This was the story that was billed as having “every Dalek ever” which turned out to be complete bollocks as there were hardly any Classic Series Daleks to be seen. As a result, this has to count as the second big misfire of the Moffat Era, after Victory of course, getting fans excited for nothing.
First they get us squee-ing at the prospect of Classic Daleks in New Who, only to let us down by having hardly any versions in the story that you could see other than the NS bronze ones! The CS Daleks were there, yes, but you had to look really hard to see if you could spot one. The story certainly didn’t live up to the hype that preceded it. Every Dalek Ever my arse!
As detailed on the excellent Dalek 63.88 website, it turns out there were other Classic Series props in there but they were so heavily “weathered” you’d never notice them. Any idiot could have told the production team that the final product was going to leave fans frustrated and disappointed. The worst bit has to be where they talk about survivors of Spiridon but when you see the casings in question they’re clearly not, unless of course they’ve been transplanted into NS casing from CS ones. Or is that discrepancy something else we have to put down to the Time War?
On the plus side, the red Mini Cooper Dalek has had a makeover, becoming a bit more metallic than poster colour in the process, but the notion of a Dalek Parliament for creatures whose second most used phrase is “I Obey!” is a bit bonkers to say the least. Oh, and I`ve fixed that bloody ridiculous flipped shot, I mean if anything other than Matt’s hair is going to give away that it’s a flipped shot it’s a bloody Dalek!
Moff again revisits his scary skelton/corpse idea from Silence in the Library with the intention clearly being to have the kids wondering if anyone around them is a Dalek duplicate and scare them with the idea someone they know might suddenly grow a little Dalek eye stalk out of their foreheads. Nice idea and a new take on an old theme but you do get the impression that we’ve been here before. Or is that just me?
As usual, Murray Gold`s music makes it very difficult to make cuts to these New Series episodes without it being obvious so there are only really two deleted scenes that have been removed. They are both Oswin scenes, which is a shame, but I think holding her reveal back a bit helps the narrative flow. And her appearance is only significant because we know in advance that she`s going to be the new companion.
I added in both Pond Life and the Asylum Prequel at the start of the edit, to give us a nice long pre-credits to lead in to the episode. Not a hugely different version of the story but I think the additional material at the start gives you a sense of completeness that means the fan edit works just a little bit better than the TX version!