BBC Doctor Who - The Stories BBC
QuickNav to a Season: 
QuickNav to a Story: 
 
The Previous Story
The Lodger
 The Previous Story
The Previous Story
(Vincent and The Doctor)
 The Next Story
(The Pandorica Opens/The Big Bang)
Season
Details
SynopsisGeneral
Information
The
Episodes
Audience
Appreciation
ArchivesNotesFirst and LastThe PlotQuote of
the Story
Release
Information
In PrintPhoto
Gallery
 

Matt Smith
The Lodger
Eleventh Doctor Logo


Synopsis


The Lodger
The Lodger
 The Doctor faces his greatest challenge yet - a flat share! People are disappearing on Aickman Road, and The Doctor must solve the mystery of a staircase that people walk up - but never down.

Source: Radio Times


General Information

Season: Thirty One (New Series 5)
Production Code: 5-11
Story Number: 211 (New Series: 55)
Episode Number:767 (New Series: 71)
Number of Episodes: 1
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Production Dates: 2010 (Block 6)
Broadcast Date: 12 June 2010
Colour Status: HD Colour
Studio: BBC Wales (Upper Boat, Pontypridd)
Location: Westville Road and Victoria Park (Cardiff).
Writer:Gareth Roberts
Director:Catherine Morshead
Producer:Tracie Simpson
Executive Producers:Beth Willis, Piers Wenger and Steven Moffat
Script Editor:Lindsey Alford
Editor:Jamie Pearson
Production Executive:Julie Scott
Production Designer:Tristan Peatfield
Director of Photography:Sinon Archer
Casting Director:Andy Pryor CDG
Line Producer:Patrick Schweitzer
Costume Designer:Ray Holman
Make-Up Designer:Barbara Southcott
Cameramen:Jon Vidgen (Assistant), Tom Hartley (Assistant), Ian Adrian (Operator) and Richard Stoddard (Operator)
Incidental Music:Murray Gold
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Paul Jefferies
Sound Recordist:Bryn Thomas
Sound Supervisor:Paul McFadden
Visual Effects:BBC Wales Graphic Design
Special Effects:Real SFX
Stunt Co-ordinator:Crispin Layfield
Title Sequence:Frame Store
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Murray Gold
Music Performed By: The BBC National Orchestra of Wales
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: Matt Smith (The Eleventh Doctor)
Number of Companions: 1The Companion: Karen Gillan (Amy Pond) Additional Cast: James Corden (Craig), Daisy Haggard (Sophie), Owen Donovan (Steven), Babatunde Aleshe (Sean), Jem Wall (Michael), Karen Seacombe (Sandra), Kamara Bacchus (Clubber)Setting: Aickman Road, Colchester, Earth (2010) Villain:The Auto Pilot

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
767The Lodger12 June 201042'31"BBC One: 6.0
BBC HD: 0.4
Total: 6.4
Yes

Total Duration 43 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 6.4 (BBC One: 6.0   BBC HD: 0.4)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2010)76.30%  (Position = 6 out of 10)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2014)73.68% Lower (Position = 90 out of 241)


Archives


 This story exists and is held in the BBC's Film and Videotape Library.



Return to the top of this page
 


Notes


This story has been written by Gareth Roberts whose previous Doctor Who stories were "The Shakespeare Code" and "The Unicorn and the Wasp". As well as co-writing "Planet of the Dead" he also wrote the interactive mini-story, "Attack of the Graske". He has also scripted stories for the 2010 series of The Sarah Jane Adventures – The spin-off series starring Elizabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith.

Gareth Roberts based this story on his 2007 Doctor Who Magazine comic strip "The Lodger", which featured the Tenth Doctor, Rose Tyler and Mickey Smith. Although the broadcasted story is not a straight-forward adaptation of the earlier story (especially as the comic strip was written for different characters) it does contain a number of similarities, principally in showing how The Doctor would fare spending time (in Amy Pond’s words) as a ‘normal bloke’. Whereas the comic strip focused more on a domestic set-up the television story involves ‘something at the top of the stairs’. This is not the first time that a non-televised story has been adapted for the television show. The 2007 Tenth Doctor story "Human Nature/The Family of Blood" being an example.

As well as a comic strip by Gareth Roberts, "The Lodger" is also the title of Alfred Hitchcock's first thriller (aka The Lodger: A Story of the London Fog). It's not the first time a Doctor Who story has had a title already used for a movie. Previous examples include "Underworld", "Black Orchid", and "Voyage of the Damned".

