Philip Madoc

Philip Madoc (born Philip Arvon Jones; 5 July 1934 – 5 March 2012)[2] was a British actor. He performed many stage, television, radio and film roles. On television, he played David Lloyd George in The Life and Times of David Lloyd George and the lead role in the detective series A Mind to Kill. His guest roles included multiple appearances in the cult series The Avengers and Doctor Who, as well as Dad's Army. He was also known to be an accomplished linguist.

Philip Madoc
Phil Madoc (left) with Arthur Lowe in the Dad's Army episode "The Deadly Attachment" (1973)
Philip Arvon Jones[1]

(1934-07-05)5 July 1934
Died5 March 2012(2012-03-05) (aged 77)
Northwood, London, England
Alma materRoyal Academy of Dramatic Art
Years active19622012
Ruth Madoc
(m. 1963; div. 1981)

Diane (divorced)

Early life

Madoc was born near Merthyr Tydfil and attended Cyfarthfa Castle Grammar School, where he was a member of the cricket and rugby teams,[3] and displayed talent as a linguist. He then studied languages at University College Cardiff and the University of Vienna. He eventually spoke seven languages, including Russian and Swedish, and had a working knowledge of Huron Indian, Hindi and Mandarin. He worked as an interpreter, but became disenchanted with having to translate for politicians: "I did dry-as-dust jobs like political interpreting. You get to despise politicians when you have to translate the rubbish they spout."[4] He then switched to acting and won a place at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).

Acting career

Madoc acted on stage with the Royal Shakespeare Company, playing the roles of Iago, Othello and Dr Faust.[1] As a television actor he first gained widespread recognition in two serials, first as the relentless SS Officer Lutzig in the Second World War serial Manhunt (1969), and then as the vicious Huron warrior Magua in a serialisation of The Last of the Mohicans (1971). He played a character resembling Lutzig, but for comic effect, in "The Deadly Attachment", an episode of the comedy Dad's Army in which he played a U-boat captain held prisoner by the Walmington-on-Sea platoon of the Home Guard. He records names on his "list" for the day of reckoning after the war is won, prompting Captain Mainwaring's famous line "Don't tell him, Pike!" Madoc's ability to give life to German villains also surfaced in the TV series The Fortunes of War, directed by James Cellan Jones.

He also appeared in five episodes of the TV series The Avengers between 1963 and 1969 ("The Decapod", "Six Hands Across a Table", "Death of a Batman", "The Correct Way to Kill", "My Wildest Dream").

In 1974 he played a corrupt and lecherous priest, Vicar Davyd, in the BBC Wales serial Hawkmoor. In 1977 he appeared as Dr Evans in the television adaptation of Andrea Newman's book Another Bouquet (the sequel to A Bouquet of Barbed Wire).

Madoc starred in the detective series A Mind to Kill as DCI Noel Bain. This series was made simultaneously in Welsh and English from 1994 to 2002. He appeared in episodes of the BBC sitcoms The Good Life and Porridge ("Disturbing The Peace"), and in a controversial episode of The Goodies ("South Africa"), which satirised Apartheid. He took the lead role in the BBC Wales drama The Life and Times of David Lloyd George.

Films in which Madoc appeared included Operation Crossbow (1965), The Quiller Memorandum (1966), Berserk! (1967), Doppelgänger (1969), Hell Boats (1970), Dr. Jekyll and Sister Hyde (1971), Soft Beds, Hard Battles (1974) and Operation Daybreak (1975). His later film performances included Leon Trotsky in Zina (1985), and Jimmy Murphy in the football movie Best (2000).

Madoc presented an educational 1960s BBC television series, Komm mit! Wir sprechen Deutsch: German by television.

Science-fiction roles

Madoc appeared in the second Doctor Who film, Daleks' Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. (1966) and later in the BBC series itself. He appeared in two Second Doctor serials The Krotons where he played Eelek, a high-ranking member of Gond Society, and The War Games, where he played the villainous alien War Lord. In the 1970s he appeared in two Fourth Doctor serials The Brain of Morbius and The Power of Kroll. He recorded DVD commentaries for The Krotons, The War Games and The Brain of Morbius and was interviewed about his roles in Doctor Who in the short film "Philip Madoc - a Villain for All Seasons", which appeared as an extra on the DVD for The Power of Kroll. In 2003, he guest-starred in the Big Finish Doctor Who audio adventure, Master, and returned to Big Finish in the 2008 Sixth Doctor story Return of the Krotons. He voiced the War King in the Faction Paradox audio series.

