Friday, 13 September 2013

Landmarks No.32


Remembrance of the Daleks.
Part of the 25th Anniversary celebrations.
At this stage in the programme, the Daleks are only being used sparingly. (Future show-runners please take note). It would transpire that each of the last few Doctors would only meet them once. On each occasion, they would mostly play second fiddle to their creator, Davros.
This story finally seems to free them from him. We have two rival Dalek factions - shades of Evil of the Daleks. The redesign which had featured in the previous Dalek story (Revelation of the Daleks) finally gets a proper outing. The white / gold Daleks are noticeably taller and slimmer.
Of course, as could have been guessed from that particular livery, Davros is still around. He proves to be the Emperor - hiding in what appears to be an homage to the Century 21 Dalek Emperor.
Skaro gets destroyed after the Doctor goads him into using the Omega device without checking it first. Caveat Emperor.
Omega is name checked (it is his Stellar Manipulator that the Daleks are fighting over), and we have references to the very first story (the I.M. Foreman junkyard and the Coal Hill School. Shame the tribute is marred by the misspelling on the gates of the former).
The Doctor implies that he was around at the beginning of the Time  Lords' golden age. A cut scene takes it further and has him claim to be more than an ordinary Time Lord.
This is the first flowering of what might have been the "Cartmel Masterplan" - had the series not ended the next year. The Masterplan has since been dismissed as merely a set of ideas.
The Masterplan would have proved a failure had it being followed. Whilst it is good to add new layers of mystery to the Doctor, to have then explained his background fully and tell the audience exactly who and what he is would have simply demystified the character once again - the very thing the writers were trying to address.

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