is "older" when he meets River Song so it may be ages before they meet again. This may have been the highpoint of the season.

Let the debate commence!

Edited by meemalee, Jun 8, 2008 @ 3:15 PM.

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#2

aliengrace

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Posted Jun 8, 2008 @ 11:30 PM

*rolls eyes at whichever fraidy cat offsite called River Song "shrill"*

Y'know, I read someone's opinion on LJ that RS was more of a idea of what a strong woman should be, rather than actually one. I'm still chewing that one over. Certainly I got irritated with her telling the mogul guy that he was ugly and to keep his helmet on, and then calling Ten "pretty boy", I felt it was making her into a mirror of sexist guys, like some guys think a strong woman must be, in order to justify their own sexism.
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#3

nanillac

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Posted Jun 11, 2008 @ 6:14 AM

I quite like the idea of River Song - or at least the cerebral part of me does. I mean, if you're going to have The Last of the Time Lords fall in love, it makes sense for it to be with a confident, daring intellectual woman of a certain age and on a wonky timeline.

::The bad bad shipper in me is chanting ≈Doctor + Rose 4 Eva≈ but I can mostly keep her controlled with fanfic and alcohol::

However, the reality of River Song just didn't quite work for me. Her hints about her supposed history/future with the Doctor were much more condescending than they were tantalizing and I didn't really see any particular "specialness" that might attract the him to her -- in fact, more often than not he (and Donna) seemed to find her extremely offputting, never obviously warming to her.

Argh, can't put my finger on it - just viscerally, I dunnah like her.
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#4

mynamehere

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Posted Jun 11, 2008 @ 7:39 AM

nanillac, I completely agree with you. I love the idea of help from a future companion/love interest, but something about it here just seemed off. I think it's a case of "all telling, no showing," where River's whole purpose is to talk about this future relationship. I suppose if the character was developed more, or there was actual chemistry between the two, I would have accepted it more.


Here's to hoping that if we revisit River again, we get a better sense of who she is. Perhaps the next actor to play the Doctor will have better chemistry with Kingston than Tennant did.
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#5

Ginn

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Posted Jun 12, 2008 @ 12:25 AM

River wasn't as infuriatingly "all tell, no show" as Reinette, but some of that overhyped quality was there. But I did love her a bit once she told Ten that she didn't want one line of their history together erased- it was one of the few really fantastic lines in the library two-parter, which is kind of shocking for something written by Moffat.
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#6

JillieRose

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Posted Jun 15, 2008 @ 12:49 PM

Certainly I got irritated with her telling the mogul guy that he was ugly and to keep his helmet on, and then calling Ten "pretty boy", I felt it was making her into a mirror of sexist guys, like some guys think a strong woman must be, in order to justify their own sexism.


Ditto. Ugh.

River wasn't as infuriatingly "all tell, no show" as Reinette, but some of that overhyped quality was there. But I did love her a bit once she told Ten that she didn't want one line of their history together erased- it was one of the few really fantastic lines in the library two-parter, which is kind of shocking for something written by Moffat.


And again, ditto. I LOVED The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances and I LOVED Blink. But viscerally I hated TGitF. It had so much good stuff but I wanted to slap Reinette and the Doctor and Steven Moffat (for the plotholes)

The bad bad shipper in me is chanting ≈Doctor + Rose 4 Eva≈ but I can mostly keep her controlled with fanfic and alcohol


I find chocolate cake helps.

However, the reality of River Song just didn't quite work for me. Her hints about her supposed history/future with the Doctor were much more condescending than they were tantalizing and I didn't really see any particular "specialness" that might attract the him to her -- in fact, more often than not he (and Donna) seemed to find her extremely offputting, never obviously warming to her.

Argh, can't put my finger on it - just viscerally, I dunnah like her.


