"Genesis of the Daleks"
A Time Lord dispatches the Fourth Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith and Harry Sullivan to Skaro at the time of the Daleks' creation.
1)Who is this Time Lord? A representative of the High Council of the Time Lords? Or an agent of the CIA*?
It's never stated. For the purposes of the story, it doesn't matter, but it's interesting to speculate as to whether or not this is an officially-sanctioned mission.
The Time Lord tells the Doctor that they have foreseen a time when the Daleks will have supplanted all other life forms, and charges him with either preventing the Daleks' creation or altering their development to make them less aggressive creatures.
2)Did the Time Lords foresee the Time War? If so, was this an abortive attempt to prevent it?
3)If they see the Daleks as such a threat that they're willing to alter history, why not go the whole nine yards and simply destroy Skaro before the Daleks ever were created? Why not simply kill Davros in his cradle? Or send someone to save him from the accident that maimed him so that he's less bitter and hateful? And why use a notoriously willful agent like the Doctor to do it?
The Doctor and friends discover a Skaro in the throes of a thousand year war between the Kaleds and the Thals, races now reduced to two cities worth of people, within walking distance of each other. They meet Davros, the Kaleds' chief scientist, a man twisted in both mind and body. Davros had determined that the radiation released in the war was causing the Kaleds to mutate. He decided to accelerate the mutation to its final form and to create a travel machine to accommodate the new life form. He also altered the mutants to eliminate what we would call the "finer" emotions - pity, compassion, etc. The result was the first Dalek.
4)As we shall see, this is something of a revision of Dalek history as shown in the series up to this point. The whole story of Davros is an insertion into the text which affected the way Dalek stories were told for quite some time.
5)If the Doctor's first priority was to prevent the creation of the Daleks, then why did the Time Lord send him to a period after they were already created?
Davros captures the Doctor and friends and determines that they are aliens from the future. Under threat of torture for Harry and Sarah, the Doctor reveals much of the Daleks' future history to Davros. Davros records this info, and the Doctor subsequently has to go to much trouble to destroy the recording.
6)It is interesting to note that earlier in the story a supporting character says that "Davros has always said that there's no life on other planets". By sending the Doctor and friends to Skaro, the Time Lord has, in effect, made sure that Davros, and by extension, the Daleks know that there is life on other worlds. Might they have made the discovery at some point anyway? Possibly, maybe even probably. But the Doctor's presence has drawn the Daleks' attention to rest of the universe. It's also made them aware of the possibility of time travel. It's hard to imagine that this was an intended consequence of the Doctor's mission.
The Doctor escapes, and manages to convince the Kaled government that Davros' experiments are a danger to them as well. They order the experiments stopped. In retaliation, Davros gives the Thals information that enables them to destroy the Kaled city. Only Davros, a few trusted aides and the Daleks survive in a special bunker. Davros sends the Daleks to destroy the Thals, all but a few of whom are wiped out. The Doctor has an opportunity to blow up the Dalek hatchery, but agonizes over mass murder - even mass murder of Daleks. In the end, the Daleks turn on Davros, "destroying" him. The Doctor seals them in the bunker, but remarks that he's only slowed them down a century or two. In the end, he states his faith that from even the Daleks' evil, some good must come.
7)The bit about slowing their development a century or two has caused some fans to speculate that the Doctor effectively altered history, invalidating all previous Dalek stories. I prefer to think that the Doctor's intereference was part of what was meant to happen, perhaps explaining why the Time Lord sent him where and when he did. Perhaps the Doctor's interference prevented a timeline in which the Daleks were even more powerful. Who can say?
So, questions, thoughts? Have I missed any important bits?
*Stands for "Celestial Intervention Agency"
(Note: This is the first ever Dalek story. There are those who would argue that it isn't the next adventure from the Daleks' point of view. I'll be revisiting that notion, eventually.)
The First Doctor, Ian Chesterton, Barbara Wright and Susan Foreman land on Skaro, where they discover evidence that a neutronic war has been fought there. They notice a city in the distance, and the Doctor, quite curious, manipulates his companions into visiting. There, they encounter the Daleks.
