Review: Genesis of the Daleks DVD

Last Alteration: Wednesday 12 April 2006

Before I start this review, let me take you back to the heady days of 1994, when I was 11, i'd been brought up in a 'Star Trek house' and all I knew of Doctor Who was the kind of British pop culture stuff like, he has a TARDIS, he travels around with a load of screaming girls and there are these things called Daleks...

I just so happened to catch a repeat of Genesis... on UK Gold, when they used to show Blakes 7 before it and you had to get up at about 5.30 am to watch it all. I did just that and lo, an fan was born. Until recently I hadn't seen it in some considerable time, and as it thrust me screaming into the world of Doctor Who, the serial held mythical status in my mind as "The Best Episode of Anything...Ever!". I remembered it mostly as a series of moments, that shocking beginning, the cliffhangers to episodes 2 and 5, the torture af Harry and Sarah Jane, Davros' 'tiny pressure of my thumb' speech and most of all, the moment in episode 6 where the Doctor holds the future of the Daleks in his hands.

Upon buying the DVD I was worried that the passage of so many years would have meant that i'd be disappointed upon seeing it again, but I was wrong. Granted the serial is by no means perfect, there are plot holes you can drive a ford fiesta through, that never ending scene in episode 1 with the landmine and most of all, that god forsaken giant clam but it does contain all the elements of truly classic Who. It has all everything that you most assosiate with the classic series,Tom Baker's portrayal of the Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith as resourseful girl adventurer and the dashing, wise cracking Harry Sullivan.The rest of the supporting cast are superb, especailly Michael Wisher's Davros, who dominates almost every scene he is in.

As for the DVD itself, the transfer is good, the commentary is very entertaining and the always informative production notes adding more to my knowledge of the serial. On the second disc there are two excellent documentaries, one on the history of the Daleks themselves and one on the serial as well as a great photo gallery.

In conclusion, I may be biased, but if you only ever buy one Doctor Who DVD, make it this one.

Emma Hyam