DEATH TO THE DALEKS

Part One

Me: I’d like you to close your eyes during the title sequence…
Sue: Is it called Something of the Daleks?
Me: **** it. Yes, the Daleks are in the ****ing title. There, you’ve ruined the surprise.
Sue: What surprise? It’s the bloody title, Neil!
Me: I thought it’d be more interesting if you didn’t know the Daleks were in it. Oh, sod it. It’s called Death to the Daleks. Happy now?
Sue: Ecstatic.

The episode begins…

Death to the DaleksSue: So that’s why you wanted me to close my eyes. Terry ****ing Nation!

After an interesting opening scene, which features somebody dying from an arrow to the stomach, drowning and acute boredom – all at the same time – we join the Doctor and Sarah as they prepare for a much-needed holiday to Florana.

Sue: Is Sarah Jane going to wear that swimsuit for the whole story? It’s definitely one for the dads, this.

The TARDIS suffers a massive power failure.

Sue: It’s the 1970s. Everyone had to put up with power cuts in 1970s. It’s very topical, this.

The Doctor and Sarah are plunged into darkness. Sort of.

Sue: There shouldn’t be any light in this scene at all, but if they did that, they’d spend the entire episode bumping into each other, so I forgive them.

After manually cranking open the TARDIS doors, Sarah decides to change into something more comfortable, but not before she makes the Doctor promise that he won’t leave her.

Death to the DaleksAnd then, as soon as Sarah’s back is turned, he leaves her.

Sue: What an absolute ****!

Oh dear.

Sue: He’s evil! It’s Jo’s sandwich all over again! Why is he doing this?

The Doctor walks further and further away from the TARDIS.

Sue: I never liked Jon Pertwee.

When Sarah eventually leaves the TARDIS, she’s dressed much more conservatively.

Sue: She’s gone from beautiful beach babe to Miss Jean Brodie. I bet all the dads switched off at this point.

Of course the Doctor is nowhere to be seen.

Sue: **** him! Go back inside the TARDIS, crank the door shut and leave him to it. I can’t get over the fact he lied to her like that. Seriously, why did he do that, Neil?

Sarah has been abandoned in a landscape of smoke and fog that looks genuinely dangerous and alien. She eventually decides to return to the TARDIS, but an Exxilon follows her. It gains entry to the ship and promptly assaults her.

Sue: This is very disturbing, all of a sudden. It’s turned into a stalk-and-slash film. These POV shots are very graphic. It’s very adult. Too adult, probably.

The Exxilons keep their large bulbous eyes trained on The Doctor as he traverses a narrow ravine.

Sue: Are they like the Sand Men in Star Wars? This looks very much like Star Wars, actually. Those funny little creatures with the glowing eyes will probably jump out and kidnap him.
Me: Utini!

Death to the DaleksA hidden tripwire causes a large boulder to come crashing down.

Sue: It’s turned into 127 Hours now.
Me: No, it just feels like 127 hours.
Sue: The direction is great, though. It’s different to what we usually get. It’s very creative.

The Doctor encounters a Marine Space Corps expedition who are searching for a rare mineral called parrinium.

Sue: It’s Avatar. Again. Doctor Who should probably sue James Cameron, you know.

They need the parrinium to cure a space plague that’s ravaging the outer worlds.

Sue: Terry loves a good space disease, doesn’t he?

Just as any hope of rescue looks increasingly unlikely, a spaceship enters the planet’s atmosphere.

Death to the DaleksSue: Oh dear, this isn’t good. Two characters are looking in completely opposite directions at the same thing. Oh, and now another actor (Julian Fox) is looking directly at the camera. I think he’s expecting – or hoping – the director will say, “Cut”.

The Space Marines rush off to meet the approaching ship.

Me: Do you have any idea who might be on that spaceship, Sue?
Sue: Is it the Master? I’m joking!

When Sarah investigates a high-tech city, she’s apprehended by some Exxilons.

Sue: Are they in a leper colony?

Sarah is sentenced to death for daring to enter the Exxilons’ holy city.

Sue: They should have had better signage. How was she supposed to know it was forbidden?

Death to the DaleksMeanwhile the spaceship has landed and – surprise, surprise – some Daleks come trundling out of it.

Sue: The Doctor actually looks a bit scared here.

The Daleks’ arrival is accompanied by some of the most inappropriate theme music ever devised for a television show.

