Get caught up with Parv and his Dr. Who mission with Part One of this series!
“The Daleks”, 1963
Part 2: The Survivors
A word on the theme music: one of the all-time classic themes of all TV, up there with Twilight Zone or Tales of the Unexpected. As we come in from the credits we see the clip of Barbara being stalked by the antenna again.
Ian, Susan and The Doctor are looking for her. The chime-y noises are back. The characters can hear something, and go into a cupboard with measuring equipment in it. The Doctor deduces that whoever made this stuff is intelligent. Ever the reactionary pessimist, Ian worries “Yes, but what do they do with their intelligence? What form does it take”. This annoys The Doctor who thinks that the equipment reveals that they are in the midst of an advanced and civilised society.
One of the measuring tools reveals that there is a very high level of fallout here, and The Doctor immediately concludes that this place must have been the victim of a neutron bomb at some stage. “It destroys all human tissues but leaves buildings and machinery intact”. That old chestnut.
Ian is beside himself with panic. The Doctor, rather tactlessly it must be said, chooses THIS moment to reveal to him that his line about running out of mercury was a ruse — a lie to get them to agree to see the city.
Ian goes fucking nuts now “You FOOL. You old fool!”
“Abuse me as much as you like Chesterson, the point is … we need an immediate return back to the ship”
They go through the door and OH MY GOD! Daleks!
“You. Will. Go. Ahead. Of. Us. And. Fol-low. Our. Dir-ec-tions. This. Way. Imm-ed-iately.”
Susan is terrified. Ian looks nonplussed and hesitates.
The dalek is pissed off. “I. Said. Imm-ed-i-ately!”
Ian makes a run for it. The Dalek shoots with one of his ray guns. YES!!! Ian is hit. Thank fuck. “My legs” he squirms. Come on Ian, you were asking for it.
“My legs” ha ha ha ha.
“Your legs. Are. Par-a-lysed. You will recover shortly. Un-less. You. Force us. To use. Our. Weap-ons. Again.”
Damn, it’s not permanent.
“My legs. My legs. I can’t use my legs”. The acting from the guy playing Ian here is piss-poor, it must be said. He’s about as convincing as a piece of lettuce pretending to be a steak.
Barbara is back somehow. Ian asks about where she’s been. They wonder about who these strange creatures are.
Barbara has a key line now: “Ian, do you think they really are … just machines?”
“What do you mean?” blurts Ian. I hate Ian so full of bluster. He’s a total dick.
“Well, I mean … do you suppose there might be someone inside them?”
Susan lets out a big laugh at this. Why are you laughing Susan? Everyone knows the Daleks have someone inside them.
“I tried to think of how to get away from them but then I felt so weak and giddy”. Well, Barbara, THE STAIRS. Run up some stairs.
Ian explains to Barbara how they all have radiation sickness. The Doctor is looking pretty ill. Unless they get treatment they are all going to die!
This is a pickle isn’t it.
The Doctor now has the audacity to be arguing with Ian about ABANDONING Barbara to save themselves. Ha ha ha ha.
Ian still has the mercury, which apparently is needed to move the TARDIS, and refuses to give it back until The Doctor agrees to help Barbara. It’s all handbags.
Two daleks talk about how the radiation could have reduced significantly in recent days. Rather difficult to follow this dialogue. A third brings in the Doctor.
“You are one of the dallll(???) people. Why are you suffering from radiation?”
A strange exchange follows this. The daleks accuse the Doctor of running out of drugs and coming to the city to seek replacement supplies. He denies it. Intriguing.
The Doctor doesn’t seem to know what they are on about, but senses an opportunity for trickery. He claims they saw some drugs near where the TARDIS landed.
He wants to know more about the “dals”.
“Over. Two. Hun-dred years ago. There were two races. We. The Daleks. And the Dals.”
Cut a long story short, there was a neutronic war. The city and their machines protected the Daleks but most of their enemies were wiped out. However, they know that there were SURVIVORS. They must have been disgustingly mutated but they are out there somewhere.
The Doctor brokers a deal for ONE of his party to take a trip to the TARDIS to pick up the anti-radiation drugs. Also, the daleks mention that they can’t leave their city because of radiation levels (or something). He goes back to see Ian and company and explains the plan. The Doctor passes out and Ian says he’ll be the one to go.
Susan wants to go too, but only one can go. There is some stuff about the complexities of the TARDIS’s lock mechanism here 21 possibilities only 1 is correct and an incorrect one melts the lock. This is enough for Ian to agree to let Susan go too, as she knows the complexities of the lock.
I am not making this up.
Barbara is going to stay with the Doctor. Ian has pins and needles in his left leg. A dalek comes in. “You. Must. Leave. Now”.
He protests about his legs but the dalek is having none of it.
Ian falls flat on his face which makes me laugh in real life.
“You must give me more time.” The dalek doesn’t care.
Pretty obvious by this stage that Susan will be soloing this. Some woeful acting from Barbara here who is upset about Susan going alone.
The dalek is sick of waiting. The daleks talk among themselves now. Their plan is dastardly! They want Susan to bring the anti-radiation drugs back only to take it from her and clone it for their own use. They are going to let The Doctor and his companions die. Villainy!
Meanwhile, the Doctor is knocked out and Ian is lamenting him for getting them into this mess. Barbara is just hysterical all the time now.
Susan makes it back to the TARDIS. Dripping with sweat and out of breath. The jungle set looks like the sort of jungle you might see on an indoor ride at Disneyland. She is very obviously in a studio, but it’s not so bad that it’s distracting.
There is some pretty pathetic stuff now though: she’s clearly running back and forth the same spot pretending to brush twigs and branches from in front of her face. Her acting is ludicrously hammy here. No one runs like that. She’s seen something!!
Dramatic cut back to Ian and Barbara looking after the ill Doctor. Ian has regained use of his legs. I hope he doesn’t get any big ideas and try to escape or anything (actually I hope he does and gets killed for his efforts).
Another terrible moment now as Ian clenches his fist and says “Hurry Susan!”
We cut back to her now. What has she seen? More of the worst running I’ve seen now as she runs through hanging vines.
The daleks from earlier conspire. They’ve noticed that “the old man is dying”. “Then he must die” one of them concludes.
Susan has made it back into the TARDIS. She grabs a metal books and hugs it close to her. What is she thinking? She hears what Ian said to her in her head “Go straight there, and come straight back, don’t stop for anything”.
Some Shatner-esque stuff from Susan now. “Must … must …”
She’s going to head back. Good girl. Heroic.
That’s it. CLIFFHANGER.
Definitely not as strong as the last episode, despite the daleks making their full-blown debut here. On the plus side, the daleks were awesomely evil. On the minus side, The Doctor spent most of the episode knocked out so dickhead Ian, shrieking and annoying Barbara and over-excitable Susan had to carry things.
The actors playing Ian and Barbara are absolutely terrible. And Susan’s running in the jungle is a sight to behold.
NEXT EPISODE: The Escape