8)The Daleks do not seem to recognize the Doctor. Some time would seem to have passed since the events of "Genesis of the Daleks" - it could be that they have no records of those events, or, having as yet no awareness of the Doctor's regenerative abilities, do not equate the First Doctor with the Fourth. The Doctor does not seem to recognize the Daleks, either. It could be that when he left Gallifrey, the Daleks were not as yet perceived as a major threat, and so he had not heard of them.
The Doctor and his companions begin to suffer from radiation sickness. The Daleks are aware that the Thals have an anti-radiation drug and have left a supply outside the TARDIS*. The Daleks, unable to leave their city, send the healthy Susan to fetch it.
9)In this story, the Daleks are powered by static electricity absorbed from the floors of their city, and are unable to leave it. It is interesting to note that the Daleks of "Genesis" had no such limitation. It does leave one wondering why they would adopt a technology that imposed such a limit on their mobility. It may be that the adoption was one of necessity, that the system was the only one available on a Skaro that had depleted its resources in endless war.
Susan encounters the Thals near the TARDIS. They turn out to be a friendly, pacifistic people. They give Susan a second supply of the radiation drugs, in case the Daleks confiscate the first one, which they do. Cured, the Doctor and company escape to the Thals. There, the Thals tell them the history of Skaro as they know it - that the Thals, once a race of warriors, fought a great war with the Daleks, once a race of teachers. The radiation from the war caused the Daleks to mutate into terrible creatures that ride about in their travel machines. The Thals, curiously enough, mutated into a race of tall, blonde, "Aryan superman" types. But the one-time warriors have become total pacifists, and wish to avoid further conflict with the Daleks.
10)The history the Thals tell is somewhat different from the one revealed in "Genesis". Of course, much time would seem to have passed since then, and the Thals' histories may have been garbled. The Thals also seem to have no recognition of the Doctor from the events of "Genesis".
The Daleks test the Thal anti-radiation drug, and discover that it is toxic to them. Furthermore they discover that radiation is beneficial to them, and decide to flood the planet with radiation, which will have the added side effect of killing off the Thals. Ian convinces the pacifistic Thals to fight the Daleks (by threatening to steal one of their girlfriends, if I recall). After an epic battle, the Daleks are destroyed when their power supply is cut off. The Thals were free to go and live peacefully. Or so it seemed.
11)I don't recall much ever being made of the Dalek's affinity for radiation ever again, after this.
*Stands for "Time And Relative Dimension In Space"
"The Dalek Invasion of Earth"
The First Doctor, Ian Chesterton, Barbara Wright, and Susan Foreman land in 22nd Century London, and find it occupied by Daleks.
12)When Ian comments that they saw the Daleks destroyed (the events of "The Daleks"), the Doctor comments that those events happened "millions of years in the future". It is my considered opinion that the Doctor is talking out of his Time Lord arse here. For one thing, these Daleks are wearing "satellite dishes" on their casings that enable them to receive broadcast power, a technology they would surely have used in "The Daleks" if they'd had it available. Interestingly, these dishes are not seen again. Probably too tempting a target for the Daleks' enemies. Also, these Daleks are capable of interstellar travel. The Daleks do not seem to recognize the Doctor or his friends here. It may be that at this point in their history they do not as yet realize that they are facing an enemy capable of time travel, having apparently lost the knowledge of the Fourth Doctor's presence at their creation.
The Doctor and friends discover that the Daleks used biological warfare to depopulate the Earth and are attempting to mine the Earth's magnetic core. With the help of surviving human resistance fighters, the Doctor and friends defeat the Daleks and destroy their invasion force.
13)There are indications in subsequent stories that the Daleks have had disastrous encounters with human forces, which may explain why they chose to mine the Earth's core, instead of that of some uninhabited planet.
The Doctor, Ian and Barbara depart, leaving behind Susan, who has fallen in love with David Campbell, a member of the resistance.
"The Five Doctors"
Cardinal Borusa uses the long-forbidden timescoop to abduct the first five Doctors, various companions, a Dalek, a Yeti and some Cybermen as part of a rather convoluted plot to gain immortality.
