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Jon Pertwee
Planet of the Daleks
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Synopsis


A Defenceless Dalek
A Defenceless Dalek
 The TARDIS arrives on Spiridon, an inhospitable planet where the vegetation is hungry and extremely dangerous. The Doctor has been badly hurt and has fallen into a coma, so it’s up to his concerned assistant Jo to leave the safety of the TARDIS to find help.

 She soon discovers a jungle containing invisible creatures, and that the planet is hiding a terrible secret about The Doctor’s oldest enemy, the Daleks…

Source: BBC DVD


General Information

Season: Ten
Production Code: SSS
Story Number: 68
Episode Numbers:344 - 349
Number of Episodes: 6
Percentage of Episodes Held:100%
Working Titles:"Destination Daleks"
Production Dates: January - February 1973
Broadcast Started: 07 April 1973
Broadcast Finished: 12 May 1973
Colour Status: Colour
Studio: Ealing Television Film Studios and BBC Television Centre (TC1, TC4 and TC6)
Location: Beachfields Quarry (Redhill, Surrey).
Writer:Terry Nation
Director:David Maloney
Producer:Barry Letts
Script Editor:Terrance Dicks
Editor:Dave Thomas
Production Assistant:George Gallaccio
Assistant Floor Managers:Graeme Harper, John Cook and Sue Hedden
Designer:John Hurst
Costume Designer:Hazel Pethig
Make-Up Designer:Jean McMillan
Cameraman:Elmer Cossey
Incidental Music:Dudley Simpson
Special Sounds (SFX Editor):Dick Mills
Studio Sounds:Tony Millier
Lighting:Derek Slee
Visual Effects:Clifford Culley
Title Sequence:Bernard Lodge and Ben Palmer
Title Music:Ron Grainer and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Arranged by Delia Derbyshire
Daleks Originally Created By: Terry Nation
Number of Doctors: 1
The Doctor: Jon Pertwee (The Third Doctor)
Number of Companions: 1The Companion: Katy Manning (Jo Grant) Additional Cast: Bernard Horsfall (Taron), Prentis Hancock (Vaber), Tim Preece (Codal), Jane How (Rebec), Roy Skelton (Wester), Michael Wisher (Dalek Voice), Roy Skelton (Dalek Voice), John Scott Martin (Dalek Operator), Murphy Grumbar (Dalek Operator), Cy Town (Dalek Operator), Hilary Minster (Marat), Alan Tucker (Latep)Setting: Planet Spiridon (2540) Villain: Daleks

The Episodes

No. Episodes Broadcast
(UK)
Duration Viewers
(Millions)
In Archive
344Episode 107 April 197324'51"11.0PAL 2" colour videotape
345Episode 214 April 197324'08"10.7PAL 2" colour videotape
346Episode 321 April 197322'34"10.1PAL D3 colour restoration and 16mm B&W telerecording
347Episode 428 April 197323'36"8.3PAL 2" colour videotape
348Episode 505 May 197322'31"9.7PAL 2" colour videotape
349Episode 612 May 197323'02"8.5PAL 2" colour videotape

Total Duration 2 Hours 21 Minutes


Audience Appreciation

Average Viewers (Millions) 9.7
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (1998)65.01%  (Position = 100 out of 159)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2009)67.89% Higher (Position = 118 out of 200)
Doctor Who Magazine Poll (2014)71.06% Higher (Position = 123 out of 241)


Archives


 All six episodes exist. Episodes 1, 2 and 4-6 as PAL 2" colour videotape. Episode 3 only as a PAL D3 colour restoration and the original 16mm Black and White film telerecording.



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Notes


Although not generally recognised as such, this story is the second half of a single 12-episode story arc. It sees the welcome return of the Daleks - having been seen aiding The Master - and so continuing the storyline begun in "Frontier in Space".

During the filming of episode four, Director David Maloney also recorded some new material for the end of "Frontier in Space" to help bridge the two stories.

Despite this story being commissioned as "Planet of the Daleks" during production it had the working title "Destination Daleks".

