Wednesday, August 3, 2011

DR. WHO & THE DALEKS (TV Show) - Ron Grainer/Tristram Cary - "The Dead Planet, Survivors, Escape, Ambush, Expedition, Ordeal, Rescue" (1963)

The "Dr. Who" TV series ran weekly in the UK from 1963 to 1989, or 26 seasons! One of the most timeless series of episodes came near the very beginning on December 23, 1963!

Series one, Episodes 6 through 11 ended on February 1, 1964, and was essentially called "Dr. Who And The Daleks, " not to get confused with the movie of the same name that was released in 1965 that was based on this series of episodes and starred Peter Cushing as Dr. Who! The first in this series was "The Dead Planet" and set the scene!

Radiation levels are already very high, and we just got started!

Here's the basic gang right after they've landed or ended up on "The Dead Planet!" From left to right, William "Sir Lancelot" Russell as Ian Chesterton, Jacqueline "Blue Parrot" Hill as Barbara Wright, William "The Mouse That Roared" Hartnell as Dr. Who, and Carole Ann "Day Of The Triffids" Ford as Dr. Who's granddaughter, Susan Foreman!

Dr. Who's vehicle is called the TARDIS, an acronym for "Time and Relative Dimension in Space" and is part time machine and part space craft, in other words, once he starts twiddling the controls, they can end up anywhere with no space or time constrictions, which gives the Dr. Who writers a lot of room to play around!! This super cool metal monster is a relic from some long lost civilization on this dead planet that TARDIS just brought them to!!

Dr. Who's granddaughter is a willing participant, but Ian and Barbara got on this trip by mistake, and want to go back home, but after accidentally discovering a lost city, Dr. Who messes with the TARDIS, so they can't disembark without getting some Mercury, which means taking a trek down to the city he wants to explore so bad! Dr. Who can be quite the devious individual, but it's always in the name of science!

For having a very small budget on what is basically a 1963 soap opera, "Dr. Who" has some pretty cool sets and effects, and is without a doubt a Helluva lot funner to watch than something from the same time period like "General Hospital!"

Once they get down to the city, it doesn't take long before Barbara gets into trouble, and they finally get some decent use out of that tacky blouse she's got on! It's almost time to meet The Daleks!

We'll just set the TARDIS controls for one week into the future, and it's time for Part Two! During the commercial interruption, it's a good time to tell you that the theme music for "Dr. Who" was written by Ron Grainer. I started reading Ron's bio, and it seriously made my head spin! Keywords: Child Prodigy, Piano, Violin, "Alien Brothers and June," heckle-phones, the shaums, the tenor comporium, "The Prisoner," "Tale Of The Unexpected" etc. etc. etc. The 'Incidental Music' is attributed to Tristram Cary, a man with one small credit, Besides being the composer for the film "Quatermass And The Pit" AKA, "Five Million Years To Earth," Tristram was a pioneer in electronic music, and was instrumental in the invention of the synthesizer!!! Ron and Tristram have both passed on, I'd drink a toast to these two awesome cats if I was you!

This beautiful shot could be right out of "Ironman" because it is STARK!!

Ta-Dum!!! The Daleks!! Introducing Groucho, Harpo, and Chico, or is it Larry, Moe and Curly? Grungebots and Monkeys!! They might not be much to look at, but these boys are dangerous!!

The outside of TARDIS looks like a police telephone booth, but it's massive inside!

In the next episode, "The Escape," Susan makes contact with The Locals, The Thal People, and The Thal's goal in life is to make some serious fashion statements! Up top is John "Moby Dick" Lee as Alydon, and below is Funky King Alan "Master Spy" Wheatley as Temmosus, and in the middle, the ravishing Virginia "Dr Jekyll & Sister Hyde" Wetherell as Dyoni!

Rent the DVD from Netflix, and on the commentary, the guy says, they had such a small budget, that those are actually real toilet plungers The Daleks use to push everybody around with! WTF!? But it works!!

The Thals attempt a rescue mission, and even though Alydon
is hiding real good, it turns out to be a trap, and wouldn't you just know it....

....Falling for the ruse of fresh fruit, Alan Wheatley goes down in history headfirst as the first person to ever be killed by a Dalek in a "Doctor Who" episode!!!

This is just like a cool family portrait shot of The Daleks!

The next two episodes are "The Expedition" and "The Ordeal!" Again, I have to emphasize, they supposedly had little or no budget, and yet somehow they managed to come up with this weird bog monster, and this incredible vortex scene!!

You can't have a family portrait of The Daleks without one of Dr. Who and Susan! I like how the restraining bands on their ankles look like 1950's four inch cuffed Levis!

In the final episode of this chapter, which was called "The Rescue," the non-violent Thals finally get a chance to let their pent up aggressions loose and kick Dalek ass all over the place! Damn, I really wish I could see this in colour to see what those Pre-Skool controls in the background look like!

Aw Shucks, they're no fun, they fell right over!!

I'm sure I left out somebody's favourite part, but out of two and a half hours, I had to skip a couple of details! Come back on Saturday for somethin' special!!


TABONGA! said...

Tonight's post is number 1,234!

H A R R Y G O A Z said...

GREAT memories !

Have a super week.

Anonymous said...

I think if I remember right it is actually Delia Derbyshire (uncredited in those days) from the BBC Radiophonic Workshop who actually created the "Dr. Who" theme along with one of those other guys you mentioned.
I mean she s all over a couple of albums of BBC Radiophonic Workshop material that has seen the light of day.

Eegah!! and Tabonga! said...

According to the IMDB, Delia Derbyshire, gets the uncredited credits as the music arranger, and Ron Grainer gets sole credit for composing the theme! Thanx!

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