She...ANNOYED me in a way I can't describe, but 'condescending' works for most of it! There were some moments which were just perfect ("You said my name" being one) but...oh dear. She improved in the second episode but in the first one I wished to slap her hard.
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#7

JosetteDupres

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Posted Jun 17, 2008 @ 6:01 AM

It's occurred to me that River Song may not be a future love interest/wife. There are a few other relationships that could make the Doctor reveal his name. One would be to his child. I think there is a small possibility that River Song is actually an aged Genny. Even the different look could be attributed to Genny being the Doctor's Daughter. Even though she didn't regenerate, it didn't mean she couldn't regenerate. And, the Doctor might be very tempted to keep his child alive (especially because she has the genetic potential to become a Timelord. Plus, it would explain the jumping into and out of her life. The Doctor seems like the type to keep companions close, until they leave and then he doesn't seek them out again. But a daughter, that is a relationship where The Doctor would have reason to keep coming back but not necessarily make her a companion.
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#8

Ginn

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Posted Jun 17, 2008 @ 9:55 PM

But who calls their dad "sweetie"?
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#9

aliengrace

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Posted Jun 18, 2008 @ 1:26 AM

Or call him "pretty boy" straight after telling someone else she doesn't fancy them? (Although it would be interesting if the relationship was other than a lover one.) Also, I reckon that the Doctor likes companions around, but he doesn't like commitment one little bit. So if he was going to have something full on with someone where he could be emotionally vulnerable (as he arguably wasn't with Rose, he was always in control of the situation), he'd probably prefer it to be more "paths crossing and recrossing"?
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#10

Ginn

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Posted Jun 18, 2008 @ 10:47 AM

Maybe she preferred it that way too- she had a career, after all, and her own life to live.
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#11

aliengrace

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Posted Jun 19, 2008 @ 4:46 AM

I definitely get the impression from her that it'd be mutual - she's no young Rose dreaming of a mortgage and certainty with this flightiest of men. That's one of the few reasons I could believe of what I've seen of her so far that she and the Doctor would wanna do a big lover thang together. Nice to see a woman like that (until the Earth!Mother transformation), I know so many women like that IRL, not so many on telly.

Edited by aliengrace, Jun 19, 2008 @ 4:51 AM.

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#12

marshmellow

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Posted Jun 22, 2008 @ 8:24 AM

However, the reality of River Song just didn't quite work for me. Her hints about her supposed history/future with the Doctor were much more condescending than they were tantalizing and I didn't really see any particular "specialness" that might attract the him to her -- in fact, more often than not he (and Donna) seemed to find her extremely offputting, never obviously warming to her.

I agree. There was something infuriatingly annoying about her person and I cannot describe it. The thought of seeing her again also makes me hate her more! I would love it if she ends up not being the Doctors tru wuv but actually someone else entirely, albeit someone close to him.

I don't know the actress who played River, but I didn't like her one bit. She overacted, not easy on the eyes [/shallow] and was quite annoying in no endearing sense, the latter of which is what I felt like they were aiming for.
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#13

JillieRose

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Posted Jun 24, 2008 @ 5:39 AM

Yeeessss...I do wonder, you know. I don't know, maybe it's my projection onto him, but this Doctor doesn't really seem very...flingy. Not the settling down kind either, but...

My interpretation of the Ten/Rose chumminess was that he was desperately hanging on to someone else who was 'other': you can't get much more other than the Big Bad Wolf, after all. And that he was terrified of losing that because he would be all alone again, last of his kind. Rose, whatever else she was, was his equal for a moment in time, and he held onto that with frightening tenacity, even though he didn't want to settle.

River...I hope she's not a love interest, though I think she is. She icks me out too much and annoys me more than Mme du Pompadour. Which is quite a feat.

I would love it if she ends up not being the Doctors tru wuv


Heehee. Exactly.
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#14

ExJetCityWoman

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Posted Jun 25, 2008 @ 8:04 PM

It's occurred to me that River Song may not be a future love interest/wife. There are a few other relationships that could make the Doctor reveal his name. One would be to his child. I think there is a small possibility that River Song is actually an aged Genny. Even the different look could be attributed to Genny being the Doctor's Daughter.

But who calls their dad "sweetie"?

Or call him "pretty boy" straight after telling someone else she doesn't fancy them?

Good theory, JosetteDupres, and makes sense, but I have to agree with ginn and aliengrace
Why? Their final scene:
- "...Handcuffs?"
- "Spoilers!" (a wink & a nod)
Just too pervy to be his daughter and not a lover, I think.

I definitely get the impression from her that it'd be mutual - she's no young Rose dreaming of a mortgage and certainty with this flightiest of men. That's one of the few reasons I could believe of what I've seen of her so far that she and the Doctor would wanna do a big lover thang together. Nice to see a woman like that (until the Earth!Mother transformation), I know so many women like that IRL, not so many on telly.

