back to article Daleks given a well-earned break

Doctor Who exec producer Steven Moffat has announced the Daleks are taking a well-earned break, and will be spared yet another confrontation with their Time Lord arch enemy for the foreseeable future. Speaking to Radio Times, Moffat said: "They aren't going to make an appearance for a while. We thought it was about time to …


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  1. Code Monkey

    Poor Daleks

    Though retirement is a step up from that stupid, stupid, stupid redesign they had.

  2. Oliver Mayes

    Giving them a break? From what?

    We got the new daleks last season, they made a token appearance in the finale and that's been it. The 'new new' daleks haven't actually had their own episode since Matt Smith took over.

    I also think it's good that this season is actually pretty creepy, the show is supposed to scare children, that's the whole point. If your children are too scared then don't let them watch it, if they insist on watching it despite being scared then the show is working.

    1. alain williams Silver badge

      It might be scary ...

      but that is what the sofa is for: hiding behind.

      Worked for me! It might have scared me, but I would not miss it.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Could anyone tell me...

    ...and Mr Moffat just how many bad guys would be left if we get rid of everyone the Doctor can defeat?

    1. Eponymous Howard

      It depends...

      ...on how many new ones can be invented.

    2. Stuart Castle Silver badge

      <insert Title here>

      The Doctor tends to win against any enemy, eventually, and sometimes at great personal cost. That's the nature of the show.

      However, if an enemy is featured too often, they lose any scariness as we find out how easily they are defeated.. Look at the Borg in Star Trek. They started off quite scary but were used often enough in The Next Generation that they really didn't become scary again until the end of Voyager and Star Trek: First Contact.

      That's one thing, IIRC, Classic Who got right. In it's 27 year run, the Daleks only featured in comparitively few stories. At most one or two a year, and a lot of years had none. This was in a full series, rather than the 13 episode series of the new Who.

      New Who has featured them at least once every year, and, TBH, the only story where they were scary is the one in the first series, called "Dalek".

  4. Anonymous Coward


    This of course has nothing to do with great Darleks having convention with the Teletubbies.

  5. Conrad Longmore

    Undefeatable enemies?

    The idea of an undefeatable enemy would be quite interesting. The trouble is that there aren't many precedents.. even if you take Star Trek's Borg as an example, eventually they were defeated. The idea of an enemy that you just can't beat would be a interesting twist..

    1. Stephen 5

      "Undefeatable enemies?"

      "Just a temporary setback..."

    2. Anon the mouse


      I can just see the Doctor trying all his usual tricks over about 30 mins, trying a McGuffin in the last 15 that doesn't work and ending on a cliffhanger :D

      and never ever finding a way to defeat them in future episodes.

    3. Adam Foxton

      Undefeatable enemies? That IS the Daleks.

      Every time you think you've defeated them, they come back.

      Back in The Parting Of The Ways, Rose became basically a Goddess. She tore the entire New Dalek Empire atom from atom. And they came back. The Doctor buried them for an extra thousand years after their inception and they just came back meaner.

      They even destroyed their home planet years before it became 'cool' and the Doctor did it (ref: Remembrance of the Daleks). And that was while they were fighting each other- the ultimate war machines fighting the ultimate war machines. With the Special Weapons Dalek (go on, Youtube it. I'll wait....pretty badass, huh?)

      So a trillion miles and a thousand years from a disintegrated home, they keep coming back. The Daleks are the undefeatable foe.

      Unfortunately they're now putting on weight and have decided to go a bit 1980s. Which is a shame, really. Hopefully this is just the start of a new Dalek civil war storyline- the flowery Daleks vs the NSDs.

  6. Lurking in the shadows, grinning...

    Tellytubbies just aren't scary enough...

    Hopefully they have been retired while they find the plans for the earlier incarnations. How anyone can find the new fat arsed Dalek scary is beyond me, since they now look like the love child of a Tellytubby and a chav's Corsa that has been on a ram-raid through Halfords.

    Until they learn to shoot the Doctor on sight, they will always be beaten. But surely that is part of the appeal, is it not ?

    1. Richard Bragg

      Yes they are .. the Tubbies are scary.

      As soon as the merest hint of their arrival the remote comes up and the channel changes. You can't say that about the Darleks

    2. Rob 5

      @ Lurking in the shadows, grinning...

      "they now look like the love child of a Tellytubby and a chav's Corsa that has been on a ram-raid through Halfords."