Sue: It’s ****ing awful! This cannot be Dudley Simpson!
Me: You’re right, it’s Carey Blyton.
Sue: Are you impressed that I knew it wasn’t Dudley?
Me: No. I am a little scared, though.
Sue: At least somebody is. That cliffhanger was pants.

 

Part Two

Death to the DaleksThe Daleks are completely harmless.

Sue: Now it’s the Daleks’ turn to be scared. That’s clever. However, I’d like to know where the power is coming from to make their little lights flash on and off when they talk.

The Doctor tells the Daleks, “We are all in this together”.

Sue: I told you he was a Tory.

Four Daleks convene to discuss the Doctor’s suggestion they form an alliance. Three of the Daleks become incredibly animated during this discussion, but as for the fourth…

Sue: Did one of the Dalek operators call in sick? And what the **** is this music supposed to be? Are these Daleks supposed to be French?

The Exxilons beat the living shit out of a Dalek, before setting fire to it and dancing around its remains.

Sue: The lack of music during this scene makes it look like a snuff film or a video nasty. This is very disturbing.

An Exxilon shows up who can actually shoot straight, and he kills John Abineri. Which is a shame because Sue never got a chance to warm to him like she usually does.

Death to the DaleksSue: The guy playing Peter just looked straight down the camera again!

She’s right. And once you become aware of this, you can’t stop noticing that Julian Fox is constantly checking that the camera is still rolling. It would make for one hell of a drinking game.

Sue: This is the strangest episode of Doctor Who I’ve seen so far. It’s completely mental. I’ve never seen anything like it.

But she hasn’t seen anything yet, because now the Daleks are using a tiny model TARDIS for target practice.

Sue: Hang on a minute. Where did they get the little police box from? Have they been round our house when I wasn’t looking?

The Daleks arm themselves with machine guns and take great pleasure in massacring the Exxilons.

Death to the DaleksSue: It’s turned into a zombie film. The faces on these aliens are very disturbing. You must remember seeing this one when you were a boy, Neil.
Me: Actually, I don’t. I have no memories of this story at all. Although I do vividly remember a clip turning up on an edition of Ask Aspel. Please don’t ask me why I remember that, I just do.

Deep in some underground caverns, the Doctor comes face-to-face with a metallic snake.

Sue: It’s a torch strapped to a hoover attachment. Another ridiculous cliffhanger to add to the collection.

 

Part Three

Death to the DaleksSue: I take it all back. It’s a torch strapped to a hoover attachment crossed with that flower from the Pink Floyd film.
Me: It looks like Gypsy from Mystery Science Theater 3000, if you ask me.

Thankfully, Sue is much more forgiving of Bellal.

Sue: The make-up in this story is pretty good. They’re a believable alien race. I like the little guy. He’s basically a nice Gollum.

The Daleks keep their side of the bargain by helping the humans mine the parrinium with their technological prowess. They do this by using the Exxilons as slave labour, which doesn’t sound very technologically advanced to us. It also makes the Doctor’s proposed alliance with them even more baffling.

Sue: How do they expect to mine enough stuff to saves millions of lives with a workforce of six?

A snake-like creature emerges from the lake to attack the Exxilons.

Sue: That was amazing!
Me: What? Really?
Sue: Yes, Peter didn’t look at the camera once!

The Doctor strokes Sarah’s face as he orders her back to the parrinium mine.

Sue: This is a bit full-on, isn’t it? He’s known her for, what? A week? He’s overstepping the mark, if you ask me.

As the Doctor and Bellal enter the city, I’m rocked by a wave of nostalgia.

Me: This is the bit they showed on Ask Aspel. I just thought you should know.

The Doctor is confronted by a simple maze on a wall.

Sue: It’s basically an episode of The Cube. Phillip Schofield is on the other side of that door.

The Doctor traces his finger through the maze with ease.

Sue: That didn’t look very difficult to me. Why did the other contestants die? How many goes did they need before they all died of starvation? They must have been really thick.

Death to the DaleksAnd then the episode concludes with…

Sue: The worst cliffhanger EVER!
Me: I thought you’d like some nice tiling.
Sue: Not for the ****ing cliffhanger! Jesus!

 

Part Four

Sue: Is Bellal the new companion? He’d be great. The Doctor should have a companion who doesn’t look human. It would help him look a little less xenophobic.

The Doctor navigates the Tile of Doom with his sonic screwdriver.

