Doctor Who: The Daleks' Master Plan

  • by Terry Nation, Dennis Spooner
  • Narrated by William Hartnell, Peter Purves, full cast
  • 5 hrs and 23 mins
  • Radio/TV Program

Publisher's Summary

William Hartnell is the original Doctor in the most epic Doctor Who story ever made, in which his arch-enemies, the Daleks, threaten to destroy the fabric of Time itself!In their quest to gain control of the Solar System, the Daleks have taken posession of the Time Destructor, a weapon which threatens the safety of all who stand in their way. As they head up an alliance of alien races bent on destroying the human race, in their midst is none other than the treacherous Guardian of the Solar System, Mavic Chen.A dangerous chase ensues across volcanos, jungles, deserts, and futuristic cities, as the Doctor and his companions struggle to prevent the Daleks' plans coming to fruition. The stakes are high, and for the first time in the programme's history the lives of two TARDIS travellers are lost....Peter Purves (who played Steven in the story) narrates these thirteen episodes, only two of which survive in the television archives. Included is the special 'teaser', Mission To The Unknown, which was transmitted some weeks before the master plan itself was unleashed.This story marks the first appearance, here playing space agent Bret Vyon, of Nicholas Courtney, who would later create the recurring role of Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart. Jean Marsh and Adrienne Hill also star as companions Sara Kingdom and Katarina.

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Magnum Opus of the Daleks

This is the audio soundtrack from the 1965 Doctor Who serial: "The Daleks' Masterplan" - starring William Hartnell in the title role--the original actor to play the part. This is one of many early stories that no longer exist (as video) in their entirety in the BBC archives, as they were among those deleted when the BBC was purging its video archives in the early 70's.

Dalekmania was in full swing at this point, and this twelve part story from the third season is simply space opera done Dalek style. The Daleks aren't just talking about universal domination here, they're doing something about it. The story opens with Doctor stumbling across a base of operations on the planet Kemball, from which the Daleks intend to launch a final conquest of everything in collusion with a number of power-hungry galactic leaders, including the traitorous Mavic Chen, guardian of our Solar System!

Action shifts from Kemball to numerous otherworldly and earth-based locales throughout time which lends an expansive feel to the story. Like many early Dalek stories, the Daleks are well characterized here and at their scheming best. The supporting cast is wonderful, and includes an extremely moving act of self-sacrifice by companion Katarina, as well as the welcome return of fellow time lord, The Meddling Monk.

There is some hammy dialogue in a few of the episodes as writer Terry Nation doesn't seem to understand the difference between "solar system", "galaxy" and "universe"; however, if you can overlook this The Daleks' Masterplan can be a real treat alternating between drama, humour and an engaging chase across time and space.

Note: episode 7 was aired on Christmas and is a bit of a self-aware slapstick run-around, ending with Hartnell turning to the camera wishing the audience a good holiday (which is much maligned by fans, however given Hartnell's love of the program is somewhat fitting). It is nice to see it included here.

Fans of the era won't be disappointed.
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- David

The First Doctor Lives Again

This is the audio track from a 1963 BBC TV (with the first Doctor, William Hartnell) program with naration to fill in the blanks. It's sort of like an old radio show. Dated perhaps, but hey, it's Dr. Who - - battling the Daleks no less. This is a 13 part story, which was the longest of any Dr. Who story. Since it's so long, the plot wanders. Dr. Who finds himself on the planet Mira, then later on a valcano planet, then on a silent movie set, then back in ancient Egypt, and so forth. At 5 hours long, it would be good for a plane trip. Campy enough not to be too stodgey, but serious enough not to be silly.
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- David

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-19-2005
  • Publisher: BBC Worldwide Limited