The Lie of the Land was the eighth episode of the tenth series of Doctor Who produced by BBC Wales. The conclusion of a three-story arc in which the Twelfth Doctor is pitted against the Monks, it saw him enter the Vault to consult Missy, revealing his endeavor to turn her from her destructive past to a path of "good".
The episode is very notable before it even aired for having one scene shown from it in the preview for all of Series 10 at the end of The Pilot: that being the Doctor starting to regenerate. Much like David Tennant before, after The Stolen Earth had aired, there were rumours and speculations that Peter Capaldi was actually leaving Doctor Who much earlier than he had previously announced. However The Lie of the Land reveals that the Doctor doesn't actually regenerate, as it's shown that Time Lords can actually fake a regeneration by making the usual effects appear, but with no actual change in appearance happening.
The Monks have ruled the world since humanity took its very first baby steps towards the Sun. One problem... they haven't always been there. And only Bill Potts sees the truth. But where is the Doctor? And how can Bill make the rest of the world see?
A montage of images of events in human evolution is shown, as the Doctor does a voice over, saying that the Monks have guided humanity and helped them evolve while praising them, as a shot of the world on Earth shows that the Monks have erected giant statues of them.
In a house a family is watching it, as a symbol is shown with the words "truth" underneath. Suddenly, armed men, break into the house and arrest the mother, as she yells that the Monks have only been there a few months. Bill is watching them in horror, as a shot of the cities on Earth show that the statues are erected everywhere, as the Doctor tells them to relax and be obedient, assuring them that their future is being taken care of.
In her flat, Bill sets down two mugs on a table, then concentrates. Another woman appears across the table. Bill greets her, saying, " Hello, Mum," reveling her to be an imagined version of her, a false memory derived from the pictures of her, and how Bill imagined she must be like. She tells her that she did not know how the Monks had invaded. She says that she used to travel with the Doctor and Nardole, telling her mum that every day it's harder for her to remember.
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- The Doctor - Peter Capaldi
- Bill - Pearl Mackie
- Nardole - Matt Lucas
- Missy - Michelle Gomez
- Mother - Emma Handy
- Group Commander - Beatrice Curnew
- Alan - Stewart Wright
- Richard - Solomon Israel
- Giant Monk - Jamie Hill
- Bill's Mum - Rosie Jane
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- The Monks propagate falsehoods and Fake News through Bill, and have injected themselves into all of human history. The Monks take credit for humanity's achievements.
- A montage (in the beginning of the episode) shows, although not named, altered versions of the Lascaux cave paintings, da Vinci's Vitruvian Man and the Mona Lisa appear. Each of these is altered to incorporate the Monks. Photos also appear of the Monks with Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein (in front of a blackboard with E=MC² written), Neil Armstrong and Winston Churchill.
- Armstrong's speech "It's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind" is heard.
- The Doctor suggests he'd make some modifications to history, like ending racism, and people who talk in cinemas.
- Jane broke the Memory Crimes Act of 1975. She is sentenced to 10 years in labour camp.
- The Doctor mentions to Bill that the Romans saved people from disease, war, famine and barbarism.
- The Doctor mentions fascism and fundamentalism.
- Missy plays "Hot or Cold" with the Doctor.
- Missy mentions Celebrity Love Island.
- The Monks' Truth posters have been plastered all over other posters, including Kikiro: One Last Time, "socialist sports car", one that mentions Carl Payne and Paul Moloneux and one that mentions Bristol.
- The Doctor explains that Bill is unaffected in "Fake News Central" because they are at the eye of the storm, as all the lies are being broadcast from there.
- A montage (in the beginning of the episode) shows a cell splitting.
- The Doctor mentions the light bulb, the telephone and the Internet.
- The Bishop family owns a Sharp TV.
- The Monks use a signal scrambler to blur the signal of the broadcasts.
- Nardole found a signal GPS in the TARDIS to trace the broadcasts.
- The Vault is dimensionally transcendental, like some other Time Lord technology.
- Quantum Fold Chambers have containment fields.