Sue: The Doctor’s cheating. He isn’t demonstrating his intelligence at all. He just owns some clever technology. Any idiot can use a screwdriver. Well, except you, maybe.

The Daleks are right behind them.

Sue: I want to see the Daleks navigate that maze on the wall with their plungers. I demand to see that scene!

Bellal crosses the floor, as the Doctor implores him to avoid the red bits.

Death to the DaleksSue: He’s touching a red bit already! Look!

As the Doctor and Bellal make their way through the city, Sue can sense a pattern emerging. And no, that isn’t the next riddle, by the way.

Sue: Is this episode supposed to be one big quiz show?
Me: You haven’t said anything about Jill yet.
Sue: What is there to say? She’s pretty, but that’s about it. What has she done, exactly? The characters are very two-dimensional. I don’t care about any of them.

Bellal is forced to threaten the Doctor against his will, which is when a cushion suddenly hits me in the face.

Me: Ouch! What was that for?
Sue: Hypnotism. You’ll get a cushion in the face every time somebody is hypnotised in this show from now on.
Me: Oh crap…

The Doctor thinks the final test will be an assault on their sanity.

Sue: How did he jump to that incredibly specific conclusion?

Right on cue, the Doctor is menaced by some coloured lights.

Sue: This is more like a test of someone’s patience than an assault on their sanity. And you definitely wouldn’t get away with this today. Epileptics would have a fit.

Death to the DaleksAs the Doctor recovers from this terrifying ordeal, his hair looks especially defeated.

Sue: This is the least bouffanty I’ve ever seen this Doctor. It suits him.

When the Doctor and Bellal reach the city’s control room, Sue can appreciate the scale of their achievement.

Sue: It’s a bit like trying to find the exit in Ikea.

The Doctor looks for a way to switch off the city’s brain.

Sue: I’m going to go out on a limb and say the Doctor will reverse the polarity of something or other.

The city deals with the threat by growing some antibodies.

Sue: Are those Cybermen I can see in the background?
Me: I wish!

When a Dalek discovers that Jill has escaped, it self-destructs out of shame.

Sue: What the hell? Do the Daleks always do that when they **** up? The galaxy must be littered with Daleks that ****ed up.

The Daleks follow the Doctor to the control room, but the antibodies intercept them. “Evacuate! Evacuate!” scream the Daleks, as the antibodies beat the shit out of them.

Me: They’re evacuating their bowels by the sound of it.

Julian Fox stares at us one more time, for luck.

Death to the DaleksAs the Daleks’ ship takes off, the Doctor ushers everyone away from the exhaust blast.

Sue: What exhaust blast? It didn’t even ripple his hair!

But all is not lost. Galloway, who Sue liked the most on account of him having something roughly approximating a personality, elects to become a suicide bomber. It’s a moving moment and Sue is on the edge of her seat when the Dalek’s ship explodes.

Sue: Whatever you do, Peter, DON’T LOOK AT THE CAMERA!

The special effects department pour acetone all over their model city.

Sue: They shouldn’t have done that. It makes it obvious the city was made from polystyrene. They should have blown the bastard up instead.

 

The Score

Sue: It started well. The direction was especially good in the first couple of episodes; some of the shots were really innovative, and I thought I was in for a good one. But the plot was horrendous. And the music killed it for me. What were they thinking? It was short, though. Short and silly.

5/10

 

64

Comments

  1. Thomas Bush  March 1, 2012

    “Whatever you do – DO NOT LOOK AT THE CAMERA!”

    Classic.

  2. Simon Harries  March 1, 2012

    Hello, I just bought three of your mugs. If you’d had one which said, “What a ****! What an absolute ****! ****!! ****!!!” then I would happily have made it a quartet 🙂

    I’m intriged by Sue’s reaction to the sinister POV shots, stalking aliens and the walking dead. Sounds like it would have earned itself a triple X rating under the old BBFC system – which goes to show, once again, that the production codes for most of the stories in this particular series of Who are quite appropriate: XXX, YYY, ZZZ! “Death” is a story I watched many times when it came out on VHS in the mid-80s, but I quickly tired of it and disregarded it for more than two decades. Then in 2011 I had a sudden twinge of curiosity and watched it again, and really enjoyed it – in spite of the tedious last episode and the dull characters. So I agree with Sue’s rating.

