It's 1953, the Coronation year of HM Queen Elizabeth II, and the people of Great Britain huddle round their television sets to witness the great event. But behind the celebrations there are rumors of monsters on the streets, and the tormented Mr Magpie is hiding a strange and alien secret.Written by
A subplot in which Rose visits her aunt, who works on a game show for the BBC was deleted because Russell T. Davies feared that having the Corporation be too involved in the plot would make the episode difficult to take seriously. See more »
When the doctor breaks into Magpie's he shatters the front door glass to get in. When he is shown leaving the glass door is completely intact. See more »
[the Doctor flashes the Psychic Paper at him]
Oh... sorry sir. Shouldn't you be at the Coronation?
[looks back whilst running]
They're saving me a seat!
Who did he think you were?
[looking at the Psychic Paper]
King of Belgium, apparently.
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Most people will tell you that a director on a television show cannot really make an impact, since all they do is run on set, take charge of the crew, and finish up the episode in less than a week. Due to this rushed process, television directors, supposedly, are restricted in terms of creativity, but "The Idiot's Lantern" is proof that this isn't necessarily true. Director Euros Lyn, also responsible for great episodes like "The Unquiet Dead" and "Tooth and Claw", makes this episode extremely entertaining with his visual style. "The Idiot's Lantern" might have been a fairly boring episode otherwise, disregarding the witty dialogue, the script wasn't exactly perfect. Inventive, zany cinematography make this episode a pleasure to look at. An inspired portrayal of the Doctor from Tennant and some witty dialogue make up for a pretty weak story and make this episode quite enjoyable. It's hardly the greatest episode, but it's good enough.
Letter Grade: B-
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