Saturday, July 28, 2012

Doctor Who-Revelation Of The Daleks
                         Colin Baker's tenure as the sixth doctor would be the shortest lived of the classic series,with only seven proper serials before the series was actually (and luckily temporarily) cancelled. Considering the bad reputation the program was getting at the BBC during 1985 from all sides,from censors to the public itself,it was lucky Doctor Who survived through it at all. Fact is,Colin Baker was scapegoated in terms of being an easy target for why the series was failing. None of the writers and producers at the time were willing to accept any blame for this as they scrambled to retool the show to go over better with the public. Again writer Eric Seward came to the conclusion that the best way to handle this would be to haul forth one of Doctor Who's most reliable old standbys,the Daleks as inspiration for a new serial to try to revive interest.


                     The Doctor and Peri are on the planet Necros where the doctor is planning to contact a scientist acquaintance of his. While there they are attacked by a mutant creature Peri is forced to kill to save the doctor. Then they discover a mysterious stone statue of himself that falls and almost kills him. This all turns out to be related to strange goings on at a fanciful looking funereal home called Tranquil Repose,whose egoist director Jobel and his staff have been putting the dead into suspended animation. Once the curious Doctor and Peri enter the facility they meet up with Natasha and Grigory,who have become suspicious when they find one of the suspended animation capsule that the the man both them and the Doctor were there to see was empty. Soon they discover the man they are looking for,partially transformed into a Dalek. Turns out that the funereal home has come under the control of the Great Healer who turns out to be none other than Davros,to whom Jobel has become something of a pawn.
      
                 They are all informed the brains of the deceased are being used to create new Dalek mutants. This creates discord and violence among the already tense and sometimes traitorous staff who begin battling each other. Meanwhile the Doctor and Peri are led by Jobel to meet a DJ with an American accent,whose been playing songs and informing those in hibernation of current events while privately reflecting that cures for their ailments were developed years before,due to him reminding Peri of her home. Turns out the DJ himself wishes to liberate the deceased from the Great Healer from the inside. During this time the Doctor asks Peri to return to the TARDIS to hail the planetary president,en route to Necros with the body of the first lady of Davros' plan. The DJ offers his own equipment to make the transmission which is intercepted by Davros who then kills the DJ and captures Peri. In the end Dalek factions loyal to the Dalek supreme and to Davros battle it out. The grey Daleks,loyal to Skaro win and return take Davros to his home planet to stand trial. However in addition to the DJ Jobel's own deceptions have resulted in his death as well.


            This serial is one of the most complex and elaborately written Dalek stories ever. For all intents and purposes Davros has become something of a carnivorous character,in desperation doing so far as to use the brains of the dead to create new Dalek mutants. A lot of the action also revolves around the vain and pompous Jobel, who meets with an unfortunate end do to his own personally conniving ways. One of those most intriguing characters here is the unnamed DJ character. Existing in a warped psychedelic world of sped up oldies and hip Murry The K like lingo he reinforces the concept of the DJ on Earth as an implicit force for social activism,often delivering important messages throughout the story in code. Even before Peri meets up with him,it's easy to become sympathetic with the character you want to be the good guy. And he is. Even perfectly willing to die for the cause. Because the show was temporarily cancelled however,the final scene was clipped off because it referenced an already written episode that would not be produced. But even though the sixth doctor era was about to end,Doctor Who was not over and neither were the Daleks.
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