ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Doctor Who - The massacre by John Lucarotti

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Release pictures

Front cover
Picture of ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Doctor Who - The massacre by artist John Lucarotti from the BBC records and Tapes library
Rear cover
Picture of ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Doctor Who - The massacre by artist John Lucarotti from the BBC records and Tapes library

BBC records label code
BBC Radio Collection label

Release details

Catalogue numberISBN 0-563-55261-1
TitleDoctor Who - The massacre
Artist(s)John Lucarotti
Cover conditionNear mint
Record conditionNear mint
BBC records label code-
Item deleted?No
Distributed / printed byBBC Audiobooks Ltd.
Country of originUK UK flag
Media typePrimary
Media genreDramas - Sci-fi
View all other tracks listed as Dramas - Sci-fi.
Run-off codes / Shop bar codes DOCTOR WHO CD : 1 : 2 : 2 .
90195 DOCTOR WHO CD2 1 : 1 : 3
My rating*****
Guest rating*****

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Number have1
What type of seller was used?Physical shop
Where can I buy this release?You may be able to purchase this release from the following websites (others are available!)

All release pictures

Below is all the cover (front, back, middle and inserts if applicable) and label pictures I have for this release.
Front cover
Front cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1
Back cover
Back cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1
Middle of cover
Middle of cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Middle of cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Middle of cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1 Middle of cover of ISBN 0-563-55261-1
Label Label


Below is a list of tracks for this release.
Side & trackTrack and ArtistLength
A2Scene 1 - Rue de Bethisy2.28
A3Scene 2 - Inside the tavern5.57
A4Scene 3 - Preslin's shop2.14
A5Scene 4 - Inside the tavern1.05
A6Scene 5 - Paris street0.46
A7Scene 6 - Outside the tavern0.20
A8Scene 7 - Inside the tavern1.03
A9Scene 8 - Preslin's shop0.40
A10Scene 9 - Inside the tavern1.56
A11Scene 10 - The Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.12
A12Scene 11 - Inside the tavern1.26
A13Scene 12 - Preslin's shop0.31
A14Scene 13 - Inside the tav ern3.09
A15Scene 14 - The Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.25
A17Scene 1 - Room in the house of de Coligny0.51
A18Scene 2 - Outside the tavern1.00
A19Scene 3 - Room in the house of de Coligny4.41
A20Scene 4 - The louvre2.41
A21Scene 5 - Outside Preslin's shop2.08
A22Scene 6 - The Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.23
A23Scene 7 - Room in the house of de Coligny1.28
A24Scene 8 - Outside the Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.08
A25Scene 9 - Inside the Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.46
A26Scene 10 - Room in the house of de Coligny2.55
A27Scene 11 - Paris streets2.24
A28Scene 12 - Room in the house of de Coligny1.40
B2Scene 1 - Preslin's shop1.26
B3Scene 2 - Council chamber at The Louvre2.37
B4Scene 3 - Preslin's shop0.57
B5Scene 4 - Council chamber at The Louvre2.32
B6Scene 5 - The Abbot of Amboise's apartments1.31
B7Scene 5A - Outside the door0.12
B8Scene 5 - Continued0.53
B9Scene 6 - Nicholas's rooms at the house of de Cologny0.52
B10Scene 7 - Rue des Fosse St Germain2.17
B11Scene 8 - The Abbot of Amboise's apartments2.14
B12Scene 9 - Council chamber at The Lourve1.20
B13Scene 10 - Nicholas's room in the house of de Coligny1.59
B14Scene 11 - Council chamber at The Louvre3.05
B15Scene 12 - Paris street2.06
B17Scene 1 - Preslin's shop0.43
B18Scene 2 - Marshall Tavanne's study1.10
B19Scene 3 - Preslin's shop0.56
B20Scene 4 - Nicholas's room at the house of de Coligny1.59
B21Scene 5 - Preslin's shop2.33
B22Scene 6 - Tavanne's study3.35
B23Scene 7 - Cul de sac outside de Coligny's house2.45
B24Scene 8 - Inside the TARDIS4.36
B25Scene 9 - Road beside Wimbledon Common0.16
B26Scene 10 - Inside the TARDIS4.19
Total length of media 1:37:53.


