Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Doctor Who 'Day of the Daleks' Review

When British diplomat Sir Reginald Styles is attacked and almost killed by a mysterious guerrilla fighter who vanishes into thin air before he can kill Sir Reginald Unit and the Doctor are called in to investigate the events.

As Sir Reginald leaves for Peking to prepare for an important peace talks Unit takes over his estate to try and get to the bottom of the mystery.  When the man reappears he is killed by a strange creature called an Ogron, and is then discovered by the Unit personnel.  Before they can examine his body in any great detail, however, it vanishes.  The only things left behind by the body are a pistol made of future technology and a crude time machine, leaving the Doctor to conclude that the man must have been from earth’s future.

As they are investigating the incident further the Doctor and Jo are captured by another group of guerrilla fighters, who reveal that have travelled back through time from the 22nd century and intend to kill Ser Reginald to prevent a series of events that would eventually lead to the Daleks taking over the earth.
The monstrous Ogrons attack the Doctor.
‘Day of the Daleks’ is a great time travel story that could almost be seen as something of an inspiration for the Terminator series, with freedom fighters travelling back through time to stop the destruction of humanity.  The story also marks the return of the Daleks since their apparent ‘final end’ in the Second Doctor story ‘The Evil of the Daleks’.

This serial also introduces the Ogrons, the Daleks bestial alien servants that act as vicious enforcers in the Dalek ruled future, and would be used again in a number of books, comics and other television serials. 
The Doctor must convince the future rebels to trust him.
‘Day of the Daleks’ has a number of similarities to the William Hartnell story ‘Dalek Invasion of Earth’ in the way it depicts the earth as ruled by the Daleks, and is even set in similar time periods.  The third Doctor gets very little actual screen time with the Daleks in this story, instead fighting the Ogrons and the humans serving the Daleks, but it does serve as a great re-introduction of the Daleks into the new, revamped colour era of the show.

A great action romp through time (where the Doctor even uses a gun to kill!) that brings the Daleks into combat with Unit on modern day earth as well as giving us a glimpse of the Dalek ruled future.  8/10


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