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Jun 13, 2010


During a visit to an art gallery with Amy, the Doctor's interest is caught by a painting of a church by Vincent van Gogh: there's a face in the window of the church – a curious, shadowed creepy face with a beak and nasty eyes. The Doctor is worried, and is sure he has seen the face somewhere before. There is only one thing for it: a trip in the TARDIS back to 1890, so the Doctor can find out from the artist himself.


The Doctor and Amy looking at van Gogh's painting of the Church at Auvers.

In a field of wheat, something begins running through it, scaring the crows away, while an artist paints the scene. The same painting, years later, hangs in the Musée d'Orsay in Paris. A man, Dr. Black, in glasses and a bowtie tells a group of people that the painting is one of van Gogh's last paintings and that the last few months of his life were the most astonishing months of his artistic outpouring. As he compares van Gogh to Shakespeare, the Doctor and Amy pass behind him, admiring the pieces of art around them.

Amy thanks the Doctor for bringing her to the museum and asks why he is being so nice to her. The Doctor defends himself and Amy says that she was only joking, asking why he was being so serious. Dr. Black tells the group the value of van Gogh's work today, tens of millions, and compares it with the value of it when van Gogh died, the value of a sofa and some chairs.

A child says "He's the doctor." Thinking it is him, the Doctor turns around, only to discover the children are looking at a picture of van Gogh's doctor. Amy grabs the Doctor's hand and pulls him towards a painting of a church. As the Doctor admires the work, he notices something in the window of the church. Amy asks if it is a face and the Doctor tells her that it is, and that it isn't a nice face.

The Doctor approaches Dr. Black, interrupting his talk and asks him when the painting was painted, asking him to skip a long speech. Dr. Black tells him that it was probably between the first and third of June in 1890. The Doctor thanks him, then the two men compliment each others bow ties. The Doctor then grabs Amy's hand and pulls her away. She asks about looking at the rest of the paintings, but he shoves her ahead, telling her that it is a matter of life and death, and that they must talk to Vincent van Gogh.

The TARDIS materializes and the Doctor and Amy exit. The Doctor tells Amy the plan, to find van Gogh, wait for him to take them to the church, then defeat the monster. Amy exclaims that it will be easy, but the Doctor disagrees. He says that van Gogh will probably be in the local café and describes it. Amy flicks through her van Gogh guide and finds a painting of it. The Doctor tells her that that painting is the one, then Amy points out that the real café is right infront of them.

The Doctor approaches the owner and asks about Vincent van Gogh. The owner disappears inside, so the Doctor asks the waitresses. The waitresses tell the Doctor and Amy that van Gogh is a mad drunk who never pays his bills. The Doctor tells them he's a good painter and the two women just laugh at him.

As the Doctor sits at a table, a man follows the owner out of the café and tries to bargain with him, one painting for a drink. The Doctor points to the man and mouths to Amy that he is van Gogh. The owner says that the painting is no good, and tells van Gogh to either pay for drinks or get out. The Doctor offers to either pay for van Gogh's drink or to buy the painting, to which van Gogh asks who the Doctor is. The Doctor tells him that he is new in town, to which van Gogh tells him three things; that he pays for his own drinks, that no-one buys his paintings lest they be laughed out of town and that Amy is cute, but the Doctor should not interfere.

Van Gogh returns to bargaining with the owner who still refuses to give him a drink, until Amy interferes and tells the two to shut up. She tells the owner that she will buy a bottle of wine, and will share it with whomever she wishes, looking at van Gogh. The owner agrees and follows Amy inside.

Inside, the Doctor and Amy talk with van Gogh. Van Gogh asks about Amy's accent and whether she comes from Holland. She replies "no" while the Doctor replies "yes" at the same time. The Doctor introduces himself properly as "the Doctor", which causes van Gogh to believe that he is a doctor sent by his brother to help him with his mental state. The Doctor laughs at the notion and points to a painting beside van Gogh. Amy says that it is one of her favourites, to which van Gogh tells her she's never seen it before. She covers up her mistake and van Gogh comments on her hair colour, so she comments on his.
Vincent and Amy at the Café.

