Leela was a warrior of the savage Sevateem, a tribe of regressed humans. She met the Fourth Doctor during his visit to her home planet and aided him against Xoanon. The two became friends and, when offered the possibility of becoming leader of her world’s new society, she left to follow the Doctor. Although he initially rejected her request to go with him, she ran into the TARDIS and became his companion. (TV: The Face of Evil)
Leela’s origins meant she had little understanding of the technological wonders to which her travels exposed her. She was educated by the Doctor, who attempted to instruct her on the nature of societies beyond her own. During one such trip, she met Henry Gordon Jago and George Litefoot, whom she would revisit a number of times thereafter. Despite the Doctor’s misgivings, she remained quick to violence and her primitive edge never dissipated. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang, AUDIO: The Renaissance Man,AUDIO:The Wrath of the Iceni,The Ruthven Inheritance, Dead Men’s Tales)
They were joined on their travels by K9. (TV: The Invisible Enemy) Having fallen in love with Andred, a member of the Chancellery Guard, Leela chose to leave the Doctor and live on Gallifrey. K9 decided to remain with her. (TV: The Invasion of Time)
She married Andred (TV: Arc of Infinity) and, taking the name Leelandredloomsagwinaechegesima, (PROSE: Lungbarrow) became embroiled in Gallifreyan politics as the bodyguard of Romana II. (AUDIO: Weapon of Choice) The Time Lords allowed her to retain her youth for an unnaturally long time. (AUDIO: The Catalyst)
In the course of her time on Gallifrey, Leela became involved in a civil war and was blinded. (AUDIO:Fractures) Following Andred’s death, (AUDIO: Insurgency) she explored a number of alternative Gallifreys in other dimensions (AUDIO: Reborn) and restored her sight in one of them by drinking blood. (AUDIO:Annihilation) Leela survived the destruction of Gallifrey, but instead became a prisoner of the Z’Nai. (AUDIO: The Catalyst) She died in their dungeon. (AUDIO: The Time Vampire) Her soul was reborn asEmily. (AUDIO: The Child)
Leela was a member of the Sevateem, descended from the human survey team of the Mordee expedition. She was the daughter of Sole. (TV: The Face of Evil) Leela was named after Leela, the greatest warrior in Sevateem history, who sacrificed her life to save the tribe. (AUDIO: The Catalyst, Arbitration, The Abandoned) In 60, she told Boudica that the name had no meaning. (AUDIO: The Wrath of the Iceni) As a child, Leela saw her mother struck down and killed by an animal on Mount Kremnon while protecting her. She stayed with her body until sunrise in order to protect her soul from evil spirits. During her childhood, she and her friend Tomas often went hunting together. (AUDIO: Empathy Games) Her father taught her how to heal animals’ wounds with moss. (AUDIO: Zygon Hunt)
Meeting the Doctor
Leela argued against the tribe’s shaman, Neeva, in his decision to attack the rival Tesh tribe – a purpose he claimed came from the Sevateem’s god, Xoanon. Leela’s blaspheming against this deity secured her banishment. Sole undertook the ritual Test of the Horda on her behalf and was killed.
While attempting to leave Sevateem land, Leela came into conflict with two men, sent by Neeva to kill her. She used a crossbow to slay one of her assailants while Tomas, her friend, killed the other. Leela instructed him to return to the tribe and, before going far, met with the Fourth Doctor. She believed him to be the Evil One – a figure from Sevateem religion who supposedly held Xoanon captive – due to the resemblance between him and the carved face on a cliff nearby.
Leela was experiencing a crisis of religion. The Doctor saved her from the psychic projections of Xoanon that resided in the jungle, earning her trust. After the Doctor was captured, Leela returned to the Sevateem village and helped him escape. Her use of janis thorns to paralyze and kill was criticized by the Doctor.
Calib used a janis thorn against Leela, and only through the Doctor’s use of a bio-analyzer was she restored from paralysis and saved from death. Leela then went with the Doctor to the base of the Tesh – in fact the spacecraft used by the expedition. There, the Doctor found the supercomputer Xoanon and set about trying to cure him of his insanity while Leela fended off the attacking Tesh, killing several. The Doctor was able to unify the mind of Xoanon, slipping into unconsciousness as he did so.
