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"I've been renewed, have I? That's it, I've been renewed"
―The Doctor
The Doctor introduces Ben and Polly to the Daleks
The Power of the Daleks
Series: Doctor Who - TV Stories
Season Number: Season 4
Story Number: 30
Doctor: Second Doctor
Companions: Ben Jackson
Enemy: The Daleks
Setting: Vulcan, possibly 2020
Writer: David Whitaker
Director: Christopher Barry
Broadcast: 5th November - 10th December 1966
Format: 6 25-minute Episodes
Previous Story: The Tenth Planet
Following Story: The Highlanders

The Power of the Daleks was the third story of Season 4 of Doctor Who. It was the first full story to feature the Second Doctor, played by Patrick Troughton. All six episodes are currently lost.



Following the Doctor's regeneration in to a new, younger body, the TARDIS lands at an Earth colony on the planet Vulcan in the far future. Mistaken as an official Earth Examiner, the Doctor discovers that a scientist called Lesterson is attempting to reactivate two inanimate Daleks found in a crashed space rocket. The colonists refuse to take heed of the Doctor's dire warnings that the Daleks are dangerous until it is too late. Once reactivated, the Daleks secretly begin to reproduce themselves in a bid to take control of the colony.



Episode 1

Ben and Polly regard the newly regenerated Doctor with suspicion.

Ben and Polly are bewildered after watching the Doctor transform into a completely different, younger man. The TARDIS lands on planet Vulcan, and as they cross the mercury swamps, the Doctor meets an Examiner from Earth who is then murdered by an unseen assassin. The Doctor indulges his curiosity; posing as the Examiner and with Ben and Polly as his assistants, they encounter a colony of humans, led by Governor Hensell. The colonists are unsure why an Examiner has been summoned; some believe it is due to the activities of an underground rebel movement, others believe it is because of a mysterious space capsule that had crashed in the swamps 200 years earlier. The Doctor admits nothing, even playing the fool (much to Ben's annoyance), hoping to expose the murderer of the real Examiner, and uses the badge he took from the Examiner's body to freely explore and observe.

He enters the laboratory where scientists Lesterson and Janley are studying the capsule. With the Doctor's subtle help, they are able to open a hatch where they find nothing but an empty entryway. Suspecting Lesterson has already been inside, the Doctor, Ben and Polly return later that night and re-enter the capsule. Finding his way into an inner chamber, the Doctor discovers two dormant Daleks, and a space where a missing third one must have been.

Episode 2

A power struggle becomes evident as Security Chief Bragen frames the Deputy Governor Quinn for rebel activity and sabotage of the colony's communication system (cutting them off from contact with Earth). The Doctor is reasonably certain that Quinn is innocent, but cannot confront Bragen without revealing his cover.

Lesterson admits that he has previously entered the capsule, but denies the Doctor's charge that he has hidden the missing Dalek. However, this turns out to be a lie, as he and Janley have secretly been experimenting on ways to revive it, unaware of its lethal nature. To the Doctor's horror, Lesterson interrupts an enquiry into the charges against Quinn, revealing that they have succeeded in reviving the Dalek (having removed its gunstick, after it blasted a lab assistant named Resno). The Doctor's dire warnings go unheeded as the Dalek drones repeatedly, "I AM YOUR SERVANT!"

Episode 3

Janley and Bragen are leaders of the rebel group, and kidnap Polly to ensure the Doctor's silence. Janley believes that the Dalek's destructive capabilities could be the clinching factor in their plans to take control of the colony, but has kept the knowledge of Resno's death from Lesterson (she told him he was injured) to avoid distracting him from his work. Meanwhile, the Dalek delights Lesterson with the breadth of its knowledge. In exchange for increased power and equipment, it promises to manufacture beneficial equipment for the colony.

Bragen and the Doctor close in on each other. Bragen knows the Doctor is an impostor, and the Doctor knows Bragen is the murderer, but neither can reveal the other without revealing themselves as well.

The Doctor discovers that the Dalek has revived its two companions. Lesterson feigns indifference, claiming he was about to do so anyway, but his trust in the Daleks starts to crack when he sees the trio chant conspiratorially, "WE WILL GET OUR POWER!"

Episode 4

While Governor Hensell is away on a tour of the outer colony, Bragen seizes the opportunity to solidify his power, and imprisons the Doctor with Quinn.