He appeared twice in the drama series UFO, once as the partner of Ed Straker's estranged wife and once as the captain of a British warship under attack by the aliens. In the pilot episode of Space: 1999 (1975) he had a brief appearance as Commander Anton Gorski, who was replaced by Commander John Koenig for the remainder of the series. In addition to his minor role of Anton Gorski, his likeness later appeared in the comic book adaptation of the Space 1999 saga, where his character's previously minor role was expanded upon. He also made a guest appearance in Survivors.

Other roles

Madoc's voice can be heard reading Bible quotations on a variant of the VoCo alarm clock. He also starred as Ellis Peters's medieval detective Brother Cadfael in the BBC Radio 4 adaptations of Monk's Hood,[5] The Virgin in the Ice[6] and Dead Man's Ransom.[7][8] He recorded a 12-CD audiobook of selections from Edward Gibbon's Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.

In 2001 Madoc voiced the role of "Prospero" for the BBC Radio 3 production of The Tempest. Madoc read the 2011 audiobook retranslation Dr Zhivago. The Welsh actor voiced Gwydion in Y Mabinogi (Otherworld) (2003), featuring Daniel Evans, Jenny Livsey and Matthew Rhys.[9]

In 2007 Madoc appeared as "Y Llywydd" (The President) in the S4C gangster series Y Pris, in which he spoke in his native Welsh. He was the narrator for the Discovery Channel documentary series Egypt Uncovered.

Selected theatre performances

Personal life

Philip Madoc's first marriage, to the actress Ruth Madoc, lasted for 20 years. [Philip A Jones married Ruth Baker or Llewellyn-Baker, at SWANSEA, in the Spring of 1963 (Reg of BMD ref 8B1080)]. They had a son and a daughter, and divorced in 1981. Madoc's second marriage, which also ended in divorce, was to Diane.[4]

He was patron of Best Theatre Arts, a theatre school in St Albans[10] and President of the London Welsh Male Voice Choir.[11]

He was a big fan of David Pearce, the professional boxer and was one of the 2,000 people who attended his funeral.

It was stated in January 2012 that Madoc had been diagnosed with cancer. He died on 5 March 2012 at the Michael Sobell Hospice in Northwood, northwest London.[2] He was cremated at the West Hertfordshire Crematorium in Watford.[12]


Year Title Role Notes
1961On the FiddleSoldier at Black RockUncredited
1965Operation CrossbowGerman Police OfficerUncredited
1965A High Wind in JamaicaGuardia Civile
1965The Spy Who Came in from the ColdYoung German OfficerUncredited
1966Daleks' Invasion Earth 2150 A.D.Brockley
1966The Quiller MemorandumOktober's Man
1968DeadfallBank ManagerUncredited
1969The Assassination BureauOfficerUncredited
1969DoppelgängerDr. Pontini
1970Hell Boats'E' Boat Captain
1971Dr. Jekyll and Sister HydeByker
1973Bequest to the NationFrench captainUncredited
1974Soft Beds, Hard BattlesField Marshal Weber
1975Operation DaybreakHeydrich's interpreter
1985ZinaLeon Trotsky
1991A Mind to KillDetective Inspector Noel Bain
2000BestJimmy Murphy
2003Den of LionsGrandpa Marcus
2003Y MabinogiGwydionVoice


  1. Meic Stephens. "Philip Madoc: Actor Forever Remembered as the U-Boat Captain in Dad's Army", The Independent, 7 March 2012
  2. "Actor Philip Madoc dies aged 77". BBC News. 5 March 2012. Retrieved 5 March 2012.
  3. "Cyfartha School Photographs 1950-51 at". Retrieved 5 March 2012.
  4. "Actor Philip Madoc Obituary". The Daily Telegraph. London. 5 March 2012. Retrieved 5 March 2012.
  5. "Review of Monk's Hood". BBC Radio Crimes audio book. Littlehampton Gazette. 24 September 2009. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  6. "The Virgin in the Ice". BBC Radio Crimes audiobook. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  7. "Dead Man's Ransom". BBC Radio Crimes audio book. ISBN 0563388625. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  8. "Dead Man's Ransom". BBC Radio Crimes audio book. 5 May 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2013.
  9. Minovitz, Ethan (6 March 2012). "Welsh Television Actor Philip Madoc Dies at 77". Big Cartoon News. Archived from the original on 3 December 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012.
  10. Best Theatre Arts
  11. "London Welsh Male Voice Choir". Archived from the original on 26 March 2012. Retrieved 6 March 2012.
  12. "Memorial Service Lined Up for Actor Philip Madoc", 15 March 2013 Wales Online
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