The Doctor interrupts and asks Vincent if he has painted any churches lately and van Gogh tells him that he has been thinking about painting one church. The Doctor says that is good news, when someone screams, the Doctor says that that is not good news.

Out in the street, the three find a girl who has been killed. The mother of the girl pushes her way through, then blames Vincent for her daughter's death. She and some of the crowd throw stones at Vincent, so the Doctor, Amy and Vincent leave immediately. The Doctor asks Vincent if a similar murder has happened before. Vincent tells him that there was one a week ago and the Doctor says he thought so. He tells Vincent that he must get home. Vincent asks where the Doctor and Amy are staying, which the Doctor takes as an invite to stay with him. Amy nervously laughs and follows the Doctor, Vincent in tail of the two.

Outside Vincent's home, the Doctor comments on the dark and the starry night. Van Gogh says that Amy and the Doctor will be alright to stay with him for one night, and one night only. Amy exclaims that they will be staying with him and the Doctor tells her until he paints the church.

Inside, van Gogh lights a lamp and apologizes about the "clutter", saying he must really clear it out. Vincent offers coffee and after seeing Vincent put coffee on one of his works, the Doctor tells him to be careful with his work and that they are precious. Vincent disagrees with the Doctor, but Amy tells Vincent that they are precious to her. The Doctor asks about the church, to which Vincent asks about his obsession with it. The Doctor asks about Vincent, and Vincent tells him that it seems to him the world offers much more than the normal eye can see. The Doctor agrees with him, glancing at Amy.

Soon after, Vincent wildly talks about colours and how he can hear them, and how he thinks. The Doctor stares at Vincent saying that he believes he has had enough coffee. The Doctor asks where Amy is and a scream comes from outside.

Vincent and the Doctor rush outside and find Amy on the ground, shaken, but not injured. The Doctor says not to worry that the attacker has gone, but Vincent screams and runs to get a fork. The Doctor tries to calm Vincent down, but Vincent runs towards them. Amy and the Doctor move to the side and van Gogh tells them to run. The Doctor agrees and tells Amy that Vincent is having a fit. The Doctor again tries to calm Vincent down, telling him that it is only him there, when something large knocks him off his feet. Amy shouts that she cannot see anything and asks what it is. The Doctor agrees that her question is good. He gets up and grabs a stick, telling Vincent he will help him fight it. Vincent asks the Doctor if he can see the creature too, to which the Doctor says he can, kind of, and finally not. The Doctor then gets hit again and thrown over a table, landing on his back. Vincent tells the Doctor that he couldn't see the creature. The Doctor returns to where the creature was, swinging his stick around, while Vincent attacks the creature and fends it off. Both Vincent and Amy watch as the Doctor continues to fight nothing, swinging his stick around. Vincent tells the Doctor that the creature has gone, to which the Doctor stops.

The three return inside. The Doctor says that the creature was invisible, and asks Vincent what it looked like. Vincet says he'll show them and begins to paint over one of his paintings, much to the Doctor and Amy's horror. After he has finished, the Doctor takes the painting from van Gogh and gives Amy instructions to keep Vincent safe. Amy protests the Doctor going outside as it is dangerous, but the Doctor decides to still go, telling them he'll be back before they can say "where's he got to now?" The Doctor leaves and Amy turns back to Vincent. The Doctor screams "not that fast" to keep the two on their toes and says he'll be pretty fast, then leaves.

The Doctor walks down the alleyways, seemingly being followed by the creature, but reaches the TARDIS before he comes to any danger. Inside, he drags a chest from one of the alcoves, talking to a specific item. He apologizes to the item, saying he thought it was just a useless, embarrassing present from his godmother, who had two heads and bad breath, on both the heads. He pulls out a machine attached to a mirror and puts it up on the TARDIS console. He links it up to the TARDIS and sticks his tongue out at it. The machine identifies the Doctor as "Doctor" and his home planet as Gallifrey and prints a copy out on the console's typewriter, including pictures of the first and second incarnations. The Doctor then shows Vincent's drawing of the creature to the mirror in order to identify it. The machine first identifies it as a parrot, then a polar bear, both of which the Doctor dismisses. He then complains that the impressionists are not accurate enough and that it wouldn't happen with one of the "proper" painters, but then apologizes to Vincent. He says that Vincent will have to draw something better and throws the painting away behind him.
The Doctor attempting to identify the 'invisible monster'.