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My rating3
Guest ratingCurrent average value is 3.

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Extra notes on cover, middle (gatefold sleeve) and any inserts


William Hartnell (1st Doctor)
Peter Purves (Steven)
William Hartnell - The Abbot of Amboise
Eric Thompson - Gaston
Reginald Jerssup - Servant
David Weston - Nicholas
John Tillinger - Simon
Edward Finn - Landlord
Christopher Trancholl - Roger
Erik Chitty - Preslin
Annette Robertson - Anne
Clive Cazes - Captain of the Guard

Written by

John Lucarotti

Music by

Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop

Produced by

John Wiles

Directed by

Paddy Russell


The TARDIS materialises in Paris in 1572, a time of great danger and religious strife. Whilst the Doctor pays a visit to famous apothecary Charles Preslin, Steven is befriended by a group of Protestants who come from the household of Admiral de Coligny.

Meanwhile the Catholic Queen Mother, Catherine de Medici, aided by the hated dignitary the Abbot of Amboise, is hatching a plot to kill all French Protestants - starting with de Coligny. Worryingly for Steven, the Abbot bears an uncanny resemblance to the Doctor. And when the plot fails and the Abbot is condemned to death, he is even more alarmed. Was that the Doctor being killed? Or does the Abbot just look like him?


The Massacre of St. Bartholomew's Eve is credited to John Lucarotti, though in fact the original idea came from the BBC's Donald Tosh and it was he who wrote the final versions of all four scripts.

Lucarotti was a master of the historical adventure and this was the last in a series of three that he contributed to Doctor Who. He was unhappy with the final versions of the scripts produced by Tosh. He had originally envisaged the Doctor playing a much larger role in the story; as it is, he disappears half-way through the first episode and does not reappear until the fourth. It would seem though that Tosh's idea of having William Hartnell play only the Abbot for most of the story worked better. Firstly the limited editing facilities available would have made it tricky to show Hartnell constantly in his double role. Secondly the fact that the Doctor isn't around leaves the viewer guessing - is the Abbot the Doctor in disguise or does he have a physical double? Thirdly, the Doctor's prolonged absence allows Steven to play a more central role than usual - this was the first time in the series' history that c companion had taken centre stage.

A second objection that Lucarotti had to Tosh's idea was that the historical events depicted were relatively unknown. Again, though, this worked in the story's favour. As Steven is swept up in events, neither he nor the audience know what is going to happen, so the atmosphere is more intense and the ending has far more impact. It could also be said that by taking a piece of slightly obscure history Tosh was fulfilling the original educational purpose of the series, as conceived by Sydney Newman.

A slightly grimmer story than usual, The Massacre contained some fine performances. So popular was the character of Anne Chaplet, in fact, the produces considered making her a regular companion. However, it was eventually decided that taking a companion from the past would cause too many difficulties - the Doctor would have to explain many things that the viewer would already be aware of. Instead a descendant of Anne, Dodo Chaplet, came into the series - although it's often been pointed out that Anne would have to have married someone with the same surname as her own in order for Dodo to be her descendant!

This was also a story that silenced some of William Hartnell's critics. His intense performance as the Abbot showed that his eccentric, doddery Doctor was not just an extension of his own character; it was a character Hartnell had created.

Other versions

I have the title track on these releases:
[cds]ISBN 0-563-49494-8Doctor Who - Adventures in history

Further information

A selection of archive collections from across the BBC.


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This page was last updated on 04-05-2023 at 15:55:35 UK local time.

This record has been seen 876 times since 20th May, 2017.