Even though episodes stopped having individual titles as of the 1966 First Doctor story "The Savages" the individual episodes for this story had working titles. These being: "Destinus" (1), "Mission Survival" (2), "Pursued" (3), "Escape or Die" (4), "The Day Before Eternity" (5) and "Victory" (6).

Since Producer Barry Letts and Script Editor Terrance Dicks had decided to include the Daleks in every season as a ratings booster, this story saw the return of Terry Nation to screenwriting for the program after a contractual agreement over the previous Dalek story, "Day of the Daleks" resulted in a clause that Terry Nation had first refusal on writing any future Dalek stories.

As well as providing Dalek voices Roy Skelton also provided, uncredited, the Spiridon voices. It is also probable that John Scott Martin, who was credited as the Chief Dalek in the Radio Times, operated the Dalek Supreme.

Rebec was named after Terry Nation's daughter, Rebecca, while the character of Latep was originally Petal. However, the name was transposed to avoid confusion with a character in "Frontier in Space".

Bernard Horsfall, who plays Taron, had previously appeared as Gulliver in the 1968 Second Doctor story "The Mind Robber" and as the First Time Lord in "The War Games". He appeared once more in the 1976 Fourth Doctor story "The Deadly Assassin" playing the part of Chancellor Goth. On all occasions the director for these stories was David Maloney.

Prentis Hancock (who played Vaber) had appeared as a reporter in "Spearhead From Space" and would return as Salamar in the 1975 Fourth Doctor story "Planet of Evil" and as a guard in "The Ribos Operation". He also appeared in the Gerry Anderson television series Space: 1999.

Director David Maloney last work on the show had been "The War Games" three and a half years before.

Given the requirements of this story, for the first time since 1964, four new Daleks were constructed to join the three which had been retained from the Sixties. David Maloney though was disappointed to discover that these were of generally inferior workmanship and were completely static. He therefore elected to keep them in the background as much as possible. It wasn't until the 1985 Sixth Doctor story "Revelation of the Daleks" that new, fully working Daleks were made. Strangely brand new Dalek were also made for the 1988 Seventh Doctor story "Remembrance of the Daleks".

For the Dalek Supreme, Terry Nation suggested using a refurbished casing from the 1966 Amicus Doctor Who film Daleks: Invasion Earth 2150 AD which he had been given. The most notable modification was its eye stalk which was replaced with a conventional torch. This was made to flash when the Dalek speaks. Unfortunately this was sometimes out of sync with his words.

For the scenes depicting the Dalek army in the cave Louis Marx toy Daleks were used. This same technique was used in the 1967 Second Doctor story "The Evil of the Daleks".

A new, almost musical sound effect is introduced for the Dalek energy weapon. This is the only time it is used. In the next Dalek story, "Death to the Daleks", their energy weapons are not used at all.

This is the only story where a Dalek Leader has punished his subordinates failure with Extermination.

In the second episode, a Dalek weapon is used for a purpose other than killing, for the second and so far the last time in the show's history, and in both cases the purposes was paralysis of the legs - in this case, of the Third Doctor. The other paralysis was the very first use of a Dalek weapon, which was on Ian Chesterton in the 1963 First Doctor story "The Daleks". The scene with the Third Doctor being shot makes this the first of only two times a Dalek has shot The Doctor, the second being in the 2008 Tenth Doctor story "The Stolen Earth/Journey's End".

It is revealed that the Daleks have amassed their greatest ever invasion force, about 10,000 strong, on Spiridon, and have subjugated the population in order to apply their invisibility techniques to themselves – though this does not seem to be very affective as it requires much power and can only be achieved for short periods of time. For the first time we get to see the Dalek Supreme, one of the ruling elite, who comes to Spiridon to take charge of operations.

The Daleks emit an automatic distress call if their casings are tampered with. They can also lower the strength of their weapons and their guidance systems are based on high frequency radio signals. They have developed anti-gravity technology in the form of gravitational disks. This technique to levitate is used despite the fact that in the earlier 1965 First Doctor story, "The Chase", it was implied that the Daleks were able to move independently between the decks of the Marie Celeste. In the later 1985 Sixth Doctor story "Revelation of the Daleks" and subsequent stories featuring the Daleks, they are clearly depicted as readily able to fly.

