Tuesday, December 26, 2006
This year's fun and fast paced Doctor Who Christmas special gave us a glimpse of the 2007 season, where we saw that Dalek Sec is to return. This is the renegade black Dalek first seen in the finalé of the 2006 season, Doomsday.
Back in the old days, Daleks never had names... or did they? Not in the tv series perhaps, but in the comics it was a different matter. In 1965 The Daleks was featured as the regular back page strip in the new weekly TV Century 21 and although it was uncredited at the time (except for a nod to Dalek creator Terry Nation) the strip was apparently mostly written by Dr.Who tv scribe David Whittaker and superbly drawn by Richard Jennings (and later by Ron Turner).
One of the early serials in the comic strip featured a renegade red Dalek who went by the name of... Zeg! Accidentally saturated by a chemical called Metalert, Zeg became invincible and, even by Dalek standards, turned into an egotistical control freak, demanding that the other Daleks announce him as their new Emperor. Naturally it all ends in tears, or whatever the Dalek equivalent is, and the upstart is eventually defeated.
As the new series of Doctor Who has already seen it borrow ideas from the Dalek strips (flying Daleks, and the design of their saucers) I'm wondering if Dalek Sec wasn't influenced by the similar sounding Dalek Zeg?
The example above, drawn by Richard Jennings, is from TV Century 21 No.13, dated April 17th 2065. (The comic was always dated 100 years in advance for a bit of fun.) That Dalek vs Dalek confrontation is one of my favourite sequences from a sixties comic. I don't know who holds the rights to those Dalek strips now, (not Panini apparently, even though they publish Doctor Who Magazine) but if ever there was an appropriate time to reprint them all again it's now. With shops full of Dalek toys, the Doctor Who Annual being the top selling annual this Christmas, and the tv series and its spin-offs hardly out of the news, a collection of Dalek strips or a new Dalek Annual seemed inevitable, yet it didn't happen. Anyone know why?