      Funny you should say that. When the new ones first appeared, I said to the wife "Oh look! The Daleks have gone all New Mini!"

  7. Paratrooping Parrot


    I see that you have sourced the Daily Fail for your Doctor Who is scary news. Relying on the Daily Fail on info about the BBC is just like asking the KKK for their opinions on African people.

    I am glad that they are giving the Daleks a rest, they have been featured too many times in the past few years.

    1. kraz

      BBc does the same

      The funny thing is the BBC article on this subject links to the Daily Mail article as well. A Daily Mail article which is over a year old. Is BBC copying El Reg? Surely not!

  8. John Ruddy

    Bring 'em back

    Some of the other old monsters that is. How about the Ice Warriors from Mars? Or the Yeti?

    1. Code Monkey
      Thumb Up

      Old Monsters

      Or them parrots in string vests. They were good.

    2. Steven Knox


      some new creepies.

      IMNSHO, the best Who episodes of any series were the ones who introduced new life and new civilizations.

      Maybe they should focus on seeking those out. You know, kind of going where no-one has ever been, kind of thing.

      Okay, this post has degenerated from an honest appeal for creativity into a really, REALLY bad joke. I'm leaving before it gets even worse.

    3. Argh

      Bertie Bassett

      Surely the killer Bertie Bassett (in The Happiness Patrol) was the scariest.

      In terms of confectionary-based foes, he was far more frightening than Mr. Staypuft from Ghostbusters.

    4. Swoop


      Bring back the Fendahl (and the fendahleen, of course). I remember having nightmares for ages after watching that particular story - something even the daleks never succeeded in doing!

    5. ArmanX

      There's a treasure trove of old enemies...

      I'd really like to see the Celestial Toymaker again... the Family of Blood (or at least more of their species) could be interesting, too. Or any of a number of other baddies...

  9. Bob H
    Paris Hilton

    Too scary?

    My brother lets his little kids watch Scooby Doo because while the episodes can be a little tense of the little ones in the end it shows them that monsters aren't real and that the good guys win through careful investigation.

    OK, to us grown-ups things don't seem scary but on the scale of Scooby Doo, Dr Who might be a bit poo-inducing for the younger audience. However he wins in the end and there is often a moral to the story, which is nice to have in this age of 'shock and awe' by writers.

    Paris, because nothing is too much for her.

  10. graeme leggett Silver badge

    Makes sense - have been overused recently

    For comparison Tom was the Doctor for around 7 years and only met them twice (the highly praised Genesis of the Daleks, and the not so well thought of Destiny of the Daleks)

    Since 2005 they have appeared 7 times.

    Dalek toys will always sell - I'm sure they don't need to be on the TV all the time to help the sales along.

  11. Eponymous Howard

    We want Zarbis!

    There. I said it.

    1. Roger Varley

      We want Zarbies

      Yay! +1 for someone else who remembers those. Mind you, you're giving your age away a bit, but I suppose only to those who are old enough to remember the Zarbis!

      1. teacake

        @We want Zarbies

        "Yay! +1 for someone else who remembers those. Mind you, you're giving your age away a bit, but I suppose only to those who are old enough to remember the Zarbis!"

        If you really were old enough to remember, you'd remember that the plural of Zarbi is Zarbi.


  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    'bout time... all I can say. What was the point of the Time War if the daleks can keep coming back somehow? Each time with a bizarre and implausible explanation of how they somehow survived/were recreated/evolved independently or something. It just gets more boring every time they appear.

  13. dshan
    Thumb Down

    Bring 'em Back

    Bring the Daleks back pronto, this season has been very poor so far and a return of the old pepper pots might be the only way to save the show. Even the Neil Gaiman episode was fairly unimpressive, but at least it was better than the rest of the season. The other episodes have ranged from poor to simply awful.

    If not the Daleks, then please let at least the Cybermen put in an appearance!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Another overused "monster"

      The Cybermen are nearly as bad for coming back too often.

      Is this a problem caused by investing a lot in one aspect of production, you get a lot of value tied up in a design and bring it back just to keep costs down.

    2. Mickey Finn

      On the contrary...

      ...I was thinking that compared with the first Matt Smith season, this one has been the best I have ever seen...

      Almost grown up!

    3. Malcolm 1
      Thumb Up

      I would respectfully disagree

      I have thoroughly enjoyed this series thus far - I would possibly go as far as saying it's some of the finest television I have seen (definitely my favourite Doctor Who /series/ of all time - Sleeping Angels is still a recent high point).