This is not the first time that a Dalek casing is used as a disguise. In "The Daleks" Ian Chesterton posed as a Dalek.

In the Seventh Doctor story "Remembrance of the Daleks", The Doctor constructs a device to disorientate a Dalek and is heard to say ‘I built something like it on Spiridon’, in reference to the converted TARDIS recorder.

The Thal race returns for the first time since "The Daleks". They say they come from Skaro, implying that either the war between the Thals and the Daleks is still continuing, or that the Thals have expelled the Daleks from their homeworld. The latter is supported by The Doctor's observation that the Daleks 'have returned' to Skaro in the 1979 Fourth Doctor story "Destiny of the Daleks". As in "The Daleks", the Thals are portrayed as fair skinned with golden hair. They would return to the show in the classic 1975 Fourth Doctor story "Genesis of the Daleks".

The Doctor is heard to mention events that occurred in "The Daleks" - loosely describing his first visit to Skaro as being 'during the Dalek War' and mentioning Susan, Barbara Wright and Ian Chesterton. It seems that the tale of the Thals' penetration of the Dalek city, in this earlier story, has become a legend.

The flora and fauna on Spiridon include aggressive and visually enabled plants, various hostile animals, and the Spiridons, humanoid creatures who have developed a way of rendering themselves invisible. The core of the planet is composed of ice.

Despite his injuries The Doctor attempts to contact the Time Lords telepathically via the console. He was forced to do this before in "The Three Doctors".

When The Doctor falls into a coma his body temperature lowers to sub-zero levels and his heartbeat stabilises at six beasts per minute. This is not the first time that Jo Grant has witnessed The Doctor in this state. Jo is heard to say that she's seen him like this before. Referring to "The Dæmons".

This story features an addition to the TARDIS set in the form of a cupboard unit containing a slide-out bed.

When the TARDIS materialises itself on Spirodon Jo attributes this to 'the Time Lords working it by remote control again' as they did previously in "Colony in Space", "The Curse of Peladon" and "The Mutants".

Listen out for when The Doctor plays back Jo's recordings as Katy Manning's voice can be heard in the studio in addition to the sound of her voice in the recorder, suggesting that she was reading her lines live and an additional microphone picked up her untreated voice.

Episodes two and four do not feature a reprise of the previous episode's cliffhanger ending, while the reprise in episode three is a re-performance. Though this latter technique was commonplace in 1960s episodes, by this time in the show's history this was an approach that was almost no longer being used.

For many years, episode 3 of the story existed in the BBC Archives only as a black-and-white 16mm telerecording, as the 625-line colour PAL transmission master videotape for that episode was wiped for reuse by the BBC in 1976 – despite the colour masters for the other five episodes being kept. The black-and-white version of episode 3 was therefore used in the 1999 VHS release of this story. Episode 3 was eventually restored to full colour in 2008, using a combination of computer colourisation by Legend Films, and software developed by the Colour Recovery Working Group. This version was released on DVD in 2009.

This story was repeated on BBC One in 1993 as part of "Doctor Who and the Daleks", celebrating 30 years of Doctor Who. Like the VHS release episode three was shown in black and white. Each episode was preceded by a specially made 5 minute vignettes. These were "Bigger Inside Than Out", "The Antique Doctor Who Roadshow", "Missing in Action", "I Was That Monster", an untitled article on The Master and a "UNIT Recruiting Film".

The novelisation of this story, written by Terrance Dicks and published by Target Books in October 1976, opens with the cliffhanger from "Frontier in Space" of a comatose Doctor pursuing the Daleks through space, even though this was removed from the novelisation of this previous story.

In the Seventh Doctor Doctor Who Magazine comic strip story "Emperor of the Daleks" (Issues 197 - 202), Davros reconditions the survivors of the Dalek army on Spiridon to be loyal to him, using them to conquer Skaro and set himself up as Emperor, leading into the events of "Remembrance of the Daleks". The Big Finish Productions audio story "Return of the Daleks" has the Daleks attempting to awaken their army on Spiridon to assist their war effort. This though contradicts events in "Emperor of the Daleks".



