Sunday, 17 June 2018

E is for... El Akir

Cruel and sadistic Emir of the city of Lydda. He and his men ambushed a party of English knights in the woods near the city of Jaffa. One of the party - Sir William des Preaux - pretended to be King Richard, as a ruse to allow the real King and his friends to escape. El Akir also took Barbara Wright hostage, after the TARDIS had materialised in the same woods. Sir William had her pose as Richard's sister Joanna. Both were given to the Saracen leader Saladin, but he immediately saw through the deception. El Akir felt humiliated, and vowed revenge on Barbara. He arranged for her to be abducted from Saladin's camp and taken to Lydda. She escaped and found shelter in the home of a man named Haroun. He told her that El Akir had murdered his wife and son, and kidnapped his daughter Maimuna for his harem. Barbara was recaptured, but escaped once more - given sanctuary in the harem by Maimuna. Haroun broke into the palace and killed El Akir, just as Ian arrived to rescue Barbara.

Played by: Walter Randall. Appearances: The Crusade (1965).
  • Randall had previously played Tonila in The Aztecs. He was cast in The Crusade by director Douglas Camfield, who would employ him on a further three stories of his - The Daleks' Master Plan, The Invasion and Inferno. A friend of Jon Pertwee, Barry Letts later cast him in the Third Doctor's final story - Planet of the Spiders - as he wanted his star to be surrounded by familiar faces.
  • The novelisation of this story, by David Whitaker, explains El Akir's distinctive scar. He got it from his brother, after he had stolen his wife.

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