"The Lodger" was recorded as part of the seventh recording block along with "Amy's Choice". Location filming took place in Cardiff in early March 2010. The house in which Craig has his flat is in Westville Road while the location for the football match was Victoria Park. The play area there had previously been used as a location in the 2008 Tenth Doctor story "Silence in the Library/Forest of the Dead".

Apart for the very end The Doctor and Amy Pond never actually meet in this story. This is very rare but not unique for a Doctor Who story. In "Attack of the Graske", The Doctor makes it clear he is continuing to travel with Rose, but we never actually see her onscreen.

This is not the first time that a story, since the show was revived in 2005, that a companion has not had a full part to play. This is similar to the 2008 Donna Noble-lite story "Midnight". Previous similar stories include The Doctor and Rose-lite 2006 story "Love & Monsters" and The Doctor and Martha Jones-lite 2007 story "Blink".

During the head-butting scene when The Doctor performs a psychic link with Craig, the faces of some of the previous incarnations of The Doctor are seen. These include the Ninth Doctor (Christopher Eccleston), the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant), the Eighth Doctor (Paul McGann), the Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker), the Third Doctor (Jon Pertwee), the First Doctor (William Hartnell) and the Second Doctor (Patrick Troughton). The Cybermen, Rose Tyler, an Ood, and a Weeping Angel also are shown. For some unknown reason the Fifth Doctor (Peter Davison), the Sixth Doctor (Colin Baker) and the Seventh Doctor (Sylvester McCoy) do not appear in this montage.

Immediately after this sequence The Doctor is heard telling Craig that he is the eleventh incarnation. This is the first time in the revived show that The Doctor has definitively stated how many incarnations he has had.

The Doctor wears the number 11 jersey when playing a football match. This is not only a reference to him being the Eleventh Doctor but also that this story is the eleventh episode of Season Thirty One (New Series 5).

The football team The Doctor and Craig play for is called the King's Arms. These scenes did not require much rehearsal as Matt Smith has previous experience as a youth footballer, having played for the youth teams of Northampton Town, Nottingham Forest and Leicester City. It has been reported that he excelled at the game and originally wanted to become a professional footballer before an injury prevented him from taking it up as a career so causing him to focus on acting instead.

Despite Matt Smith’s previous football experience writer Gareth Roberts has stated that the football scenes was always going to be carried over from the comic story and he began writing it prior to the casting of Matt Smith.

Another coincidence is the 2010 FIFA World Cup England vs USA football match kicked off just as "The Lodger" finished. The timing has been noted by writer Gareth Roberts as a ‘happy accident’.

The Doctor playing football is the second time he has shown exceptional skill when playing a sport when entering a team at the last minute. In the 1982 story "Black Orchid", the Fifth Doctor plays a cricket match and proves to be equally skilled with both bat and ball.

Look out for the scene in the Craig’s kitchen. On the fridge is a postcard advertising the Van Gogh exhibition at the Musée d'Orsay, which The Doctor, Amy and later Vincent Van Gogh himself visited in the previous story, "Vincent and The Doctor".

Also in The Doctor’s room is a print on the wall which appears to be a variation of a Van Gogh sketch of a wheat harvest from one of the artist’s letters written in August 1884.

Craig is heard to use the Eleventh Doctor's catchphrase ‘Geronimo!’ that he introduced in "The End of Time" and also exclaimed in "The Eleventh Hour" and "The Beast Below".

The Doctor is heard to once again mention that bow ties are cool. As he previously stated in "The Eleventh Hour", "Amy's Choice" and "Vincent and The Doctor".

The Doctor refers himself as ‘the Oncoming Storm’ again. (see the 2005 Ninth Doctor story "Bad Wolf/The Parting of the Ways", the Tenth Doctor stories: "The Girl in the Fireplace" and "The Stolen Earth/Journey's End" and the Eleventh Doctor story "Amy's Choice").

After Craig is poisoned by the wall, The Doctor feeds him tea, with the intention of ‘reversing the enzyme decay’ in Craig’s body.

When in the shower, The Doctor is heard singing Verdi's "La donna è mobile" which The Third Doctor previously sang at the beginning of the 1970 story "Inferno".