Leaving the TARDIS, now day, the Doctor alters the machine. The creature appears behind the Doctor, appearing in the mirror. The machine's "match" noise sounds and the Doctor says that there may be a time delay, but the machine always gets it in the end, not noticing the actual creature behind him. The Doctor reads the details on the creature, a Krafayis, before noticing that it is directly behind him. The Doctor begins to run and hides behind a corner. He uses the mirror to see the creature charging towards him, before running again. He tries to slow the creature by blocking its path, and the creature hits its head on an archway. The Doctor hides behind another corner and sees the creature fleeing. He breathes a sigh of relief, before turning the corner and seeing Amy. Both of them scream and the Doctor says that she scared the living daylights out of him. Amy apologizes and says that she was bored of Vincent's snoring.

The Doctor enters Vincent's room and opens the windows, letting in a flood of light and waking Vincent up. Vincet gets up as the Doctor leaves the room, telling Vincent that Amy brought him a present. Amy tells him she brought the present for saving her the previous night. Vincent looks out to see the outside surrounded by sunflowers. Amy suggests he paint the flowers, but Vincent says that they are not his favourite flower, much to the surprise of Amy and the Doctor. Vincent explains that he finds them complex, half-living and half-dying, a little disgusting, but a challenge. The Doctor tells Vincent he is sure he will rise to the challenge.
Amy amidst the sunflowers.

The Doctor shows Vincent a picture of the Krafayis, explaining how the species travels in space as a pack and that they are a brutal race; if one falls behind, the rest of the pack do not return for it. He explains that this particular one has been left behind, and like the other Krafayis abandoned across the universe, it will kill without mercy until killed, which they usually are not, given their invisibility. The Doctor tells Vincent that they are in a unique position of being able to stop this one if Vincent paints the church. Vincent asks about the monster, but the Doctor tells him that if he paints the church, the monster will come. Vincent agrees and the Doctor tells him that he and Amy will be no longer bothering him by the next day and will be gone. After Vincent has left the room, the Doctor tells Amy that taking Vincent is risky. Amy asks if it is riskier than normal. The Doctor checks to see that Vincent is not listening and tells Amy that if Vincent is killed, half the pictures in the Musée d'Orsay will disappear and that it will be their fault.

The Doctor knocks on Vincent's door and enters. He finds Vincent on his bed crying. The Doctor asks if he can help. Vincent tells the Doctor that he and Amy will leave as everyone always leaves him, that he will be left with an empty heart and no hope. The Doctor tells Vincent that his experience is that there is always hope, but Vincent tells him that he does not have a full experience and that he knows it will not end well. The Doctor tries to console him, but Vincent gets angry and tells him to get out. The Doctor leaves.

Amy asks the Doctor what is happening and the Doctor explains how delicate Vincent is, that he will eventually shoot himself, and that is why they should leave. After looking at some of Vincent's paintings, the Doctor says that he and Amy must go to the church and hope that the Krafayis still turns up. Before they can leave, Vincent appears at the door, fully clothed and ready to go, selecting a paintbrush.

Amy, walking arm in arm with Vincent, tells him that she is sorry he is sad. He tells her that the moods he has last for weeks or even months, but that he can soldier on if she can. She tells him that she is not soldiering on but he says to her that he can hear the song of her sadness and points out that she is crying. He tells Amy that he understands but Amy replies, telling him that she does not. The Doctor, having listened to the conversation interrupts and proposes a plan. Vincent says that they will fight the creature, but the Doctor explains that it needs to be more developed, that he needs to be able to see the creature as well. Amy asks how the Doctor is supposed to see the monster, to which he replies that he has the answer inside a box he is carrying, giving praise to his godmother.

Further up the road, the three see the funeral of the girl who was killed the previous night. They stand at the side of the road, Vincent having taken his hat off in respect, as the coffin passes with sunflowers on top. Amy asks the Doctor if he has a plan, to which he tells her that he doesn't, but something similarly greater.

Vincent sets up his easle as the Doctor makes sure that he will be told when the creature appears. Vincent tells the Doctor that he is mad and not stupid. The Doctor begins to explain that he may not actually be mad, just deeply depressed, but Vincent tells him to shush, and that he is working.

