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Doctor Who story number 27
Location filming in Doctor Who had been previously limited to occasional trips out to a nearby quarry or a jaunt around London, with the most extensive work taking place in The Dalek Invasion of Earth and The War Machines. For this story however, they wanted some really authentic looking settings so they took the entire cast (minus William Hartnell) and crew out to Cornwall for a week of filming. The choice of director was decided by the desire to have someone who knew the area in charge, and so Julia Smith was chosen for her knowledge of the area (women did a lot of work behind the scenes on Doctor Who, it's quite a contrast to the way the female characters are treated).
The story itself is basically a pirate story - Arrrr! and it be a good pirate story, with plenty of viciousness and quirky characters talkin' that there pirate talk we all love! Plenty o' rum and pistols an' cutlasses and arrrrs and avasts!
On the character side Captain Pike is presented as a pirate trying to pass himself off as a gentleman, and the costume is much like Dustin Hoffman as Captain Hook. Pike is quite good, even just going off the scripts you see an interesting character - He favours killing people with his hook, a stylised blade made to look like the head of a polearm. Interestingly he refers to two of his crewmembers by their homelands, and the others all have nicknames, adding to the pirate atmosphere. Cherub, the other villain, is a sadistic killer who is handy with a knife and he likes to show off. It's all quite fun and frankly I'm upset it's missing.
Elroy Josephs is possibly the first black actor to have a role on Doctor Who (I haven't seen enough pictures from the missing stories but it's fairly safe to say this is true). No comment on the performance - we can't see it. He only gets to play a superstitious pirate, but he gets good air time. The role is probably character acting too (and I am going to be honest, it's a very negative stereotype), so there's not much scope for more than the generic over the top pirate stuff. Anyway, don't feel bad for Elroy Josephs having poor scripting or poor directing - he had to do scenes with Willam Hartnell, and was probably happy to get them over and done with.
The story is missing, some scurvy dog threw the only copy into a furnace in the 70's - The audio track has been released on CD with linking narration by Anneke Wills.
Here's the photonovel:
And of course, a transcript is available online, with a more complete cast list including the unnamed characters here:
This story has 4 episodes.
The story opens with Ben and Polly walking in to the TARDIS control room, amazed at what they see. The Doctor doesn't notice them, closes the door and dematerializes. He's quite outraged that they followed him into the TARDIS, despite the fact they did so to return his spare TARDIS key. They're quite intrigued by the ship but don't believe the Doctor's remark about being unable to control where he lands - or when. The TARDIS materialises and the Doctor does the standard environmental checks and lets Ben and Polly out. They're quite surprised to find themselves standing on a beach, shadowed in the overhang from some cliffs - obviously very far from Fitzroy Square. The Doctor comes out and locks the ship, and tells them that he's not going to take them back to London - he really means he can't, but he's also wanting to have a look around. Ben and Polly set off up a path and the Doctor follows, shaking his head at the youth of today....
Polly is really excited by the fact they've been shifted to what looks like Cornwall - Ben is just keen to get back to London and the Doctor trails behind them, muttering about all the trouble they're going to get into. They come to a church and are jumped by the Churchwarden, armed with a blunderbuss. The Doctor talks to the man, who (mis)takes him for a gentleman and invites the group into the church. The Churchwarden is worried about something, but won't say what. The Doctor fixes his dislocated finger and wins his full confidence, but he advises them to leave. They have to head to the village because the tide has come in, and as they go the Churchwarden whispers a coded phrase to the Doctor. As the group leaves they pass a bald seaman, hiding behind the gravestones. Down at the inn the inkeeper, Kewper, sends Tom off to tell the Churchwarden to expect a delivery that night.
Back at the church the bald man - Cherub - confronts the Churchwarden. It seems the Churchwarden used to be the mate of a ship called The Black Albatross and Cherub thinks he knows where Avery's gold is hidden away. The Churchwarden refuses to talk and dives for the blunderbus, but gets Cherub's knife in his back from across the room. Back at the inn Ben and Polly are treating the whole affair as an entertaining trip but the Doctor cautions them - he knows just how much trouble strangers get into in the past. Tom returns and tells Kewper that the Churchwarden is dead and gets sent to bring the Magistrate. Ben and the Doctor have heard this but before they can do anything Cherub turns up with a press gang and kidnaps the Doctor, knocking Ben out in the process. The Squire, who serves as Magistrate, turns up and charges them with the murder of the Churchwarden. They have it easy though - the Doctors been ushered into the presence of the deadly Captain Pike, who wastes no time in threatening the Doctor with his hook, fashioned in a play on his name in the form of a pike....
The polearm you idiots, not the fish.
It seems the Churchwarden, Cherub and Pike all served under Avery, and the Churchwarden made off with the plunder. Cherub wants to flog the doctor, and then starts making veiled threats to cut off his ears and eyelids.... Back inthe village young Tom is in charge of the prisoners, and Polly, in between screaming at rats, hits on a plan - She makes a doll out of the straw, pretends to be in a trance and Ben tricks the gullible Tom into thinking they are warlocks so they can escape. Back on The Black Albatross the Doctor plays on the captain's vanity to keep himself safe from Cherub - who laughs at the Doctor's praise of Pike's gentlemanly qualities and lands squarely in his captain's bad books. Before the Doctor can mak a deal with Pike news comes of a boat coming out to the ship, and the Doctor is hauled off to the galley. The boat is manned by Kewper, who speaks for the local smuggling ring - headed by the Squire and the Churchwarden. With that comment he's taken prisoner and left with the Doctor in Pike'scabin, guarded by Jamacia - with orders to flog them if they try anything funny.