    • DPC  March 1, 2012

      The Discontinuity Guide would vouch for the XXX rating, especially given what they phonetically equate “parrinium” with, oh my… 😮

      • Dave Sanders  March 2, 2012

        Tewwee comes back for editing duties after Robert Holmes’ baptism of fire, and just like here, the changeover is immediately obvious. The Monster Of Peladon drinking game; take a swig every time the script goes out of its way to use the word ‘destroy’ instead of ‘kill’.

  3. ajrmoore  March 1, 2012

    From certain angles Pertwee is a dead ringer for Mrs Thatch.

  4. Matt Filla  March 1, 2012

    Extra points for including a picture of Gypsy. Nice to have a little Doctor Who/MST3K crossover.

  5. Kristian  March 1, 2012

    “And you definitely couldn’t get away with this today; epileptics would have a fit.”

    Brilliant.

    • Dave Sanders  March 1, 2012

      I am saying nothing. Except ‘oh dear’. Astute viewers will already have sussed why.

  6. Jarad  March 1, 2012

    This is one of the few remaining stories that I have never seen! I am looking forward to it coming out on DVD now – sounds like a strange one! I was aware of the awful music and the cliffhanger issues…but there seems to be so much more to love/hate.

    Another great entry – loved the references to Julian looking at the camera haha!

    Really loved this line however I think my view of the third Doctor is being tainted! “He’s evil! It’s like Jo and the sandwich all over again! Why is he doing this?”

  7. Fred  March 1, 2012

    Sue, you’re softening up on Doctor Who. A Hartnell with this many “**** me!” moments would have been 1 or 2 out of 10, especially a Terry ****-ing Nation story.

    • Noodles  March 1, 2012

      It’d be incredibly interesting, once this is all over, to get Sue to re-watch “An Unearthly Child” and, without telling her what score she gave it, see what score she gives it a second time round.

  8. matt bartley  March 1, 2012

    This is one I’ve still yet to see, so that music has stunned me. I mean…really?

    Great review, though.

    “Where do they get all the little police box models from? Have they been to our house when I wasn’t looking?”

  9. Catseye  March 1, 2012

    Thank you Sue, I have never noticed the actors looking at the camera despite this being one of the first I owned on VHS so was watched with horrific regularity! Loving the website and cannot wait till we get to Colin Baker….!

    • DPC  March 1, 2012

      Ditto!! 😀

  10. Dave Sanders  March 1, 2012

    It’s the ‘parp parp’ at the end that does it.

    Has Sue been subjected to the cliffhangers mockumentary in the Trial box set with Rob Shearman and Nev Fountain yet, or is that tantamount to spoilerage? It’s a lot more entertaining than Terror Of The Vervoids.

    • PolarityReversed  March 1, 2012

      For the full-on Jacques Tati Monsieur Dalek’s Holiday experience just twang a thick rubber band any time anyone goes through a door.

      The concept of impotent Daleks was a good one, but wasted. I like the idea that Daleks can “wish the ground to open up and swallow them” when they’re really embarrassed! Sadly this just comes across as a fatal tantrum, rather than the chilling fanatical military suicide that was perhaps intended.

      A few of us got ahead of ourselves a while back, pondering the gameshow vibe of the Exxilon Fun Palace. The ultimate test before you get to dismantle Philip Scofield’s brain, it seems, is to suffer the indignity of featuring in a naff improvised period TOTP video…

      Heigh-ho. A good enough amble and worth a 5, I suppose.

  11. Jazza1971  March 1, 2012

    What a class review. I think I prefer the weaker stories because it really allows Sue to vent her spleen.

    “Hypnotism. You get a cushion in the face every time someone is hypnotised in this show from now on.”

    That had me laughing out loud.

    Thanks, really cheered up my day.

    • Majik  March 2, 2012

      That could be a lot of cushions in the face if I remember much about Sarah’s time as a companion…

  12. Newbunkle  March 1, 2012

    Speaking of French daleks, has Sue ever seen that youtube video that was going around a few years ago?

  13. Jez Larrapan  March 1, 2012

    Terry Nation loves scenes of aliens testing weapons and doing target practice. He writes like a 13-year-old schoolboy.

    • Frankymole  March 2, 2012

      Or a 12-year-old Ian Fleming!

      • encyclops  March 2, 2012

        It’s still OK for me to like Blake’s 7, right?