Lesterson's doubts are confirmed when he discovers that the Daleks are reproducing themselves en masse. When he notifies Janley, she cooly informs him about Resno's death, and how he's at fault for providing the Daleks with the necessary power and equipment to reproduce. Lesterson, already on edge, has a nervous breakdown. The Daleks, meanwhile are laying a network of static electricity conduits along the corridors that, once active, will give them free range of motion throughout the colony, and once they switch over to their own energy supply from the colony's, they'll be unstoppable. Meanwhile, the Dalek army grows.

Episode 5

Hensell returns to find Bragen seated at his desk. When he protests, Bragen kills him with a blast from a Dalek gunstick. The revolution has begun. Bragen is confident that with the Daleks on his side, success will be swift. Janley, however, is horror-stricken when Bragen gives her a list of rebel leaders to be killed, deeming them untrustworthy. The Dalek army, now complete, emerges to engage in full-scale slaughter, chanting "DALEKS CONQUER AND DESTROY!!"

Episode 6

In the midst of the battle between the rebels and the loyal guards, the Daleks begin indiscriminately massacring both sides (including Janley). The Doctor, Ben & Polly seek shelter in the lab, where they find a deranged Lesterson. Lesterson distracts the Daleks at the cost of his life, while the Doctor manages to overload the Daleks' power supply, causing them all to spin wildly and explode. Bragen is killed by one of his own men (Janley's lover Valmar). Quinn, now in charge, is appalled at the aftermath: not only are casualties enormous, but the Doctor's fiddling has destroyed the colony's power supply and will take months to repair. The Doctor suggests to Ben and Polly that they'd better leave "before they send us the bill," and they sneak away in the TARDIS.




Story Notes

  • This story had a working title of; The Destiny of Doctor Who.
  • Dennis Spooner wrote the final version of the scripts, but received no on screen credit.
  • A photo of William Hartnell is used to achieve the Doctor's 'mirror trick'.
  • Polly is absent from Episode Four and Ben from Episode Five as Anneke Wills and Michael Craze were on holiday during the respective weeks in which they were recorded.
  • This is the first story to show the Dalek mutants from inside the Dalek machine.
  • Fewer than five minutes of footage survives of this story, but there are full telesnaps and audio recordings of the story.
  • One of the more notable clips shows the Daleks going round in a circle crying in a mad-like chorus:
  • Dalek#1: Exterminate all humans!
  • Dalek#2: Exterminate all humans!
  • Dalek#1: Exterminate! Annihilate! Destroy! Daleks conquer and destroy!
  • Daleks: Daleks conquer and destroy! Daleks conquer and destroy! Daleks conquer and destroy!
Although they are indeed the same four Dalek props, the intended effect is that of several different Daleks going through the doorway
  • First Dalek story not to be written (or co-written) by Terry Nation.
  • First Dalek story to use the title format "...of the Daleks", the most commonly used title format for serials featuring the creatures, most recently used in the 2007 episode Evolution of the Daleks.

Archive Status

All six episodes are missing. The original broadcast video was wiped, and no 16mm telerecordings exist in the BBC Archives. The audio for all six episodes, however, does exist, thanks to a fan's home recording. Telesnaps for all six episodes exist. Short segments of 8mm film footage from off-air recordings exist. Some footage copied for use in promotional material exists.


  • Episode 1 - 7.9 million viewers
  • Episode 2 - 7.8 million viewers
  • Episode 3 - 7.5 million viewers
  • Episode 4 - 7.8 million viewers
  • Episode 5 - 8.0 million viewers
  • Episode 6 - 7.8 million viewers


  • Doctor Who's planet Vulcan predated Star Trek's. (Star Trek made its on-air debut in the US on 8 September 1966, pre-dating transmission of The Power of the Daleks by almost two months; and although Spock's home planet was referred to initially as 'Vulcanis' it became 'Vulcan' just a few episodes later.)
  • Tristram Cary's incidental music used in this story was taken entirely from the first Dalek story, The Daleks. (Some of it was taken from season three's The Daleks' Master Plan.)