First and Last

The Firsts:

 The first Dalek story written by Terry Nation since the 1965/66 First Doctor story "The Daleks' Master Plan".

 The first appearance in the show of the Dalek Supreme.

 The first (and only) story where a Dalek Leader has punished his subordinates failure with Extermination.

 The first appearance in the show of the Thals since the 1963 First Doctor story "The Daleks".


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The Plot

WARNING: May Contain SpoilersHide Text
Finding a Dalek
Finding a Dalek

Wounded, after being shot by The Master, it is up to Jo Grant to help The Doctor into the TARDIS. Before collapsing he sends a message to the Time Lords via its telepathic circuits. Jo then helps him to a couch where he falls into a deep coma. Shortly afterwards the TARDIS arrives on the planet Spiridon and Jo decides to go outside to find help. As she leaves the TARDIS, which has landed in a jungle, a plant sprays her with a liquid. On exploring her surroundings she finds some footprints and decides to follow them. They lead her to a crashed spaceship in which she discovers a dead pilot. She is found there by two Thals, Taron and Vaber. After explaining that she requires assistance with The Doctor a third Thal, Codal, calls the others away as someone, or something, is approaching. Jo hides in a cupboard as an invisible creature enters the craft and starts searching.

Back in the TARDIS The Doctor recovers to find Jo is missing. He also realises that there is no oxygen and the doors refuse to open. He is saved from suffocation by the Thals who remove a fungus growth covering the outside of the TARDIS and help The Doctor out. When one of the plants sprays The Doctor Taron uses another spray to kill the fungus that is starting to grow on him. He warns The Doctor that if left untreated, it would quickly cover his whole body and kill him. They then make their way back to their spaceship so as to find Jo but instead they encounter an invisible Dalek.

Jo, who has by now discovered that she has the fungus growth on her hand, is found and taken by an invisible Spiridon. But Codal is captured by a group of other Spiridons. The Doctor and the two Thals arrive just as two Daleks approach to destroy the Thal’s spaceship. Thinking that Jo is still inside The Doctor is captured when he tries to stop them.

Jo and a Thal
Jo and a Thal

Jo, however, is being treated by a Spiridon called Wester, who she learns is against the Daleks. Jo soon recovers and decides to enter the Dalek city so as to rescue The Doctor. Meanwhile Vaber wants to blow up the Dalek city but Taron advocates caution. Another spaceship from Skaro arrives but it crashes. The only survivors are an old love of Taron's, Rebec. She is accompanied by Latep and Marat. They have come to warn Taron that somewhere on the planet is an army of ten thousand Daleks…

In the Dalek city, The Doctor has been placed in a cell with Codal. They manage to escape and find themselves in the lower levels of the city just as Taron, Rebec and Marat require help getting out of a ventilation shaft. They have gained entry to the Dalek’s city via a network of icy passages. They explain to The Doctor that the Dalek’s city is built on an ice volcano, where the ice although below freezing is still a liquid, and that while inside the tunnels an eruption had started. The three Thals manage to escape from the ventilation shaft just before the flow of ice reaches them and before the Daleks close the ducts to seal the city from the advancing ice.

Inside the Dalek's Base
Inside the Dalek's Base

Daleks then arrive and Marat is exterminated as he tries to hold them off. The Daleks however, find a map on his body showing the location of where the Thals have hidden their explosives and a patrol is ordered to locate and destroy them. Jo, who has managed to enter the Dalek’s city and is hiding in a control area, overhears the Daleks and knowing how important the explosives are to the Thals she follows the Dalek patrol. When the Daleks discover the explosives they set the timers to destroy them. However, when the Daleks have left the area Jo manages to disarm two of the three bombs. She carries them away and hides them elsewhere before heading back towards the entrance to the Dalek’s city.

