River Song's Timeline

I wanted to re-watch all of the Doctor Who episodes with River Song, but from her timeline. Deciphering the order took a bit of research, so I thought I would share the results.

River Song’s Timeline - by Episode

Story Series Episode Name
218a 6 A Good Man Goes to War
214a 6 The Impossible Astronaut
214b 6 Day of the Moon
218b 6 Let’s Kill Hitler
222 6 Closing Time
223 6 The Wedding of River Song
212a 5 The Pandorica Opens
212b 5 The Big Bang
206a 5 The Time of Angels
206b 5 Flesh and Stone
229 7 The Angels Take Manhattan
260 9 The Husbands of River Song
159a 4 Silence in the Library
159b 4 Forest of the Dead
238 7 The Name of the Doctor
*Optional

Huge Story Arc

The River Song story arc is pretty big:

  • River meets 3 Doctors (that we know of)
  • River is in 15 episodes
  • Total run time above: 12 hours

Post-Mortem

It took a while, but I finally re-watched all those episodes in the above order.

NO SPOILERS

I should say, the first three episodes above actually have River at multiple points in her own timeline. So those episodes feel less like you are walking through her life alongside her. But after those first few, the timeline becomes a lot more linear.

The River Song stories were built around Matt Smith’s Doctor, so the first three-quarters of the timeline is one big story arc. And it’s a good one. Things start to get somber around the episode The Husbands of River Song. No spoilers, but the last quarter of the timeline had a lot more impact for me when I watched them from her perspective.

After watching them all again, I don’t think the last episode really needs to be on the list. The second-to-last episode is really the conclusion of the River story arc. And the last episode only kind of has her in it anyway. So I marked it as optional.

In the end, I really enjoyed watching the episodes in this order. It added an extra dimension to the them and gave a little depth to the characters. This was a marvelous experiment. I’m glad I did it. And I’m glad I did it with my best friend.

Published: May 19 2016