Filming Locations

Discontinuity, Plot Holes, Errors

  • Not only does the Doctor regenerate, but his clothes do as well. A side effect of a first regeneration?
  • There are quite obviously only 4 actual Daleks - the others are clearly cardboard. Few Dalek stories in the classic series had more than four functional Dalek props; it was common to use photographic blowups or miniature models for scenes requiring large numbers
  • A Dalek crashes into a camera in one of the few surviving scenes.
  • How do the colonists not recognise the Daleks after the events of Doomsday and Journey's End? It is revealed in The Time Traveller's Almanac that the events of Bad Wolf / The Parting of the Ways, and therefore all Dalek stories since, didn't "happen" until after Dalek had "happened". Also, it is speculated that there are two Dalek histories in different timelines. The first ends with the events of The Evil of the Daleks. The second begins with the Fourth Doctor interfering in Dalek evolution in Genesis of the Daleks and includes the events of Journey's End. The Power of the Daleks may belong to the first timeline, in which case Doomsday and Journey's End never happened.


  • EDA: War of the Daleks offers an explanation of where the Dalek ship comes from.
  • The Dalek's reliance on static electricity is first referenced in The Daleks. In that story, as in this one, they draw it from the metal floor. In the second Dalek story, The Dalek Invasion of Earth, the Daleks draw electricity by means of dishes on the back of their casings. In The Chase they no longer have these dishes and can move freely with neither the need for metal floors or dishes. In Power the Daleks have apparently reverted to their dependence on static electricity. Or perhaps these are a group of the more 'primitive' city-bound Daleks that somehow reached Vulcan from Skaro.The Daleks do indeed chant that they are a 'new race of Daleks'. This suggests that they may indeed represent the more primitive Daleks which have elsewhere been superseded and destroyed. Or that the Dalek race, as a whole, had been destroyed. In the latter case, the events of Power could be placed after The Evil of the Daleks. Or after long peroids of "hibernation" the daleks need static for a while.
  • The Doctor regenerates for the first time, though the term "regenerate" is not used. The transformation of the Doctor's persona is not referred to as "regeneration" until Planet of the Spiders (Third Doctor/Fourth Doctor). In Power, the Troughton figure refers to the Doctor in the Third Person, and assumes the identity of another person, the Examiner, as if to make his true identity ambiguous. Polly is sure that he is Doctor. Ben less so, though he is sure by the end of the story.
  • First mention of the Doctor's Five Hundred Year Diary.


DVD, Video and Other Releases

  • The surviving footage was released as part of the Lost in Time DVD in 2004.
  • 2 surviving clips were discovered after the release of Lost in Time. They have been featured on The Daleks Tapes, which was included on the Genesis of the Daleks DVD.
  • Loose Cannon Productions have released a reconstruction of all 6 episodes on VHS using audio, telesnaps, stills and surviving footage


Main article: The Power of the Daleks (novelisation)

Script book

  • In March 1993, Titan Books published the scripts for the serial as part of its Doctor Who: The Scripts line of books.

See also

to be added

External Links

  • Official BBC Episode Guide for The Power of the Daleks
  • Doctor Who Reference Guide: Detailed Synopsis - The Power of the Daleks
  • A Brief History of Time (Travel) entry for The Power of the Daleks
  • The Power of the Daleks transcript
Season 4
The Smugglers  • The Tenth Planet  • The Power of the Daleks  • The Highlanders  • The Underwater Menace  • The Moonbase  • The Macra Terror  • The Faceless Ones  • The Evil of the Daleks
Dalek television stories
Major appearances: The Daleks  • The Dalek Invasion of Earth  • The Chase  • Mission to the Unknown  • The Daleks' Master Plan  • The Power of the Daleks  • The Evil of the Daleks  • Day of the Daleks  • Planet of the Daleks  • Death to the Daleks  • Genesis of the Daleks  • Destiny of the Daleks  • Resurrection of the Daleks  • Revelation of the Daleks  • Remembrance of the Daleks  • Dalek • Bad Wolf/ The Parting of the Ways  • Army of Ghosts/Doomsday  • Daleks in Manhattan / Evolution of the Daleks  • The Stolen Earth / Journey's End
Minor appearances: The Space Museum  • The Wheel in Space  • The War Games  • The Mind of Evil  • Frontier in Space  • Logopolis  • The Five Doctors  • The TV Movie  • Human Nature  • The Waters of Mars
Non-canonical: The Curse of Fatal Death
 • Complete List of Appearances •
This page uses content from the English Wikipedia. The original article was at The_Power_of_the_Daleks. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with the TARDIS Index File, the text of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License 3.0 (Unported) (CC-BY-SA).

This article uses material from the "The Power of the Daleks" article on the Dr Who wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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