Rory Williams, the hapless Arthur Dent-esque nurse, has become one of the most popular characters in Doctor Who's history, thanks to his steadfast devotion to the lovely Amy Pond. If only Rory would stop dying!
Spoilers for recent episodes ahead...
We were just on a conference call with actor Arthur Darvill, who has a bigger-than-usual role in this Saturday's episode, "The Girl Who Waited." And he completely dodged a question about whether Rory would be dying again this season. (He said he wasn't sure, nor is he sure if there's a point to the running gag where Rory keeps dying.) He did, however, express a strong desire: "I wish Rory would just stop dying," he said, emphasizing each of those last few words. He also pointed out that a lot of Rory's deaths have come about because of his habit of putting himself in harm's way for others, including the Doctor as well as Amy. It's part of Rory's general pattern of stepping up and being a "bumbling hero."
Darvill told reporters that he was really glad that Rory had manned up, and that experiences such as waiting 2000 years as a plastic centurion for Amy, and discovering that River Song is his daughter, have completely changed him. He's a bit more world-weary, but also braver and more assertive. He's also seen that Amy has a great bond with the Doctor, and his relationship with the Doctor has changed from jealousy to a kind of friendship — in which they occasionally have a huge falling out. And Rory has discovered that in spite of all of the weird, universe-shattering things that have happened around him, "his love for Amy is still the strongest thing in the world."
Most of all, Rory has "proved to the Doctor and everyone else around him that whenever things start kicking off, he can really step up to the plate and of use," said Darvill. "The Doctor constantly seeks out good people, and Rory is one of the best."
The burning question that we were dying to ask Darvill was about Amy and Rory's reaction — or non-reaction — to discovering that they would never be able to raise their own daughter. Instead, they found out that they had actually grown up with her, because she came and became their best friend, Mels, when she was a toddler. Why weren't Amy and Rory more upset? Especially after the Doctor promised he would find their child for them.
Here's what Darvill told us:
Yeah, it's kind of strange. We questioned this when we got the script. But actually, there was time in between those two episodes ["A Good Man Goes to War" and "Let's Kill Hitler"] in the summer break, for them to sit down and talk about it. But they're so affected by what's happened to them, and what they go through every day, that this can happen to them, and it's not as freaky as it would be to your average person. [They can't really] return to real life, to react to things the way a normal person would react to it... If they were to go home and sit and talk about what's happened, I don't think they could compute.
In response to another question, Darvill also said that Rory hasn't had time to process everything that's happened to him and Amy, and that Rory's still "freaked out" about the whole thing. The key to Doctor Who is that every time the characters start to reflect on their weird lives, there's another monster or emergency, and they're sent off running again. This is the key to the show, because we wouldn't really want to watch these people talking everything through.