Planet of the Daleks

Doctor WhoThe TARDIS continues toward the planet Spiridon, the location of the hidden Dalek army that could overrun the entire galaxy. The injured Doctor falls into a self-induced healing coma, leaving Jo few instructions. When the TARDIS lands, Jo ventures out into the poisonous jungle on Spiridon, eventually encountering a military expedition of Thals, the Daleks’ mortal enemies from Skaro. The Thals manage to get the Doctor to safety and join him on a mission to keep the Dalek army from launching its offensive. The invisible natives of Spiridon, enslaved by the Daleks, are another hazard, along with the lethal vegetation. When the Dalek Supreme arrives to lead its army into battle, it appears that the Doctor may be too late to stop his old rivals.

written by Terry Nation
directed by David Maloney and Paul Bernard
music by Dudley Simpson

Guest Cast: Bernard Horsfall (Taron), Prentis Hancock (Vaber), Tim Preece (Codal), Roy Skelton (Wester), Jane How (Rebec), Hilary Minster (Marat), Alan Tucker (Latep), Tony Starr (Dalek Supreme), John Scott Martin, Murphy Grumbar, Cy Town (Daleks), Michael Wisher, Roy Skelton (Dalek voices)

Broadcast from April 7 through May 12, 1973

LogBook entry & review by Earl Green

Review: This largely average adventure has never been seen in a complete state in the U.S., since its third episode exists only in black & white. Sadly, there’s very little going on which really merits a six-part episode to begin with, so the version seen in the States merely has some mysterious plot holes. The plot drags along slowly as it is, and for all the set-up of Frontier In Space, I couldn’t help but feel a bit disappointed that the Dalek army could be stopped with such relative ease. And though the actors playing the Thals – including Bernard Horsfall, who later made a much bigger impression in The Deadly Assassin – are appealing, they don’t steal the show nearly as much as the actors in Frontier did, and the linking of the two stories seems to beg that perhaps otherwise unfair comparison.

Planet Of The Daleks suffers from the combination of the missing footage and the dreary pace.