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The Genesis of Davros – Part 4
“Men will be gods!”
Skaro is at a critical point in its history. The planet has been ravaged by war for far too long between the Kaleds and the Thals. But Davros is now about to make his move to secure the future of his people.
The fourth chapter of this mini-series called ‘I, Davros’ is the episode that I was looking forward to the most. Not because this was the last episode, but this was also the episode that links into ‘Genesis of the Daleks’ in ‘Doctor Who’. It is so gripping and exciting to listen to as well as gruelling and disturbing.
The last ‘I, Davros’ episode, ‘Guilt’, was released on a 2-disc set. Disc 1 contains the episode ‘Guilt’ and Disc 2 contains a ‘Behind-The-Scenes’ documentary on the making of the ‘I, Davros’ mini-series. Surprising they didn’t or haven’t compiled the complete ‘I, Davros’ mini-series into a 5-disc CD box set.
‘Guilt’ is by Scott Alan Woodward, who wrote the Sixth Doctor audio adventure, ‘The Juggernauts’ with the Sixth Doctor, Mel and Davros. Scott has done a fantastic job with linking this last instalment of the ‘I, Davros’ series into ‘Genesis of the Daleks’. I could not be happier with this thrilling, dramatic climax
This episode sees Davros now wheel-bound and crippled following the previous episode, ‘Corruption’. Davros still has his high rank of Chief Scientist among the Kaled people as he continues to work on his experiments in order to secure their future. But his crippled state has affected both his mind and body.
Davros’ experiments have caused more fear from the Kaled people including the Supremo and the Council of Twelve. But Davros is not willing to make compromises since he seeks to secure his people’s future by transforming them into the genetic mutations they are to become by exposure to radiation.
The Thals also fear Davros and in this episode they manage to capture him in a mission to take him away from his laboratories. Davros is betrayed by his fellow scientist David Bickerstaff as Ral when this happens. But the Supremo wants Davros returned as he sends a squad of soldiers to recover him back.
Terry Molloy has excelled himself in this mini-series as Davros. He’s now performing as Davros from the TV series and has become more Dalek-like. If you’ve listened to the previous three stories, you can see Davros’ growing madness in this one and how his status and position affects everyone around him.
Davros is now monster than man and it was interesting and disturbing how crippled he can be. There are moments when he is out of his ‘wheelchair’ when he’s kidnapped by Thals and placed on a bio-bed. But Davros’ strength is inside of him and his determination to carry out his experiments is strong.
Peter Miles stars as Lt. Nyder in this audio episode. Nyder was a character from ‘Genesis of the Daleks’. He is sent by the Supremo to lead the squad to rescue Davros from the Thals. I was delighted to hear Nyder in this last instalment of the ‘I, Davros’ mini-series and how he has his first meeting with Davros.
I liked and found it interesting how Davros and Nyder first met each other and formed this friendship with each other between a scientist and a soldier. Davros admires something in Nyder and Nyder is clearly admiring of Davros and his work. Nyder gradually becomes loyal to Davros as he works for him.
John Stahl returns as the Supremo in this final instalment of the ‘I, Davros’ series. The Supremo is older and clearly not liking what Davros is doing. Yet he sends Nyder and his troops to rescue him from the Thals. The Supremo later realises how immoral Davros can be and he refuses to grant him his requests.
It’s pretty disturbing in that scene when the Supremo refuses Davros’ request for conducting experiments on the Kaled babies and Davros is outraged before he makes a move against him. It was even more disturbing when Nyder walks in and he’s following Davros’ orders instead of the Supremo’s.
There is a dream sequence where Davros sees his mother, Carolyn Jones as Lady Calcula and his half-sister Lizzie Hopley as Yarvell. This scene is to remind us how influential Davros’ mother was to him, although it is ironic that she’s not alive in the final episode of ‘I, Davros’ to see how much he achieved.
There is a scene where Davros visits the incubation chamber and the Kaled/Dalek mutants are inside. It was harrowing to listen to those scenes where Davros visits the ‘children’ in the ‘nursery’. Sometimes it did put me in mind of the incubation chamber featured in ‘Genesis of the Daleks’ with them mutants.
I’m very impressed with the sound design and the music by Steve Foxon on all four episodes of the ‘I, Davros’ mini-series. I’m really pleased to have heard the familiar sounds from the ‘Genesis of the Daleks’ TV story. It helps establish the continuity and consistency of everything occurring in the series.
At the end of this episode, Davros and Nyder witness the beginnings of the first Dalek ever born. The Dalek mutant is inside the ‘Mark I’ travel machine as it wakes up and Davros talks to it. It was pretty chilling and disturbing to listen to when the Dalek wakes up and declares, “I…AM…ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
‘Guilt’ is a fantastic finale to this mini-series. It explores Davros’ beginnings and past very well before ‘Genesis of the Daleks’. I’m pleased that this final episode matched my expectations and it features some brilliant performances from both Terry Molloy as Davros and Peter Miles who returns as Nyder.
The bonus disc of this ‘I, Davros’ CD release contains a behind-the-scenes documentary looking into the making of the mini-series with behind-the-scenes cast and crew interviews. The documentary is narrated by Joseph Lidster, who has written as well as produced plenty of Big Finish audio productions.
The documentary starts by looking into the history of Davros on TV and in the Big Finish audios before coming to the making of this spin-off mini-series. There are interviews with Andrew Wisher, Michael Wisher’s son; David Gooderson, who was Davros in ‘Destiny of the Daleks’ and of course Terry Molloy.
There are also interviews with director Gary Russell, who has made a significant contribution to Big Finish ‘Doctor Who’ and this turned out to be his last project. There are also interviews with the writers Gary Hopkins and James Parsons. Sadly Lance Parkin and Scott Alan Woodward don’t get interviewed.
There are also interviews with the cast. As well as Terry Molloy, there’s also Rory Jennings; Richard Franklin; Carolyn Jones; Andrew Wisher; Katarina Olsson; Sean Carlsen; Peter Miles; John Stahl, etc. All cast have made significant contributions to Big Finish before they appeared in the ‘I, Davros’ series.
There are also interviews with Steve Foxon, the music/sound designer of the ‘I, Davros’ mini-series and with Stuart Manning who designed the CD covers for the four ‘I, Davros’ episodes. I’m pleased with how this documentary disc covers everything in ‘I, Davros’ and predates future Big Finish releases.
An interesting question gets raised at the end of the documentary about whether Davros is either mad; bad or misunderstood. I personally would say Davros was both mad and bad and not misunderstood. It was so interesting how each of the cast and crew of ‘I, Davros’ answers the question.
The ‘I, Davros’ mini-series has been exciting excursion into the ‘Doctor Who’ universe. I enjoyed listening to this spin-off mini-series and exploring Davros’ past. It was intriguing how Davros became the monster he is today before he had his meeting with a certain Time Lord from the planet Gallifrey…
This is the end of the ‘I, Davros’ mini-series. But for Davros, this is just the beginning…
‘Guilt’ (I,D) rating – 9/10
‘I, Davros’ CD series – 9/10
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