Timestamp Special #1: Dr. Who and the Daleks

Dr. Who and the Daleks
(1965)

Timestamp S01 Dr Who and the Daleks

It’s a very basic re-telling of The Daleks, but with a faster pace and a larger budget. In this version, Barbara and Susan are both granddaughters to the Doctor, who is a human inventor called Dr. Who in this interpretation. We never find out his first name, but his surname is Who. Ian Chesterton picks up the role of  comic (often slapstick) relief, giving this an air slightly less silly (and a bit more watchable) than 1967’s Casino Royale in comparison to the James Bond movie franchise.

The Thals are essentially goths with heavy eye shadow and blonde wigs to make them look alien, and the Daleks are… well… the Daleks. In color. With bigger head lamps that don’t actually sync very well with their voices. The Daleks also picked up some home decor tips from the 1960s and 70s, including lava lamps and some very James Bond-inspired control room sets.

It was really good to Peter Cushing in a role other than Grand Moff Tarkin from Star Wars, and this presentation has me on the lookout for other films of his.

Overall, with high production values but low story content, I grade this as an enjoyable interpretation, but with nowhere near the staying power of the source serial.

This rating won’t count toward anything since this isn’t an official Doctor. Onward to Series Three.

 

Rating for The Daleks: 4/5
Rating for Dr. Who and the Daleks: 3/5

 

UP NEXT – Doctor Who: Galaxy 4

 

The Timestamps Project is an adventure through the televised universe of Doctor Who, story by story, from the beginning of the franchise. For more reviews like this one, please visit the project’s page at Creative Criticality.

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Timestamp: Second Series Summary

Doctor Who: Second Series Summary

Timestamp Logo First

 

The second series really stepped up the game in terms of this project. The lineup got mostly fours, and was only brought down by The Web Planet.

Taking a slight detour on my way to the third series, I’m going to take a look at one of the unofficial adventures with Peter Cushing in the role. After that, it’s off to Galaxy 4 and the road to the 12-part return of the Daleks.

 

Planet of Giants – 4
The Dalek Invasion of Earth  – 5
The Rescue – 4
The Romans – 4
The Web Planet – 1
The Crusade – 4
The Space Museum – 4
The Chase – 4
The Time Meddler – 3

Series Two Average Rating: 3.7

 

UP NEXT – Special #1: Dr. Who and the Daleks

 

The Timestamps Project is an adventure through the televised universe of Doctor Who, story by story, from the beginning of the franchise. For more reviews like this one, please visit the project’s page at Creative Criticality.

Timestamp #17: The Time Meddler

Doctor Who: The Time Meddler
(4 episodes, s02e36-e39, 1965)

Timestamp 017 The Time Meddler

To start things off, it still really bothers me how little remorse The Doctor shows over Susan’s departure. It has bothered me since The Dalek Invasion of Earth how much better the Doctor interacts with Vicki than he did with his own granddaughter. Did Susan eat the last of his Werthers or forget to record Matlock? Is the Doctor somehow tempering his sorrow with his promise to return?

Regardless, it brings me to the current companions. I still adore Vicki, but Steven’s a bit of an idiot and an ass. He’s very headstrong and rude. I hope becomes a better member of the team, because right now he’s not showing me much promise.

This wasn’t a bad serial, but I didn’t see it as a great one either. It has some good points, and is essentially a detective story.

The Monk is given away by the fault in his recording and the ton of anachronisms that surround him. I did like seeing another Time Lord, and I liked that the Doctor couldn’t defeat the Monk on 11th century terms, where the latter was deeply immersed, but could readily best him as a Time Lord.

The Doctor deceives once again with the “Winchester” in the Monk’s back, and he shows a little violence in this serial, but again only in self-defense.

The Monk’s newer model TARDIS has an “automatic drift control,” which the Doctor must have installed or fixed at some point. He has no trouble sitting in one spot in deep space in later years.

 

Rating: 3/5 – “Reverse the polarity of the neutron flow.”

 

UP NEXT – Second Series Summary

 

The Timestamps Project is an adventure through the televised universe of Doctor Who, story by story, from the beginning of the franchise. For more reviews like this one, please visit the project’s page at Creative Criticality.

 

 

 

 

Timestamp #16: The Chase

Doctor Who: The Chase
(6 episodes, s02e30-e35, 1965)

Timestamp 016 The Chase

The serial has an interesting start with the whole Time-Space Visualizer bit, and it is a great plot device to start the whole “chase” part of The Chase, but they spent a lot of time on it. I did enjoy how The Beatles become “classical music” in the future.

My first thought when the TARDIS touched down on Aridius was, “welcome to Tatooine,” twin suns, desert, and all. The reveal with the Dalek rising from the sand is cool, but not as much as the one that emerged from the water in The Dalek Invasion of Earth. Overall, I quite liked the story with the Aridians. It struck me as kind of the reverse of the Atlantis myth. I also liked the birth of the TARDIS’s resistance to Dalek weapons, and the clever trap to escape Aridius.

The New York sequence was humorous, as was the Mary Celeste sequence. There are a lot of Dalek shells littered through history after this serial. I wonder if the BBC used various sets that they had available from other productions. This serial had a lot of various sets and it seems like it would be more expensive than the usual Doctor Who production.

The fabricated duplicate of the Doctor was interesting, and it did lead to a clever Doctor vs Doctor fight. The mutually assured destruction Dalek-Mechonoids face-off was also quite the sight.

I did get a little excited when the Doctor asked for his screwdriver. Alas, it was not a sonic version, but my I think my parents own a set just like it so it was a nice touchstone to my childhood. I also may have missed it, but I did wonder why our heroes even leave the ship until they had a solution to defeat the Daleks? Since the TARDIS is impervious to Dalek weapons, why not arrive, wait for the ship to recharge, then leave again?

Finally, this is where we say goodbye to Ian and Barbara. While it wasn’t as moving a farewell as Susan’s, it was still very touching to see them finally make it home. They seem very happy together, and it was touching to see the Doctor’s reaction to their departure. Under that gruff exterior, he really does care.

 

Rating: 4/5 – “Would you care for a jelly baby?”

 

UP NEXT – Doctor Who: The Time Meddler

 

 

The Timestamps Project is an adventure through the televised universe of Doctor Who, story by story, from the beginning of the franchise. For more reviews like this one, please visit the project’s page at Creative Criticality.