Destiny Of The Daleks: Doctor Who: Season 17
Destiny Of The Daleks SYNOPSIS:
The Doctor repairs K-9 and Romana undergoes an elective regeneration her new appearance is a physical double of Princess Astra of Atrios. She and the Doctor explore city ruins on an unknown planet but underground explosions cause a wall to collapse on the Doctor. When Romana goes for help he is freed by three silver haired humanoids who take him to their ship.
Returning Romana accidentally falls down a vent shaft. At the bottom, Daleks break through a wall and take her prisoner assigning her to a slave labour force. The Doctor finds out the humanoids Movellans, in a war with the daleks and the planet is Skaro. Helped by former slave Tyssan and Movellan Agella, the Doctor is rejoined by Romana. Together they find the Daleks are drilling into their old city in search of Davros.
Their creator Davros revives from suspended animation only to be kidnapped by the Doctor's gang and kept from the Daleks. The Doctor is forced to leave Davros behind when cornered by the daleks. But he and find the Movellans are also deadly robots and the daleks need Davros to break the military stalemate both races have reached in their war. Now both races have to be stopped and Davros captured to prevent either taking over the galaxy.
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Destiny Of The Daleks DETAILS:
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Destiny Of The Daleks CAST & CREW
Tom Baker (Fourth Doctor)
Lalla Ward (Romana II))
David Gooderson — Davros
Mike Mungarvan, Cy Town — Daleks
Roy Skelton — Dalek Voices
Peter Straker — Commander Sharrel
Suzanne Danielle — Agella
Tony Osoba — Lan
Tim Barlow — Tyssan
Penny Casdagli — Jall
David Yip — Veldan
Cassandra — Movellan Guard
Production Staff for Serial 5J:
Writer - Terry Nation
Director - Ken Grieve
Script editor - Douglas Adams
Producer - Graham Williams
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Destiny Of The Daleks REVIEWS
Terry Nation returns for one last thrill ride of an adventure and his first script for the series in 4 years (he obviously didn't want Android Invasion to be his final hurrah after 13 years and two stints as a regular Who writer) So you know what to expect story wise. Although admittedly Destiny Of The Daleks is slightly different to what Terry's usually written but now you've explained below Grob (wikipedia?) it makes more sense. Also it's the first script edited by Douglas Adams who obviously wanted to turn the show into Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy before the BBC green lit his pet project. Another major difference that drags it back is that it's directed by Ken Greve and it's very dull in execution.
So goodbye Terry and hello Doug and....oh yes - Lalla Ward. Thanks to Tom's hormones, his new girlfriend, merely a guest star in the last story is elevated to the role of companion in Destiny Of The Daleks, in fact the same companion, it's Romana mark 2. This is shoddily done and played for laughs. Why, when they had plenty of time, did they not just regenerate Romana in the Armageddon Factor? Here Romana is seen regenerating for a 'bit of fun' before settling, not only Princess Astra's body but her costume as well...and with no 'ill' after effects. But Lalla does a good job in being a different Romana but essentially the same character and a much better foil for Tom even though he's displaying distinct signs of "I really should have left last season"...
The daleks are trying to dig Davros out of his old bunker to win a war against the most liberated gay bunch of robots in the universe - the Movellans, led by a prancing nonce. You find him creepy Grob? What about some of the amateur theatre directors you've worked with over the years? Man if these guys are a universal threat this explains why Davros is dug up. Although wouldn't mind seeing the Movellan woman in a more revealing costume. Why do these guys wear their most vulnerable point on their belts??
The daleks look shabby but must admit when I saw this as a kid the way the daleks were interrogating Romana was frightening and the sight of Davros covered in Cobwebs starting to move was really creepy. Likewise the bit of Tom and his crew spiriting Davros away and then being trapped by the daleks in the ancient city sticks in the memory. But seeing Destiny Of The Daleks grown up the illusion is shattered. The new Davros doesn't live up to the original plus the production letdowns, e.g. why are they very badly positioned big spot lights -switched on - that people run past in parts of a city that's supposed to have been deserted for centuries? Plus back to filming in a sand pit. Hardly the Daleks finest hour but has a few creepy moments, mines a 5/10
Barren planet, underground drilling, a big bomb, human slaves removing rubble, daleks trying to secure their own future, which story are we talking about? Planet of the Daleks? Death to the Daleks? Dalek Invasion of Earth? Nope, its DESTINY OF THE DALEKS!!!
Gotta hand it to Terry Nation. He's earned a squid load of cash for doing next to bugger all and all he has to do when he needs to pay the mortgage off on one of his Brighton estates is write another dalek story. And he doesn't even need to do that part of it really. "Run down that corridor!" "Blow up that dalek!" "Kill a human slave!" "Remove more rubble!" This is pretty much what they got from Terry back in the seventies (and sixties) and it was up to everyone else to turn it into something interesting. Or not.