Trapped in the lower levels The Doctor discovers a huge Dalek army in a large cave, frozen in suspended animation due to the icy cold temperature. Realising that they have discovered something very important The Doctor and the Thals have to find a way of escaping from the Dalek’s city. This they achieve by making a hot air balloon and allowing it to pull them up a ventilation shaft. When they reach the top they find themselves on the planet’s surface. A Dalek though is pursuing them up the shaft on an anti-gravitational disk so they push some rocks down the shaft which kills the Dalek.

The Doctor and the Thals meet up with Jo and they all decide to spend the night at the Plane of Stones, an area which retains the heat from the day. Overnight, Vaber leaves to try and destroy the Dalek’s city alone but he is caught by the Spiridons. Taron and Codal ambush the party as it returns to the Dalek’s city and are able to commandeer their purple fur cloaks which they can use as a disguise. Wester then arrives at the Plane of Stones and warns The Doctor and Jo that the Daleks are heading towards them. Vaber is exterminated by the Daleks but Taron and Codal manage to get the bombs, Jo had salvaged, and return to The Doctor. They disable two Daleks by pushing them into ice pools. They use one of the Daleks, with Rebec inside, and the commandeered purple fur cloaks, so that they look like a Dalek patrol which they plan will enable them to get into the Dalek’s city. To increase the chance of reaching the Dalek army, that The Doctor discovered earlier, Latep and Jo descend down the ventilation shaft. However, on their way to the top of the shaft Jo and Latep witness the arrival of the Dalek Supreme who has arrived to take charge of operations on the planet.

The Dalek Supreme
The Dalek Supreme

The Doctor, Jo and the Thals though are unaware that the Daleks are preparing a bacteria which will destroy all life on Spiridon. Only the Daleks and their slave workers will be given immunity. Wester, on learning what the Daleks are planning, releases the bacteria early, trapping the immune Daleks in the isolation room forever and killing himself instantly.

In the Dalek city, The Doctor's party is discovered but they still manage to make their way to the lower levels, abandoning the Dalek casing along the way. They are all reunited at the bottom of the ventilation shaft. The Doctor initially plans to lock the refrigeration unit on, but the Dalek Supreme orders the Dalek army revived and the unit is switched off. Instead, while the others escape back up the ventilation shaft, The Doctor uses Codal's bomb which opens a fissure in the cave wall. This sets off the ice volcano which destroys the approaching Daleks and buries the whole Dalek army in ice.

With the Dalek’s plans in ruins The Doctor and Jo watch the Thals depart in the Dalek Supreme's ship before returning to the TARDIS.

 
The Doctor and a Thal
The Doctor and a Thal
Making Plans
Making Plans
Meeting a Spirodon
Meeting a Spirodon
Escaping from the Daleks
Escaping from the Daleks
 
A Defenceless Dalek
A Defenceless Dalek
The Daleks
The Daleks
The Dalek Control Room
The Dalek Control Room
The Doctor and Jo
The Doctor and Jo




Quote of the Story


 'Courage isn't just a matter of not being afraid. It's being afraid and doing what you have to do anyway.'

The Doctor



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Release Information

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)Code NumberCover ArtRemarks
Video
VHS
Planet of the DaleksNovember 1999BBCV 6928Photo-montagePart of a Limited Edition Dalek Box Set (BBCV 6875) along with "Revelation of the Daleks" Contains a Black and White version of episode 3
Video
DVD
Planet of the DaleksOctober 2009BBCDVD 2614(B)Photo-montagePart of the "Dalek War" box set (BBCDVD 2614) along with "Frontier in Space" Includes the re-coloured version of episode 3
Video
Blu-Ray
Doctor Who: The Collection - Season 10 (Limited Edition)July 2019BBCBD 0468Photo-montageBlu-Ray Limited Edition boxed set containing 5 specially restored stories
Video
Blu-Ray
Time Lord Victorious - Road To The Dark TimesNovember 2020BBCBD 0518Photo-montageBlu-Ray set containing 7 stories containing legends of the Dark Times, the Dalek Empire and the Time Lord Victorious.


