Analysing The Ponds #1: Amy, Darling

After reading many LJ entries full of very good meta, and stumbling across this fabulous thread on Gallifrey Base, I thought I’d try my hand at my own analysis!

As you could’ve very easily guessed just from a glance at this journal, most of it will be centered on the Ponds- Amy and Rory, and sometimes River. Today’s Amy’s turn. So this is a chaotic and haphazard look at Amy’s personality, her role in the story, and the things she’s associated with. Okay? Okay! It does contain a minor spoiler for Series Seven, by the way.

Tomorrow (weather permitting) is A Tour Around The Pond Properties, looking at the set design of the Ponds’ bedrooms and houses…

All Children Grow Up

Here we have Amy floating in the sky, safe with her imaginary friend- just like that other girl who flew. The parallels between Amy Pond and Wendy Darling – both women who fled for adventure before the day came when they grew up- are made explicit in a deleted scene from The Beast Below (see The Eleventh Doctor Companion Volume One):

AMY: My aunt says your wedding day’s the day you grow up.

The name Amy means ‘beloved’- not far from ‘darling’. Like Wendy before her, Amy flies away with a boy who won’t grow up, meeting mermaids and pirates…and lost children. Like Wendy before her, Amy grows to leave the nursery and accept the adult world. In marrying Rory she is given the best of both worlds, and even though she’s left the TARDIS now the Doctor and adventure (we know she’s getting back on the TARDIS- thanks, spoilery press releases!) are still in her life.

The Temptation Of Amy Pond

This is a story as old as time: a woman is tempted by an apple. The apple in this case is not just an apple, however- it’s associated with Amy’s mother, and so associated with motherhood:

AMELIA: I used to hate apples, so my mum put faces on them.
DOCTOR: She sounds good, your mum.

– and of course it harks back to Amy’s first meeting of the Doctor. It’s a symbol of both a mother’s love and a Time Lord’s life. Two things that will later form the core of Amelia’s journey, all there in the apple.

And at her wedding, look what necklace she’s wearing. It’s hard to see, but it looks like an apple. (Amy is actually associated with plant life quite a lot, I realised, but more on that later.)

The Doctor said in The God Complex that he tempted people. It seems he did, with Amy. She took the apple and she kept it…

Amy’s great fear

We learned in The God Complex that Amy still fears abandonment. She fears being the little girl left behind with nothing- it’s happened to her so many times: The Eleventh Hour and The Girl Who Waited. It’s not even fear of being left behind by the Doctor (if it was, that would make his later action pretty callous) just fear of being alone, hopeless and helpless. Or that’s how I see it…I hope I’m right…see here for more!

Amy was seven at the age her Doctor abandoned her, and her terror lurks in Room 7- but something escaped from there, the last time we saw a Room 7:

Rory is the one person Amy knows won’t abandon her. “Rory wouldn’t, not ever.”

Red and Blue

Amy is associated with red from the beginning of her story- red hair, red cardigan. And the name Rory means ‘red’. (I love that detail.) The Doctor is, as he’s always been, associated with blue. Blue box, blue shirt, blue bow tie. (Rory does make his first appearence dressed in blue- maybe to hint that Amy is currently using him to replace the Doctor?) It’s almost like Amy’s choice is between her red man and her blue man, and in the end she picks Rory- he’s been her colour all along, he’s the one for her. But she still uses the old rhyme about something blue to save the Doctor. Amy Pond can have all the colours she wishes- she can save both her boys. And then there’s the Red Waterfall- of course Amy presses the red button…

The waters, and the gardens

And of course, a waterfall is water that runs wild and free, and also has the potential to destroy. (Rory, on the other hand, presses the green anchor- he is the thing that anchors both Pond women, and the Doctor.)

Amy’s been associated with water since the beginning, of course. She’s a Pond! And I always thought that the “duckpond” conversation in The Eleventh Hour meant something, although I haven’t quite worked out what, yet. A duckpond with no ducks = Amy as she is at that time? No-one to depend on her, no-one for her to look after, to save…maybe it means that a piece of her personality is still missing at that time? I don’t know.

Water brings life- Amy’s associated a heck of a lot with life, birth (obviously) and nature. And water itself, of course. Her first journey in the TARDIS has her saving a Star Whale, and fish people are the enemy in Vampires Of Venice. Heck, the last time we saw her she was holding a water pistol… (Maybe a sign that since she’s killed someone now, she no longer wants to use an actual weapon…)

Anyway, then there’s the fact that Amy’s around flowers quite a lot. In Amy’s Choice, a total dream world, as well…”I’ve crushed your flowers.”/”Oh, Amy will kill you.” Her bedroom and her house are packed with flowers too (see?). Look at her surrounded by sunflowers!

Flowers…interesting that later on she makes a business out of scent, right?

Sex!!

The other thing about flowers is: they’re often used in art to represent female fertility. Which made me consider that a lot of Amy’s character is bound up in sex– she starts off as a kissogram, she’s perfectly comfortable with the idea, there’s a drawing of a naked woman on her wall, she happily wears skirts that show her body off (and she should if she wishes to!)-

In The Girl Who Waited, there’s sexual images everywhere- naked statues, a red waterfall that’s almost symbolic of menstrual flow- I don’t actually know what it all means, to be honest. Maybe to say that Amy, regardless of her age (and contrary, kinda, to what society says about older women) will always be a sexual creature? Yeah, I like that…

The Life And Death Of Amy Pond

Amy is definitely Life to Rory and the Doctor’s Death. Her memories have saved them both- her memory is even part of the means of saving Rory in The Curse Of The Black Spot, since she had to remember what he told her. She can channel her creativity (see: her drawings!) and she is the creator to the Doctor’s destroyer- see this little essay (written before Let’s Kill Hitler) for more. The Doctor killed River (well, sort of); Amy gave birth to her. Rory was close to death: Amy brought him back. The Doctor was erased from existence: Amy remembered him back into being (Weirdly enough…she is almost the Doctor’s mother in a symbolic sense. She rebirthed him!). Amy frequently saves things using her ability to love, too- her love for her imaginary friend led her to look at the Star Whale differently, she knew beyond all doubt that love would save a dying cyber-human, and her love for her husband (and her desire for her younger self to know that love) leads her to sacrifice herself for them in The Girl Who Waited.

The only time she destroys something (well, I did say a waterfall has the potential to destroy) is when she kills Kovarian and the Silence, but that was to protect Rory and avenge her daughter- the lives that were taken or almost taken from her- and even that is undone when Time restarts. I hope Amy’s act of killing is addressed in the next series, I really do…

The Woman Who Waited

When Amy is asked by the Interface in The Girl Who Waited where she would like to go, Amy chooses the Garden. So far, she’s always doomed to wait in a garden-

But significantly, the last time this happens, the person she’s waiting for actually arrives when she expects them to, and doesn’t let her down-

At last, the couple who waited have someone who won’t make them wait.