Karen Gillan on ‘the huge pay-off’ in Doctor Who

Karen Gillan talks to TV & Satellite Week magazine about the dramatic mid-series finale of Doctor Who, screening on BBC1 on Saturday, June 4.

We saw Amy about to give birth at the end of last week’s episode, what happens next?

“Well she is obviously in labour and she has been taken away somewhere so the Doctor and Rory are on a massive mission to find her and she has to deal with some very scary people and things.”

Does her baby get taken away from her?

“You will have to tune in to find out, but it is really, really emotional for Amy what she goes through. I think any woman watching will really feel for her. It is something that I actually found quite difficult to understand so I had to speak to my mum about the labour scene and just tried to make it really horrific.”

Have you had to show a very different side of Amy in this episode?

“Definitely, that is one of the things I set out to do because of something that happens to her to do with giving birth, which would really affect anyone. It is going to change her in a big way for the long run and I think we are going to get to see Amy in a really different light.”

How far ahead did you know that this was the direction it was going to take?

“I didn’t know until we started shooting it because everything is really last minute on Doctor Who, so you just get the script. Then there was a dummy ending on the episode seven script so none of us knew what was actually going to happen until the readthrough when Steven Moffat took us outside and showed us on his laptop.”

It looks like there are a lot of old favourites back in this episode such as the Cybermen and the Silurians does Amy come across them?

“She may well do! There are lots of monsters in this one and it really feels like a finale. There are lots of old familiar things coming back and lots of storylines that have been going on for many years will be resolved.”

Do we find out who Frances Barber’s character is?

“Yes we find out what and who she is and why Amy has been having encounters with her this whole time and that is really good.”

Is this episode where we find out who River Song is, too?

“Yes, this is the episode where it is finally revealed from way back when we met her with David Tennant. It is just such a huge pay-off and I didn’t see it coming actually. I was really, really shocked and it was really worth investing all that time into it in the past.”

Your mum is a massive Doctor Who fan – does she think it has got scarier?

“She hasn’t mentioned that, but I am all for it getting scarier. I think kids just go with it and it is the adults going, ‘Ooh is this too much?’ It’s like when you go on a fairground ride, you go on it to have the thrill of being scared so it is a good thing. I just think Steven Moffat is so good at tapping into what connects with children and he lets his kids watch it so that is how he measures it, I guess, and they are fine.”

How scary is this episode?

“Well, it is full of shocks and twists and turns in terms of stories that have been going on for a long time and I find it really disturbing as an episode more than scary.”

What do you think it has added, splitting the series in half?

“It means it lasts longer which is always good and also we are going to end on such a huge revelation that I think everyone will need the whole summer to digest it.”

Have you enjoyed playing Amy as a married lady this time around?

“Yeah, I love the fact she is married, I think there are lots of funny moments from it. I just didn’t want her to become boring when she got married so I wanted her to have the same Amy traits while still being married.”

Do you still get a thrill of being in Doctor Who?

“Yes, it hasn’t gotten old, that is for sure and it still excites me to talk about even now. It is just such an amazing thing to be involved in and it is nice to be part of that sci-fi history and in a show that people care so much about because I am not so sure that will happen that often.”

What are you doing next?

“I am playing Jean Shrimpton in a BBC4 drama We’ll Take Manhattan but I have just literally gone from Doctor Who to that so I haven’t had a chance to sit and have a think. I actually would really like to go home to Scotland for a little while and reflect on what has happened and then decide what my next move is, but I don’t know what that is yet.”

Latest TV News