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Sleeping Angels?

        Must have missed them.

        I did, however, see "Blink", "The Time of Angels" and "Flesh and Stone", all of which featured the Weeping Angels.

      2. Sarev

        You missed a word there

        > it's some of the finest television I have seen

        It's some of the finest _children's_ television I have seen. Not a fan at all but I can just about appreciate why various people like it. Roll on the flames...

        1. Eponymous Howard


 is very specifically pitched as *family* television.

  14. Bilgepipe


    About time, they had become overused and generic as a result of RTDs over-the-top writing. And hopefully they'll find a way to write in a reversal of the awful Honda Dalek overhaul. They look like they run on wind power or something.

  15. Mickey Finn

    The problem with Daleks... that they are too much like our modern day politicians...

    Even though they were originally modelled on the Nazis!

  16. Eponymous Cowherd
    Thumb Down


    Because the new Playmobil Daleks are crap.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Summary of Doctor Who

    One of the regular suspect scary monsters attack Earth/Doctor/whatever. Havoc ensues and disaster threatens. Doctor discovers new and highly dubious law of physics that makes all the monsters die/explode/whatever. Shortly afterwards monsters discover new and similarly dubious law of physics that lets them all return for a repeat match in a subsequent episode.


  18. Llyander

    Oh come on...

    I'm sorry but... Too scary? Did these people ever SEE the classic series? People being strangled and stabbed, lobotomised, electrocuted, dismembered, cybermats poisoning people, the Master reduced to a rotting skeleton, a bodycount well in excess of double figures in some stories.... Dr Who has always been scary!

    This is just yet another, "WON'T SOMEONE THINK OF THE CHILDRENNNNNNN!" knee jerk reaction from people who have apparently totally forgotten what it was like when they were kids themselves.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      you dropped

      this icon

    2. Bill B


      The Yetis put me off travelling on the London underground for a long time

      1. Minophis

        @Bill B

        "The Yetis put me off travelling on the London underground for a long time"

        Now simply travelling on the London Underground is enough to do that.

    3. Code Monkey


      Did you write that in a Dalek voice? I read it in one. Well done sir or madam

  19. jake Silver badge

    It's not just the Daleks who need a break ...

    The entire Dr. Who franchise has been a boring cash cow for about three decades now ,,,

  20. Pete 43

    Well yeah

    the clockwork/diesel powered ones were/are pants.

    The all new EV Dalek should be fun

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'd had enough of the Daleks

    When I was still watching them in black and white.

    One can have too much of a good thing. Far, far, far too much.

  22. Mark Rowles

    It's time for him to go

    There's moving forward, and there's revitalising, and there's bringing up to date - and there's ruining

    Time for Mr Moffat to go

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Down


      You're wrong. RTD has had his day. Almost all the best episodes since 2005 have been written by Moffat, and we don't want to go back to RTD's "lots of running around and explosions set to dramatic music" version of Doctor Who thank you very much.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Good call

    For a race that were supposedly wiped out (as told in the first on the 'new' series) they do seem to keep miraculously reappearing! And don't get me started on that ludicrous Dalek-human hybrid shite in New York...!

    This series has definitely been a bit questionable in places, with plot twists and over-arching story lines, and at the higher level of the scare-o-meter, but hey challenging TV is never a bad thing. I'm not sure how SFC this Amy's baby storyline is though...?

  24. Ralph B


    > "Surely they see the Tardis approaching, say, 'Oh. It's him again' – and trudge away."

    "Trudge"? That should be "trundle", Shirley?

  25. John70

    It's time for an enemy...

    ... that cannot be defeated by the Doctor's Sonic Screwdriver.

    1. Joseph Haig

      You know, just once ...

      ... I'd like to meet an alien menace who wasn't immune to bullets!

      I, for one, am glad that the Daleks are being given a rest. Much as I am grateful to RTD for bringing the series back I found his stories to be amazingly lacking in imagination and the recurrence of the Daleks and Cybermen (and sometimes both) ad nauseam was just a symptom of this.

      The weeping angles, on the other hand, were scary. Who invented them? Oh yes, it was Moffat.

  26. Lonesome Twin
    IT Angle

    The enemy is all around

    It's everywhere, and yes, it's totally impervious to sonic screwdrivers. It controls our thoughts, our actions, our language, even our clothes. Entire populations are bent to its anvil. A dramatic representation on TV is well-nigh impossible, tho resistance is futile and often illegal. Go fight some political correctness in a Welsh quarry Doktor!

