Friday 8 April 2011

137 The Power of the Daleks: Part Three

EPISODE: The Power of the Daleks: Part Three
TRANSMITTED: 19 November 1966
WRITER: David Whitaker
DIRECTOR: Christopher Barry
PRODUCER: Innes Lloyd
FORMAT: CD: Doctor Who: The Power of the Daleks
TELESNAPS: The Power of the Daleks: Part Three

Hensall is pleased with the potential offered by the Daleks. The Doctor orders the Dalek to shut itself down which it seems to do only to reactivate when he leaves the room claiming that the order would have prevented it serving. The enquiry into Quinn's behaviour continues: he is found guilty and imprisoned, with security chief Bragen being made deputy governor in his place. The Doctor builds a device to interfere with the Dalek and brings it to the laboratory. It works but Lesterson smashes it and sends the doctor away before he can permanently harm the Dalek. Hensall departs for a tour of the perimeter leaving Bragen in charge. Janley meets Bragen: she is leading the rebels and he has been assisting them for his own means. She has obtained the Dalek gun that Lesterson removed and believes it will help them take over the colony. Bragen needs the Examiner restrained so Janley and fellow rebel Valmar kidnap Polly. Ben notices Polly's disappearance and worries. The Dalek pleases Lesterson with it's knowledge and persuades him to order some equipment to build a device to help the colony. When he leaves the room the Dalek activates the power to the capsule and goes inside. The Doctor & Ben discover the power connected and confront the unarmed Dalek. They are forced to leave when the other two armed Daleks appear activated. Bragen confronts the Doctor saying they have found a body in the swamps and suggesting he may not be the Examiner. The Doctor retorts that the only way he could know for sure was if Bragen was the real Examiner's killer. Bragen tells The Doctor to leave Lesterson and the Daleks alone. As he leaves a note about Polly is pushed under their door. Lesterson sees his now trio of Daleks who are pleased that "we will get our power!"

This episode moves like a piece of well oiled machinery. It does exactly what you guess it might as the Daleks slowly advance their plan, the rebels start to move and the Doctor finds his progress obstructed. Lovely scene between the Doctor & Bragen as they each call the other's bluff, and at the end as the Dalek's guard starts to slip in front of Bragen. I said last episode that you feel this isn't going to end well and you feel it even more in this episode.

Having dealt with the characters & actors who didn't trouble the scorers much in earlier episodes let's look at the rest of the cast. I'd previously quite liked Hensall but now I've discovered he's played by Peter Bathurst who goes on to play the civil servant Chinn in the Claws of Axos who is possibly the most annoying character in Doctor Who. Bernard Archard (Bragen) you'll see again as the possessed cadaver of Marcus Scarman in Pyramids of Mars. Robert Glynn (Lesterson) will be back as the High Priest in the Masque of Mandragora. He's also in the very first episode of Blake's Seven: The Way Back playing Blake's Ven Glynd. I spot that the same episode also features Robert Beatty, who was General Cutler in the previous Doctor Who story The Tenth Planet.

The "Daleks posing as your servants" idea is re-used in the new series story Victory of the Daleks, where it works fabulously well again. It's after the bit where they're busy being servants that Victory of the Daleks falls apart.

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