Classic Rewatch: Genesis of the Daleks

genesis of the daleks

Typically, we’d use this moment to compose a little anecdote about the world around us, a little commentary on social behavior and interaction, and then tie it in somehow to a recurring theme or plot line from the classic Doctor Who story we’re currently revisiting.

Doing so, in this case, would rob us of the time we’d rather be enjoying one of Tom Baker’s most iconic performances, and a remarkably solid script from Terry Nation. (We know you had it in you, old chap.)

This week, we sit back and absorb all there is to one of the most frequently referenced, critically scrutinized, and impactful stories to emerge from the Classic Who library: season 12’s “Genesis of the Daleks”. Haley has to suspend her “all 6-episode stories should really be 4” theory, Keir wonders how great Bettan would have been as a companion, and they both still can’t fathom what Fantom Events is going to cut out of the story for the upcoming cinematic release. (Oh, and we learn that Harry Sullivan really can’t stand shellfish.)



Classic Rewatch: Death to the Daleks

We can thank Terry Nation for the conceptualization and creation of one of the most iconic and long-lasting villainous forces ever created in televised science fiction. What we can’t always thank him for is a really compelling story that uses them.

This week, we scratch our heads a bit at the Third Doctor and Sarah Jane story from Season 11, “Death to the Daleks”. All the basic components of a great episode are there, from concept to cast, but the end result…well…

At least we get to play a little Myst: Doctor Who Edition, and find our way through the rooms of a dead city by solving puzzles. Thanks, “Dave”!





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Classic Rewatch: Planet of the Daleks

Planet of the Daleks

It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. It was a season of “classic” Doctor Who that had fans then and now reveling in the performances, loving the on-screen chemistry, and even enjoying the plotlines and creativity that writers and producers were bringing to the table.

And then…Terry Nation came back. Without much to offer in the ‘originality’ department. But hey — purple fur cloaks for everybody!

Joined this week by television producer and devout classic Whovian, Dave Barsky, we go many, many levels below the surface to find the positives in the 1973 story, “Planet of the Daleks”. We discuss the performances of Pertwee, Manning, and Horsfall, the absence of Roger Delgado, and the apparent importance of rocks. Lots, and lots of rocks. Grab your favourite purple shag carpet, sit back with a warm bowl of strawberry jam curative, and enjoy!

EXTRA: We play a little “Five Rounds, Rapid” Q&A with our guest Dave.




Classic Rewatch: Day of the Daleks

Day of the Daleks

Five years without a go-round with your favourite sinister salt shakers is one heck of a dry spell. Shoehorning them into the middle of a temporal causality loop story rife with guerilla future freedom fighters, gorilla thuggees, and a Time Lord who’s been tipping into the wine cellar before attempting a mad dash on a fat-wheeled trike just pushes the whole thing into lunacy. (Sweet, delicious lunacy.) How could you possibly improve upon this sack full of angry cats? Why, bring in updated effects and a delightful Nick Briggs some forty years later, of course.

As Jay departs the studio to batten down the hatches for a hurricane in Texas, Keir and Haley are joined by Don Klees to throw back a bottle of red, a few nibbles of exquisite gorgonzola, and enjoy “Day of the Daleks”. Season 9 hits the ground running with bigger aspirations than the effects team could provide (and if you ask Jon Pertwee, fewer Daleks than the script required), but thanks to a present-day producer who wanted something more for the 21st century DVD release, we have an extraordinary “Special Edition” that provides what we feel is an applaudable enhancement, or ‘nip and tuck’, to the original Third Doctor and Jo Grant paradoxical adventure. Added bonus? Haley gets her first exposure to the UNIT Dating Conundrum — and her ability to put aside continuity concerns may be in jeopardy forevermore.

EXTRA: We find out exactly what it is that our guest Don does for Acorn Media (the popular British TV streaming platform).



Classic Rewatch: The Dalek Invasion of Earth

dalek invasion of earth

In 1963, the world was introduced to the alien horrors of the “homicidal trash bins” known as the Daleks. As terrifying as they were to the audience of the time, there may yet have been a sense of separation from this manifestation of evil, as we (through the eyes of the TARDIS team) met them millions of years in the future, on their strange planet of Skaro. When next we find them, however, the dangers of these sinister pepperpots strikes home — quite literally. Enjoy the time you have, fellow Earthlings, because by the mid 22nd century, we’re in for a rough go of it.

Turning back to what is possibly Terry Nation’s finest script, we look back this week on the second season of William Hartnell’s tenure as the Doctor, in “The Dalek Invasion of Earth”. We discuss the fascinating construct of the script, the attention paid to supporting cast, the trials and tribulations of the beleaguered prop department, and, of course, the farewell to Carol Ann Ford, as Susan exits (exits? no…gets locked out of) the TARDIS for the last time — on screen. It’s one of our top ten Classic Who stories, and arguably one of the best First Doctor stories overall. Feel otherwise? Well, well, yes indeed, then speak up, my good chap!

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