This is not the first time The Doctor has showered himself on screen. The Third Doctor is seen taking a shower in the 1970 story "Spearhead From Space".

When The Doctor rushes out of the shower, in fear of Craig's safety, he grabs a toothbrush rather than his Sonic Screwdriver. In a later scene The Doctor is seen with a regular screwdriver and asking where the on switch is!

The Doctor at one point is seen wearing only a blue bath towel. Matt Smith appeared similarly undressed in Secret Diary of a Call Girl, which stars Billie Piper, when he was playing the part of one of her clients.

The Doctor seems to have regained the fondness for cats embraced by his Sixth incarnation and later reverted into a dislike by his Tenth (see "Fear Her"). Over the course of the story he is seen conversing with one about its findings when it had visited the upstairs flat. The real name of the cat that features in this story is called Pearl.

According to The Doctor the spaceship, that is the upstairs flat, is an attempt by someone to build a TARDIS. However, it is too weak to link with a Time Lord but too strong for a human.

The centre of the Faux-TARDIS resembles the actual TARDIS' control room seen in the 1996 film "Doctor Who: The Movie". However, the centre console has large orbs for control devices, a characteristic usually seen in Dalek designs.

Another crack in the universe is once again seen, this time in the wall in Craig's flat.

Rumour was that Amy will remember, or begin to remember, Rory by the end of the story. Although she never remembered him enough to say it, she did find the engagement ring from Rory, that previously featured in "The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood", in the pocket of The Doctor's coat. It uncertain if this will spark memories of Rory or if she will assume that The Doctor intends to propose to her himself.

This story was mistakenly entitled "Reality Check", "A Clinical Finish", "Don't Go Up the Stairs", and "Something at the Top of the Stairs".

In the ‘next time’ trailer, clips from "The Eleventh Hour", "The Beast Below", "Victory of the Daleks", "The Time of Angels/Flesh and Stone", "The Vampires of Venice" and "The Hungry Earth/Cold Blood" were shown.

Following on immediately after this story, on BBC3, was the eleventh chapter of the fifth series of Doctor Who Confidential. Titled "Extra Time" which looked into the making of this story. It was presented by Alex Price.



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first time a storyline has been based on a Doctor Who comic strip.

 The first time in the revised series that The Doctor has definitively stated how many incarnations he has had.

 The first time The Doctor is seen playing football.


Return to the top of this page
 


The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
The Doctor Arrives
The Doctor Arrives

The TARDIS materialises on Earth, in a park in Colchester, rather than the intended destination of the Fifth Moon of Sinda Callista. As The Doctor steps outside he is thrown to the ground. He is then shocked to see the TARDIS dematerialises with his travelling companion, Amy Pond, still inside leaving him behind.

The following day, outside a nearby house, passers-by are seen being lured into the house by a voice seeking help, from the intercom at its front door. When the door opens they are encouraged to ascend the staircase to the first floor. But as they enter the room flashing lights are seen and screams are heard emanating from behind the now closed upstairs door.

Meanwhile, in the downstairs flat a man called Craig and his female friend, Sophie, discuss a strange stain, which is on the ceiling in the corner of the room, and their plans for the evening. Their plans, however, are curtailed when Sophie has to leave so that she can tend to another friend who is upset over a recent break up. This leaves Craig with the prospect of spending the evening alone. However, when the doorbell rings he is delighted as he thinks it is Sophie returning. But when he opens the front door Craig is shocked to discover it is The Doctor who claims to have seen an advertisement to rent Craig’s spare room.

Craig
Craig

Before he can be stopped The Doctor walks in and gives Craig a paper bag containing a large amount of money as rent. The Doctor explores the downstairs flat and, so as to persuade Craig that he will be a good lodger, he cooks Craig an omelette. On noticing the stain on the ceiling he warns Craig to avoid touching the rot. Claiming to be an expert in rot he tells Craig that he will fix it himself. This convinces Craig to allow The Doctor to stay. Then in his room The Doctor contacts Amy, using a communication device in his ear, to discuss what is going wrong. The TARDIS then begins shaking violently and The Doctor tells Amy how to fix it. Unknown to The Doctor another passer-by has been enticed inside the house and upstairs.

