‘Life depends on change, on renewal.’ The Doctor
5th November – 10th December 1966
The Time Space Visualiser
I wonder what it must have been like for the viewing public back then to have such a strange thing happen to their show. We take it as read now, but just imagine. What a start though. I am really looking forward to it all.
It is very exciting following a regeneration, especially one I have not seen before. It is also very exciting to be at the start of the Troughton era. One of the best actors to have played the lead. What a shame there are so many of his episodes missing. Thankfully thirteen more than would have been and the first of those discoveries will be the first moving Troughton episode I see. For now it is exciting to have a few clips.
‘Why do human beings kill other human beings?’ This is a very chilling line and of course at this point Daleks don’t kill other Daleks. All the early scenes with the Dalek are very sinister as, like the Doctor, we know they are up to no good. I rather like this change from their previous stories. ‘I am your servant.’
The setting is quite claustrophobic and adds to the sense of foreboding. A very exciting end to episode 4 with so many Daleks. It is the humans I find it difficult to like. What a horrible bunch of people. Is there a single sympathetic Vulcan among them? They are all up to something! Again some great acting, particularly from Lesterson, the mad scientist who by the end of the story seems to have had a break down.
By the end of the story Patrick Troughton IS the Doctor. He is a very different kind of hero to the first Doctor. It is great to see him pitted against the Daleks so early on and they are very sinister here. Together with Ben and Polly they ease the viewers through the dramatic change in the programme but it is the new lead actor who ultimately makes us feel at home with the titular character.
In the Foooter . . .
. . . we will have uber modern chairs that look like they come from space. They are plastic, probably brightly coloured and slightly, well, chair shaped!
Post Regenerative Stress. We get our first clues as to the stress of regeneration on the Doctor. He is behaving erratically. He speaks only via the medium of recorder notes. He is wearing silly hats; in fact all his clothes seem to have changed along with his body! No wonder Ben and Polly are so suspicious. ‘Slower, concentrate on one thing.’
The Conniption of the Daleks. This is the first Dalek story to feature the traditional titling convention that remains for all the Dalek stories in the rest of the classic series. The Eighties takes it a step further, with every title beginning with R. There are a few in the new series as well, although these drop ‘The’.
Episode 1 16:06
Ben: Look, why don’t you stop blowing that thing and talk to us properly!
The 500 Year Diary
13th December 2020
What a peculiar experience. I obviously know that our species renews itself when the body dies, but what a most odd experience. The sound of drums! I literally am a new man. I couldn’t have done it without the TARDIS. Without it I couldn’t survive. Rummaging around I find this 500 year old diary as well as a dagger from Saladin and something else – some metal. Exterminate….
Ben and Polly – well, Ben mainly – were very distrustful. Don’t blame them. Was giving out a lot of ambiguity like talking about myself in the third person. Found a recorder too! Wearing stove pipe hats now. Stove pipe hats are cool. Also my clothes mysteriously changed in the transformation. Does that usually happen?
Then there was the murder of the examiner. Immediately embroiled in trouble on this mercury swamped planet. I was nearly next and knocked unconscious although have managed to grab a button off the attacker’s clothes.
We’re brought before the governor, Hensell, and Braden, head of security of the colony, Vulcan. I assume the identity of the examiner which means I have access all areas and a badge! Ben still seems rather distrustful. I am acting differently – what would the Doctor have done? There appears to be a mysterious space capsule that they want me to look at. On examination in the laboratory, I sense something is wrong. The metal I found in the TARDIS matches. I find a way into the capsule and later that night we sneak in. Daleks!
14th December 2020 am
One of the Daleks is missing! Just one could destroy the whole colony. I suspect the scientist, Lesterson, has got one hidden way, particularly as he showed no surprise in seeing the Daleks for apparently the first time. These Daleks need to be destroyed!
Braden tells me about an underground movement of rebels. Aren’t there always? Something is afoot. I find a bugging device in some fruit. Who called for the examiner and who killed him? I need to contact Earth to tell them the dangers of the Daleks, but the communications room has been smashed up, apparently by this Quinn, who has a button missing from his tunic.
As Quinn is being questioned, Lesterson appears with a Dalek! It seems to recognise me…. I try to urge all to destroy it, but then it speaks. “I am your servant.”
14th December 2020 pm
No-one seems to want to listen, thinking that the Daleks would be great around the colony! Later on I sneak back in for a bit of sabotage. Sadly, Lesterson stops me.
Later on Lesterson leaves his lab and we find a cable. What for? Static electricity like Skaro. Just what are these Daleks up to? An argument with Braden leads me to admit that I’m not the examiner, but only Braden would know that if he was the murderer. Touché.
And now, again, one of companions has disappeared. Polly. A note tells me that she’ll be safe if I do not interfere with the Daleks. A dilemma indeed.
14th December 2020 eve
We go to see Bragen about Polly and a Dalek trundles in serving drinks! In the corridor outside we see three more Daleks. Three more? But there were only three in the first place. The Daleks must be reproducing themselves! Again try and convince Lesterson otherwise, but he collapses. I think I’m beginning to strike a nerve. This Janley ushers us out. Don’t trust her either!
There’s also this notice board that everyone keeps looking at. I work out that it’s stating a coded message about a meeting tonight. Ben and I sneak in beforehand. I was right – that Janley is an untrustworthy sort. But who is the man in the shadows? Janley is very brave or very stupid as she orders a Dalek to kill her to convince the others that the Daleks can be controlled. Fortunately, for her, it does not kill her. Yet.
Ben gets captured. I’ve lost them both now!
The man in the shadows is unsurprisingly Bragen – the leader of the rebels. He’s going to frame me for the murder of the examiner so I get locked away with Quinn. The lock can be controlled using a sonic sound. I must get round to making a sonic device so I can get out these situations quicker.
15th December 2020 am
Takes ages to get out of the cell – thank heavens for the recorder! During this time a crazed Lesterson barges in and tells me that the Daleks are indeed reproducing themselves.
Quinn and I sneak into the laboratory and we find Polly! Chased by a Dalek, we run off. We discover Hensell is dead, killed by Bragen. We are ordered to be locked up… again!
15th December 2020 pm
We’re confronted by armed Daleks, but luckily we manage to get away from them. We overpower our guards and escape finding Ben who tells us all about the power mad Bragen.
There are not a lot of places left to go as the Daleks appear to be exterminating everything in sight. We make it back to the laboratory, only to find a deranged Lesterson. He tells me about the cable that has been rigged up. Is this our answer? I need time to sort things out, but just as I get somewhere, Daleks burst in. That poor chap Lesterson gives his life by distracting the Daleks giving me enough time to overload the power and defeat the Daleks (and destroy most of the colony – sorry about that…).
We sneak away before they send us the bill. Ben and Polly wonder if I knew what I was doing at the end. I neither confirm or deny. I am the Doctor, after all.
The Five Word Lords
Who’s that on the floor?
Artwork: Deviant Art Hisi79: http://dw-50th-project.deviantart.com/art/The-Power-of-the-Daleks-wallpaper-401577690