I didn't liveblog this episode because I watched it at five in the morning.
I so want my reaction to be, "Oh, Matthew!", but I know it should actually be, "Oh, Steven!" since that last bit was dictated from high. However, I can "OH, MATTHEW! a little bit, because that pull quote from the Den of Geeks I posted gleefully, the one where Matt says he couldn't come to the end of an episode and be all 'guess what? Amy's a cyberman!' --- was him being a tricksy bastard --- because that's essentially what he did
do. Granted, it was more logical and rational, but, still, the basic tenet remained. And therefore it is clear that my boy has learnt nothing. HILARIOUS! ♥ Oh, Matthew and his obsession with rug-pulling will never not amuse the crap out of me.
Almost-failures of the episode for me:
I feel like Ganger!Jen's transformation was far too sudden and therefore it didn't resonate with me. In some ways, this was a limitation of time and plot, so I understand it. I just kind of feel like there should have been more hints early on that Jen was predisposed to being this way, since it was clear from the other Gangers that they were those same people they were avatars for, only made of the Flesh. If that wasn't the case you'd be getting into a highly muddled territory. I think it was clear from Ganger!Cleaves' reaction, though, that Ganger!Jen had suffered a mental breakdown. (Maaaaybe if Jen had been in love with Buzzer, and seeing him die sent her over? Maybe? But then why would Ganger!Jen kill him at the end? Hey, maybe she didn't?)
I am guessing the Doctors must have switched shoes when they were behind the console, because they had no other time to do so. Also, we know it had to have been before the Doctor freaked Amy out, because he knew about her witnessing his death at the end. I think I would have liked the shoe-changing stated more explicitly, since it took me ages to realise it must have happened then. (I LOVED that as a plot-point, though. And I suspected it, so when my suspicions were confirmed I was pretty pleased.)
The fact that Rory never had the opportunity to say that he understood the Gangers because he has memories of once being made of fantastic plastic was a terrible waste, I think. It gave his character a deep motivation that made a lot more sense than, 'I wanna be seen as A Man.' (If Rory really felt that way he wouldn't love Amy the way he does. He would complain more. I just don't believe it from him, DW crew, sorry.) (However, the scene where Rory brought out 'the big guns' was adorable.)
I understand that Ganger!Amy wasn't exactly a separate entity like the other Gangers --- more that Amy's consciousness was transferred to a Flesh body (as in the beginning, with the harnesses), but the coldness of the Doctor at the end there was absolutely chilling. Meant to be, maybe, but boy did it work.
Things that were not failures for me:
EVERYTHING ELSE. Gosh, it was so tense, and atmospheric, and remained funny even though it was also heartbreaking and terrifying, and really, I continue to be SO PROUD of my boy, because this was brilliant television. Most of my problems with the episode stem from Steven related stuff, not Matthew.
His dialogue was amazing. His two Doctors interacting was amazing. I can only imagine what a headache blocking that as a writer would have been. (Blocking it as a Director, though? Matthew is SUCH a pain in the neck, hahahaha!)
It all made sense, even though it had a TWIST.
He didn't shy away from saying how really fucking awful humans had been to the Flesh and Gangers, and didn't end with, "but none of that matters, because the heroes survived." No, he ended with a peaceful call-to-arms, with action being taken to stop it from continuing, and I respect him so, so much for that. As he had the Doctor say, "Happy Endings". Well, sort of.
Even Buzzer dying again made me happy, because I am a terrible, horrible person. (Three deaths! Three! Marsh must be thrilled, even though one was off screen.)
In the end? That was awesome. Clever and emotionally engaging and thinky-thought-provoking and, importantly, NOT A LET-DOWN AT ALL. Go Matthew! Go and be awesome always!