        • Dave Sanders  March 2, 2012

          That’s the other DTTD drinking game; take a swig when you recognize anything in Terry Nation’s writing that will turn up in some form in B7 later.

          • Alex Wilcock  March 2, 2012

            It’s not just the writing; look at the MSC logo. They’re fighting for the Federation.

  14. Ratbag  March 1, 2012

    I remember that clip being on Ask Aspel too, it was the first time I’d ever laid eyes on a Dalek. That must have been late ’74, before I started watching the show (I started with Ark In Space ep 1 – I was 4 at the time…).

  15. Richard L  March 1, 2012

    Used to love the Target novel of this one. The Exxilon city sounded epic! One of those stories where the actual show just couldn’t live up to a child’s imagination.

  16. Steve  March 1, 2012

    “The Doctor really should have a companion that doesn’t look human. It makes him look a bit xenophobic.”

    Glad to see Sue’s a Frobisher fan 😉

    All Hail the Big Talking Bird!

  17. Simon Harries  March 1, 2012

    Apropos of nothing, the only Dr Who / Ask Aspel episode I remember was in 1979 when he had Lalla Ward on, and they showed a clip from Creature from the Pit of K-9 first destroying a wolf-weed and then being overwhelmed by them. It’s a pity they didn’t stick some of that interview with Lalla on the Creature DVD.

  18. Roderick T. Long  March 1, 2012

    Those uniforms (as pictured at the top of the page) look a lot like modern-era Star Trek uniforms.

  19. James C  March 1, 2012

    “Any idiot can use a screwdriver.”

    Please, please add this to your mug collection.

    As it happens I am perversely fond of the music for this story – it stuck in my head like no other score has. Yes, even more so than The Sea Devils! It would be perfect for a drunk Dalek with a limp. And hiccups.

    • PolarityReversed  March 2, 2012

      SOMEWHERE OUTSIDE A PUB IN EXILLON COMMON SOUTH:

      “Got any shpaaare parrinium, maaaAAATE? I MISHED the last nightSHIIIP back to ShkarOOOOh… [spins dizzily back and forth] …OOh, ooooh… See that – hic – Dok-TOOOR? I exshTERRminated him [waves plunger erratically] loads of times in the SIX-TIIIIIES. Shpaare parrinim – parrimuma – HIC – mum – manumaMANUMAMAHHH!!! – [eyestalk droops] Boll-OOOOCKS. COME ON, maaaAAATTTE?”

  20. Frankymole  March 2, 2012

    “Sue: That didn’t look that difficult. Why did the other contestants die? How many goes did they need before they all died of starvation? They must have been thick.”

    The book indicates that they don’t get “goes”. They have one attempt – any wrong turning and the maze disappears – and so presumably does the air, pretty soon…

  21. encyclops  March 2, 2012

    My childhood memory of this was being bored by all of it EXCEPT the quiz show bit at the end. Back then I was a sucker for unlocking ancient cities and tombs by doing puzzles, and when I first saw this the device didn’t seem hackneyed to me yet.

    I’m really fascinated by Sue’s take on Pertwee; he was my second favorite Doctor for a long time but I’m starting to see him in a different light. It might actually be the case that Barry Letts is my second favorite Doctor. In any case, I can’t wait to see how she reacts to the climax of a certain upcoming story.

    • Simon Harries  March 2, 2012

      Barry Letts is your second favourite Doctor?!

      • encyclops  March 5, 2012

        Meaning that maybe it’s not the personality of the Third Doctor I like so much as the productions he appeared in.

  22. David  March 2, 2012

    With Sue loathing Terry Nation this much, I am looking forward to her reaction when she starts watching Blake’s 7. 😉

  23. Chris Too-old-to-watch  March 2, 2012

    It’s amazing really: Terry f****ng Nation is really only famous for inventing aliens without legs – certainly not as a decent writer.
    Bouffanty Pertwee?
    What about the Exillon left wandering around the TARDIS all these years?

    Definite low point is the music: the Dalek Kazoo Marching Band (?) with bassoon accompaniment?

    I think the only excuse they could possibly have for this is it was left lying around on the shelves from Troughton era, and they need a cheap fill-in after spending most of the budget on the dinosaurs from the last story.

    Then again if you thought this was bad, wait until next week………..

    • Frankymole  March 2, 2012

      Apart from on The Persuaders!, Blakes 7, Survivors, The Outer Limits, The Avengers, the children’s book Rebecca’s World… no, Terry Nation isn’t famous for being a good writer at all.