  27. Graham Bartlett

    Dalek redesign

    The problem with Daleks is keeping them scary. And like it or not, size is an issue here, boys. Of the James Bond baddies, are you more scared by Jaws (Richard Keil) or Nick Nack (Herve Villechaise)? I rest my case on the old 5-foot-something Daleks.

    Oh, and this series of Who is rather seriously good so far. Last scene of last Saturday's, anyone? Eek. Plus the outstanding Neil Gaiman one.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Out of ideas perhaps?

    I think its not so much that the writers thought that the Daleks needed a rest, I think they put themselves into a scenario of which they can't figure out how to get out of.

    Up until now the Daleks have always tried to gain the upper hand again so to speak. Apart from some side issues it was always the main purpose, next to the extermination of everything else that is. And in the end of "Victory of the Daleks" they basically succeeded; they could re-enter the time war with their new technology. But in theory this may just as well affect the outcome of said time war itself.

    So right now I get the feeling that the authors simply got themselves into a plot of which they can't come up with a good excuse as to why the Doctor would face these new Daleks again. Since facing them would also imply they got out of the time war somehow, which would go direct against everything which we've already seen on Doctor Who in the past. And we all know what issue Who fans despise most; heavy inconsistencies in the series or story.

    As to the new daleks being a bit underwhelming.. I think its not only so much as how they looked but mostly of what they did. Better put; what they didn't do. All they did was trying to attack one 'meager' earth city while the whole planet was infested with "lesser creatures". And when they used their bomb (you don't really have to be a dalek to come up with such an idea) they simply fled.

    The daleks we knew so far were "brave" (or stupid) enough to keep on fighting to the very end. I think thats what made them look so friendly.

  29. Bored Cael

    Current Season / Last Season

    I got so fed up last season of the Doctor being sidelined while other characters did the clever, the smart and the necessary stuff that I didn't even get round to watching the last few episodes, really couldn't be bothered. This season however actually has me watching, even when I have to bother using series catch up. The Doctor is acting more doctor like, coming up with the solutions, thinking ahead, outsmarting people.

    I'm not saying there were no good episodes last season, just the overall feel as it moved along just didn't do it for me.

  30. Kubla Cant

    Obvious, really

    Steven Moffat seems to have missed the obvious solution to the fact that the Doctor always beats the Daleks. He should let the Daleks win. A 13-week season of trundling and Dalek voices* wouldn't be any worse than most of what's on TV.

    *Do they still do this? It's been a few decades since I saw them.

  31. Chris King

    Fat Lardy Daleks ?

    I reckon Moffat's sent them off to a health farm:

  32. Red Bren

    What to retire?

    I agree is is time to let the daleks (and the cybermen) have a bit of a rest. They lose their shock value when they turn out to be the ones behind every major plot.

    The other race that could do with a rest are the effin' humans! Week in, week out, it's humanity this, or humanity that, be it in the past, present or future. What about all the other alien races! Don't the writers remember the third Doctor was exiled to Earth as a punishment? Why on earth would he want to spend so much time there now when there's the whole of time and space to explore?

  33. Long John Brass

    Dr Who = Archetypical Boffin

    @Pete 43

    Clockwork Daleks .... FFS that Brilliant!

    WRT the the Daleks always comming back, Isn't that always the problems with what is effectivly a cloned species?

    Only takes one of the little buggers to be hiding under the stairs; next thing you know

    Intergalactic battlefleet :)

    Watching my mates kids, watch Dr Who brings back happy memories

    They hide behind the sofa, pillows and/or mum & dad

    but god help you if you suggest they don't watch or try to change the channel

    It's good to have a hero on TV that wins through brains, gadgets & perseverance.

  34. Mediocrates

    When did Apple get involved?

    Surely the photo shows fruit-themed iDaleks.

  35. Adrian Esdaile
    Thumb Up

    I liked them.

    There, I said it.

    I know, it's a bit like enjoying Vogon Poetry.

    However I would rather have a brightly coloured Dalek than no Daleks. I don't mind that they aren't in the current season, either.

    I think the whole point of a Time War is that you can go back in time and muck with things, which I am sure the Daleks are doing right now.

    Also the new season is doing a cracking job of behind-the-sofa moments! Keep it up!

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