The Evil of the Daleks – Story #036

DW36

Jael’s Judgement:

I was not a huge fan of this one. For the most part liked the first part of the story, but Jamie seemed a bit too smitten with Victoria’s “beauty.” Nothing against Victoria. I do not really know her all that well yet. But once I like someone, I tend to feel a sense of propriety. And I like Jamie. Nothing silly, I am writing this blog with the love of my life after all. But I relate to Jamie and don’t want him to change too much because of some helpless girl.

The good news is that Jamie questions the Doctor’s motives and whether he trying trying to do what is right. I think it is important to question what you think and believe. This way you can have a better understanding of what you think and who you trust.

Why does the Doctor keep counting himself as human? This seems so odd.

Disturbingly I yet again find myself agreeing on a point with the Daleks. They tell Victoria to stop feeding the flying pests. Birds, what terrifying creatures.

As I said, the first part of this story is alright. But it is soooo long. Near the end I had no idea what was going on any more. We suddenly found everyone in the middle of Daleks yelling and fighting each other. I cannot even remember how the story-line resolved itself.

  • Story Grade: C-

 

Tony’s Take:

Space-time jumping, Daleks, a new companion, and the “Human Factor”?!  What a full story here!  Sure, most (if not all) stories from the Old Who era could have been trimmed up a bit (especially 1960s Who), but going with the normal style of story-telling, this wasn’t all that bad.  I am guessing that listening to 5 out of the 6 episodes instead of viewing them also tends to skew the “grading” down a bit.

While I agree with Jael that the Doctor saying he is human or implying that he is human; I believe that this was just a fault of the writing group, hoping to make The Doctor easier to access for the audience.  This “human factor” that the Doctor applies to himself and the term human itself could easily be re-written to make it not be the Earth-bound version, but more of a characteristic that we “Earth humans” share with other similar advanced beings (be it looks, intelligence, etc.).  Where I have a problem with the Doctor being human is in the TV movie… but that will be covered many months from now.

As for Jamie in this story?  He not only gets a female counterpart (who he has a thing for), but he is questioning the Doctor – rather intelligently.  It’s almost as though Jamie is getting the hang of being a companion.

Then there is Victoria; yes, she was the typical damsel in distress, but her life, in just one story, gets incredibly complicated.  Imagine traveling time, meeting a boy totally head over heels for you, and then at the end your father dies… then you are sent with the Doctor to travel space and time.  Wow.

Lastly, the Human Factor and the Daleks: at least it wasn’t “Evolution of the Daleks” bad…

DW_S3.5_Evolution

Introducing Daleks to human qualities is nothing new, not only has it been done many times, but it is probably the greatest struggle shown throughout Doctor Who.  The show really hammers home the importance of these human emotions and feelings and how they separate us from becoming like a Dalek (xenophobic).  It’s kind of ironic that this was coming during a time where Civil Rights were being fought over in my home country (USA), women were still treated much lower than men (see Victoria’s stereotypical role), and don’t even try talk about sex during this era (at least in the US) – though the hippie movement would put a few cracks in this wall.  We (humans) were incredibly xenophobic, but even then, compared to the Daleks, we were not entirely evil.

…And we know that not all the Daleks were destroyed, right?

  • Story Grade: B-
  • Packed with many ideas and set in multiple times and planets, we truly begin to see the seemingly eternal struggle between Daleks and humanity.

 

Thanks to the writer of this story, David Whitaker (and the script editors, Gerry Davis and Peter Bryant).  While times were not perfect – we are still fighting xenophobia on our home planet – you made us take a look at ourselves and make a decision: be like the Daleks and die or be the good side of humanity and live?