‘VICTORY OF THE DALEKS’
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Go, Go Power Daleks with the Eleventh Doctor and Amy
Oh dear. ‘Victory of the Daleks’. This was a wasted opportunity on many levels. I wish I could say Matt Smith’s first encounter with the Daleks was great! But this ‘Doctor Who’ story did fall flat for me.
The episode is by Mark Gatiss, a very good ‘Doctor Who’ writer. Set in 1940s London during World War II, the Doctor and Amy meet Winston Churchill, who is now working in the Cabinet War Rooms.
Churchill asked for the Doctor’s help in ‘The Beast Below’, but he arrived in the TARDIS a month late. The Doctor and Amy soon see that the British Army have a new secret weapon called the Ironsides.
But the Ironsides happen to be Daleks. The Doctor is not happy when he sees them. He knows the Daleks are up to something. They keep saying “I am your soldier!” and they seem to not know the Doctor.
I do like the Ironside Daleks where they’re painted khaki-green, similar to British army soldiers in World War II. If only the Daleks stayed like that throughout the episode, as they’re more interesting.
There is a sense of an atmosphere echoed from ‘The Power of the Daleks’, especially when the Daleks seem to be serving humanity. But the Doctor sees through their cover and it’s over so quickly.
Once the Doctor’s given his ‘testimony’ to allow the Daleks to activate their progenitor, the Daleks on Earth return to their spaceship hidden behind the moon. There, they continue with their evil plans.
It turns out that these Daleks survived the events of ‘The Stolen Earth’/’Journey’ End’ when the Doctor comes to their spaceship to face them. The Daleks use their progenitor to restore their race.
And this is where my disappointment of the episode comes into place. This episode features the first appearance of the new Paradigm Daleks that come out of the progenitor machine on the spaceship.
And they’re awful! Honestly, I don’t like these new Paradigm Daleks in the episode. They’re bigger and fatter than the normal Daleks. I know some readers of ‘Doctor Who Magazine’ didn’t like them.
The idea was to have multi-coloured Daleks echo the 1960s movies with Peter Cushing. Except these don’t look anything like Daleks, with their eyestalks and big ‘busts’! (I didn’t think I would say that!!!)
When I look at the new Paradigm Daleks, they put me in mind of ‘Power Rangers’. Seriously! These Daleks could have their own TV show called ‘Mighty Morphin’ Power Daleks’ should it ever be made.
The Daleks of saving grace are the Ironsides and the bronze Dalek aboard the spaceship. If only they lasted longer! But nope! They get destroyed instantly by the new Paradigm Daleks! Destroyed! Argh!
And there’s another thing I don’t like about this episode. There are flying Spitfires…in outer space! Flying Spitfires in outer space?! No, no! Sorry! I can’t buy it! That’s just silly and ridiculous to think of.
Is there anything I like about this episode? Well, yes, actually. Ian McNeice is very good as Winston Churchill in the episode. I’ve met Ian McNiece in real life at the ‘Worcester Comic Con’, August 2016.
There’s also Bill Paterson as Professor Bracewell in the episode. I first saw Bill Paterson in the BBC adaptation of ‘Wives and Daughters’ and he would later play Frazer in the ‘Dad’s Army’ 2016 film.
And Matt Smith and Karen Gillan give decent performances as the Doctor and Amy. I like how they interact with Churchill and how they emotionally connect to Bracewell when he’s about to explode.
There’s something interesting about this episode in connection to Amy. She doesn’t remember the Dalek invasion of Earth with planets in the sky from ‘The Stolen Earth’/’Journey’s End’. Why is that?
‘Victory of the Daleks’ is a disappointing episode with the metallic pepperpots. I didn’t like the new Paradigm Daleks back then in 2010 and I still don’t like them now. It was a wasted opportunity here.
The DVD special features on this episode are as follows. On the ‘Series 5, Volume 1’ DVD, there’s ‘Monster File: The Daleks’ which looks into the creation and development of the new Paradigm Daleks.
On Disc 2 of ‘The Complete Series 5’ of ‘Doctor Who’, the ‘Monster File: The Daleks’ can also be found on there. There’s also an in-vision commentary with writer Mark Gattis, Dalek voice artist Nicholas Briggs and Dalek operator Barnaby Edwards.
On Disc 6, there’s the ‘Doctor Who Confidential’ episode ‘War Games’.
The first three TV episodes of Matt Smith’s era of ‘Doctor Who’ start the era well. With the exception of ‘Victory of the Daleks’, the new Matt Smith/Steven Moffat era looks promising. I was hoping to get more into this new era and find out what would happen next. Would this new era get better for me?
‘Victory of the Daleks’ rating – 4/10
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