14)During his time in the Death Zone, the First Doctor encounters a Dalek, which recognizes him instantly. It's impossible to say, but it's fun to speculate that the abduction of this Dalek was what first made the Daleks aware of the potential of time technology as a weapon, and led them to begin their own experiments in time travel.
"The Evil of the Daleks"
(Note that not all episodes of that story currently exist.. I have some of the ones that do.)
In 1967, the TARDIS is stolen, and the Second Doctor and Jamie MacCrimmon are kidnapped through time to 1867. There, they discover that the primitive time travel experiments of Professor Maxtible have attracted the attention of the Daleks, who are experimenting in time travel themselves, and have traveled to 1867 as well.
15)It's my feeling that these Daleks are from the future, a time after "The Dalek Invasion of Earth". Having come to the realization that they are facing a time traveling enemy, they have developed time travel themselves. At this point in time, their technology is still primitive compared to that of the Time Lords.
Having suffered several defeats at the hands of humanity, they seek to isolate the "Human Factor", those elements of the human psyche that enable them to defeat the Daleks. They coerce the Doctor into helping them. When he succeeds, they return to Skaro where they encounter the Emperor Dalek and their real plan is revealed - they intend to infect humanity with the "Dalek Factor", making humans psychologically more like Daleks and thus easier to control. The Doctor manages to infect several Daleks with the Human Factor, and they become friendly and playful. The "Humanized" Daleks come into conflict with the other Daleks and Skaro erupts into civil war. The Dalek city is destroyed, and apparently, all the Daleks along with it.
16)This was one of many "final ends" for the Daleks. It's interesting to note that at this time, they seemed to be confined to one city on Skaro. As we shall see, it seems that the Daleks were not alone on Skaro, and some Thal forces survived.
"The TV Movie"
The Seventh Doctor goes to Skaro to retrieve the remains of the Master, who was tried and executed for his crimes by the Daleks. The Master, who is not quite dead, battles the newly-regenerated Eighth Doctor in San Francisco.
17)This kind of bothered me - the Daleks never struck me as the sort to bother with trials, not even show trials. To me, a Dalek "trial" is as follows:
"You are the enemy of the Daleks! You will be exterminated! Exterminate!"
In other words, if they think someone's crossed them, they kill him. It's conceivable that they might've held a trial as part of a trap for the Doctor - but it's inconceivable to me that the Doctor, particularly the devious Seventh Doctor, wouldn't've been more on his guard. Instead, he seemed quite relaxed as he returned to Gallifrey. However, what if some of the "humanized" Daleks had survived the events of "Evil" and set themselves up on Skaro - perhaps in alliance with the surviving Thals? They might've held a trial, and the Doctor might've been more relaxed with them. So, there doubtless was a plot - on the part of the Master.
"The Power of the Daleks"
(Note that not all episodes of this story currently exist. I have seen some of the footage that exists, however.)
The Second Doctor and his companions, Ben Jackson and Polly Wright land on the distant Earth colony Vulcan (no relation), where the colonists have discovered a crashed Dalek ship. Ignoring the Doctor's warning, they revive a Dalek, which professes to be the humans' eager servant, buying time while a new Dalek army is constructed aboard the Ship. The Daleks are defeated with the Doctor's help, although one Dalek, at least, seems to be still alive.
18)The Daleks recognize the Second Doctor here, which, since it is right after the Doctor's first regeneration, leads me to think that it takes place after the events of "Evil". (Of course, it's also possible that the Daleks have learned to recognize the Doctor's unique physiology and/or have learned that his appearance can vary radically.) However, the humans seem to be ignorant of the threat the Daleks present, so either this is a very isolated colony, or this story may've taken place earlier than "The Dalek Invasion of Earth". I'll leave it where it is for now. Note that the Dalek ship contains the mechanisms to generate an army of new Daleks, but that its power supply is damaged, forcing the Daleks to draw on the colony's power supply.