Leela cared for him for two days until he came to his senses. She followed him back to his TARDIS and requested that he take her with him. The Doctor protested, admitting that he liked Leela, but saying he could not take everyone he liked with him as they were too numerous. She walked past him into the TARDIS, he followed, and Leela’s use of the console led to de-materialization. (TV: The Face of Evil)
Leaving the TARDIS
The Doctor signed a treaty with the Vardans, agreeing to help them invade Gallifrey in return for complete control over the Time Lords. He disabled the TARDIS scanner to stop Leela from watching the proceedings. His lack of trust annoyed her, but as the Vardans could read minds, he chose to keep his plan to trick them to himself.
They went to Gallifrey and the Doctor claimed the office of Lord President of the High Council of Time Lords. Leela met Andred, a member of theChancellery Guard. He tried to help her select an outfit for the Doctor’s induction ceremony, but she found nothing to her liking. Leela and Andred were stood together at the ceremony when the Doctor was attacked by the Matrix. Borusa had Leela taken prisoner, deeming her to be responsible. The Doctor ordered that she be sent out of the Capitol.
Leela fled and, after a time, managed to find the Doctor. She followed him back to the TARDIS, only to find he had locked her out, forcing her to flee to evade Andred and the other guards. She found Rodan, who was separated from her by a force field. The two talked and, taking a liking to the savage, Rodan turned off the barrier, letting Leela in. They watched as a hostile spacecraft entered Gallifreyan space and learnt of the Vardan invasion.
Leela and Rodan met with Andred and told him of their plan to leave the Capitol. Outside, they were taken prisoner by the Outsiders, led by Nesbin. They managed to gain the confidence of the group and Leela persuaded them to help fight against the Vardans. She showed them her proficiency with a bow and tactically plotted their assault on the Capitol. They managed to make their way to the President’s office where the Doctor used K9 to send the Vardans back to their planet.
The Sontarans followed the Vardans to invade Gallifrey after the force field had been opened. Leela, as with the Doctor’s other allies, followed him to the President’s office. She killed a Sontaran on the way, throwing a knife into its probic vent. The Doctor and Borusa split away from the main group who were led by Leela back to the TARDIS.
The Doctor and Borusa joined them and, shortly after, the Sontarans gained access to the TARDIS. Leela and the Outsiders attacked and killed the soldiers, leaving only Stor, whom the Doctor erased from time with the De-mat Gun.
Leela decided to stay on Gallifrey, having fallen in love with Andred. When the Doctor was ready to leave, he indicated his intent to Leela. She told him she wanted to remain and when he asked why, Andred took her hand. The Doctor assured Andred that Leela would look after him, saying she was “terribly good with a knife”.
K9 chose to stay too, in order to look after “the mistress”. Leela told the Doctor she would miss him, an admission he only made in kind when alone inside his TARDIS. Once the craft had de-materialized, she asked K9 if the Doctor would be lonely without them, but he could only reply that there was “insufficient data”. (TV: The Invasion of Time)
Life on Gallifrey
She spent the next decades in the Capitol. Andred and Leela married (TV: Arc of Infinity) and conceived a child, the first born on Gallifrey for millennia. (Pythia had long ago made the Gallifreyans a sterile race.) (PROSE: Lungbarrow) There were hints that the Doctor was really her son; this was covered up by family, politics and paradox-avoiding paranoia.
