Harman Patil (Editor)

The Crusade (Doctor Who)

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Directed by  Douglas Camfield
Script editor  Dennis Spooner
Executive producer(s)  None
Author  David Whitaker
Date started  27 March 1965
Incidental music composer  Dudley Simpson
Written by  David Whitaker
Produced by  Verity Lambert
Production code  P
Date ended  17 April 1965
Director  Douglas Camfield
Producer  Verity Lambert
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Similar  David Whitaker books, Other books

The Crusade is the half-missing sixth serial of the second season in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which was first broadcast in four weekly parts from 27 March to 17 April 1965. The story is set near Jerusalem, in Palestine, during the Third Crusade. Only two of the four episodes are held in the BBC archives; two remain missing.



The TARDIS materialises in 12th century Palestine, during the time of the Third Crusade. When the Doctor, Ian, Barbara, and Vicki emerge, they find themselves in the middle of a Saracen ambush. In the confusion, Barbara is seized by a Saracen from behind, while the rest of the TARDIS crew stop the attackers from killing William de Tornebu, an associate of King Richard. They realise Barbara is missing, but she has been gagged and is being tied up by the Saracens. William des Preaux, another companion of the king, is also captured by Saracens and pretends to be Richard in order to protect him. The Doctor, Ian, and Vicki agree to take the wounded de Tornebu back to Richard's court, but first must steal clothes from the market in order to blend in. They call Barbara's name, but though she can hear them, she is unable to cry out and is taken away by the Saracens.

Meanwhile, des Preaux and Barbara are presented to Saladin's brother Saphadin by El Akir, who mistakenly believes them to be King Richard and his sister Lady Joanna. When des Preaux reveals their true identity, El Akir is furious but, before he can act, Saladin emerges from hiding and prevents any violence from occurring. Saladin is intrigued by Barbara, who tells tales of having met Nero, and tells her she can become the new Scheherazade.

The disguised Doctor and company bring the injured de Tornebu to the King's court. They are met by Richard, who witnessed their fight during the ambuscade. The King, however, is in a foul mood, and treats the TARDIS crew very curtly. Ian, anxious to rescue Barbara, asks for the King's help in rescuing her, but the irritated monarch tells Ian that Barbara can remain with Saladin until her death.

De Tornebu and the Doctor are able to convince the King to change his mind by playing up the embarrassment Saladin will feel when it's revealed he has not actually captured the King. Richard is amused, and asks the Doctor to join his court. Ian is knighted "Sir Ian of Jaffa" so that he may serve as a proper emissary, and is sent to Saladin's court to both request the release of des Preaux and Barbara, and to offer the hand of the real Lady Joanna in marriage to Saphadin in order to create peace. When Joanna learns of these plans, she is infuriated, and tells her brother she will not consent.

Ian, after delivering his message to Saladin, asks leave to continue to search for Barbara, which Saladin grants. During his search Ian is attacked by bandits and knocked out. When he claims to have no money, one of the bandits, Ibrahim, ties him down with stakes in the hot sun and daubs him with honey. He tells Ian the ants will loosen his purse strings.

Barbara is kidnapped by El Akir and taken to his dominion, but manages to escape, and is taken in by Haroun ed-Din, who defeats a guard looking for her. He is sympathetic because El Akir killed his wife and kidnapped his daughter, and now Haroun is looking for revenge. Haroun leaves to attack El Akir, but is knocked out by soldiers. They go to Haroun's house, recapture Barbara, and bring her to El Akir. El Akir taunts Barbara with threats of death, but she once again manages to escape, this time hiding out in the Emir's harem. El Akir tries to find Barbara, but she is hidden by a sympathetic harem girl.

Ian eventually tricks Ibrahim into untying his feet, and overpowers him. Ian convinces the bandit to accompany him to Lydda and aid him in his quest for Barbara. Meanwhile, Barbara convinces the harem girl, Maimuna, to help her get out of the castle. It turns out Maimuna is Haroun's long lost daughter and, when she finds out her father is still alive, joyfully agrees to help. Before they can do so, another harem girl, Fatima, betrays them and El Akir bursts in on the two women.

El Akir is about to attack Barbara when Haroun arrives in the nick of time and fatally stabs El Akir. Fatima screams, and two guards burst in. Ian arrives, and he and Haroun subdue the guards. Haroun and Maimuna are reunited, and Barbara and Ian head for the TARDIS.

The Doctor, who has been trying not to get caught up in court politics, attempts to make a break for the TARDIS. He is caught by the Earl of Leicester, who thinks the Doctor is a spy for Saladin. He sentences the Doctor to death. Ian arrives and, presenting himself as "Sir Ian of Jaffa," tells Leicester that the Doctor is a spy and that he is here to carry out the execution. The Doctor plays along and asks for one last chance to see Jaffa before he dies. Leicester agrees, and the Doctor is able to sneak away to the TARDIS with the rest of the crew and leave. When Leicester and his knights see the TARDIS vanish, they agree to keep the story quiet, so as not to look like fools.

On board the TARDIS, the crew enjoy a good laugh over their escape. As the TARDIS prepares to land, the power fails and all the interior lights dim. The crew freeze into immobility.


Barbara tells Saladin of the travellers' recent adventures on an alien world ruled by insects ("The Web Planet"), in Rome at the time of Emperor Nero ("The Romans") and in England a thousand years in the future ("The Dalek Invasion of Earth").

Missing episodes

Copies of the four episodes were believed lost in the mass junking of episodes in the 1970s, with BBC Enterprises junking their copies. The BBC Film Library retained a copy of "The Wheel of Fortune" that it had accidentally acquired, but a copy of "The Lion" had been junked from the library by 1972. In 1999, a film copy of "The Lion" was discovered by Neil Lambess and Paul Scoones in the collection of Bruce Grenville, a film collector in New Zealand; the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation had acquired the story in 1960s, but did not transmit it. The story had been thought to be one of the very few for which no off-air soundtrack was known to exist, until copies were located in 1995.

The first episode of the subsequent story, The Space Museum, begins with a brief clip of the finale of Episode 4, "The Warlords", where the time-travellers stand in period costume round the TARDIS console, literally frozen in time (it is confirmed as a clip rather than a restaged scene by an off-camera cough on the soundtracks to both "The Warlords" and The Space Museum). This is the only known surviving footage from the final episode.

Cast notes

In episode 3, William Russell appears only in a pre-filmed insert as he was on holiday. Julian Glover was cast by Douglas Camfield to play King Richard I. Glover would return to Doctor Who to play Scaroth in City of Death. Jean Marsh, who played Princess Joanna, would play Sara Kingdom in The Daleks' Master Plan and Morgaine in Battlefield. Marsh was married to Third Doctor actor Jon Pertwee from 1955 to 1960.

Bernard Kay had appeared in The Dalek Invasion of Earth. He would later appear in two more serials, The Faceless Ones and Colony in Space. Roger Avon later played Daxtar in The Daleks' Master Plan. Tony Caunter later played Morgan in Colony in Space and Jackson in Enlightenment. Tutte Lemkow previously played Kuiju in Marco Polo and would appear again as Cyclops in The Myth Makers. Gábor Baraker had also appeared in Marco Polo (as Wang-Lo).

Broadcast and reception

A different version of the final episode of the previous story The Web Planet featured a caption with "Next Week: The Space Museum" instead of "Next Week: The Lion." This alternative end tag was on the version of The Web Planet recovered from Nigeria.

In 2008, Patrick Mulkern of Radio Times wrote that The Crusade was "arguably the first story where every aspect of the production works to perfection". He praised the way the TARDIS crew was broken up - allowing them to see both sides of the Crusades - and the "classy guest cast", where "Walter Randall's El Akir is the most sinister character in the series to date".

In print

This serial was the third and final story to be novelised by Frederick Muller publishers. Written by David Whitaker as Doctor Who and the Crusaders, it was first published in 1966 and was the last novelisation published until 1973 when Target Books launched its long-running line of episode adaptations, beginning with reprints of this and the preceding two novels. There have been French, Dutch and Portuguese editions.

As with Whitaker's first novelisation, the story is converted into a stand-alone novel with a lengthy prologue in the TARDIS where the travellers discuss the paradoxes of their journeys and time travel. The pointlessness of a religious war is also emphasised more.

Once again, Whitaker plays up the romantic potential of Ian and Barbara and includes a graphic passage of Barbara being scourged. For some reason the name of Susan's husband has changed from David Campbell to David Cameron.

In 2005 the novel was also issued by BBC Audio as part of the Doctor Who: Travels in Time and Space audio book collectors' tin, read by William Russell.

The script of this serial, edited by John McElroy and titled The Crusade, was published by Titan Books in November 1994. It was the tenth in that publisher's series of Doctor Who script books, following Galaxy 4. At the time that the book was prepared, the BBC archives held only one episode of The Crusade on video (The Wheel of Fortune) and no audio recordings.

Home media

In 1991, "The Wheel of Fortune", then the only episode known extant, was released on VHS as part of The Hartnell Years (BBCV 4608), presented by Seventh Doctor, Sylvester McCoy, with McCoy giving a brief 're-cap' of events before and after the segment, with additional information concerning its 'lost' companions.

As part of The Crusade and The Space Museum VHS box set (BBCV 6805/6888) in 1999 a version of episodes 1 and 3, with the events of Episodes 2 and 4 related by William Russell in character as an aged Ian Chesterton, was released in a special presentation package. A compact disc of the other two episodes' soundtracks was also included. The 'scripted' passages, to fill the gaps between the missing episodes and the following storyline were written by Stephen Cole, with additional continuity snippets by Ian Levine. An audio-only version of this story, with narration again by Russell, was released as a two-CD set in 2005 in The Lost TV Episodes Collection One 1964/1965. The two extant episodes and the two soundtracks for The Crusade were again released as part of the Lost in Time DVD (BBCDVD 1353) collection of restored episodes and clips in 2004, with Russell's sections as an extra when "Play All" is selected on disc one. Notably, while most of the episodes in the set were given a new transfer directly from their film prints for restoration, "The Lion" was not as the existing print was very heavily damaged and putting the print through the telecine process was seen as an undesirable risk. Therefore, the 1999 transfer was used as the basis of restoration work. "The Lion" did not undergo the VidFIRE process, while "The Wheel of Fortune" and all other episodes in the set did.


The Crusade (Doctor Who) Wikipedia