To give you an idea on Terry's involvement in the storyline, guess which element WASN'T part of his original storyline; a) The Movellans b) Davros c) Romana's regeneration That's right; NONE of those ideas were originally Terry's. Which makes you wonder what Destiny of the Daleks actually WAS before everyone else got their hands on it and reached for the aspirins.
Now in Destiny Of The Daleks (author unknown) the daleks are lagging down the ladder in Evil Universe Dictators somewhere behind the Sontarans, Cybermen, Collingwood Football Club and Tim's sister. So its off we go to find Davros so he can fix the problem. Good job too, cos these daleks in the story are in serious need of refurbishment. They are battered, badly painted and some of them have their balls missing (cue email from Tim!) In fact, you can watch one dalek blow up and then see it wheeling its way down a corridor in the very next scene!
I seem to recall that Davros had his arse blown out of his chair in Genesis of the Daleks in his underground bunker inside the Kaled dome. So why does the place - THAT IS SUPPOSED TO BE THE EXACT SAME PLACE AS IT ALL ORIGINALLY STARTED - look so completely different??? (cue next email from Tim!).
Davros himself looks just as shabby as the daleks and David Gooderson is no Michael Wisher. AND when he moves along the ground in his little chair he actually bobs merrily up and down.
On to other members of the cast now. Tom Baker seems to have done the same thing everyone else was thinking and thrown the script out the window. He seems to be less Doctor Who in this opening story and more pissed, egocentric, unstoppable actor. Romana's regeneration has all the logic (cue Tim) of that Bad Wolf thing in so much that, well, it makes no sense whatsoever. However, Lalla Ward is miles away from her previous acting role as Princess Astra and is every bit of a match for grumpy old Tom - go her. And she will cos in a few more stories she won't give a shit either. Tim Barlow as Tysson is very good though. He is also totally deaf (not that has anything to do with anything else, I'm just showing off)
The Movellans are an interesting race for the daleks. They are so interesting we never hear from them again after this! They look like they are going to jump aboard the disco bus and head off to the Inflation Nightclub! To their credit the actors portraying them do a pretty good job, particularly Peter Straker as Commander Sharrel - very creepy and quietly menacing.
In all, Destiny Of The Daleks is the sort of season opener a little bit more money, a decent plot, a stray job for the daleks and a bullet to Terry Nation wouldn't fix. 4/10
As brilliant as Genesis of the Daleks was, it kind of makes you wonder how it effects all the previous Dalek stories? Do they remain the same as Davros has been buried for so long? I concluded last night that that's what has happened - but the fact that I spent a lot of time wondering about it, meant that there wasn't much happening at all! In the end, I decided that the base they used in the very first Dalek episode, was built on a different part of Skaro... perhaps in the southern Skaro hemisphere...
OK, firstly, the regeneration. Huh? Time Lords can choose to regenerate? And they can choose what body they want? Since when?? Two things could have solved this 1) Killing Romana in a showdown with the Black Guardian in Armageddon Factor (they had time!) and forcing her to regenerate, or 2) as a reward for her work on the key, the Time Lords gave her one free regeneration of her choice. Either would probably have worked - but doing it this way breaks internal logic... and that's bad.
Apart from that bit, part one was actually ok - the standard investigating alien place, Doctor and companion separating, alien reveal at the end all works... and cos it's a Dalek reveal at the end, it works very well (OK, so the title kind of gave it away, but it still worked).
After that, Destiny Of The Daleks gets really boring.
A cobwebbed Davros moving as a part 2 cliff-hanger, and Romana in the test tube bomb thing works as an effective part 3 cliff-hanger - but that's about it.
So the Daleks are at war with the Movellens are they? Why? The Daleks seem more concerned finding Davros then with the fact that there's a Movellan ship a mile from their base (so Time Lords haven't gone metric hey!). And for a sophisticated war robot, movellans are pretty shit... why would you carry such a large target on your bloody belt! That's worse than the Sontaran's hole in the neck!
They could have done away with the Movellan plot and just had Destiny Of The Daleks as the search for Davros.
I like that they find Davros (even if this guy is nowhere near as good as the last or the next one at it), and some of the banter between Davros and the Doctor is great... if nothing else, the finding of Davros and the treatment of him by the extremely poorly played humans, sets up the far superior Resurrection of the Daleks very well!
Have any of you guys worked with Colin Buckley (mainly does stuff at Beaumaris). He looks like Tyssan.
Which brings me to the human slaves... the idea of that was great, but man, how bad were they!! And I'm sure a couple of the ones that were exterminated in the Dalek bunker were shot again on the Movellan ship.
And why the hell didn't Tyssan just talk to Romana instead of making her fall down a shaft?
Bad bad bad bad bad.
OK, I liked that Romana knew all about the Daleks - they thought that out well. And the paper, scissors, rock to explain the stalemate was good too.
But not enough to pass.