Tuesday, June 16, 2009

EE4 - The Power of the Daleks 4

With Anneke Wills off on holiday during this episode, along with her distracting, impossibly long legs, I can actually focus on the matter at hand again. And this episode is, like the others before it, chock full of memorable moments.

I love the quiet war that The Doctor and Bragen have been waging against each other since the start of the story. Like the Doctor/Daleks relationship, in that only the Doctor knows what the true nature of the Daleks are, and, seemingly, vice versa, only The Doctor suspects that Bragen murdered the real Examiner, and only Bragen knows that The Doctor isn't really the Examiner. Their scenes together change instantly once they are alone together, as each subtly threatens to expose each other's motives and actions. It's the type of scene that this devious new Doctor, as played by Patrick Troughton, excels at. It's very early into Troughton's run, yet I can't for a second imagine any other Doctor being in this story other than him.

Janley has another great episode, particularly in the scene where her and the other rebels are having a secret meeting. In order to prove the rebels' power over the Daleks, she has a gun fitted to a Dalek with a control switch attached. The rebels think they have control over the Dalek gun, but, of course, no one can control a Dalek with its gun attached. To prove the rebels' point, though, that the Daleks will not harm them and are working for them, Janley herself stands in front of the Dalek, confident that it won't shoot. The tension is palpable - it shot Resno, it's natural instinct is to kill...but it spares Janley. It knows that now is not the time to show its hand (so to speak). Yet more signs of the truly devious nature of the Daleks in this story.

And why are they so devious? Because they are quietly and secretly building an army of Daleks to overtake the colony. The last five minutes of this episode are given over to the famous Dalek production line sequence, of which only a few short clips exist. It is a damn shame. As Lesterson watches from a safe distance, he probably shares the same feelings of dread and awe that the viewer gets from seeing countless Daleks coming into being. From what would appear to be three dormant Daleks at the beginning of this story are now, with only their cunning and diabolical ingenuity to aid them, manage to recreate themselves from almost nothing into a formidable army. It certainly validates a claim that The Doctor made earlier, that one Dalek was capable of wiping out the entire colony. We're about to see that happen.


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