The next day, while The Doctor is showering, Craig hears a loud bang from upstairs and so goes upstairs to investigate. The Doctor panics and fears Craig is in danger, so grabs Craig's toothbrush in mistake of his sonic screwdriver. The Doctor finds Craig safe and is introduced to Sophie who has just arrived and let herself into the flat. After receiving a phone call Craig asks The Doctor to join him in his pub football league as his team lacks a player. Believing football is played with the sticks The Doctor agrees.

Sophie
Sophie

At the football match, The Doctor at first shows how unfamiliar he is with the game but he soon shows his skill and talent scoring many goals so winning the match. Craig, however, becomes jealous of the increasingly popular Doctor. However, while celebrating their win The Doctor witnesses Craig and his friends becoming stuck in a time-loop. At the same time the TARDIS shakes violently and, back at Craig’s house another person enters the upstairs flat. The affects on the TARDIS concerns The Doctor who is worried that Amy could be lost in the TARDIS forever.

Back at the flat, Craig asks The Doctor to keep out of his way while he is with Sophie so he can profess his love for her. The Doctor however interrupts them and as they talk he convinces Sophie that she can do anything and encourages her to work with Orang-utans like she dreams. Later that night, after Sophie has left, Craig touches the rot, that is spreading even further over the ceiling, only to pull his hand back in pain.

In the morning, The Doctor prepares breakfast for Craig only to find him nearly dead. The Doctor makes him remedy out of teabags for Craig to drink. Craig claims there is a business meeting he needs to go to but The Doctor insists that he stays in bed to rest. Suddenly Craig wakes up to find that it is now the afternoon. He rushes to work to find The Doctor at his desk insulting a rude client. His manager then says he was useful at the meeting. This upsets Craig who becomes jealous of The Doctor for being better than him and for suggesting to Sophie that she should leave to fulfil her dreams. Craig is worried he could lose Sophie - the woman he secretly loves.

The Lodger
The Lodger

Aware that the first floor room may not be all it appears to be, and with increasingly frequent time-loop events occurring, The Doctor builds, in his room, a scanning device in an attempt to discover the nature of the threat. Craig however, discovers The Doctor’s apparatus forcing The Doctor, so he can remain in the house, to mind-meld with Craig. This informs Craig of The Doctor’s alien nature. Sophie then arrives at the house and spots a young girl at the top of the stairs. She asks Sophie to help her and so Sophie follows her into the upstairs room. After seeing her keys in the door The Doctor and Craig become aware of Sophie’s arrival. Then, on hearing a scream, they race up the stairs to save her. The Doctor contacts Amy who reveals to him that according to the house’s blueprints, which she has discovered in the TARDIS’ databanks, the building is only one storey tall and so there is only the ground floor. When they open the upstairs door The Doctor and Craig discover they have entered a spaceship. The Doctor, however, is more shocked to discover that the inside of the spaceship resembles the Console Room of a TARDIS.

They also discover Sophie being pulled towards a console. The Doctor rushes over to her and, with the help of Craig, they manage to break the contact between her and the console. A man then appears which The Doctor realises is a holographic auto pilot who is able to appear in the form of the various victims it has attracted, as well as Craig's seldom-seen neighbour. The Doctor learns from the hologram that the spaceship crashed killing all the crew. Since then the auto pilot has rebuilt the spaceship and, so as to find a suitable replacement, it has been luring in humans so they can be tested. However, all the human minds tested so far have proved not sufficient for the task so killing them. Recognising The Doctor as a suitable pilot, the ship tries to pull him in. Knowing he cannot pilot the ship safely (as it would destroy the entire solar system in the process), The Doctor realises that the spaceship had only lured in people who wanted to escape or leave somewhere, hence why it hadn't attempted to lure Craig before (nor Sophie, until The Doctor motivated her to better herself). After finally admitting their love for each other, both Craig and Sophie touch the panel’s activator, causing the spaceship’s engines to shut down and the spaceship to implode. Fleeing, the house they notice the spaceship vanish along with the entire top floor which, The Doctor explains no one else has noticed due to a perception filter.

