The usual spoiler warning applies. If you read past this point, it’s your own fault.
This episode’s bad guy is in the form of a Minotaur in a “maze” of 1980’s hotel corridors. In a rare twist, the villain had no choice. The victim of his worshipper’s advancement into technology and leaving of their Old Gods, he is doomed to prowl the endless depths of space while his surroundings pull in “meals” – people with enough faith to provide him with sustenance. And it takes three bodies laid out on the slab before he works out exactly how to defeat the creature.
In the closing days of Series 6 and the Doctor’s life, we are getting royally kicked in the teeth with the emotional weight of the Time Lord’s inescapable fate. As the Doctor Who Confidential imparted to its viewers, this creature draws a parallel to the lonely Gallifreyan in more ways than one. Doomed to wander, with no family left and no friends that can stay more than a life-threatening adventure or two, the Monster and the Doctor both secretly long for an end to their existences. By episode’s end, the Time Lord drops Amy and Rory off back on Earth, gifting them with a flat (apartment) and a hot red car. His explanation to Amy of why their adventures have to end shows the depth of his feelings for them both. To stand over their graves is more than he can bear in this incarnation.
As monsters go, this was a good one for the classic fans of big, hairy, ugly creatures with pointy claws and horns, running down corridors, scaring the crap out of everyone in the Doctor’s company. Every room holds a horror – one for Amy as herself the night she was “the girl who waited”. A child let down by yet another adult – even though he be a mad man in a box, she clearly sees this as the worst night of her life. Even the Doctor gets a room (room “11”, of course) and though the viewer doesn’t see what lies within, whatever it is, he is not surprised in the least. With an accompaniment of a cloister bell, could it be the death of the Tardis? We may never know.