Thursday, November 15, 2007

Exterminez-vous! Part Cinq - Le Cinquieme Docteur (The Fifth Doctor)

Back in May, I left off my series of the Doctor's history with the Daleks with Tom Baker, the fourth incarnation of the Doctor. I have a bit of time today, so let's take a look at Peter Davison (pictured right) and how he tangled with Terry Nation's nefarious cyborgs.

When I first discovered Doctor Who in college, it was the pinball game that tipped me off to how cool the television series could be. Peter Davison was the first Doctor I watched on TV in the story arc, "Arc of Infinity." I would check in from time to time with the series but never watched it regularly until Chris Eccleston ushered in the new age of Who. However, Davison's portrayal has stuck with me all these years.

So how did the Fifth Doctor fare against the Daleks? Well, he only encountered them once in his final year (Season 21)—in the four-part story arc Resurrection of the Daleks.

In this story, the TARDIS is dragged to 1984 Earth due to "turbulence" in a time corridor. The Doctor and his companions, the ever shrill Tegan and schoolboy Turlough, end up in (where else) London. There they attempt to investigate the time corridor only to eventually end up face-to-eye stalk with a Dalek that they disable with machine gun fire and push out a window (I kid you not). The Doctor takes the TARDIS to the other end of the time corridor only to land on a Dalek ship and be captured.

The devious plan (devised by the Dalek Supreme) here is to clone the Doctor and his companions and have them kill the Time Lord Council (and at some point, invade the Earth). However, a convenient change of heart by a human Dalek agent and infighting between a recently unfrozen Davros and the Dalek Supreme pretty much puts the kibosh on that, especially when Davros's germ warfare scheme backfires, seemingly killing him along with most of the other Daleks. The Dalek Supreme has already placed human duplicates all over Earth but the Doctor doesn't seem to think the plan will get very far and doesn't do anything about it. The human Dalek agent from before wipes out the Dalek forces, which horrifies Tegan. She decides to leave the Doctor, sparing him from the shrill cries of "Doctor!!" forever.

The Fifth Doctor met his end as a result of fatal chemical exposure while preventing a war. After three seasons and the cool anniversary special, The Five Doctors, Peter Davison passed things on to Colin Baker (pictured right, no relation to Tom) and his doofy umbrella.


smacky said...

I have never seen a Colin Baker episode. Does that Doctor's personality match his unusual choice of wardrobe?

De said...

I recall the Colin Baker stuff being a bit darker in tone than previous incarnations. That era also had the worst theme music of any incarnation.

Siskoid said...

Is the theme different from the Davison era? You might be thinking of the 7th Doctor's.

The stories were "darker" yes, in the sense that they were more violent and less appologetic about it (like Roger Moore's James Bond). Colin's Doctor is an insufferably arrogant, verbose jackass who travels around with Peri, the American student who clearly can't stand him or his adventures. It's very annoying. Out on DVD and not so bad thanks to other factors: Revelation of the Daleks and The Mark of the Rani, though a lot of people like Vengeance on Varos.

That said, the 6th Doctor audios are on the whole very good. Colin really redeemed his Doctor in those, he really did. He's my favorite Doctor on audio (and my least favorite on tv).

Anonymous said...

Peter Davison is the best doctor
it's really sad when Peri is saying to the newly regenerated sixth doctor: "you were young, you were sweet... I liked you"

later in the story (the twin dilemma I think) he goes on to strangle her, poor girl!

since colin Baker took over it went downhill, and it hasn't regained its former glory with the new series

P.S the theme music is different

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