The Dalek Chronicles
TV Century 21
Genesis of Evil
Doctor Who Weekly #33
The Dalek Chronicles Special
|Synopsis: On the planet Skaro, a bomb leads to a new breed of Daleks emerging.|
"Working Within the Limits" by Tim Roll-Pickering 27/12/98
Like many other origin stories from accross all ranges of fiction, Genesis of Evil comes across as being much weaker than many of the subsequent stories. Fortunately, with only three parts to the story, it does not outstay its welcome or waste time characterising people like Zolfian and Yarvelling who are not going to last long. Instead, it tells the creation story of the Daleks quickly, with events following those described in the original Dalek story, The Mutants, much better than the TV story Genesis of the Daleks, though, as in that story, the early Daleks seen are able to move about freely, unhindered by the need for metal surfaces and static electricity. Both the old and new Daleks that we see are true to form, with both Zolfian and the first new Dalek (who becomes the Emperor) being determined to ensure that the Daleks survive, multiply and become a great force to be reckoned with.
David Whitaker wisely remembers right from the start that the Dalek are mutants and not just the robots they have often been dismissed as, an element that he later so successfully used in The Power of the Daleks. It is also interesting to see the first new Dalek become the Emperor, an idea that John Peel used twenty eight years later in his novelisation of The Evil of the Daleks. Although the strip is inevitably weakened by the constraints of having to get the Daleks’ origin dealt with and the limited scope for characterisation, Whittler’s script shines through, proving once again that the Daleks were far better served by him, their ‘godfather’, rather than their natural ‘father’, Terry Nation. Richard Jennings hits the ground at full speed on this story, providing the strong artwork that is missing from many other TV Century 21 strips such as Thunderbirds or Stingray.
The strip can be considered a reasonable success, getting The Daleks off to a much better start than would normally be expected, but the best was to come... 6/10