The triumphant return of Modern Recap-itulation alights on what many fans consider to be the first true Eccleston classic, Dalek. Actually, that’s probably something of an exaggeration. While most of the fans we’re probably hooked by the end of The Unquiet Dead, it’s quite understandable that despite the totems of the Tardis, most casual viewers wouldn’t truly buy in until those lil’ pepperpots showed up on the scene.
The canny hook in Dalek, however, is in showing the power not of a Dalek fleet but of one solitary mutant. That it is also the second helping of larger myth-drop of the Time War aided in no small measure by Eccelston’s slightly unhinged performance.
It’s tremendous stuff. It feels, unfortunately, a bit like ancient history given that Dalek is now a 10-year old story, but it really sold Doctor Who as a cultural entity once again. Would the Daleks in subsequent seasons be overused, as they had done occasionally during the ‘classic’ run? Sure. The prevailing wisdom here at THT Towers is that Daleks need to be deployed sparingly to keep their impact intact, but the ratings lure all too often overrides this perceived wisdom, and that’s where Victory of the Daleks comes from.
Modern Recap-itulation will return soon.