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Reviews for The Crusade

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Another Classy Historical

By:Matthew David Rabjohns, Bridgend, United Kingdom
Date:Monday 20 June 2011
Rating:   10

If there is one particular story in Will Hartnell's run that clearly highlights this spectacular actors abilities, then I would overall have to go for The Crusade. William Hartnell positively shines within this story. And so once again it is highly lamentable that this story suffers from being partly lost. It is so irritating that the BBC saw fit to destroy such brilliant serials as The Crusade. If everything else was rubbish in The Crusade and just Will saved it, then it would still be brilliant. But nothing in The Crusade is rubbish, no way.

The Crusade is the perfect mix of comedy and yet horror at times. We have Walter Randall, superbly cast as the sadistic El Akir, and its obvious that he relishes playing the role due to the fact that he's just so flipping good at it. Bernard Kay and Saladin too is perfectly cast, and Bernard gives the role many good and interesting layers, whilst being more subtle than Walter, he is all the more sinister and palpable.

Maureen Obrien really shines with Will Hartnell in this one, there is a level of comraderie between them that outshines even the best scenes Will had with Carole Ann Ford beforehand. Maureen gives by far her best performance here, pretending to be a boy for most of the tale so as not to land in trouble.

Jacqueline Hill delights again as Barbara, and this is perhaps her most involved story of them all, as it really is her story overall, yet still all the other characters dont fade into the background. William Russell too is as reliable as ever as Ian. The opening sword fight sequences are extremely well done for the time.

And then we come to Julian Glover and Jean Marsh. Douglas Camfield definitely picked the cream to play these two parts. Julian delivers a peaked performance as the troubled King Richard, and Jean Marsh as Joanna is an inspiration and joy to watch. All of them just spark off each other so very well indeed and make the script positively glow with life.

There is a gritty realism to the Crusade that was only matched by The Massacre and Marco Polo, it is truly an outstanding historical tale that explores its themes very well indeed and even in the restricted audio medium, this story is just phenomenal.

The pinnacle of the historicals!

By:Sofia Fox, Hale, United States
Date:Tuesday 21 May 2019
Rating:   10

I love the interaction of King Richard and the companions and The Doctor. Incredible!

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