- Missy asks for "toys" like a particle accelerator, a 3D printer and a pony, in return for her help.
- The Monk statues around the world act as beacons for false propaganda.
- On an A-Z map highlights the Regalis and the H.M.S. Belfast.
- The Doctor calls the guards' tape recorders "stereo headphone iThing"s.
Martial arts Edit
- Nardole performs a Tarovian neck pinch to knock out Alan. He's reached the level of Brown Tabard in Tarovian martial arts.
- The Doctor had Bill write a 3000 word essay on free will, which she never completed due to the Monk invasion.
- The Doctor says Missy is going cold turkey from being bad.
- Missy speaks both French and Spanish.
- The Memory Police are roaming the cities enforcing the Truth.
- A Magpie Electricals shop is broadcasting the Doctor's Monk Truth on window-televisions.
- The shop Spencer Skuse & Potter is seen.
- A Fiction Factory shop is seen.
- The Doctor has 50 Danish kroner in a drawer in the TARDIS.
Food and beverages Edit
- The Doctor has takeaway menus in a drawer in the TARDIS.
- The Doctor says that after spending six months of talking sense into the guards, he could use a Strepsil.
- Missy says Nardole looks like an egg.
- The Monks have erected statues in cities including Bristol, New York City, Paris, Forbidden City, Sydney and Toronto, among others. Statues have also been erected by landmarks, including St Basil's Cathedral, Mount Rushmore, Niagara Falls and Stonehenge.
- Breaking News reports of Memory Criminal investigations going on in Tokyo.
- Nardole mentions Australia.
- Locations on Nardole's map include Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aberdeen; all located in the United Kingdom. Locations around the UK include the Hebrides, Orkney Islands and Shetland Islands. The Faroe Islands, highlighted as being part of Denmark, are also located north of the UK. To the north-east of the UK is Norway which includes the locations Stavange, Bergen and Oslo.
- Some locations on the map appear only partially. "Belfa" (Belfast) is located in Northern Ireland, "lin" (Dublin) is on the east coast of Ireland and "Trondhe" (Trondheim) is located in Norway. Across the border in Sweden are "Stockh" (Stockholm) and "Gothenbur" (Gothenburg).
- The Doctor is located on an old Hulk prison boat off the coast of Scotland.
- The Doctor mentions Vienna in his rant to Bill.
- Bill mentions Seine, in Paris.
- The Cathedral has relocated to central London. It is now located west of St Paul's Cathedral, south of London Wall, east of St Martin Le Grand and north of Cannon Street.
- An A-Z highlights locations such as Bermondsey, Cannon Street, River Thames, Southwark Bridge, London Bridge, Blackfriars, Millennium Bridge, Tooley Street, Queen Victoria Street, Newgate Street, Farmingdon Street, Shoe Lane, St Bride Street, London Wall, Mansion House St, Holborn Viaduct, King's Reach, St. Mary's Overie's Dock, Byward Street, Clerkenwell, Houndsditch, Tower Hill, Minories, East Smithfield, The Tower of London, Mansell Street and Aldersgate Street.
- Portland House is also seen.
- A montage (at the beginning of the episode) shows a mudskipper crawling towards a welcoming Monk.
- The Doctor mentions the Daleks, the Cybermen and the Weeping Angels in his broadcast.
- Bill mentions the "Heather creature".
- The Doctor mentions the sea serpent.
- Time Lords can "fake" a regeneration, seemingly by starting the process only to abort it before any actual healing, if needed, is enacted.
- Bill references Heather.
- Nardole once had an imaginary friend.
- Nardole won his current left hand gambling.
- The boat captain has an identity card for the Sea Ranger IV which includes his fingerprint and the Truth logo.
- Richard, Alan and Dave are all part of the resistance group.
- When Bill attempts to drown out the propaganda, images of her childhood appear on the screens. (archive images of Bill from The Pilot, Thin Ice and Knock Knock also appear)
- Missy had previously defeated the Monks by pushing the girl, who was the lynchpin back then, into a volcano.
Story notes Edit
- The read-through for The Lie of the Land took place on 11 January 2017, and filming took place between 16 January and 22 February.