"Day of the Daleks"
The Daleks use their time travel technology to create an alternate timeline in which there was a nuclear war on Earth in the late 20th Century, allowing the Daleks to conquer the planet and once again rule it in the 22nd. The Third Doctor and his companion Jo Grant, with help from human rebels manage to undo the Daleks' meddling.
19)Here we see the Daleks once again using time travel technology, this time in an attempt to alter history. For the first time we see them using Ogrons as "enforcers". The Daleks make no attempt to mine the Earth's core this time, merely using humans as slaves to mine its minerals. As in "The Dalek Invasion of Earth", Daleks seem to enjoy making humans do hard labor, even when machines would be more efficient. They use a mind probe on the Doctor, which projects his previous two faces on a screen, showing that by this point they are aware that the various Doctors are one being.
"Frontier in Space"
The Third Doctor and his companion Jo Grant investigate a series of incidents that seem likely to provoke a war between the Earth Empire and Draconia. They discover that the Master and the Daleks are behind it, exploitng already-existing tensions between the two powers.
20)Not much to chew on, here. The Daleks obviously fear the combined power of Earth and Draconia, and would like them to tear each other apart, in hopes of mopping up the victor, and are using a machine that projects images into a person's mind of their greatest fear to do it. It is fun to speculate that this Earth Empire might be the first of the three empires the presumably preceded the Fourth Great and Bountiful Human Empire mentioned in later stories.
"Planet of the Daleks"
Continuing directly on from "Frontier in Space", this story takes the Doctor and Jo to the planet Spiridon, where the Daleks are marshalling an army to overrun the universe, even if they have failed to provoke a general war. With help from some Thal agents, the Doctor is able to trap the Dalek army using an ice-cano - a volcano that shoots liquid ice (don't ask me) instead of lava, freezing them in place.
21)The Doctor is a legendary figure to the Thals, and they are reluctant to believe it's really him. They're also no longer all blondes. The Daleks recognize the Thal ship as coming from Skaro. It's conceivable that in this period the Daleks no longer live on Skaro, and that in this period the planet is inhabited exclusively by Thals (and perhaps a few "humanized" Daleks?).
"Death to the Daleks"
The Third Doctor and his companion Sarah Jane Smith arrive on the planet Exxilon, where they encounter a ship from Earth. The Daleks have spread a plague thoughout space, and the humans have come to Exxilon to obtain a supply of Parranium, the only cure for the plague. Unfortunately, a ship of Daleks has come as well, wishing to prevent the humans from obtaining the cure. However, all parties discover that the city of the Exxilons projects a field which drains energy from all machines. Thus, the Doctor must eliminate the energy field and defeat the Daleks.
22)Despite the fact that the Exxilon city renders their weapons useless, the Daleks can move about in the travel machines. Apparently, the explanation for this is that the Daleks can temporarily power their machines from their own bio-energy, which is unaffected. The Daleks quickly convert their weapons to fire bullets, which suggests that they've run into power-dampers before. The Daleks are still seen here as obsessed with weakening human power.
"Destiny of the Daleks"
The Fourth Doctor and Romana arrive on Skaro to discover that the Daleks are drilling through the ruins of the Kaled city to try to find Davros. As it turns out, the Daleks are stalemated in a war with the Movellans, a race of robots, and hope that Davros will provide some insights that will enable them to win. The Doctor defeats the Daleks and the Movellans, and frees the Daleks' human prisoners. The humans take Davros into custody.
23)Interestingly, Skaro seem to be uninhabited at this point, as there's no sign of the Thals, and the Daleks have arrived from outisde, themselves. Where are the Thals? Who knows? Left to find a more hospitable planet, perhaps, or driven off or wiped out by the Daleks, just out of spite. Apparently, during the time they controlled the planet, the Thals never bothered exploring the Kaled bunker. Perhaps they considered the place haunted. Davros turns out to be alive - having suspected treachery, he placed himself in suspended animation when the Daleks turned on him. Whicih raises the question: Did the Daleks know he wasn't dead? After all, if they thought him dead, why come looking for him?They must've been desperate indeed, to come looking on the off chance that he might somehow still be alive.