      Sarah left the door open – so unlike the spare Cyberman, Sontaran etc, the injured Exxilon may have left.

      And they’re not kazoos, they’re saxomophones…

      Apart from that, spot on!

      • Chris Too-old-to-watch  March 3, 2012

        Not denying Nation had some good ideas, but his writing is laboured, slow (even allowing for the changes in pace between 1970 and now) and inconsistent.

        Often Nation introduces a major concept that is then dismissed when he gets bored with it: just go back to the first dalek story. The thals are safe outside the city because daleks need the metal surface to move about on: we can then just get rid of that when they need to be on other planets. (with a disc on their backs which is never repeated either)
        Lets get a good cliffhanger for the end of Blakes 7 series one: Orac can tell the future and shows the Liberator being blown up. This is a talent he never shows again throughout the entire series.

        I do know he wrote other things apart from his DW stuff: I think they’re just as weak.

        • John Callaghan  March 4, 2012

          The Daleks’ ability to move without metal floors was at least addressed and explained, and to my mind the vertical slats take the place of the disc.

      • Chris Too-old-to-watch  March 3, 2012

        Oh and I do know the difference between saxmophones (sic) and kazoos: obviously you don’t realise that Daleks couldn’t possibly play saxophones with their sink plungers……

        • PolarityReversed  March 4, 2012

          I’m intrigued by the idea of characters playing their own motifs. Should definitely be done.
          Love the idea of mummies lumbering about with bass clarinets or the amazing cybermen marching gamelan ensemble. Also Bodie and Doyle hidden behind a car with a bass guitar and snare drum. Darth Vader might have trouble with a trombone though…

          • PolarityReversed  March 4, 2012

            …bass guitar and hi-hat.

  24. Paul Mudie  March 2, 2012

    I’ve not seen this one since it was first on the telly, so I’m looking forward to the DVD release. I remember that Bellal scared the bejabbers out of me!

  25. Alex Wilcock  March 2, 2012

    I’m almost tempted to get out the VHS after all that Julian Fox look-to-the-camera-spotting. The screengrabs are very funny. But my opinion of the story’s so low that I think I’ll wait for the DVD…

    Is this the highest swearage count so far in the voyage? I can’t say I’m surprised. But, Neil, surely now you have a range of T-shirts and mugs, you have the opportunity to make the asterisks “massive” when you print up “What a ****! What an absolute ****! ****!! ****!!!”

    And “It’s like Jo and the sandwich all over again!” wins a decent second place, too.

    I’ve always said the Part One cliffhanger’s the worst – because on paper it should work, but everything about it (including Pertwee finding another girlie to patronise; thanks, Terry, after turning Sarah Jane into a screamer in a swimsuit) is done so badly. For me, Part Three’s just dull, not catastrophic. But as Sue’s got such an interest in interior furnishings, I guess that hits her own ‘On paper it should work’ trigger…

    On the bright side, Bellal looked great in The Doctor Who Monster Book when I was a boy, and I’ve always been fond of him and his little tribe of nudist nonconformists.

  26. Chaz Antonelli  March 2, 2012

    Oh wow. I just finished episode six of “Planet of the Spiders” last night. I guess I’ll have to take a break and let you guys catch up!

    One comment about “The Curse of Peladon” and “The Monster of Peladon”, I don’t believe that someone got special credit for the Alpha Centauri consume, which is merely a painted paper mache sphere (eyeball) and a green shower curtain. Yikes!

  27. Alisaunder  March 2, 2012

    Neil, why DO they have so many 6 parters rather than a 5 parter that isnt padded?

    • Neil Perryman  March 2, 2012

      It’s not my fault!

    • Frankymole  March 2, 2012

      You think Pertwee’s 6-parters are dull…. try season 5!!!

  28. John G  March 2, 2012

    “The worst cliffhanger EVER!”

    I’m not going to argue with Sue about that, particularly when she is on such scintillating form. This is, by some distance, my least favourite classic series Dalek story. It had so much potential, particularly the concept of the living city and the Daleks being deprived of their normal weapons, but the end result feels more padded and tedious than many of Pertwee’s 6-parters, while the human characters are almost all totally forgettable. John Abineri is as good as always, but is totally wasted in his short-lived role – why on earth was he cast in it? The least said about the plank playing Jill the better, I think…

    The music is one thing that doesn’t actually bother me, funnily enough. However, thanks to Sue, if I ever watch this story again I think I’ll be too distracted looking out for Julian Fox to pay much attention to the rest of it!

