I thought I’d start a new, and doubtless to be highly irregular, series on resources from Wikipedia that game masters can use to help with their games. For the first, I’d like to point you to the episode summary for the television show The Adventures of Robin Hood, which aired on the BBC and in the US from 1955-59, and starred Richard Greene.
My wife are watching the show now on DVD (you can get the whole series for under $10 on Amazon!) and while it’s often cheesy, it’s still a lot of fun and holds up remarkably well if you appreciate it as a product of its time. Richard Greene is one of the better actors I’ve seen portraying Robin Hood, and the supporting cast is pretty darn good (some of the supporting actors went on to great things on British television – Patrick Troughton, Edward Mulhare, Leo McKern) and Alexander Gauge pretty much defines the role of Friar Tuck. I’d recommend it just as fun television.
There were 143 episodes, and Wikipedia has a comprehensive list of the plots of each. If you’re stuck for a plot for your game, you might want to scroll through the list and get some inspiration. For example:
- Robin & Friar Tuck help a poor serf to enter the Monastery at Whitby. However the young man is forced to flee when the Sheriff has his twin brother thrown into prison on trumped up charges.
- When Sir William tries to acquire Tom the Miller’s flour mill by underhand means, Robin is soon called in to save the day.
- While waiting for a boat to take them back to England, Robin spots Sir Roderick, an emissary of Prince John, disguised as a wine merchant, collecting gold for the Prince. Robin and Tuck contact the French underground via the waitress at the “Black Rabbit” Inn, Michelle, for help in uncovering the plot. Robin & Tuck decide to divert the gold, and a little impersonation is called for.
- Lord Guthrie ‘steals’ his own salt supplies to push the prices up and Robin is blamed. Robin and Little John obtain salt from the coast and Tuck distributes it free until Lord Guthrie’s partner, the Sheriff, confiscates it. Another plan is required needing, Roger of Antioch, a “salt diviner”.
- Robin becomes the latest victim of Sir Hugo DeBask, a lord who arrests travelers through his estate and sets them to work on his lands if they can’t pay the fine he imposes at their trial, looking for him Marian also falls into the trap, escape comes from an unexpected quarter.