As Vincent paints, the Doctor talks about watching Michaelangelo painting the Sistine Chaple, and how he winged because he was afraid of heights but Amy tells him to shush. Later he moves on to Picasso, and how he tried to advise him on his paintings. Much later, the Doctor, bored, asks if time normally passes really slowly and in the correct order. He stands up and tells Amy and Vincent that he can't stand an unpunctual alien attack. Amy asks if he is nervous, when Vincent tells the two that the monster is now at the window.

The Doctor tells Amy and Vincent that he is going in, so Vincent tells him that he is going in too. The Doctor stresses that Vincent is Vincent van Gogh, and that he is not going in. Vincent protests that the Doctor is not armed, but the Doctor tells him that he is, with overconfidence, the machine and a small screwdriver. The Doctor says that all he needs to do is find the correct prozac setting to stun the creature. He gives Amy one simple instruction, not to follow him and signals to Vincent to watch her. Amy agrees and the Doctor heads towards the church. Vincent leans in towards Amy and asks if she will follow him, and she tells him that she will. Vincent then tells Amy that he loves her.

Just outside the chapel, the Doctor opens his box and takes out the machine. He puts it on and before heading into the chapel, looks at a carving above the door, a carving of an angel slaying a dragon. Inside, the Doctor looks around for the Krafayis. Outside, Amy asks Vincent if the Krafayis has moved. Vincent tells her that it hasn't, but suddenly tells her that it has turned around. After approaching the window where the Krafayis was, the Doctor believes the creature has moved. Suddenly, a hand knocks the Doctor flying. Amy and Vincent hear the crash, look at each other and head inside to help the Doctor. The Doctor recovers from his fall and tries to stun the Krafayis. He runs towards a room when he bumps into Amy. The two of them hide in a confessions box to hide. While inside, the Doctor tells Amy to breath quieter. Amy says that she cannot, then believes that it has walked past them. Then the Krafayis begins attacking the confessions box, and the Doctor compliments its excellent hearing.

Vincent then calls on the monster, fighting it with a chair, while telling Amy and the Doctor to get behind him. The Doctor, twice, tries to stun the Krafayis again but is unsuccessful and on the second attempt, the Krafayis actually seems to enjoy it. Vincent tells the Doctor to duck as the creature takes a swipe at him, then to move to his left. However, because of miscommunication, left being Vincent's left and not the Doctor's, the Doctor is hit by the monster against a wall. The Doctor suggests that they run like crazy and regroup, so Amy chooses the nearest room to hide in. They get in the room and attempt to close the door until the creature blocks it with its foot. Vincent, however, stands on the foot and the creature retreats.

The Doctor begins to tell Amy and Vincent his plan, but accidentally calls Vincent, Rory. When Amy asks what the plan is, the Doctor tells her that the only plan he is sure of his that he will only use his sonic screwdriver to screw in screws in future. Vincent tells Amy and the Doctor to give him a second and that he will be back. The Doctor considers talking to the Krafayis and hearing his side of the story. Although he thinks the Krafayis may not be in the mood for it, the Doctor but tries anyway. The Doctor explains to the creature that he understands that it is trapped on the planet and alone, and tells it that he is also alone. Suddenly, the window behind them smashes open and the invisible creature jumps through.

Vincent returns with his easle, holding the feet up, the spikes being used as a weapon. The Doctor asks what it is doing and is told it is feeling it's way around the room. The Doctor calls himself stupid and comments that he is getting old. The Doctor figures out that the Krafayis is blind and raises his voice when mentioning the fact it has perfect hearing. Vincent then tells them that it is now charging towards them. Vincent runs forward as the creature charges, telling the Doctor and Amy to get back. The creature is stabbed by the easle, and Vincent is sent hanging in the air. As the creature falls to the ground, Vincent lets go of the easle and lands on his feet.

Vincent tells the Doctor that he didn't mean to kill the creature, and the Doctor comforts it as it dies. He makes out that the creature says that it is afraid and the Doctor tells it not to be while stroking it. Vincent compares the Krafayis to humans who lash out when they are frightened, much like those in the town that scream at him and the children who throw stones at him. The Doctor then says that sometimes winning is no fun at all.

