The Evil of the Daleks

From Academic Kids

Template:Doctorwhobox The Evil Of the Daleks is a serial in the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, which originally aired in seven weekly parts from May 20 to July 1, 1967. This serial marked the debut of Deborah Watling as the Doctor's new companion, Victoria Waterfield.



Trying to find the stolen TARDIS, the Second Doctor and Jamie are lured into a trap by the Doctor's old enemies the Daleks. The Dalek Emperor wants the Human Factor to make the Daleks unstoppable, and amazingly, the Doctor agrees to help...


Missing image
A Dalek checks on the captive Victoria Waterfield.

Taking off immediately from the end of The Faceless Ones in 1966 London, the Second Doctor and Jamie watch helplessly as the TARDIS is loaded onto a lorry and driven away from Gatwick Airport. The trail leads them to an antique shop run by Edward Waterfield, who sells Victorian-style antiques that curiously seem as though they were still new. Investigating the store, the Doctor and Jamie succumb to a booby trap that gasses them.

They wake up to find that they have been transported to 1866, and are in the house of Theodore Maxtible, Waterfield's partner. The two had been trying to invent a time machine using mirrors and static electricity, when the Daleks emerged from their time cabinet. The Daleks then took Waterfield's daughter Victoria hostage and forced Waterfield to travel a century forward in time to lure the Doctor into a trap by stealing the TARDIS. Waterfield is obviously fearful for his daughter's safety and his own, but Maxtible seems to be going along with the Daleks for his own reasons.

The Daleks threaten to destroy the TARDIS unless the Doctor helps them by conducting an experiment to isolate the "Human Factor", the unique qualities of human beings that have allowed them to consistently resist and defeat the Daleks. Once the Doctor has isolated the Human Factor, he will then implant it into three Daleks, which will then become the precursors of a race of "super" Daleks, with the best qualities of humans and Daleks. To that end, the Daleks want to Doctor to test Jamie by sending him to rescue Victoria, who is being kept in the house. The Doctor is strangely co-operative with the Daleks, manipulating Jamie into the rescue mission but not telling him of the nature of the test.

Jamie manages to rescue Victoria, but she is taken prisoner again and transported through the time cabinet. The Doctor, observing how Jamie accomplished the rescue, distills the Human Factor, but continues to harbour suspicions that there is more to the experiment than just this. Once the Human Factor is implanted in the three Daleks, they become completely human in personality and seem almost child-like, although the Doctor says their mentalities will mature quickly. This was the Doctor's intent all along, that the human factor would lead to "human" Daleks that would be friendly to humanity. He christens the three Alpha, Beta and Omega, but they soon return through the time cabinet to Skaro, the Dalek's home planet.

Meanwhile, Waterfield has discovered that Maxtible has betrayed them all to the Daleks, hoping that he will be able to learn the alchemical secret of transmuting base metals into gold. However, Maxtible is discovering just how ruthless the Daleks are and how empty their promises can be. Jamie, Waterfield and the Doctor manage to escape through the time cabinet to Skaro before a Dalek bomb destroys Maxtible's house. Maxtible has done the same earlier, and is tortured by the Daleks for his failure to bring the Doctor to them.

At the same time, the trio have found their way into the Dalek city and are brought before the imposing Emperor Dalek, who reveals the true reason behind the experiments and the capture of the TARDIS. By isolating the human factor, the Doctor has succeeded in isolating the Dalek Factor as well. The Daleks will use the "Dalek Factor" — the qualities that make the Daleks mindless killing machines — to reconvert the "human" Daleks. In addition, the Emperor wants the Doctor to use the TARDIS to spread the Dalek Factor throughout human history, turning all humanity into Daleks. The Doctor knows that the Emperor realizes that he would die before complying with this order, and so is concerned about why the Emperor seems so confident.

Maxtible is put through an archway that infuses him with the Dalek Factor, mentally turning him into a Dalek. He hypnotises the Doctor and puts him through the arch as well, apparently converting him. However, the Doctor is feigning his conversion, and secretly plants a device on the arch while the Daleks hunt for the three "human" Daleks. As one still remains to be found, the Doctor suggests that all the Daleks be put through the conversion arch so that the "human" Dalek will once again be infused with the Dalek Factor.

As the first batch of Daleks go through the arch, the Doctor frees the others. The arch did not work on the Doctor because it was calibrated for humans, and he is not one. The Doctor has also substituted the Human Factor for the Dalek one on the arch so the Daleks that go through will become "human" and rebel against the Emperor. The Emperor calls out his Black Daleks as the rebellion spreads and the city falls into chaos. Waterfield throws himself in front of a Black Dalek blast meant for the Doctor. The Doctor promises that Victoria will be taken care of, and Waterfield dies content. The Emperor is attacked and exterminated by the "human" Daleks. While the Doctor and his companions escape, Maxtible rushes back into the exploding city, screaming of the everlasting glory of the Dalek race.

The Doctor tells Jamie that they will be taking Victoria along on their travels. Jamie, Victoria and the Doctor watch the Dalek city in flames from the top of a hill as the civil war continues. The Doctor pronounces this as the end of the Daleks — the final end.


  1. Written by former Doctor Who script editor David Whitaker, Evil was initially intended to be the last Dalek story on Doctor Who. Writer Terry Nation, the creator of the Daleks, was busily trying to sell the Daleks to American televison at the time and it was intended to give them a big send off from the series. Of course, despite the Doctor's pronouncement, this was not to be his last encounter with these most famous of his adversaries.
  2. Fans have suggested that this story is the final Dalek story in the context of Dalek history, although like most things in Doctor Who fandom, this is debatable.
  3. The actor who would give Alpha, Beta and Omega their voices, Roy Skelton, would later go on to be the voice of "Zippy" on the ITV 1970s children show Rainbow.
  4. The Evil of the Daleks was wiped from the BBC's archives in the early 1970s. Only a telerecording of episode 2 remains, returned to the archive in May 1987 after being found at a car boot sale a few years earlier, but a copy of the soundtrack was released in 1992. A second version with alternative narration was released in 2003.
  5. For the continuity-minded, the first two parts of Evil take place contemporaneously with part four of the First Doctor serial The War Machines, which may go some way to explaining why the First Doctor said that he had the same feeling he had when Daleks were around at the start of that story.
  6. In 1993 readers of DreamWatch Bulletin voted The Evil of the Daleks as the best ever Doctor Who story in a special poll for the series' thirtieth anniversary.

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