'Doctor Who' Season 1 Story 2 Review
Time And Space
Let's time travel together - back to the distant year of 1963. This was a time when we humans had yet to even go to the moon; yet we have been dreaming of other worlds for thousands of years! The four-part initial story of the very first season of 'Doctor Who' is often considered to be a bit dry. Although I thoroughly enjoyed it, the first story is nothing when compared to the exciting seven-part second story.
The Daleks' Physical Form
The version of the daleks in this story include a brief image of a very non-human, clawed hand. Does this not fit your understanding of dalek anatomy? This might be good! We know from later stories that the daleks are subject to great changes during their evolution over the many years of their existence. We also know that they were initially mutants on the planet Skaro; meaning that they did not (even at first) all necessarily look a like. The daleks have been described as green (and shown this way in "The Five Doctors") and sometimes seen as pink or very light brown. We even see a grey dalek in the 2019 New Year's special "Resolution". Some daleks seem to appear like terrestrial octopodes, whereas at other times they appear much different (however, the possession of tentacles is very common throughout the show's history). I suspect, that in the very second story of the show, that the daleks were in a very early part of their evolution. I surmise that being encased in their armor may have greatly effected their evolution. Not to mention that organisms outside of Skaro can be made into daleks. Who knows how this could effect their appearance. Davros once used cells from his own body to make new daleks. Does the physiological structure or the mentality of the being define a dalek as a dalek? This is one of the great questions of 'Doctor Who'.
More About The Daleks
Those who only begin to watch this very long second story may believe that this version of the daleks includes a dalek gun that is not very effective. However, by part four ("The Ambush") we can see just how deadly the daleks' weapons really are. Latter seasons indicate that the daleks' weapons only become more horrifying and deadly with time. Still, that is not to state that the daleks have not always had insane vicious power.
I enjoyed the acting. I am not sure that I would ever claim that this story was my absolute favorite in the series, but the actors truly did a great job with their roles. It is also super interesting to witness the now famous William Hartnell play his role as the first Doctor!
Views On Race And Gender
Although there are expressions involving perceived differences between the sexes, it would appear to me that (in this story) such sentiments were placed in order to give a grander understanding of culture. More recently, in "Twice Upon A Time", the first Doctor is portrayed as being somewhat sexist. However, the first Doctor may have simply gotten used to the cultures he was subjecting himself to - he may have even been going against his own beliefs so that he could seem to everyone as more human. Regardless, in this second story of the show, the first Doctor gives women respect. When he is disrespectful to people, it seems to be without thought of gender and more so of age. The show even uses the daleks as an example of why racism is bad. Even in 1963, 'Doctor Who' was very socially progressive. One can compare this kind of mentality to the show 'Star Trek', which has also been socially progressive. I don't wish to see things go too far in one direction, but I feel very good about how the show has done for about 55 years!
I love how imaginative this story is! The entirety of the thing is awesome. I especially love items like the far away view of the city of the daleks. I enjoy viewing the inner chambers of the city, the unique plant and animal life depicted, and the machinery (like the vessels of the dalek race). The detail in making this place seem like an actual alien planet is profound!
The second story of the show was great. Every episode was awesome, and the whole thing stands up to time (for the most part). Other stories of this time period may be more debatable, but I am inclined to yet again give another five stars. This second story in 'Doctor Who' is fantastic and incredible.
© 2019 Alexander James Guckenberger