Entry updated 23 June 2018. Tagged: Character, Theme.
Sinister and implacable Aliens in the Television series Doctor Who: bent on universal conquest, they are Mutants rendered immobile by radioactivity, inhabiting metal transporters as Cyborgs with built-in Blasters (see Mecha) and manipulators. Their rallying cry, delivered in their characteristically harsh, electronically distorted tones, is "EX-TER-MIN-ATE!" The Daleks were introduced to Doctor Who by writer Terry Nation in The Mutants (1963-1964), the long-running programme's second story, beginning with the episode "The Dead Planet"; this storyline is now generally referred to as The Daleks to distinguish it from a later sequence also called The Mutants. It was subsequently filmed as Dr Who and the Daleks (1965) and novelized by David Whitaker as Doctor Who in an Exciting Adventure with the Daleks (1964; vt Doctor Who and the Daleks 1973); Whitaker and Nation also co-scripted the Dalek stage play The Curse of the Daleks (first performed 1965), and Nation's byline appeared on the first Dalek Comic strip (1965-1966) though this was actually written by Whitaker. Another 1964 television story was filmed as Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 A.D. (1966). The Daleks returned in many Doctor Who television episodes, being the most popular feature of its first decade; only in 1975 did we learn, in Genesis of the Daleks, that they had been created by an evil, crippled genius, Davros, in the image of his futuristic wheelchair-equivalent. Their popularity continues through further reinventions in the show's twenty-first century revival. The Daleks' distinctive pepper-pot design and eerie gliding motion were devised by Raymond Cusick (1928-2013), production designer for the first 42 instalments of Doctor Who. [DRL/PN]
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