Genesis of the Daleks

medium used: DVD

A totally engrossing story, unfortunately marred by padding and some occasional silliness (e.g., big, nasty clams)

Great Moments

Where to start? There’s so many!

Davros — played to perfection by Michael Wisher.  He dominates every scene that he’s in.

Nyder — another character played to perfection.  One niggle is that I wish we could have found out a bit more of his motivations for being so loyal to Davros.  He shows one moment of doubt upon hearing of Davros’s plan to destroy his own people (“You would go that far?”), but that is quickly over.

SJS leading the slave rebellion, and the climb up the scaffolding — It’s a pity, though, that they have her freeze up and then fall.  No doubt that’s partly to create a time filler and a cliffhanger, but it also undermines the character. Sarcasm alert: Poor weak female, can start a rebellion, but just can’t follow through without messing up, and needs a male to rescue her.End sarcasm alert (Still, the first part of the scene is quite impressive.)

“Excuse me, can you help me?  I’m a spy.”

And, of course, the “Have I the right?” scene,  justly regarded as a great iconic moment.

Random Thoughts

“Have I the right?”  The Doctor hesitates to put the two ends of the wire together — not only would he be committing genocide, but his act would alter the future in unimaginable ways. Still, the expectation that this would destroy the Daleks is unfounded.  There are mature Daleks out doing Davros’s dirty work who would not be affected by the blast; neither would Davros  himself and most of the scientists. Moreover, there are undoubtedly scientific records of the Dalek creation stored in a safe place.  Thus, destroying the “nursery” would be a severe blow, but would still not be a complete solution.

The only way the Doctor could be sure of ridding the universe of Daleks would be to totally destroy the bunker, make sure there were no survivors, and then kill off the Daleks who were  sent out  to murder Thals —  and that’s assuming that Davros has not stored a copy of his records in some other, secret location.

There doesn’t seem to be a whole lot of women around —  there’s Bettan on the Thal side, and I thought I caught a glimpse of another female in the background.  I noticed no women at all among the Kaleds.

One pleasing aspect of this story is that there’s no  simplistic “good guys vs bad guys” scenario.  The Thals are just as sadistic and aggressive as the Kaleds, and the mutant outcasts attack normals just because they’re not mutants.

Shipping Report

Not too much to say here — the TARDIS crew continues to work well together, and the Doctor once again displays concern for his companions — even willing to co-operate with Davros to spare them pain.

Food and Drink

The Doctor brashly asks for tea or coffee after Nyder leaves them in care of their new jailor, much to the guard’s shock.

SJS, after seeing the big, nasty clams, says “I’ll never eat oysters again.”

Grade: 4/5

July 30, 2010

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