  29. BWT  March 3, 2012

    “Whatever you do – DO NOT LOOK AT THE CAMERA!”

    T-shirt. Please. Make it so…

    Agree with Sue’s rating. Always remembered the Dalek suicide – it’s right up there with Jenny Laird. And Terry ****ing Nation? Louis Marks did the Daleks so much better…

    “Now there are only 699 wonders of the universe…” Lucky old universe, I say.

    • Matt Sharp  March 3, 2012

      I’m still surprised that there hasn’t been a YouTube re-edit with Pertwee telling Sally Sparrow not to SPLINK.

      Admittedly, it wouldn’t actually be that funny, but this IS YouTube we’re talking about…

      • Dave Sanders  March 4, 2012

        I did that joke years ago. Nobody got it.

        • Matt Sharp  March 4, 2012

          Tsk, what’s not to get?

          Stop Pavement Look Is Near Keep – simples!

  30. Nathan  March 3, 2012

    When the daleks are attacked byt he antibodies, one of the daleks calls it a fascist.

    • Dave Sanders  March 3, 2012

      Doesn’t it call it a cyst?

  31. DamonD  March 4, 2012

    Oh God, never noticed Julian Fox staring before, now I always will!

    Episode 1, by itself, is a minor gem. Thinks are spooky and well directed, Pertwee seems more animated than usual and has good chemistry with Lis. Even the music mostly works, I adore the little sequence where Sarah Jane first sees the Exxilon City.

    Rest of it never quite lives up to that, but it’s still a decent yarn with a great central idea and Bellal is rather sweet.

  32. James Gent  March 8, 2012

    I like that Sue immediately picked up on the more grim, moody style of this story, as it’s like a tentative dry-run for the Holmes & Hinchcliffe House of Horror shenanigans that are just around the corner. Very fond of this story, partly because it was the second Dr ‘oo videotape I owned (Still not seen the episodic version) and although it sticks to the Terry Nation script-o-matic algorithm there is some interesting stuff going on there. Disappointed she didn’t have much to say about Galloway, he strikes me as a deliberate piss-take of the stereotypical ‘rowdy trade unionist’ of the era (until his predictable last minute heroic act of self sacrifice of course).

  33. Josiah Rowe  March 10, 2012

    Sounds like Julian Fox could have used some acting coaching from Matthew Waterhouse. Pity that Waterhouse was only 12 when the episode was filmed, or Fox could have benefited from the advice he later gave to Richard Todd. 🙂

    • Frankymole  March 18, 2012

      Looking at Richard Todd’s CV, it seems that at the time of “Kinda” Matthew Waterhouse had about three times as much experience of a TV studio and VT work (and Todd’s was largely in the 60s, so his experience was even less relevant given the huge changes in such work after 20 years)…

      • Josiah Rowe  March 18, 2012

        It was still incredibly inappropriate of Waterhouse to try to give him advice.

        • Frankymole  March 18, 2012

          I think a recent DWM put a slightly different slant on what actually happened… I’ll have to dig it out and have another look. But prima facie I can’t really see how an actor working in a different medium (Todd being a film star) would object to friendly advice on VT studio technique – maybe it’s the manner it put across. But there has apparently been some misreporting on the incident. Then again – haters gonna hate.

  34. Sparklepunk  March 24, 2012

    Funny, I remembered this one being quite interesting, I’m not arguing, haven’t seen it for quite awhile and yeah the whole puzzle thing tended to excite me when I was a kid, before I saw how stupid the puzzles were so I guess it’s not surprising that it’s not as good as I remember. I also had remembered Jo being in it, so it shows how long it’s been, I should find it and watch it again. Honestly I often got bored by Dalek stories, this was the one that I liked a lot.

  35. Farsighted99  April 18, 2012

    That one was a bit silly. The Dalek music was just dreadful, a bit too Abbott & Costello for me. I laughed whenever i heard it. And Daleks target-practicing with a miniature TARDIS! 😀 The aliens looked a bit like they were from TatooIne. I loved the giant metal lily monster! I particularly liked the gladiator fight it had with the Dalek. And the Dalek ship blowing up at the end, what’s not to like?