Back on land Ben and Polly are checking out the crypt when a strange figure comes in. Thinking may be the murderer they knock him out and Polly goes to get the Squire while Ben stays to watch him. Of course Ben has really clocked Josiah Blake, King's Revenue Officer - sent to uncover the smuggling operation. All he's uncovered so far is a secret passage down to the beach - right where the TARDIS is. At the Squire's home Pike hatches a plan - steal the smuggler's goods,Avery's treasure and the Squire's posessions. the Squire has no idea who they are, and when Polly is brought in he doesn't believe her story, after all there's money to be had.... they tie and gag her and take her back to the church where they get the drop on Ben, free Blake and have him take the pair away at gunpoint. On the ship the Doctor tells Kewpers fortune using a deck of playing cards, making a big show of it to get Jamaica interested - when he asks for his fortune to be told Kewper knocks him out as he shuffles the cards and the Doctor and the innkeeper make their escape.
Blake takes Ben and Polly to the stables at the inn and frees them, as he's fairly sure the Squire is the leader of the smuggling ring. The Doctor arrives, and Polly reveals Blake to be a revenue officer, which Kewper doesn't take so well. Meanwhile Pike kills Jamaica for letting the Doctor and Kewper escape, but not before using the scene as an excuse to tell us his cunning plan - pillage the village by day because people will be expecting it at night (not to mention it's easier to film in daylight). Pike then discovers that Cherub hasn't come aboad (how the HELL he didn't notice earlier I'll never know). Josiah Blake rides off to get the millitia and the Doctor refuses to leave yet - he's worried leaving might get the village destroyed and he wants to wait til Blake returns - and perhaps if they can find the treasure they can bargain with the pirate. However Kewper has gone to the Squire, and they plan to ambush Pike's men later - and grab the treasure now.
The Doctor, Ben and Polly search the crypt, finding the three names from the Churchwarden's rhyme but needing a fourth. Kewperand the Squire arrive, Kewper threatening the time travellers but Squire Edwards (He has a name now!) won't have any killing. As they argue Cherub comes in, throws his knife into Kewpers back and shoots the Squire in the shoulder. Polly tries to tend to the Squire but Cherub holds her hostage. The Doctor tells Cherub the names, but plays dumb about checking the crypt. Cherub knew them, and names the fourth name. The Squire raises the question of Avery's curse (don't groan you knew something like this would come up). It seems Avery died a pauper and insane, trading the devil the souls of those looking for his treasure for his own to avoid going to hell. Cherub tires of the banter and gives them one minute to tell him where the treasure is or he will kill Polly.
Pike sneaks to the church with some men, and sets them to move the cache of goods hidden in a grave down to the beach. He then moves to the crypt and confronts Cherub, and they fight. The Doctor sends Ben and Polly down the tunnel to the TARDIS, willing to stay and keep the winner of the fight busy until the troops arrive - with no hostage they can't force the Doctor to reveal information. Pike disarms Cherub, dodges the trademark thrown knife and gets in his own signature move, stabbing Cherub in the heart with his hook. The pirate then confronts the Doctor, who says he will give up the gold if Pike keeps his men out of the village. Pike says he'd rather just let the men have their fun, but the Squire says he's afraid to try and enforce his authority. Pike can't have this implication that his crew would defy him, and he says he will stop them from raiding the town.
Ben leaves Polly to make her own way to the TARDIS - which has two pirates guarding it because they think it's valuable - and returns up the tunnel for the Doctor, while Blake arrives on the beach and heads for the tunnel, sending some of the men up the cliff path. The Doctor tells Pike of the riddle, and Pike says the men died at sea. The names are on four seperate walls - lines from each intersect over a loose flagstone, under which lies Avery's treasure. Just as Pike begins to haul it out the millitia coming up the path raid the churchyard, and the pirates there fall back to the crypt. Ben runs back to help fight off the two pirates, and is saved from being skewered by Blake. Backin the crypt the Doctor weaves through a pitched battle for the tunnel, Pike trying to make his way through the chaos to kill him. Blake and his men arrive with Ben, but the Doctor insists on helping the Squire. Pike catches up and nearly manages to take down the Doctor, but the Squire catches his arm and holds Pike so Blake can shoot him. The Doctor and Ben slip down the tunnel to the TARDIS, meet up with Polly and leave.
As they talk in the TARDIS console room the craft maerializes, and the interior temperature drops.... The Doctor announces that they have arrived at the coldest place in the world....
Terence deMarney - Churchwarden ("Holy" Joe Longfoot)
George A. Cooper - Cherub
David Blake Kelly - Jacob Kewper
Mike Lucas - Tom
Paul Whitsun-Jones - Squire Edwards
Derek Ware - Spaniard
Michael Godfrey - Captain Samuel Pike
Elroy Josephs- Jamaica
John Ringham - Josiah Blake
Jack Bligh - Gaptooth
Gordon Craig - The Doctor (on location)
- Michael Craze's favourite story - he grew up in Cornwall so it's not surprising
- Date? Oh alright: Somewhere between 1694 and 1700, as someone says "God save the King" and the costumes apparently fit this period. Does the date really matter in any pirate story? No!
- So in the climax Cherub shoots the Squire, Pike knocks the gun from his hand, they fight, Cherub picks up the gun and fires. Wait a minute.... he fires a flintlock pistol? Twice? WITHOUT RELOADING?
- What's left of the film footage? The deaths of Longfoot, Jamaica, Kewper and Cherub - because the Australian censors didn't like showing stabbings they chopped them out, and were legally required to kep the clips. Amusing.... The only footage we have is the bits the censors didn't want us to see.
Well, Doctor? Will ye loosen your tongue...or lose it altogether? - Pike