Wait, these knights, eventually identified as men fighting a war both from the past and another dimension, think the Doctor is Merlin. Does this mean that family-friendly BBC fantasy show I watched was actually about a different incarnation of the Doctor?
No, don’t be ridiculous. That Merlin used magic, and magic on this show is always advanced science in disguise. Because we don’t want something as silly as magic in our show where a face-changing alien travels through time and space in a police box.
But it sure does look that way. The knight the Doctor found is named Ancelyn, but the bad guys are led by…Mordred!
And Mordred’s mother Morgaine…is on her way!
Dum dum DUM!
So is the Brigadier, who apparently was flying back and forth in a helicopter all night and still hasn’t gotten to the Doctor by the end of the episode. Oh, he does meet Morgaine, and they have…a rather civil conversation because she believes in honor and he won’t arrest or attack someone who is clearly paying funeral respects to the fallen. Mordred got chastised for doing disrespectful stuff.
OK, but Mordred didn’t kill the Doctor, or Ace, or Ace’s new friend, or the new Brigadier (her name is Bambera), or Ancelyn. See, he’s spooked by the Doctor. He also thinks the Doctor is Merlin, and the Doctor simply concludes that if all these people think he’s Merlin, he might as well play along.
Works for me!
So, a quick trip back to the pub shows that scabbard on the wall acting funny possibly because Mordred has his own version of Excalibur. That can’t be good. Regardless, the Doctor gets the local archeologist to take the Doctor and Ace to the local dig site near Lake Vertigern, one of those names that’s very prominent in some Arthurian lore. And there’s a message there in an ancient alphabet that Professor Warmsley can’t read. The Doctor can! Turns out he wrote it. It says “dig here”.
Ace can dig quickly because she packed some explosives.
It all goes down to a spaceship (because of course it does), and the Doctor and Ace find King Arthur in suspended animation. Ace decides to pick up Excalbur because that apparently is never a bad idea except for this time when it isn’t a good idea. Security systems go off. The pair are chased by a fake snake thing, Ace gets trapped in a chamber filling with water, and the Doctor gets knocked out.
Yeah, definitely shouldn’t just take random swords. Better to let some watery tart toss a scimitar your way.