Amy, Vincent and the Doctor lie in a field and hold hands. Vincent asks the other two to see the world as he does, describing the night sky. The Doctor tells him that he has seen nothing as wonderful as what Vincent has. Vincent tells the Doctor and Amy that he will miss them when they are gone.
The Doctor, Vincent and Amy gazing up at the 'Starry Night'

The next morning, Vincent tries to give the Doctor a self portrait as a gift, but the Doctor refuses (though Vincent isn't surprised). Vincent hugs Amy who tells him to be good and kind to himself and to trim his beard before next kissing someone. Vincent also tells Amy that if she tires of the Doctor, she should return and they could have children together. Vincent then tells the Doctor that he thinks he might not do as well on his own than when he was with him. They embrace in a hug, then Amy and the Doctor leave.

Outside, the Doctor asks Amy if she is thinking what he is thinking. She replies telling him she wants food before they leave, not exactly what the Doctor was thinking. The Doctor then calls Vincent, who hangs out a window, and tells him he has something to show him and to tidy himself up first.

The Doctor takes Vincent to a poster covered TARDIS and lets him inside. Vincent then peers out of the TARDIS and feels the outside walls before going back in and asking how he is crazy and the Doctor and Amy are sane. The Doctor enters and takes Vincent's hat off him, placing it on the hatstand. Amy closes the door and they head to the console. Vincent asks what all of the buttons do and the Doctor explains several of them; one which plays soothing music, one which makes a large noise and one which makes everything shake. Vincent asks what a button does and the Doctor lunges forward to stop Vincent from pressing it, telling him that it is the Friction Contrafibulator. Then Vincent asks what another button does, to which the Doctor tells him that it is ketchup, then points to another which he calls mustard.

Vincent asks them back to the café, but the Doctor tells him that he wishes to show him something first. In Paris 2010, outside the Musée d'Orsay, the last few posters burn off the TARDIS. Amy, Vincent and the Doctor step outside and head into the museum, the Doctor explaining when and where they are.

The three enter the van Gogh exhibition. Vincent looks around at his work in awe at the number of people looking at them. The Doctor then asks Dr. Black to tell him where van Gogh stands in the importance of the history of art. Amy positions Vincent behind Dr. Black so he can hear all the positive things he thinks of him; that he is the finest painter of them all, the most popular painter who managed to transform his pain into beauty, that he was not only the world's greatest artist but also one of the greatest men of all time.
Vincent in the Musée d'Orsay

At hearing these words, Vincent begins to cry, but when the Doctor asks if it is too much, he replies that they are tears of joy. Vincent then kisses, hugs and thanks Dr. Black, apologizing about his beard after. Dr. Black then walks away, but pauses for a moment to ponder. He looks back and then dismisses the thought.

The Doctor returns Vincent to his own place and time. Vincent tells the Doctor that he will be a new man and the Doctor tells Vincent that it has been an honour. Amy then hugs Vincent as he jokes about her marital status, to which Amy tells him she in not the marrying kind. The TARDIS departs and Vincent walks off.

Vincent's dedication of Sunflowers for Amy.
Amy and the Doctor return to the Musée d'Orsay, Amy believing that there will be hundreds more paintings, but the Doctor is doubtful. In the gallery, Amy finds no new paintings and hears Dr. Black still saying that he commited suicide at age 37. Amy thinks that they didn't make a difference to Vincent's life at all, but the Doctor explains to her that although good things can't remove the bad things, the bad things can't spoil the good things, and that they certainly added a large amount of good things to Vincent's life. The Doctor also shows Amy that they did make a couple of minor changes, such as the non-existance of the evil face in the church window.

As Amy walks away, she walks towards another painting, one of sunflowers, which she sees is dedicated in her name. She tells the Doctor that if they had been married, their children would have had very red hair. The Doctor calls them the "Ultimate Ginger". Amy smiles at him and says the "Ultimate Ginge". The two chuckle together as Amy tears up.



