Thursday 24 November 2011

367 Death to the Daleks Part Two

EPISODE: Death to the Daleks Part Two
TRANSMITTED: 02 March 1974
WRITER: Terry Nation
DIRECTOR: Michael Briant
SCRIPT EDITOR: Terrance Dicks
PRODUCER: Barry Letts
FORMAT: VHS: Doctor Who - Death To The Daleks
Episode Format: 625 video

The Daleks guns malfunction failing to produce any energy: they too are affected by the power drain and reluctantly join forces with the humans. In temple cavern the Exillons have set a fire. The Daleks claim to have come to Exillon because they need the Parrinium to treat sickness of their worlds but they actually have another motive and conceal that there are more Daleks in the ship than the four that emerged. While returning to the human dome the party is attacked, Railton is killed by an Exillon arrow and one of the four Daleks is battered with Exillon weapons to the point where it is destroyed. The captive Commander Stewart orders them to give up. Doctor, Humans & the two captured Daleks are taken to the caves where Sarah is being sacrificed. The Doctor attempts to rescue her and is beaten to unconsciousness. He wakes in a cage imprisoned in a cage. The Daleks try to bargain with the Exillons. The third surviving Dalek from patrol has returned to it's ship and informed it's comrades of what has happened. The Daleks there have been equipped with new machine gun weaponry. Commander Stewart dies, promoting Hamilton over Galloway but Galloway refuses to pass his dying commanders wishes on. The Exillons agree to co-operate with the Daleks after the sacrifice, now consisting of the Doctor and Sarah, but the ceremony is interrupted by the arrival of the armed Daleks who exterminate many of the Exillons and allow the Doctor & Sarah to escape. The Daleks put the remaining Exillons to work mining the Parrinium. The Doctor & Sarah hide in a cave tunnel, in which odd noises echo, and are pursued by the Daleks. The Doctor leaves Sarah at a junction while he explores but he encounters an odd robotic snake creature.

The concept of Daleks unable to kill is a superb one and sadly done away with far too quickly here as the Machine Gun Daleks (another fab idea) show up. I love the testing target for the machine guns in the Dalek ship: a small Tardis model :-) Sarah quickly cottons on that the Daleks are still moving which the Doctor explaining that they "move by psychokinetic power". We'll have to assume that several of the other Dalek systems are also powered by the mutant inside, superbly described here as a "living bubbling lump of hate", as the eye lights seem to work as do the arms.... In which case is anything else other than the guns powered by another power source? Well possibly something structural or defensive judging by the way that Dalek went up when battered by the Exillons' hand weapons.

We've said bye bye to two of the cast already. Captain Richard Railton was played by John Abineri who we've heard in Fury from the Deep as van Lutyens and seen in The Ambassadors of Death as General Carrington. He's got one more appearance to come in The Power of Kroll as Ranquin. He's famous to telefantasy fans as Herne The Hunter in Robin of Sherwood and has probably been seen by most people as the butler in the Ferrero Rocher Ambassador's reception advert. Neil Seiler, playing Commander Stewart, was the Radio Operator in The Sea Devils (director: Michael Briant) and Mostyn Evans, the High Priest, was Dai Evans in The Green Death (director: Michael Briant) On the recent Colony in Space DVD director Michael Briant cops to using the same people regularly for the very good reason that he knows them and knows he can work with them. An excellent commentary participant I hope we hear Briant on the Death to the Daleks DVD. Duncan Lamont plays Dan Galloway on his only Doctor Who appearance. He was in the original 1953 The Quatermass Experiment playing the infected astronaut Victor Carroon. When he died in 1978 in he was working at the time on the Blake's 7 episode Hostage and had already filmed location material. He was replaced by, and the footage reshot using, his co-star here John Abineri.

The Daleks meanwhile are a selection of the usual suspects Michael Wisher does the Dalek Voices while the operators are John Scott Martin, who's been in every Dalek story since the Chase while Cy Town is making his third appearance following Frontier in Space & Planet of the Daleks. Making his final appearance in a Dalek shell is Murphy Grumbar, misspelled Murphy Grunbar throughout the credits in this story. He made his debut as a Dalek Operator in The Daleks followed by The Dalek Invasion of Earth (for both of which he was credited as Peter Murphy) before returning under his own name in The Space Museum, The Evil of the Daleks, Day of the Daleks, Frontier in Space & Planet of the Daleks.

1 comment:

  1. I will say that Murphy Grumbar is my favourite ever name on a tv credit.