WORD, aliengrace, as this is one of the reasons I liked her -- we see so few female characters with this trait, that don't go over the top or descend into stereotypes. Yes, the first ep. annoyed with the really sexist (and grating) "I don't fancy you" and "Pretty boy" lines; however, though I love this series, and realize that we're dealing in non-reality, it's nice to have a grownup, sexually-aware, holding-her-own, woman-over-40 around, who is not necessarily a mum, or is protecting Rose (or Donna), or is evil, has a career, and does her own thing (and saves the situation a few times with her own square gun/ sonic/ whatever.) And clearly chooses to meet the Doc, now and again, for some fun & happy times. Bravo!

And to fluster the Doc? Not such a bad thing. Loved the Doc and Rose, but very cool to see the all-knowing shoe on the other foot for a change, though at times she's a bit heavy-handed with the smugness. For me the final scene, between the choosing-to-die-for-4022-other-lives, and reassuring him it would be okay, all in 1 1/2 minutes, redeemed River. THAT is where I think (ironically) Kingston and Tennent showed the most chemistry...well, that and the name revelation scene, but I'll give that one mostly to DT's acting/facial skills. Some really good work from both. (I must admit, in the interest of full disclosure...at the end? Tears? Yup.) Plus, loved her dry, throwaway line, "What? I don't get a career?"

I like kids, but HATED that from what we saw, she was made into an EarthMother, though as a character she seemed fine with her "life/death changes." (One wonders for how long... Make peace when confronted by the inevitable...?)
But...The hell?
What gives, Moffat? And what is it with many male writers?
She gets to be a Mom to three kids in "heaven?" Interesting. Gee. Wow. That's it?
And perhaps that's her evolution? Mom/Madonna-complex, anyone?

Let's hope, if she really does get to experience fiction (or biographies), she gets to "experience" some of the fun guys, in all the interesting books, in The Library! (Like Casanova? -- heh)

Edited by ExJetCityWoman, Jun 25, 2008 @ 8:10 PM.

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#15

modelno13

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Posted Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:26 PM

I just wondered if all her callbacks to Capt. Jack were in there to mess with us, or is there a point? I counted:
  • The gun
  • The handcuffs
  • A mention of going to the end of the universe together
  • The overall attitude, including the flirtiness and the ability to stand up to the Doctor
ETA: did I miss anything?

Edited by modelno13, Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:26 PM.

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#16

ExJetCityWoman

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Posted Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:40 PM

Ohhhhh, GOOD one, modelno13 re: Capt. Jack!
Hadn't thought of that. Don't think so, but.....
And there was also the fact that they were in the 51st Century, again possibly harkening back to Jack, so.....
Hmmmm........
But then again, while Jack is flirty, he doesn't so much stand up to the Doc., as honors him, right?
Still, you've got me thinking....

Edited by ExJetCityWoman, Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:40 PM.

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#17

modelno13

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Posted Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:42 PM

I was thinking at first it might be Jack himself, but ... if a time agent-turned-immortal somehow ended up a single father, wouldn't his daughter likely turn out much like River Song?

That's a good point about Jack honoring the Doctor. He certainly does -- but he certainly called him on it after the Doctor abandoned him. IMO it's possible to do both.

Edited by modelno13, Jun 27, 2008 @ 11:47 PM.

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#18

ExJetCityWoman

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Posted Jun 28, 2008 @ 1:01 AM

NICE one! River as JACK's daughter. Hmmmm.....
Similar cheeky, carefree, yet-can-turn-serious vibes.

But was it Russel or Moffat who said in a Confidential (I watched on-line) that they liked the idea of the square gun really being Jack's, as he had left it on the Tradis - so River could have nicked it off of the Tradis. BUT, what if it was really Dad's/Jack's and she nicked it off of him? OR if he gave it to her?
I LIKE it! Cool idea.
;-)
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#19

Bruinsfan

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Posted Jun 28, 2008 @ 4:40 PM

I don't know, I think we've been shown that Jack is hung up on the Doctor enough to enter Great Love of His Life territory. Making River his daughter, with similar feelings toward the Doctor, strikes me as too skeevy even if the feelings aren't requited toward either of them.
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#20

Adri

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Posted Jun 29, 2008 @ 6:33 AM

Alex Kingston! Thank you! It was making me crazy that she seemed so familiar and I couldn't remember her name or place where else I had seen her.