Executive Producers: Steven Moffat, Piers Wenger and Beth Willis

Produced by
Tracie Simpson
Patrick Schweitzer

Directed by
Jonny Campbell

Written by
Richard Curtis
script editing by Brian Minchin
and Emma Freud

Director of Photography
Tony Slater Ling

Production Designer
Edward Thomas

Visual Effects
The Mill
Make-up Designer
Barbara Southcott

Casting Director
Andy Pryor CDG

Murray Gold

Costume Designer
Ray Holman

Jamie Pearson

Special Effects
Real SFX
Original theme music by Ron GrainerTitle sequence by Framestore• With thanks to BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Martha Freud 

General production staff

Directorial/DOP staff

Art department


Make-up and prosthetics



General post-production staff

Special and visual effects


Not every person who worked on this adventure was credited. The absence of a credit for a position doesn't necessarily mean the job wasn't required. The information above is based solely on observations of the actual end credits of the episodes as broadcast, and does not relay information from IMDB or other sources.

This was the first episode of the BBC Wales series to have two credited script editors. Oddly, Emma Freud was credited at the end of the roll, suggesting she was considered more "senior" than Brian Minchin.  As on The Vampires of Venice, Patrick Schweitzer was double-credited as both producer and line producer.


  • The episode makes numerous direct and indirect references to van Gogh's most famous works, though artistic liberty was taken in regard to their chronology and the locations in which they were painted. While the setting for the episode was ostensibly Auvers-Sur-Oise, the last place of residence and resting place of van Gogh, where he painted Church at Auvers, inspiration for the set decoration of his home and the cafe he frequented (or rather was frequently thrown out of), came from works he previously produced while living in Arles several years before (Bedroom in Arles, Cafe Terrance at Night). Also, while the episode suggested Amy Pond inspired van Gogh to paint sunflowers, particularly Still Life: Vase with Twelve Sunflowers, to which he then 'dedicated' to her, they were, in fact, painted in 1887 and 1888.
  • Van Gogh works referenced in the episode include: Church at Auvers (1890), Bedroom in Arles (1887), Cafe Terrance at Night (1888), Still Life: Vase with Twelve Sunflowers (1888), Portrait of Dr. Gachet (1890), The Starry Night (1889), Wheatfield With Crows (1890), Vincent's Chair with His Pipe (1888), Self-Portrait with Straw Hat (1887).
  • Among the posters covering the TARDIS are those for the cafe Au Tambourin at 27 Rue Richelieu in Paris, which was the first place to exhibit van Gogh's artwork in Paris.
  • The Doctor refers to having met Michaelangelo and Pablo Picasso.
  • The Doctor expresses frustration with van Gogh's 'impressionist' style when attempting to identify the invisible monster (though van Gogh is considered to be post-Impressionist by art historians), suggesting that this would "never happen with Gainsborough, one of those proper painters." While this suggests the Doctor's affinity for some notion of 'scientific accuracy' over emotive artistic expression, he later humbly tells Vincent that while he has seen many things, "you are right, nothing quite as wonderful as the things you see."

Story notes

  • The episode was incorrectly entitled, Lend Me Your Ear. However, no mention or reference was made in the episode regarding van Gogh's ear at all.
  • Unlike most stories in this series, this story focuses much more on characters than plot, and has hints and references to van Gogh's depression and suicide, something the series has not explored very much before. In fact, a message and phone number for the 'BBC Action Line' was broadcast following the 'Next Time' trail, for those wanting more information on 'issues raised in this program.'
  • Pictures of the First and Second Doctors are printed on the TARDIS' typewriter.
  • This is the second story in the series to lack any cracks, silence, or other foreshadowing of the series' finale (the first being Amy's Choice). However, it does tie in to Rory's death and establishes that, on some level, Amy is aware he has died.
  • Although originally believed to be standalone, spoilers make this story involved with the series arc, some mentioning van Gogh's paintings, one of which is Dr. Gatchet, relating to the finale. Dr. Gatchet is supposed to be appearing in the mentioned episode. Others include van Gogh communicating a disturbing prophecy to the Doctor in the finale through one of his paintings, and a van Gogh reference in DW: The Lodger.
  • Bill Nighy was not credited for his role.
  • Numerous positive or affirmative references were made in the episode to van Gogh and Amy's hair colour, perhaps in a conscious effort to address the accusation by some viewers of the program being 'anti-ginger' (the so-called 'ginger' controversy).
  • The song used for the final scenes is "Chances" by Athlete.
  • Amy attempting to get Vincent to paint 'The Sunflowers' is similar to Rose trying to get Queen Victoria to say, "I am not amused." (DW: Tooth and Claw)


