So the third appearance by the Daleks is done, and Team TARDIS at the end looks almost entirely different from how it looked at the start.
This is a pretty solid story overall. Definitely one of the highlights of the early years. Yes, it gets a bit chaotic and strange, and the Mechonoids just…well, I don’t know what the heck they were, but they didn’t work. Even Big Finish wasn’t really able to rehabilitate them very much.
But the story itself is decent. There’s some wonderful moments of comedy (the special-needs Dalek, the Scooby-Doo moments), the Daleks are less boring than they usually are, and the departure of Ian and Barbara is really just great on every level.
Let’s talk about that for a moment. We see the Doctor utterly heartbroken as he realizes that he might be alone, then perking up as he finds out that Vicki will stay with him. This, the idea of him fearing loneliness, is something the series revisits often, especially in modern times.
The departure itself was handled well, with elegance and grace, and a wonderful photo montage as a “goodbye” to two beloved characters. Really, it would have been hard to ask for anything better.
To top it all off, we get a new companion, in the form of Steven, though most people at the time didn’t realize it. He’s very good here, with Purves putting in some excellent acting. He’s a valuable addition to the series, and I look forward to the next several episodes. Or I would, if it weren’t for the fact that I’m about to hit a huge swath of nothing but reconstructions. *sigh* Still, brave heart. Must soldier on.
Douglas Camfield (episode 6, uncredited)
|Script editor||Dennis Spooner|
|Incidental music composer||Dudley Simpson|
|Length||6 episodes, 25 minutes each|
|Date started||22 May 1965|
|Date ended||26 June 1965|
Next episode: “The Watcher”
Next story: “The Time Meddler”