With the danger over, and the TARDIS able to materialise, The Doctor says his goodbyes to Craig and Sophie. Back in the TARDIS The Doctor is reunited with Amy and they travel back in time a week so that Amy can leave the note in the newsagent’s that directed him to Craig’s flat in the first place. However, when Amy looks for a red pen with, which to write the note, she looks inside the pocket of The Doctor’s discarded jacket that is draped over a chair. Instead she finds the engagement ring that Rory had given to her before he was erased from time. Its presence unsettles her. Unbeknown to both The Doctor and Amy back in Craig’s flat, in the wall behind Craig's fridge, another crack in the universe glows ominous as it grows larger…

 
Sophie, Craig and The Doctor
Sophie, Craig and The Doctor
Football Crazy
Football Crazy
Craig and Sophie
Craig and Sophie
The Doctor Interrupts
The Doctor Interrupts
 
Amy in the TARDIS
Amy in the TARDIS
The Doctor in Trouble
The Doctor in Trouble
The Timeship Revealed
The Timeship Revealed
Amy Finds the Ring…
Amy Finds the Ring…




Quote of the Story


 'All I have to do is pass as an ordinary human being. Simple. What could possibly go wrong?'

The Doctor



Return to the top of this page
 


Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Video
DVD
The Lodger - The Pandorica Opens - The Big BangSeptember 2010BBCDVD 3216Photo-montage
Video
Blu-Ray
The Lodger - The Pandorica Opens - The Big BangSeptember 2010BBCBD 0085Photo-montage
Video
DVD
The Complete Fifth Series Box SetNovember 2010BBCDVD 3285Photo-montageDVD boxed set containing all 10 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Fifth Series Box SetNovember 2010BBCBD 0115Photo-montageBlu-Ray boxed set containing all 10 stories
Video
DVD
The Complete Fifth Series Box Set (Limited Edition)November 2010BBCDVD 3344Photo-montageLimited Edition DVD boxed set containing all 10 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Fifth Series Box Set (Limited Edition)November 2010BBCBD 0130Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray boxed set containing all 10 stories
Audio
CD
Original Television Soundtrack - Series 5November 2010Photo-montageMusic by Murray Gold
Audio
CD
The Essential CompanionNovember 2010Photo-montageDocumentary
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Series 1-7 Box Set (Limited Edition)December 2013BBCBD 0242Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray boxed set containing all Series 1-7 stories at full 1080p high definition
Video
DVD
The Complete Fifth Series (2014 Re-release)August 2014BBCDVD 3969Photo-montageBoxed set containing all 10 stories
Video
Blu-Ray
The Complete Fifth Series Box Set (Limited Edition Steelbook)February 2020BBCBD 0487Photo-montageLimited Edition Blu-Ray Steelbook boxed set containing 10 stories


In Print

No Book Release
Doctor Who Magazine - PreviewIssue 422 (Released: June 2010)
Doctor Who Magazine - ReviewIssue 423 (Released: July 2010)
Doctor Who Magazine - Time TeamIssue 505 (Released: December 2016)
Doctor Who Magazine - ArticleIssue 549 (Released: April 2020)
Doctor Who DVD FilesVolume 79 (Released: January 2012)

Return to the top of this page
 


Photo Gallery


The Doctor and Companion

 
Matt Smith
The Eleventh Doctor

   

 
Karen Gillan
Amy Pond
 
   




On Release

DVD Cover
DVD Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Blu-Ray Cover
Blu-Ray Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series DVD Box Set
Complete Series DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series Blu-Ray Box Set
Complete Series Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
   
Ltd Edition DVD Box Set
Ltd Edition DVD Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set
Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Original Television Soundtrack Cover
Original Television Soundtrack Cover

BBC
AUDIO
The Essential Companion Cover
The Essential Companion Cover

BBC
AUDIO
   
Complete Series 1-7 Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set
Complete Series 1-7 Ltd Edition Blu-Ray Box Set

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series DVD Box Set<BR>(2014 Re-release)
Complete Series DVD Box Set
(2014 Re-release)

BBC
VIDEO
Complete Series Blu-Ray Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set
Complete Series Blu-Ray Limited Edition Steelbook Box Set

BBC
VIDEO



Magazines

Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 422
Doctor Who Magazine - Preview: Issue 422

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 423
Doctor Who Magazine - Review: Issue 423

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 505
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 505

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Article: Issue 549
Doctor Who Magazine - Article: Issue 549

Marvel Comics
   
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 79
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 79

GE Fabbri


Return to the top of this page
 
 
Who's Who
KJ Software
Who Me
Episodes of the
Eleventh Doctor


Season 31 (New Series 5) Press to go back to the previous visited page References
 
 
Doctor Who is the copyright of the British Broadcasting Corporation. No infringements intended. This site is not endorsed by the BBC or any representatives thereof.