If you haven’t got the jist, I bloody love this story. I adore doctor who stories that push the limit of just how dark the stories can go and the massacre does this to great effect. There’s an incredible sense of bleakness about the whole thing, indeed throughout the whole four episodes there was very few comic moments. Indeed actually found the “viewing” experience to be an incredibly intense and unnerving one. I suspect this is down to the fact that the doctor appears very little and the story instead follows Stephen. To be stranded in another time, a violent one at that, without a hope of getting back to your own time unless you find the Doctor, would be a terrifying experience and indeed this episode presents it as such. The doctor himself is once again totally alien, perhaps this was something I missed out on, but we never find out what the connection is between him and the abbot or indeed what he was doing during the time he is absent.
Speaking of Morrell he really is great in the role and it’s a shame that we just have to put up with hearing him as oppose to seeing him in action. Another great performance comes from Joan Young as Catherine De’ Medici who during the whole story says surprisingly little but manages to steal the show! However sadly I think that the Massacre will never be as appreciated as much as it should be. Partly due to the fact that it is a pure historical but also because no footage of the story remain.