Episode Review: Doctor Who:"The Pandorica Opens"

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A lost Van Gogh painting, Stonehenge, River Song and all the bad guys in the universe... sounds like a great start, huh?

The Doctor responds to another 'Hello, Sweetie" note to find the Pandorica, a prison for the most feared being in all the cosmos. The being would drop out of the sky and "that would be the end of your world"   The Doctor reasons that all the bad dudes in the universe would very, very much like to enlist the aid of the Pandorica's occupant to do all manner of mischief.  Apparently at one point in history, a band of different peoples united to put the cosmos' greatest threat in a box below Stonehenge.  What could inspire that level of fear?

The Doctor deliberately ignores some pretty huge coincidences, almost on purpose as he's busy.  He probably shouldn't have.  But, to be frank, as the Pandorica has summoned 10,000+ starships.... Dalek, Cybermen, Sontaran, Slitheen, Nestene, Sycorax, Atraxin, all arrive for the Pandorica.  Well, at least they have surprise on their side.  

Everything that ever hated the Doctor is coming.  But he has an unexpected ally in a recently dead companion.

This episode begins part of the payoff of the season's master plot, but in a rather unexpected way.  The cracks in the universe take second place to all those races that are affected and terrified by them.  In true Moffatt style,  the disparate threads from the last few seasons all pay into the Pandorica plot.  Everything from bits of Tennant's specials to Eccleston's first appearance as the Doctor mesh in a master plan that goes from the frantic quest for the ultimate Black Box, to the triumph of one of the Doctor's best speeches where he stills the very skies ("Remember every black day  I ever stopped you and then... and then do the smart thing... let somebody else try first"), to the worst defeat the Doctor has ever suffered.  And there are hints at questions that will last even into the next season.

We learn what we've suspected this year, that there is something very odd about Amy... her life makes no sense outside of the purpose that was set out for her by the.... but that would be telling.

This episode is an action packed rollercoaster from start to end, one of the best examples of "show, don't tell" exposition that I've ever seen.  

We'll have much more analysis after next week's episode- I mean, the Doctor has to get out of this somehow, right?