Andred vanished, and Leela served as bodyguard and confidante to President Romana, another former companion of the Doctor. (AUDIO: Weapon of Choice) She was drawn into Time Lord politics and conspiracies while working on Presidential missions with Celestial Intervention Agency operatives Torvald and Coordinator Narvin. (AUDIO: Square One, A Blind Eye) She discovered that Torvald had caused Andred’s death, but later that Torvald was really a regenerated Andred. (AUDIO: A Blind Eye)
Mission to Earth
She was sent on a mission to the 19th century by Romana to track temporal seepage and to stop it destroying the Earth, as she knew the time. She sought out Jago and Litefoot to aid her. Romana told her how to track the breaks in time. They taught her cockney rhyming slang. She found a source of temporal seepage at the Jolly Rodger and became a barmaid there. (AUDIO: Dead Men’s Tales) She later went round looking for an energy source. Her temporal seepage detector relayed Eleanor Naismith’s story that Clara. (AUDIO: The Man at the End of the Garden) She tracked the energy source to the New Regency Theatre, much to Jago’s dismay. She thought that plays were stupid. (AUDIO: Swan Song) Leela later found the source of the temporal seepage to be the experiments that Payne was performing. When Litefoot was trapped under a collapsed building, she worked out where he lay. As her job was done, she tried to return back to Gallifrey but couldn’t. (AUDIO: Chronoclasm)
Realizing that her time ring wasn’t working, she rejoined Jago and Litefoot and suggested they go on holiday to Brighton like the Sixth Doctor said. She thought that Abigail Woburn wouldn’t make a good mate for Jago. She killed a lioness to save Litefoot. (AUDIO: Jago in Love) She did not like Oscar Wilde’s play. She was more interested in the man with no smell. (AUDIO: Beautiful Things) She went to find Kempston and Hardwick with Ellie. They went with Winnie O’Connor, to the train that Jago and Litefoot where trapped on in a time loop. (AUDIO: The Lonelty Clock) She helped the Doctor stop Kempston and Hardwick. After this her time ring started to work and she went home. (AUDIO: The Hourglass Killers)
Back to Gallifrey
She went into the catacombs and encountered Pandora. (AUDIO: Lies) She accompanied Romana toDavidia where she started to understand Romana’s way of thinking. (AUDIO: Spirit) Braxiatel appointed her to acting Castellan after the disappearance of Wynter; this angered Andred. (AUDIO: Pandora) Braxiatel’s last act as chancellor was to appoint her as a tutor at the Time Lord Academy, where she taught Neeloc, Taylor Addison, Galadina and B’arech about living in harmony with the Time Lords. (AUDIO: Insurgency)
Leela had not forgiven Andred for his deceit when he died soon afterwards. During the troubled time that followed, Leela’s most trusted friend, K9, was destroyed in an explosion aimed at off-world students of the Time Lord Academy. Bitter at the loss of her last link with the Doctor, Leela refused a replacement. (AUDIO: Imperiatrix) In the Time Lord civil war, Leela fought on Romana’s side and was blinded by a bomb. (AUDIO: Fractures) She protected Romana when she fought Pandora inside the Matrix. (AUDIO:Warfare)
After the Sunari, Nekkistani and Phaidons invaded Gallifrey after the civil war, she was tasked in finding K9 Mark II so that he could fix the transduction barriers. (AUDIO: Appropriation). When Romana was imprisoned by Darkel, Leela posed as part of Romana’s legal counsel to talk to her. She also pursued Darkel’s would be assassin into the catacombs. Leela was told by Narvin to go to Braxiatel’s office to check his notes, and found Braxiatel there. (AUDIO: Mindbomb) When Romana left the capitol, Leela, following K9’s prediction, went to the House of Heartshaven to find her. She then smuggled Romana intoElbon’s medical wing. After the destruction of the matrix Narvin used her first hand evidence about the criminal activities of Mephistopheles Arkadian to the High Council. She followed Arkadian for the CIA tower to the bio-data archive. She, with the archive, Narvin and Arkadian, was time scooped to the Braxiatel Collection. (AUDIO: Panacea)
Death and ReBirth
Leela survived the destruction of Gallifrey. She ended up a prisoner of the Z’Nai, who had returned to power. While Leela lived on Gallifrey, the Time Lords had allowed her to retain her youth for a greatly extended time. This was no longer so. While the Z’nai tortured Leela for information about Gallifrey and the Time Lords, she aged physically, one year for each day.
