The lonely assassins, they used to be called. No one quite knows where
they came from, but they’re as old as the universe, or very nearly, and
they have survived this long because they have the most perfect defence
system ever evolved. They
are quantum-locked. They don’t exist when they’re being observed. The
moment they are seen by any other living creature, they freeze into
rock. No choice. It’s a fact of their biology. In the sight of any
living thing, they literally turn to stone. And you can’t kill a
stone. Of course, a stone can’t kill you either. But then you turn your
head away, then you blink, and oh yes it can.
That bit in Blink where
Sally hands the Doctor the photographs of the Weeping Angels along with the
transcript is so important. It’s such a small moment, and easy to miss
since it’s buried in the big “Sally and the Doctor finally meet” scene, but it’s
the physical handing over of the folder which I noticed the most this time
around, for two main reasons:
1) Speaking thematically, it’s what allows Sally to finally
move forward and live her life with Larry.
Larry tells her earlier on that she needs to move past what happened,
and look to the future – he tells her this because she still clings on to the
photographs. By handing them down to
someone else, she passes on that burden.
She quite literally frees her hand of the photographs so that she can
hold Larry’s hand with it instead!
2) It’s also seriously neat headcanon material. So we learn later on that the image of an
Angel becomes itself an Angel, right?
And those images are given to the Doctor? I’ve seen it cited as a plot-hole before, but
you could just as well read it as the opposite – the last piece of the
puzzle. Perhaps the Doctor, travelling
to the recent past, leaves the photographs lying around. Angels are born from the photographs – the same
Angels which send the Doctor back in time.
The episode is, after all, already
an embodiment of the bootstrap paradox.
What harm would one more do?
Maybe that’s all the Angels are in the end. Circular replications of themselves – beings generated
through the circulation of their own images, their own reflections, with no
beginning and no end.