Ah Rory Pond, er, Williams – wasn't he just awesome? In my opinion, he was one of the best examples of character development in all fifty years of our wonderful show. He was hilarious, he was lovable – I admit, his multiple deaths did get a little repetitive, but Arthur Darvill's awesome acting also made me forgive the character.
Before we dive into Mr Pond, let's look at the man who help craft him, Arthur Darvill. Born 17th June 1982, (real name Thomas) he was brought into the career from day one. His mother Ellie, obviously a big inspiration, made Arthur help out with the puppets, masks and even live acting at the Cannon Hill Theatre. At the age of ten, Darvill joined Stage2 Youth Theatre Company, and stayed there until 2000. When he was 18, he then moved to London, where things really started for him.
He appeared in Terre Haute, as a criminal, where he garnered much praise, and was even nominated for 'Best Newcomer' in the 2007 Evening Standard Theatre Awards. In 2008 Darvill made his television debut in He Kills Coppers, and later that year the BBC serial Little Dorrit. From there it was on to everyone's favourite show, Doctor Who....
Rory Williams was first seen in The Eleventh Hour where, lets say it, he was a bit of a loser. A nice loser, but definitely not companion material. Now, I'm not a giant fan of Amy Pond (I personally think she's the worst nu-who companion), but I was rooting for her to get with Jeff more than Rory.
However, after a bad first impression we meet Rory again properly during The Vampires of Venice. I'd say this is where the character really picks off, and shows signs of becoming one of the better male Doctor Who companions – although I would never say Rory was as good as Jamie, I think the way he and the Eleventh Doctor bounced off each other was great. Although Amy's Choice was, of course, Amy – centric, it was also a great character building episode for Rory. Seeing his ideal life, seeing the fact he would rather live in peace than travel with the doctor. I think not only did this episode set up who this character is, but also sets up future Rory story arcs.
After the clumsy rip-off that was The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood, Rory finally returned in the two part Series 5 finale, more epic than ever. As I mentioned earlier, I'm not Amy's biggest fan, but I think it's awesome how much Rory loves her. I mean, he waited 2000 years outside the Pandorica, before punching the Doctor in the face and taking all the timey wimey madness that comes his way. And his wedding – how sweet!
After being promoted from recurring character to main cast member, Rory just got better and better. In my opinion, Series 6 is the worst series of the shows entire history (worse than Season 24, and that's saying something!) but Rory still shines through. Although it is very River centric, he has some great moments.
And then, we get to Series 7 Part One – the final days of Rory Pond. Although the divorce in Asylum of the Daleks is awful, I was really hoping Rory would leave Amy since he obviously deserved much better. Again, Rory shines throughout the episodes, especially when with his father Brian Pond - another great character. His ending in Angels Take Manhattan was suiting, and I loved the way he decided to jump off the roof, rather than Amy.
Rory went from wimp to kickassing Roman. Although he's not up there with my favourite companions (Jamie, Ace, etc) he is certainly one of the most interesting the show has ever produced.
by Michael Allan