Watches rarely receive TV coverage outside of the selling channels — usually it’s restricted to finds on Antiques Roadshow. Full marks to the BBC for commissioning the coincidentally-named IWC Media (no relation!) to produce a one-hour special on Breguet and the legendary Marie Antoinette watch.
Presented by Nicholas Parsons, a lifelong clock enthusiast and member of the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers, the lavishly-produced programme covers Breguet’s life, examines his reputation and tells the story of the creation of the Marie Antoinette watch — ultimately reaching its theft and recovery.
He visits Versailles, the Breguet works and the key locations in Israel relevant to the watch’s most dramatic chapter, climaxing in the rarest of honours: Parsons gets to handle the actual timepiece.
Parsons’ narrative is augmented by observations from Emmanuel Breguet and others, including yours truly — in my capacity as an Editor at Large at Revolution.
The Incredible Story of Marie Antoinette’s Watch will be broadcast on BBC4 at 9:00pm (UK) on 6 October. For further information, visit: www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b07xtbhr