DW: Daleks! Review

So… this somehow became a thing! Daleks! (yes the exclamation mark is part of the title…) is a series of five 15-ish minute episodes focused on the unique Dalek group we’ve heard/read about recently in the Time Lord Victorious stories. Sadly, even for an entirely free YouTube series, the production values are extremely low, so much so it’s distracting a lot of the time. Add in the fact that there are no human or even visibly alien characters, only robots and aliens inside robot shells, it comes off as if it had to be made in five seconds. Want to know more? Well, I don’t see why you do, but okay…

Synopsis (of Episode 1):

The Daleks invade the Archive of Islos – but will its guardians surrender?

*spoilers appear from here on out!*

The Good:

I do like the retro/new combination Emperor design they went with, I’ll say that much!

The overall plot isn’t bad, really. The Daleks wish to raid the famous archive of Islos, but after tricking the (entirely robotic and lifeless) guardians of the Archive in order to get in The Daleks find themselves betrayed, and attacked by an entity from another universe… an entity that looks like a very basic CG swirly effect. The Entity wipes out a good chunk of Skaro and gives chase, beating the Daleks to an off-planet, underground storage Dalek Army, resulting in a Dalek vs. Entity-controlled Dalek battle where the non-controlled Daleks have to flee.

The few remaining Daleks seek refuge on Mechanus, the home of their old nemesis race The Mechanoids. They offer an alliance, helped by the fact that the Daleks brought the Entity to Mechanus in their wake, so the two races figure out a way to send it back to its own dimension. The Mechanoid leader figures out that the Daleks must be weaker than they ever have been before and so travel to Skaro to finish them off, but thanks to a sneaky plan from the Dalek Strategist the Mechanoids end up sucked into the same universe as the Entity. The Dalek Emperor congratulates his strategist for taking out two enemies at once, before we get a final shot of a possessed Mechanoid making reference to the Daleks’ up-coming fate in the TLV series…

I liked the addition of Mechanoids (and so did the animators given they have no animation or mouths or anything…) but… well, read below.

The Bad:

I’m pretty sure the same explosion effects were featured in Star Fox for the SNES…

I hate to rag on the animation given I watched it for free, but sweet jumping Jesus it was bad. Some of the fire effects were so bad I’m not even joking when I say I’ve seen better fire in PS1 games. They tried their best to hide it by having all characters be robots without mouths, but it didn’t work, even the Dalek gliding animation looked off. This is the BBC, could they really not find a better studio? I’ve seen fan animations with far higher quality.

Again it doesn’t seem fair since it was just a small web series on YouTube, but it really did take away from damn near every scene and it just made it impossible to like, in my eyes.

The Continuity:

Multi-coloured Mechanoids! … Well, single-coloured Mechanoids of different colours… You know what I mean!

Obviously the Daleks (or should that be Daleks! ?) seen here are the same group the Eighth Doctor runs into in his strand of the Time Lord Victorious story, starting with “He Kills Me, He Kills Me Not”.

How Islos became a place famous for its Archive is seen in the TLV Audiobook “The Minds of Magnox”.

Overall Thoughts:

At least copying and pasting Daleks and Mechanoids just makes it look like they’re in formation…

Daleks! was an entirely free little side-step in the Time Lord Victorious brand, but the shockingly low budget drained all the fun out of it for me. There were some fun bits, and it was good to see the Mechanoids back and developed a little further, but overall I can’t say I’ll be watching it again, or recommending it to a friend, for that matter…

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