Doctor Who: The Crusade Part 3: The Wheel of Fortune

Hello Dwellers and Welcome to the Basement

Happy Friday, today we are up to part three of the classic Doctor Who story The Crusade (titled: The Wheel of Fortune), where we learned who saved Barbara and talk about Jean Marsh's excellent performance as Princess Joanna when she finds out what King Richard's plans for her are.



Time and Relative Dimensions

Doctor Who
The Crusade Part 3: The Wheel of Fortune
Original Air Date: April 10, 1965
Viewers: 9 Millions (Up half a million from previous episode)


With the TARDIS crew split up, the focus is primarily on Barbara’s adventures in trying to avoid El Akir and The Doctor being caught up in some midevil political intrigue.


Turns out the person who covered Barbara’s mouth is a man named Haround ed-Din, who has issues with El Akir who killed his wife and son while kidnapping one of his two daughters. He leaves Barbara with his remaining daughter under her protection in order to try and see how to deal with the men that is looking for Barbara but is knocked out, and figuring Barbara may have found ‘help’, El Akir’s men search Haroun’s house. Barbara thinking quickly hides Haroun’s daughter and tries to escape but is captured and brought before El Akir, who declares that the only pleasure Barbara will have is her own death and that it’s going to be put off, indicating he plans to torture her. At the same time, Ian is on his way to rescue Barbara, but is attacked out in the desert


The truth about Vicki being a girl is revealed to Princess Joanna when she happened to walk in on their conversation, leading her to question why they would lie. The Doctor says it was Vicki’s own safety because of the land they are in, and Joanna declares that Vickie would be under her protection and order some fine clothes to be made for her. The Doctor is included with King Richard’s next planning session to lay out his plan for peace, the meeting also include the Earl of Leicester who rather fight than have peace, in particular with the offer of Princess Joanna as a peace offering to Saladin’s brother in marriage. The Doctor argues somewhat from a neutral position questioning the King’s plan to marry off his sister while at the same time questioning the sanity of the Earl of Leicester for wanting a bloody war… on the plus side, Saladin agrees with King Richard’s plan to the delight of his brother, but is going to be very cautious and prepared for trouble,


However, the real highlight is when Joanna learns about her brother’s plans for her and she just goes off, telling Richard that she will no obey his commands and she will take the issue to the Pope in Rome, since he has a higher authority than The King, since Richard is in Jaffa to fight the ‘infidel heathens’ not make a deal with them. Infurriated The King turns on The Doctor thinking he was the one to reveal the plan, however a shot indicates that it was the Earl of Leicester who did the deed.

Now I genuinely love Jean Marsh as Princess Joanna in this episode, the what she put behind the character’s rage upon finding out her brother’s plans is simply a sight to behold, you can feel how ticked off Joanna is, and she plays perfectly off of Julian Glover’s King Richard. Also Ms. Marsh is someone who would be kind of a reoccurring figure in Doctor Who, playing Sara Kingdom in the Dalek’s Master Plan in the third season, and later Morgaine in Season 26’s Battlefield, while also doing some work for with Big Finish on Doctor Who Audio Productions, notable the tales Home Truths, The Drowned World and The Guardian of the Solar System. In addition she was married to John Pertwee from 1955 to 1960


We’ll conclude our look at The Crusade on Monday of his upcoming week!

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