The Z’nai had abandoned their ancient custom of leaving their chests bare. Just before the Z’nai interrogating her was to kill her, she gave him a choice — stop the killing or be killed. He laughed, but she infected him with the plague that had wiped out the Z’nai originally. The entire race died, leaving Leela and the other prisoners at first joyful, then terrified as they realised they were trapped and abandoned. Leela remained bound, without the strength to free herself, reminiscing about her days with the Doctor as she waited to die. (AUDIO: The Catalyst)
After the Z’nai had all died and all torture had stopped, the machines used to torture Leela and her fellow prisoners kept them alive. Leela told a fellow prisoner who was crying a story about when she saw the Doctor being afraid. (AUDIO: Empathy Games) Leela eventually died in the Z’nai prison. (AUDIO: The Time Vampire) Leela’s soul was reborn as a young girl named Emily. Leela recounted many of her adventures with the Doctor to Emily. (AUDIO: The Child)
Summoned to Gallifrey because of the Omega plots, the Fifth Doctor asked about Leela and was told by Damon that she was “well and very happy”. He was sorry to have missed her wedding. (TV: Arc of Infinity)
The Doctor commented on the fact that Leela’s child would be half-Gallifreyan and half-human. He told Leela to name the child after him. (PROSE: Lungbarrow)
After seeing Richard Harries’ experiments with rats, the Eighth Doctor recalled the episode in the London Sewers when Leela had been attacked by a giant rat. (PROSE: The Banquo Legacy)
At some point, Leela was taken to the Black Archive by UNIT to have her record as a companion of the Doctor taken, she met Sergeant John Benton there. Leela’s memories of the visit were subsequently erased and she was sent on her way. (TV: The Day of the Doctor)
Leela had a Bookface account and was friends with the Eleventh Doctor. She commented on one of the photos River Song tagged him in and asked if it was taken on Riftan Five, where she and the Doctor once got lost for three days. (COMIC: Timeliney Wimey)
After Xoanon was made sane, Leela declined the opportunity to be the leader of the unified Tesh and Sevateem. The Doctor admitted to liking her, but refused to take her on as a companion, so she entered the TARDIS against his wishes. (TV: The Face of Evil)
Leela retained the mindset that life among the primitive and superstitious Sevateem had imprinted upon her. She took the noises of a ship on the River Thames for the attack sound of a swamp creature. When a Chinese man she had implicated in a crime refused to talk, Leela insisted that he be tortured into speaking. While in the home of George Litefoot, Leela displayed her savagery to the host, tearing meat off the bone with her teeth. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang)
The Doctor described Leela as “a huntress, a creature of instinct”. She felt better suited to the wastelands of Gallifrey than the Capitol. Nevertheless, Leela was confident she could “survive anywhere”. Her single-mindedness convinced the Doctor that she would be susceptible to Vardan telepathy, so he ordered that she be banished from the Capitol.
Leela was unwilling to believe that the Doctor was a traitor, despite Rodan’s insistence, even declaring that “reason [was] a liar” for suggesting otherwise. The Doctor told Borusa that he trusted Leela after the Chancellor questioned his decision to hand her the Great Key of Rassilon. (TV: The Invasion of Time)
The sociology of the tribe instilled Leela with the belief that the only way to learn was by listening to the wisdom of elders. Leela maintained that the “fate of the old and crippled” was to be slain and asked the Doctor to kill her when she thought she was blind. She did not consider herself to be a lady. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock)
Leela rejected the belief that Xoanon was a god. She referred to the phantoms that supposedly resided in the lands beyond Sevateem territory as “feast fire stories”. (TV: The Face of Evil) She abandoned her belief in magic, telling Adelaide Lessage “I too used to believe in magic, but the Doctor has taught me about science. It is better to believe in science”. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock)
Leela did not hesitate to use the weapons she kept about her person, despite the Doctor’s disapproval. (TV: The Robots of Death) He didn’t berate her for saving his life through violence. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang) Leela boasted over the wounded Rutan scout on Fang Rock, telling it “I enjoyed killing you”. She believed it was “fitting to celebrate the death of an enemy”, a point the Doctor disagreed with her on. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock)
Henry Gordon Jago believed that Leela was the “bravest creature” that he had ever met. (AUDIO: The Night of 1000 Stars) She claimed to have no fear ofdeath. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang)
Leela admired Boudica. She doubted her knowledge of the Doctor’s character after he refused to help the Iceni, saying “I thought you were a man of honor”. She ignored his warnings about altering history, told Boudica of her coming defeat, and swore fealty to her. The slaughter at Camulodunon convinced Leela that she had misjudged the queen’s character. She recognised her former self in Boudica and chose not to kill her when she had the chance. (AUDIO: The Wrath of the Iceni)
Leela became angry with K9 after he failed to provide her with information, telling him to “shut up”. When K9 started to sulk, she apologised, saying she was sorry and assuring him that she “didn’t mean to shout”. K9 chose to stay on Gallifrey with Leela to look after her.