I do think River was probably one of the doctor's great loves and not a daughter. Just something about the way she looked at him and said he wasn't *her doctor*, not yet. I liked the "What, I don't get a career" line and was really impressed at how much Tenant conveyed just by the look on his face when she whispered his name to him but the exchange I really loved was her exasperated "You're so much work young!" and his indignantion. It was a refreshing change of pace, for me, to see the Doctor not be the only one who knows all and figures everything out on his own but to have someone who can get right in there beside him to do the hard and dangerous stuff and also stand toe to toe with him.
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#21

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Posted Jun 30, 2008 @ 5:02 PM

I don't see River as Jack's daughter. Even for the 51st century that's a little skeevy. However, I can easily see her as the mother of Jenny, the Doctor's child.
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#22

Ella Ollivander

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Posted Jun 30, 2008 @ 6:28 PM

You mean as a sort of mother-figure for Jenny? Since Jenny was a product of the magical cloning machine that the Doctor had his hand shoved into.

But yeah, the Doctor, River Song, and Jenny would make an interesting family unit of sorts, if a decidedly unconventional one.
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#23

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Posted Jun 30, 2008 @ 8:05 PM

You mean as a sort of mother-figure for Jenny? Since Jenny was a product of the magical cloning machine that the Doctor had his hand shoved into.


Actually, I meant as Jenny's real mother, because I never saw the complete episode. With the news of the magic cloning thingy, I revise my statement that I think that River Song was/is/will be the mother of the Doctor's real child.
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#24

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Posted Jul 9, 2008 @ 5:43 PM

think that River Song was/is/will be the mother of the Doctor's real child.


johntfs, I assume you mean another of the Doctor's children? Not the one(s) he referred to as having in "The Doctor's Daughter." Since, the Doctor already had child(ren)/grandchild(ren) by the time of his first incarnation.

It will be interesting to see what big plan Moffat has in mind for River. I find all the speculations so far quite intriguing.
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#25

DonaNobisDoctor

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Posted Aug 2, 2008 @ 11:00 PM

I'm not sure exactly what it is, but I don't care for River Song. I find a weird combination of traits I don't care for... she behaves as if she's cooler than everyone else because she's doing the Doc. And even though she teases him, flirts with him, etc, she seems to be just a Martha who got some... She even describes him as someone who sends armies screaming the other direction. I'm just not sure about her.
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#26

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Posted Oct 16, 2008 @ 11:31 PM

What turned me off of River Song was her smugness. It's like the Doctor was a prize she won. Right away, she tried to seperate him from the group and form a clique of two. I mean, she could have simply said: "I know it's weird but I'm someone you're going to meet some time in the future (obviously before your next regeneration since I recognized you). I still need your help," and left it at that. Instead she continuously flirted and dropped innuendo about their relationship taking time away from dealing with the matter at hand. I was glad Donna got irritated with her.

I know I was supposed to find her awsome but all I could think was "...and?". That she was designed to seem like she's the Doctor's type, I could see that design and so she came across less like a person than an assembly of qualities the Doctor is supposed to find irresistable. I got enough of that with Rose and Reinette, thank you.
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#27

darkestboy

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Posted Oct 17, 2008 @ 4:59 AM

I actually didn't mind River (mainly because AK can sell it good) but I don't have a burning desire to see her again.

Recently Moffatt said that her relationship with The Doctor was more complicated than a wife.
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#28

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Posted Oct 17, 2008 @ 10:13 AM

I saw that too... It's in RTD's new book, unless I'm confusing my sources (entirely possible this morning).

Frankly, that hint is one of the few things that does make me want to see her again. I like fadooski's idea that she could have been more straight with him once she realized he hadn't met her yet -- I think a simple refusal to answer further questions would have been more mysterious and intriguing than her smug flirtation.
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#29

Cygnia

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Posted Oct 17, 2008 @ 10:46 AM

If she is brought back, I'd prefer it more in one of the novels or comic books rather than back on the screen.
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#30

O2Sean

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Posted Oct 17, 2008 @ 9:24 PM

The only way I would want to see her again is if the appearance wasn't written by Steven Moffat. I thought the writing for her and Miss Evangelista was extremely condescending and offputting, probably some of the worst writing I've seen for female characters in the Doctor Who revival.
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