With the Power of Three we are one step closer to the end of Amy and Rory’s journey. And yet, so much of that journey remains undocumented. Amy tells the Doctor that they have spent 10 years of their lives traveling with him, which has not only put them out of synch with the real world, but with their legions of fans as well.
This episode documents the “Year of the Slow Invasion”, when Earth is bombarded by millions of cubes whose only function appears to be as a novelty item. The cubes arrive one day and do nothing…which frustrates the Doctor to no end. He leaves Amy, Rory, and dad Brian to watch the cubes, letting them get on with their lives while he runs off and has adventures on his own. Along the way, the Doctor meets the daughter of an old friend; Kate Stewart, daughter of the Brigadier and now in charge of UNIT.
The story itself is fast-paced to the point of being frenetic. Despite the long incubation period experienced by the characters, the action and cuts give the story a quickened feeling that often leaves the viewer a bit frazzled. That said, there are tons of loveable fan moments. Kate Lethbridge-Stewart is ably played by Jemma Redgrave, and Mark Williams is eminently adorable as Brian. The Doctor’s heart-to-heart with Amy about why he spends so much time with the Ponds is honest and touching, and the chemistry between Amy and Rory feels fully developed as they struggle between real life and Doctor life.
My major problem with this episode, and with the season as a whole, is that everything feels so rushed. We know that there are so many adventures that we have not seen, and yet here we are at the end of Amy and Rory’s time, and we end up with a rushed half-season that feels like watching their adventures on fast forward. We don’t get the sense of continuity that we have had with previous companions. Instead we are teased with hints about what we’ve been missing, and as a fan of Amy and Rory I can’t help but feel a bit cheated.
All things being equal, the episode is still one of the best of this season, and probably one of the best of Amy and Rory’s tenure. I only wish we could have gotten a full season with the Ponds; one that did not have a continued storyline and that gave us more of a sense of the amount of time they have really spent with the Doctor. Maybe we will see some flashbacks down the road, but still, I can’t help but feel that we’ve been short changed, and that’s a sad thing to do to one of the best set of companions the series has ever known.
“The Power of Three” gets Three and a Half Acorns out of Five!