5.0 million

Filming locations

  • National Museum of Wales [1]
  • Trogir, Croatia [2]
  • Roald Dahl Plass [3], which is supposed to double for the Musée d'Orsay in Paris


  • It was rumoured that either the Timoreen, the Ha'rik or the Skarkish will appear. The monster was a Krafayis.
  • It was rumoured that Vincent van Gogh will stab a yellow monster. He stabbed the Krafayis, the monster was pale yellow.
  • Howard Lee plays a character called "Dr. Gachet" [4]. Dr. Gachet was van Gogh's real doctor, who nursed him during his final years. He was mentioned but he was not actually in the episode.
  • Nighy plays a van Gogh expert, with similar fashion tastes to the Doctor himself. This turned out also true. He also wore a bowtie.
  • Steven Moffat stated in a recent interview that the controversial topic of the regeneration limit for Time Lords will be "addressed in a very, very cheeky way by an old friend of mine" at some point in Series 5. [5] As the "old friend" could very well be Richard Curtis, the issue might be addressed in this episode. This turned out to be false for this episode, but it could happen in later episodes with Alex Kingston's character River Song addressing the subject, as Steven Moffatt created her character.
  • As a Vincent van Gogh painting will feature in the events of "The Pandorica Opens", it was likely that this story would bring more developments to the main story arc of the series. [6] This was not the case, with the episode being more or less a stand-alone story, but apparently the finale will still feature a van Gogh painting in some way. This connection may be illuminated in "The Lodger", as a pamphlet for a van Gogh exhibit can be seen on Craig's fridge in the trailer. Although, the Doctor does take a van Gogh painting inside the TARDIS trying to identify the Krafayis, he pitches the painting over his shoulder into the TARDIS. Perhaps that painting is the one to carry a message 1,000 years into the future.
  • It was rumoured that Vincent will propose to Amy or ask the Doctor to travel with them because in the preview clips, he shows a large interest in Amy and the Doctor and even tells Amy that he loves her. This turned out true.

Production errors

  • When running through the streets with his mirror, the Doctor screams "Ahh", but his mouth is not synced with his screaming.
  • For most of the episode, Amy is wearing tights. During the church scene, when van Gogh starts painting the Church, they've gone. Later on when the group are hiding from the monster, she's wearing them again, as was the case with the previous episode.
  • When in the chapel looking for the monster, the Doctor switches the mirror from his left to right side while holding his sonic screwdriver. For each change, the camera angle also changes, and the sonic screwdriver changes from being in closed mode and extended mode.
  • At the beginning, when looking at the painting of the church, the Doctor scratches his head. When the camera is behind the Doctor, he uses his right hand but when the camera cuts to in front of him, he is using his left hand.


If you'd like to talk about narrative problems with this story — like plot holes and things that seem to contradict other stories — please go to this episode's discontinuity discussion.

Home video releases

BBC Video - Doctor Who Series Five - Volume Three will feature Amy's Choice, The Hungry Earth, Cold Blood and Vincent and the Doctor. It will be released on Monday 2nd August 2010 (UK Only) on DVD and Blu-ray.[1]

over twelve years ago

Michael, I feel you were a little harsh on this story, OK I realise that this is just how you feel, but to take a dig at the shows and then the BBC's attempt to tackle the issue of depression was a bit much. You say you don't get it, well I suggest you take a listen to the Cultdom Collective podcast reviewing this, towards the end Ian, The 6th Doctor, goes on about how the issue of depression is one that does hit home to him having suffered the condition himself. It's a very moving review and once you listen you may start to see the point.
Michael, you seem to have distanced yourself somewhat from the rest of fandom, you never update Gallifrey Base any more about new podcasts,you've cut yourself off from feedback via twitter.
I haven't heard you guesting on another podcast for a while and I think it would do you good if you were to appear on a fan reaction edition of the Doctor Who Podcast.