So the second appearance of the Daleks, the last appearance of Susan, and a guest appearance by Mr Rumbold. Truly, this was a busy story!
This is a very good story, with few failings. There are a couple of scenes that run long, and the fifth episode is a bit dull, but overall, it’s just quite decent.
The Nazi invasion allegories are a bit blatant, which surprises me, since I hadn’t noticed them until this watching. Clearly the story channels the fear, which was at that point twenty-plus years on, that the Nazis might have invaded and what might have happened if they had. The starvation, the slave labor, the death visited upon people at a whim, and those folks who turned quisling…all these things were legitimate fears for the British people and this story does an excellent job of capitalizing on that.
As for the Daleks themselves, they’re far more interesting here than they were in their first appearance. Their plan to make the Earth into what amounts to the Death Star is ludicrous, but it works out ok if you don’t think about it too hard.
Of course the most important thing about this story is the way it shows Susan’s departure. Though it’s a bit illogical, it works overall, and both Hartnell and Ford play it superbly. The final speech itself is sweet and a bit heartbreaking.
This story remains one of the best of the early years, and certainly one of the best of the Dalek stories in any years. If only all future installments were as good.
|Script editor||David Whitaker|
Mervyn Pinfield(associate producer)
|Incidental music composer||Francis Chagrin|
|Length||6 episodes, 25 minutes each|
|Date started||21 November 1964|
|Date ended||26 December 1964|
Next episode: “The Powerful Enemy”
Next story: “The Rescue”