Doctor Who

Season 5 Episode 12

The Pandorica Opens (1)

Aired Saturday 8:00 PM Jun 19, 2010 on BBC America
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Episode Summary


A Van Gogh painting ferried across thousands of years, communicating a disturbing prophecy to the Doctor, a message on the oldest cliff-face in the universe and a love that lasts a thousand years. In 102 AD England, Romans receive a surprise visit from Cleopatra. Nearby, Stonehenge conceals the Pandorica, a prison-box of legend. As it slowly unlocks from the inside, terrible forces gather in the heavens above. The fates are drawing close around the TARDIS – is this the day the Doctor falls? There is just one certainty: Silence will fall...


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Bill Paterson

Bill Paterson


Guest Star

Ian McNeice

Ian McNeice

Winston Churchill

Guest Star

Sophie Okonedo

Sophie Okonedo

Liz 10

Guest Star

Arthur Darvill

Arthur Darvill

Rory Williams

Recurring Role

Alex Kingston

Alex Kingston

River Song

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (8)

    • When the Doctor is telling Amy his plan to visit Planet One, she is wearing red gloves. Her gloves disappear when she takes the Doctor's hand, and then reappear as they exit the TARDIS.

    • When the Pandorica opens and the Doctor says "The final phase. It's opening," the shot is flipped. In that shot, Matt Smith's hair falls on the left side of his face, when it normally falls on his right, while it falls on his right side just before and just after that shot.

    • When Vincent Van Gogh is shown, his left ear is intact. But by 1890, he had cut off the lower lobe.

    • Commander Strak's name is misspelled "Stark" in the closing credits.

    • Early in the episode, the Doctor and Amy read the message on the cliff face using the TARDIS' translation capabilities. However, in the episode, Time of the Angels, Amy wasn't able to read a similar message on the home box.

    • The message River leaves for the Doctor reads "HELLO SWEETIE ΘΣ Φ ΓΥΔϟ". ΘΣ (Theta Sigma) was the Doctor's nickname during his days in the Time Lord Academy, a fact previously stated in the original series stories The Armageddon Factor and The Happiness Patrol.

    • The appearance of a Uvodni (from The Sarah Jane Adventures story Warriors of Kudlak) and the Weevils and Blowfish (seen many times in Torchwood) marks the first time aliens from the spin-off shows feature in the main series.

    • Among the alien races that are approaching Stonehenge are "Chelonians". The Chelonian race premiered in the New Adventure "The Highest Science" and were also featured in the Missing Adventures novels "The Well-Mannered War" and "The Crystal Bucephalus".

  • QUOTES (11)

    • The Doctor: One day it would just drop out of the sky and tear down the world.
      Amy: How did it end up in there?
      The Doctor: You know fairy tales. A good wizard tricked it.
      River: I hate good wizards in fairy tales. They always turn out to be him.

    • Amy: It's weird, i feel.. I don't know, something.
      The Doctor: They fall out of the world sometimes, but they always leave traces. Little things you can't quite account for. Faces in photographs, luggage, half-eaten meals. Rings. Nothing is ever forgotten, not completely. And if something can be remembered... it can come back.

    • The Doctor: Go get her.
      Rory: But I don't understand. Why am I here?
      The Doctor: Because you are. The universe is big, it's vast and complicated, and ridiculous. And sometimes, very rarely, impossible things just happen and we call them miracles. And that's the theory. Nine hundred years, never seen one yet, but this would do me.

    • Doctor: (distracting a cyber-arm) Hey look at me, I'm a target!

    • Doctor: (Shouting through a loudspeaker) Come on, look at me! No plan, no back up, no weapons worth a damn, oh, and something else I don't have, anything to lose! So, if you're sitting up there in your silly little space ships with all your silly little guns, and you've got any plans on taking the Pandorica tonight, just remember who's standing in your way! Remember every black day I ever stopped you, and then, and then, do the smart thing! (pause) Let somebody else try first.

    • The Doctor: Hello again.
      Rory: Hello.
      The Doctor: How've you been?
      Rory: Good, yeah. Good. I mean, Roman.
      The Doctor: Rory, I'm not trying to be rude. But you died.
      Rory: Yeah. I know. I was there.
      The Doctor: You died and then you were erased from time. You were never born at all. You never existed.
      Rory: Erased. What does that mean?
      The Doctor: How can you be here?
      Rory: I don't know. It's kind of fuzzy.
      The Doctor: Fuzzy?
      Rory: Well, I died and turned into a Roman. It's very distracting.

    • Amy: Why am I crying?
      Rory: Because you remember me. I came back. You're crying because you remember me.

    • River Song: Doctor, this once, just this one time, please, you have to run.
      The Doctor: Run, where?
      River Song: Fight, how?

    • Cyberman Head: You will be assimilated.
      Amy: Yeah? You and whose body?

    • The Doctor: Yes, okay, okay, okay, okay. Dalek fleet, minimum 12,000 battleships, armed to the teeth. Ah, but we've got surprise on our side! They'll never expect three people to attack 12,000 Dalek battleships. 'cos we'd be killed instantly, so it would be a fairly short surprise... Okay, forget surprise.

    • The Doctor: You graffitied the oldest cliff face in the universe.
      River: You wouldn't answer your phone.

  • NOTES (0)