|Postman Pat and the Magpie Hen|
|Air Date|| 23th September 1981 (UK)|
11th June 1991 (Australia)
|Previous||Postman Pat's Finding Day|
|Next||Postman Pat's Birthday|
During his lunch break, Pat falls asleep on a hill above Thompson Ground, leaving his lunch box open and his keys just beside it. When he wakes up, he sees Dorothy Thompson's hens running off with his sandwiches and one with his keys. Pat follows the hen up a tree, but then the hen drops the keys and flies away. After falling out of the tree, Pat tells Mrs. Thompson about the hen and she comes to the conclusion that it must think its a magpie. Pat and Dorothy then go to get a ladder and Pat finds more than just his keys up in the tree. He also finds Mrs. Thompson's wedding ring which went missing the previous Easter and which she thought she lost down the sink. Having lost his sandwiches, Pat later has some of Mrs. Thompson's dinner. Later on when Pat carries on with the post, he tells everyone else about the magpie hen and they wonder themselves if anything they lost was taken by the bird in question. On the way home, Pat sees some real magpies and wonders if they had taught Mrs. Thompson's hens how to take shining objects like them.
- Alf Thompson
- Dorothy Thompson
- Sarah Gilbertson
- Miss Hubbard
- Sam Waldron
- Bill Thompson (does not speak)
- Tom Pottage (does not speak)
- Lucy Selby (does not speak)
- Charlie Pringle (does not speak)
- Mrs. Pottage (cameo)
- Auntie Jean (mentioned)
- This is the Official Introduction of Alf Thompson and Charlie Pringle.
- The theme song is played again during this episode.
- The music played when Pat goes up the tree to get his keys is the instrumental to the Farmer's song.
- In the book version of this episode, Alf's part towards the end of the story was filled by George Lancaster.
- In the Finnish and Swedish versions of the episode, the theme song is not sung when it is played the second time, instead an instrumental version is played.
- In the Swedish and Spanish versions, an instrumental version of Pop Goes The Weasel (which also features in Postman Pat's Windy Day) is played when Pat is at the school.
- In the British version, when Pat brings down the nest to show to Mrs Thompson, the music fades out and fades back in when Pat says "Mind your head." The music also fades out when Pat leaves Thompson Ground with Jess. In the Swedish and Spanish versions, the music does not fade out but does when Pat gets back into his van.
- The scene of Pat going up the ladder to retrieve his keys from the tree was later referenced and shown in Postman Pat's ABC. The only difference between the normal and animated scenes was Pat saying "It was so high! I was really scared!"; in the original version of the episode, Pat clearly hid his fear and concentrated on getting his keys back.
- The three naughty hens that go for Pat's sandwiches are later referenced and shown in Postman Pat's 123.
- This episode was included as a bonus on the Australian VHS release of Postman Pat Takes the Bus.
- How did Jess end up in Mrs. Thompson's Kitchen if he didn't join Pat on his picnic?
- Unless this is another skill she picked up from magpies, it would be impossible for the magpie hen to fly.
- When the magpie hen flies away, it makes pheasant noises.
- In the close-ups of Pat driving the van whilst the theme song is playing again, the roof is off.
- In the long shots of Pat driving his van around the countryside and through the village, he is not wearing his hat or glasses and Jess is not next to him.
- When Pat falls into a prickly bush, the sound effects that are heard sound more like water splashing.
- When the tree's branch breaks under Pat, a string can be briefly seen attached to him and a close up of the branch breaking away under his foot and him falling can be seen for a few frames in between the moment itself.