In Print

FormatTitleRelease Date (UK)PublisherAuthorCover ArtRemarks
Novel
Novel
Doctor Who and the Planet of the DaleksOctober 1976Target No. 46Terrance DicksChris AchilleosISBN: 0-426-11252-0
(1st Edition Target Cover)
Novel
Novel
Doctor Who and the Daleks Omnibus1976Marks and SpencersTerrance DicksGeneral Illustration CompanyHardback. Abridged and illustrated. Also includes "Doctor Who and the Genesis of the Daleks".
Novel
Novel
Doctor Who and the Planet of the Daleks1976Target No. 46Terrance DicksHardback.
Novel
Novel
Doctor Who and the Planet of the Daleks1978Target No. 46Terrance DicksChris AchilleosISBN: 0-426-11252-0
(Green Logo Cover)
Novel
Novel
Dalek Omnibus1983WH AllenTerrance DicksAndrew SkilleterHardback. ISBN: 0-491-03420-3
Novel
Novel
Planet of the DaleksJuly 1992Target No. 46Terrance DicksAlister PearsonVirgin new cover reprint.
ISBN: 0-426-11252-0
Tape
Tape
Planet of the Daleks1995BBC AudioTerrance DicksAbridged version read by Jon Pertwee. Single Cassette. ZBBC 1769
MP3
MP3
Tales From The TARDIS - Volume 2July 2004BBC AudioTerrance Dicksphoto-montageMP3 version read by Jon Pertwee. Release includes 7 stories read by various actors and actresses from the show.
ISBN: 0-563-52377-2
CD
CD
Doctor Who and the Planet of the DaleksJune 2013Target No. 46Terrance DicksChris AchilleosAudio version of the Target Novel read by Mark Gatiss with Dalek voices by Nicholas Briggs.
Doctor Who CMS Magazine (An Adventure in Space and Time)Issue 68
Doctor Who Monthly - ArchiveIssue 72 (Released: January 1983)
Doctor Who Magazine - ArchiveIssue 202 (Released: August 1993)
Doctor Who Magazine - Time TeamIssue 336 (Released: November 2003)
Doctor Who DVD FilesVolume 81 (Released: February 2012)

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Photo Gallery


The Doctor and Companion

 
Jon Pertwee
The Third Doctor

   

 
Katy Manning
Jo Grant
 
   




On Release

VHS Video Cover
VHS Video Cover

BBC
VIDEO
DVD Cover
DVD Cover

BBC
VIDEO
The Collection Season 10 Limited Edition Blu-Ray Cover
The Collection Season 10 Limited Edition Blu-Ray Cover

BBC
VIDEO
Time Lord Victorious Blu-Ray Cover
Time Lord Victorious Blu-Ray Cover

BBC
VIDEO
   



In Print

Original Target Book Cover
Original Target Book Cover

Target
NOVEL
Doctor Who and the Daleks Omnibus Cover
Doctor Who and the Daleks Omnibus Cover

Marks and Spencers
NOVEL
Hardback Book Cover
Hardback Book Cover

Target
NOVEL
   
First Reprinted Target Book Cover
First Reprinted Target Book Cover

Target
NOVEL
Dalek Omnibus Cover
Dalek Omnibus Cover

WH Allen
NOVEL
Reprinted Virgin Book Cover
Reprinted Virgin Book Cover

Virgin
NOVEL
   
Audio Cassette Cover
Audio Cassette Cover

BBC
TAPE
MP3 Cover
MP3 Cover

BBC
MP3
Target Audio CD Cover
Target Audio CD Cover

BBC
CD
   


Magazines

Doctor Who CMS Magazine (An Adventure in Space and Time): Issue 68
Doctor Who CMS Magazine (An Adventure in Space and Time): Issue 68

CMS
Doctor Who Monthly - Archive: Issue 72
Doctor Who Monthly - Archive: Issue 72

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Archive: Issue 202
Doctor Who Magazine - Archive: Issue 202

Marvel Comics
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 336
Doctor Who Magazine - Time Team: Issue 336

Marvel Comics
   
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 81
Doctor Who DVD Files: Volume 81

GE Fabbri


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