Day of the Daleks

I picked up the Pertwee era Day of the Daleks which promised better effects, a convincing number of Daleks (the BBC only had three available it appears), Nick Briggs re-doing the voices and a host of other digital / CGI tweakings. As I remembered watching this at the time I thought I would pick it up, plus a friend of mine featured in the DVD extras! (You know who you are!).

Having watched this I thought of a couple of questions:

  1. Is the update worth having?
  2. What do I think of the actual story?
Read on for my views

Is the update worth having?

The worry is this might look like 70s TV with 21st century effects – mainly they get away with this and we are spared the inconsistencies of (e.g.) the BluRay of 2001: A Space Odyssey. Yes there are more Daleks all with the modern Dalek voice; people explode in full CGI glory and there are some impressive shots of future Earth.
For the money this is a no-brainer; you get both versions and some extras I all (in my case) for under a tenner.

What do I think of the actual story?

The actual tale is one of the ‘self cancelling/ never happened but did’ type; in the future a bunch of rebels go back in time to stop a traitor blowing up a conference and triggering World War III leaving Earth easy prey for the Daleks. In so doing they actual cause the event they were trying to stop. The Doctor figures all this out and saves the day. Hurray!
There were a lot of things that haven’t stood the test of time (and let’s face it, in the early 70s there was no expectation that we would be able to have our own copies of these things and repeat and analyse to death!). My list is here:
  • Jo Grant – absolutely no role in the story at all. Gets captured, acts as a lure for the Doctor (no needed as he would have been interested in the Daleks). Very weak for her
  • Venusian Karate – no amount of CGI could make this look anything other than ridiculous. No more to say on the subject
  • Attitude to weapons – the Doctor is very casual towards picking up a weapon and blowing up Ogrons. What would the current Doctor say?!
  • Attitude to drink – here the Doctor readily indulges in the wine cellar and likes a good Burgundy. This is a theme that varies across all incarnations / different writers
  • The future – we all wear pale face paint whilst talking like zombies
  • The mine-workers – once more Daleks are digging the Earth, this time for minerals. These scenes convinced a lot less than Hartnell’s Invasion of Earth I am afraid.
Overall, and I am not a completist, I probably could have lived without buying this – still we live and learn!

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