- Archive material from TV: Blink, Nightmare in Silver, Into the Dalek, and The Pilot is shown. By extension, Weeping Angels, Cybermen, Daleks and photos of Bill Potts' birth mother are shown in this capacity.
- This story, along with Mission to the Unknown, Doctor Who and the Silurians, The Mind of Evil, The Dæmons, The Sea Devils, The Sontaran Experiment, Genesis of the Daleks and Midnight, are the only nine stories to not feature the TARDIS, although she is mentioned.
- This is the second story of the tenth series which sees Bill almost using a curse word; I'm gonna beat the sh…. The first was TV: Thin Ice.
- The various photographs inside The Cathedral showing various moments in the history of our universe, appear to be the originals, whereas the TV broadcast photographs have been altered.
- Screens inside the pyramid show images of a "votes for women" sign, the Truth logo, Winston Churchill, Albert Einstein, Emmeline Pankhurst, Mother Teresa, Neil Armstrong, the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer, Martin Luther King, Mount Everest, Big Bang, Big Ben and the London Eye at New Year's Eve, Concorde, Elizabeth II with Prince Philip and Bobby Moore, the Berlin Wall, and Donald Trump.
- Ian McNeice's version of Winston Churchill was to appear at one of the screens in The Cathedral, seen as the Doctor is walking in. This was changed in the broadcast episode, as an image of the real Churchill was instead used.
- This is the only episode of the revived series to feature the appearance of regeneration (albeit a faked one) to not be written by the head writer (then Steven Moffat).
- 3.01m (UK overnight figures)
- 4.82m (UK final)
The episode also notably had the lowest audience share of any episode since the series revived in 2005, with only 20.3%.
Filming locations Edit
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Production errors Edit
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- The Doctor mentions the Daleks, (TV: The Daleks, et al.) the Cybermen (TV: The Tenth Planet, et al.) and the Weeping Angels. (TV: Blink et al.)
- Citizens watch the Doctor's broadcasts in a Magpie Electricals shop. (TV: The Idiot's Lantern, et al.)
- To gain Bill's trust, Nardole tells her they went to Australia on the run from "the Heather creature" (TV: The Pilot) and that space doors should go "shuck shuck". (TV: Oxygen)
- The Doctor and Bill reference her asking the Monks for help and him getting back eyesight. (TV: The Pyramid at the End of the World)
- Nardole mentions being contaminated by Raoultella planticola (TV: The Pyramid at the End of the World) and states it laid him up for six weeks.
- Bill mentions her status as kitchen staff at the University. (TV: The Pilot)
- The Doctor tells Bill about the creature under the Thames. (TV: Thin Ice)
- The Doctor fakes a regeneration. (TV: The Impossible Astronaut, The Wedding of River Song) In doing so, he voluntarily conjures up regeneration energy (TV: Rise of the Cybermen, The Angels Take Manhattan, The Witch's Familiar).
- Missy previously scoffed at the idea that she had "turned good" when questioned by Clara Oswald. (TV: The Magician's Apprentice) He preferred to die than be taken "prisoner", under the Tenth Doctor's protection. (TV: Last of the Time Lords) As early as his seventh incarnation, the Doctor had vowed to one day save his friend after the Master was forced to revert following a temporary spell as the kindly John Smith. (AUDIO: Master)
- Nardole knocks Alan out with a Tarovian neck pinch, using only his thumb. Ian Chesterton demonstrated a similar act on Ixta. (TV: The Aztecs)
- Nardole continues to hint at a cybernetic nature (TV: The Return of Doctor Mysterio, The Pilot, The Pyramid at the End of the World) when he tells the group invading the pyramid that his left hand isn't his original hand but is one that he won in a game of some sort.
- The Doctor introduces Missy to Bill as "the other last of the Time Lords". (TV: Utopia, The Sound of Drums, Last of the Time Lords)
- Bill recalls being "attacked by a puddle". (TV: The Pilot)
Home video releases Edit
DVD releases Edit
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Blu-ray releases Edit
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Digital releases Edit
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