On Gallifrey, Leela met Rodan. The Time Lord advised her to put her knife away, lest she hurt herself, which Leela said was something the Doctor often remarked. When Rodan allowed a fleet to pass and told Leela it was probably going to “blast some part of the galaxy to dust”, Leela told her she ought to have stopped them, but Rodan explained that the non-interference policy forbade such action. Leela mocked Rodan’s manner of speaking, saying “one must, one must, yes”. Rodan only replied “I knew I’d like you” and turned off the force field that separated the pair.
At their parting, Leela told the Doctor she would miss him. He made an admission in kind only when alone in his TARDIS, saying “I’ll miss you too, savage”. Leela left him in order to be with Andred, whom she fell in love with. (TV: The Invasion of Time) Romana considered Leela to be her best friend. (AUDIO:Extermination)
Leela usually dressed in animal skins and armed herself with a knife and janis thorns. (TV: The Face of Evil) She once accompanied this outfit with the Doctor’s hat. (TV: The Invisible Enemy)
While in London in 1889, the Doctor had Leela wear a less conspicuous outfit, befitting the time. Leela thought these alternative clothes were ridiculous. In order to affect a disguise, she took and dressed in Teresa’s clothes.
In order to accompany the Doctor to the Palace Theatre, Leela wore a fashionable dress selected by George Litefoot. She was pleased by the comments the pair made, with Litefoot labeling it as “quite delightful” and the Doctor saying he would “be proud” to take her the theatre “looking like that”. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang)
Leela dressed in a skirt and wore a boater hat for a trip to Brighton. When she found herself on Fang Rock instead, she changed into men’s clothes belonging to the lighthouse keepers. The explosion of a Rutan mother ship resulted in pigmentation dispersal that caused Leela’s eye color to change permanently from brown to blue.
While on Fang Rock, James Skinsale commented that Leela was “not a bad looker”, but Adelaide Lessage thought her “perfectly grotesque”. Skinsale told her he had learnt to “appreciate nature” during his time in India. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock)
On Gallifrey, Andred helped Leela to chose an outfit. She went through many clothes, rejecting them all, much to Andred’s annoyance. He asked her what outfit she would like and she replied: “a quiver, a bow, a pouch of Janis thorns and my knife back”. While with the Outsiders, she wore a fur cloak over her other clothes. (TV: The Invasion of Time)
After she stopped travelling with the Doctor, one of her skins remained in the TARDIS wardrobe. The Fifth Doctor’s companion Peri Brown considered wearing it on one occasion. (AUDIO: No Place Like Home) The Eighth Doctor’s companion Izzy Sinclair tried it once. (COMIC: Ophidius)
Leela was skilled in combat, both armed and otherwise. She was particularly adept with knives, which she used as throwing weapons. (TV: The Robots of Death) Leela was able to hit a Sontaran’s probic vent with a thrown knife and the Doctor congratulated her, calling the act “prodigious” and “amazing”. (TV: The Invasion of Time) She was once found by a policeman to be strangling her opponent with his own pigtail. She had never used a handgun until her visit to London in 1889, but managed to utilize it effectively against Mr Sin. (TV: The Talons of Weng-Chiang) She was skilled with a bow and displayed her talent for archery to the Outsiders on Gallifrey. (TV: The Invasion of Time) The Doctor claimed that “Leela was an expert in armaments”. (AUDIO: The Renaissance Man) Before his death, Andred showed her how to operate a staser. (AUDIO: Extermination)
Leela wrote with her left hand, but threw her knife and performed other actions with her right. (TV: The Invisible Enemy) During her travels with the Doctor, he taught her to read and write. (PROSE: People of the Trees; AUDIO:The Time Vampire, White Ghosts, TV: The Invisible Enemy) She was able to swim and did so in the TARDIS swimming pool. (TV: The Invasion of Time)
The Fourth Doctor told James Skinsale that “Leela’s senses were particularly acute” when explaining how she had sensed a change in temperature that alluded everyone else present. Leela also believed she had a keen sense of hearing. (TV: Horror of Fang Rock) She could sense an evil about the Swarm and was able to tell that a communique from Titan Base had a non-human source. (TV: The Invisible Enemy) In Jack Corrigan’s house, she was able to “smell” death and correctly predicted that a battle had taken place there. She also recognized that Corrigan was “not what he seemed” by being in his presence and hearing him talk. (AUDIO: Destination: Nerva) The Doctor believed that her “tracking skills were peerless”. (AUDIO:The Renaissance Man)