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Doctor Who - Daleks in Manhattan/Doctor Who - Evolution of the Daleks

episodes 3.4, 3.5

UK 2007
produced by
Phil Collinson, Russell T.Davies (executive), Julie Gardner (executive) for BBC Wales/BBC
directed by James Strong
starring David Tennant, Freema Agyeman, Hugh Quarshie, Miranda Raison, Ryan Carnes, Andrew Garfield, Eric Loren, Felix Schwimm, Alexis Caley, Paul Kasey, Earl Perkins, Peter Brooke, Ian Porter, Joe Montana, Stewart Alexander, Nicholas Briggs (voice)
written by Helen Raynor, Daleks created by Terry Nation, music by Murray Gold

tv-series
Doctor Who, Doctor Who (David Tennant), Doctor Who (new series), Martha Jones, Daleks

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Doctor Who (David Tennant) and Martha (Freema Agyeman) visit Manhattan 1930, the midst of the Great Depression, where the Doctor can't help but investigate the disappearance of a few people from Hooverville, the township of the unemployed in Central Park ... and soon enough he finds out that everything is linked to the Empire State Building and the last four Daleks (who escaped the war with the Timelords in which both races were pretty much erradicated).

Out of necessity to survive, the Daleks have acquired the services of a corrupt builder, Diagoras (Eric Loren), who helps them luring people to his company and turning them into shortlived and lame-brained pigslaves - but they also have a masterplan: to merge with the humans and to as a result be able to move outside their contraptions again (for those not familiar with the Daleks: because of genetic deterioration, they are confined to living inside metal vessels that look like pepperpots but that are fully armed and able to move around and even fly). Especially the Daleks' leader is fascinated by that thought and he soon merges with Diagoras and becomes a Dalek-human, but what's more important, he really becomes human, has feelings, shows compassion, wants peace for his race - and before long he has even convinced the Doctor that he is no longer a threat ... however, now the other Daleks see him as a threat and soon enough remove him from command and make him their prisoner.

... and now, as always, it's up to the Doctor to save the world again, helped by Solomon (Hugh Quarshie), the leader of hovverville (who is eventually atomized by the Daleks), young unemployed Frank (Andrew Garfield), blond actress Tallulah (Miranda Raison) and her boyfriend Laszlo (Ray Carnes), who has already been turned into a pigslave by the Daleks but not yet brainwashed. Eventually the Doctor learns that the Daleks want to use the Empire State Building (that's still being built back in 1930) as a conductor for a solar flare to bring to life their army of human slaves and overrun Manhattan ... but somehow the Doctor fills the human slaves up with Timelord DNA that makes them turn against the Daleks in the end and destroy them ... all but one, who has to get away to ensure future Dalek-stories ...

 

Despite leaving a few too many questions open (like why do the Daleks turn humans into pigs), this is not a too bad Dalek-tale (especially considering it's an episode of the new series of Doctor Who), it's just sometimes way too much in love with its special effects and forgets its story over it - and another thing, I just can't get used to flying Daleks (they didn't do that in the old series) ...

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Robots and rats,
demons and potholes,
cuddly toys and
shopping mall Santas,
love and death and everything in between,
Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

is all of that.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to
-
a collection of short stories and mini-plays
ranging from the horrific to the darkly humourous,
from the post-apocalyptic
to the weirdly romantic,
tales that will give you a chill and maybe a chuckle, all thought up by
the twisted mind of
screenwriter and film reviewer
Michael Haberfelner.

 

Tales to Chill
Your Bones to

the new anthology by
Michael Haberfelner

 

Out now from
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On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD