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12 Great Moments From Into the Dalek

Mark McCullough picks out twelve faves from the second episode of Series 8.

Note: Episode spoilers naturally!

Now that our journey Into the Dalek is over, it is time to reflect on twelve memorable moments along the way:

The Daleks Approach

into-the-dalek-attack

When we think of Daleks the word EXTERMINATE is not far behind. The problem is, it has been a while since we actually seen the Daleks utilising their most fearsome ability of ruthless killing. This scene was particularly effective as it showed them do so with ease. Credit has to go to the director for the way in which the Daleks advanced without breaking formation or changing the speed they moved. What this served to do was present the Daleks as an unstoppable force which dispatched any resistance. In all honesty this is probably the only scene where the Daleks have scared me. Another contributing factor was the reactions of those facing the Daleks in providing the audience with a source for empathy. A simple yet chilling scene.

Danny and the Desk

danny-desk-into-the-dalekAnother scene which is made better by the way in which it was presented is Clara’s introduction to Danny Pink. Danny’s initial awkwardness serves to ground his character and make him seem a little more real. The way the camera cut between the conversation and Danny thinking about what he should have said is very well done and has perfect comic timing. Even more comedy is added to the mix as he is unaware that Clara is watching him. What is evident in the scene is that Coleman and Anderson share excellent chemistry.

Rusty kills the Daleks

rusty-into-the-dalek-exterminateSomething about this scene just really made me smile. Seeing a Dalek as a force for good and betraying its own kind was great if only for the novelty factor. In truth that’s probably all there is to it, the feel good factor. Again the direction is top notch as we see the Daleks completely taken aback and caught off guard by Rusty’s attacks. You can almost see them stall for a second as they are unable to process what is happening. A possible complaint about the scene however could be that it was a little too easy for Rusty, although that doesn’t have a huge impact on things.

The Doctor Rejects Journey

into-the-dalek-reject-journeyIt has been a while since anyone has asked to travel with the Doctor after meeting him, usually if they do something happens to prevent them doing so. With Journey this was a rejection by the Doctor based purely on the fact that she was a soldier. He even admires he character which makes it all the more a blow to her. Why I have selected this scene however is for where it sits in the grand scheme of things. Surely it doesn’t bode well for the Doctor’s reaction to Danny when and if he eventually finds out about him.

The Pre-title Sequence

into-the-dalek-ship-openingThe episode opened with an epic scene of a small fighter ship under fire from a vastly superior Dalek ship. This immediately sets the sense and gives the episode a sense of scale and danger. Then we get a glimpse inside the ship as its brother and sister team flee for their lives before the ship blows up. My gut instinct was that it was only a scene to establish a sense of threat for the Daleks. So it came as a pleasant surprise to have the Doctor save Journey. However it was an even bigger shock that he was only able to save her and not her brother. This led to a particularly interesting exchange with the Doctor which showcased the very alien aspects of Capaldi’s incarnation. In short: a brilliant pre-title scene which established a lot for the episode to build on.

Memories

doctor-mind-into-the-dalekThe Doctor confronts his greatest enemy, (but is it a reflection of himself?). The first thing of note is the nice little cameo of clips from the Series Four finale. A feature of Smith’s tenure as the Doctor was his epic speeches to his enemies; this scene is probably Capaldi’s equivalent. How do you reason with pure evil? The Doctor makes an attempt at it by sharing with Rusty his memories. Of course being a Dalek Rusty focuses on hate which causes him to redirect his anger to his own kind. The beauty of this scene is that it shows that some is not defined by one aspect of their personality and different people can interpret things in alternate ways. Just because the Dalek seen the hatred does not reflect that the Doctor is filled with hate. It was also nice to be able to place the dialogue from the teaser trailer and for it to come together in such a magnificent scene.

Danny the Soldier

danny-tear-into-the-dalekNot strictly relevant to the scene, but I feel I have to say that I love how Danny’s character has been handled so far, he has been given a lot more depth in his initial appearance that I suspected he would. My favourite scene with featuring him was the classroom scene where a student asks if he has ever killed a man, obviously seeking a reaction from Danny. (Coal Hill looks like it has really nasty students.) When this doesn’t get a reaction he asks again if Danny has ever killed someone that wasn’t a soldier. Credit has to go to Samuel Anderson who is able to convey a glimpse at a trouble past through only a tear and the tone of his voice. If Danny is like this throughout the series, then he is sure to be a favourite.

“Am I a good man?”

Series-8-TV-launch-trailer-(33)A scene which occurred quite early in the episode, a possible reason for this is that the Doctor was still questioning himself following his recent regeneration. The more likely explanation however is because it was the undertone of the entire episode. This meant that it was in the back of the audiences mind allowing them to judge for themselves based on the Doctor’s actions within the narrative. Capaldi and Coleman executed the scene perfectly. As a refresher for the audience the point is addressed at the conclusion of the episode as well. The difference is this time Clara gives an answer which states it is who you try to be that counts.

“You are a good Dalek”

capaldi-eye-view-into-the-dalekBy the time the Doctor and Rusty get a proper opportunity to talk, the main threat of the episode has passed and the pace has dropped significantly. It is my opinion that this works strongly in favour of this scene. With the Doctor lamenting that his plan did not come off he concludes that there can be no such thing as a truly good Dalek. Rusty’s reply is a simple one, that the Doctor is the good Dalek. At first this may appear as an insult, but if you reflect on the true meaning of this it a compliment. The idea of a good Dalek was one who seen the beauty in the universe and acts as a champion for life (“life prevails”). In fact this one line is a subtle answer to the Doctor’s earlier question. Yes, he is a good man, but sometimes his hatred gets in the way of that. In fact I would go as far as to say it is a scene which makes you question the entire episode. Is it Into the Dalek? Or would Into the Doctor be a more apt description.

What have we learnt?

into-the-dalek-tardis-endNot strictly one moment, but a series of short conversations between the Doctor and Clara that go really far to develop their relationship further and give Clara a chance to shine. The first scene is one where she introduces herself as the Doctor’s carer. This is proven to be the case later when she convinces him that a situation is not as bad as he had first feared. We later get to see how much this means to the Doctor as he commends her ability as a teacher and he comments how he should pay her. After a turbulent start to their relationship in Deep Breath it is great to see that they are now on better terms.

Gretchen sacrifices herself

into-the-dalek-Gretchen-heavenWith what we had seen of the Doctor so far, it is admittedly a starting to become a little hard to trust him, which is why this scene comes at the perfect time. To see a character prepared to make the ultimate sacrifice for him goes a long way to restore our faith in him. The question “Is he mad or is he right?” is as much to the audience as it is Clara. The obvious conclusion was that he is both, and this is not enough to convince Gretchen who then asks “Is it worth it?” The Doctor’s reply is enough to convince her do so, which again alludes to the darker aspects of Twelve’s character. In all, this is a great moment, even if the heaven scene feels like it was inserted with a shoehorn. The entire scene becomes more poignant in retrospect given that her sacrifice turned out to have little impact.

Ross’ Death

into-the-dalek-ross-deathMy favourite scene from the episode is the one where Ross dies. If I were to ask you how many of you expected the Doctor to save him, I’d expect a majority would have said yes, myself included. This is exactly why the scene worked so well, we have become so accustomed to the Doctor trying to save everyone, so to see him manipulate the situation of someone’s death to his own advantage was a shock to the system. A line about how one life sacrificed for the sake of the others is not something I expected from his character. This juxtaposition between twelve and his predecessors who always strived to champion all life with less of a valuation of his own. One thing is for sure, this Doctor is certainly going to keep us on our toes.

Step back in time...

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179 comments
Noybusiness
Noybusiness

"A line about how one life sacrificed for the sake of the others is not something I expected from his character."

But it wasn't sacrificed, and the Doctor didn't say anything to that effect. He did nothing to cause Ross's death, he only used it, something that was going to happen anyway no matter what he did, to guide them to a safe area. And Ross didn't know he was about to die, which is generally considered a kindness.

13thDoctor
13thDoctor

to me Ross' death was also the highlight of the episode. I loved 12 saying "He was already dead." while 10 would almost certainly had said to Ross "I'm sorry, I'm so very sorry." Brilliant

1

HarrySulivansDad
HarrySulivansDad

I'm surprised that no-one has yet, as far as I can see, referenced the possible influence of the Lost In Space episode where will and Dr Smith travel into the Robot ("Trip Through The Robot", ostinspace.wikia.com/wiki/Trip_Through_the_Robot.) 


The Robot was enlarged rather than the people miniaturised, but I remember it well, it was on UK TV in the days of Troughton's Doctor. 

RichardTyler
RichardTyler

I agree the miniature eye swim was awesome. Very much reminded me of a Stargate effect.

mgm1229
mgm1229

Best visual moment for me was when the miniaturized Doctor and Clara swam through the blue light of the Dalek eyestalk. Just gorgeous! I actually whooped and shouted "our show is better than yours!" And I live alone!

NineTenElevenTwelve
NineTenElevenTwelve

I enjoyed this episode. The supporting cast was pretty forgettable for the most part and most of the Daleks held few surprises for me. However, I enjoyed seeing the journey into the Dalek Fantastic Voyage style, the Twelfth Doctor and Clara continued to bounce off each other extremely well, I enjoyed getting a fresh and interesting look at the morality of the Daleks, Journey Blue was a good supporting character, and I've already taken a liking to Danny Pink (PTSD wounds, awkwardness, and all). Overall, I give the episode a 7/10.

AnthonyMercer
AnthonyMercer

That last scene you brought up - that's exactly how I felt. I'm really glad we're not just getting Eleven with a new face - this Doctor is a different man, with different ideas about morality. We've been given such good impressions about what each Doctor is like that we can tell how they would react to this situation - I can imagine Ten, seeing what's happening to this guy, putting his hands on his head and saying "No-no-no-no-no-no! No, don't die!" Similarly, now that we know how Twelve reacts to a situation like this, we really get an idea of what kind of Doctor we're dealing with.

Master Michael Moon
Master Michael Moon

It just goes to show what such a good writer Phil Ford is. Having a five year break from co-writing the masterpiece The Waters of Mars with RTD, he not only made the Daleks great again, but brought new and interesting ideas that mirrored both the 'good' Dalek and the Doctors' characters. I seem to think that the only part Moffat wrote was the brief heaven scene, but then his credit could also go to the fact that going inside a Dalek was his idea in the first place. Next: Phil Ford writes a two parter story set on the ruins of Skaro in which the Doctor is trapped between two sets of Daleks fighting a civil war, and an impossible choice of loyalty...


Cryptobiosis
Cryptobiosis

Right then - is it just a coincidence that the place that Missy is in and which she refers to as 'paradise', the ornamental garden, is exactly the same location, the same ornamental garden, right down to the colonnades and the central fountain, that Amy was in, in The Girl Who Waited?


And is it also a coincidence that the 11th Doctor referred to that place as '...a paradise planet, two billion light years from Earth...'?

BringBackBellal
BringBackBellal

Thanks for your great article. I think the introduction of Danny, given the short but memorable screen time/scenes the character had, gets my vote as the best of the Great Moments from Into The Dalek.


Merganman4
Merganman4

"I see beauty. I see divinity. I...see...HATRED!!!" That line sends chills down my spine every time I hear it.

AnthonyJFuchs
AnthonyJFuchs

I thought I saw certain Machiavellian tendencies in this Doctor in "Deep Breath," and now he has removed all doubt.

Mercy Reborn2
Mercy Reborn2

I think after watching it three times its still great if it has faults they are small ones, it is a great episode nearly as good as Dalek but better than Victory. I loved the parts with Danny and Clara there scenes were done well. I think it was good to see  the doctor put under the microscope himself, maybe he does make a good dalek, he does get angry too

IceDaleks
IceDaleks

I've watched it 3 times, and I enjoy it a little more every time, it's gone from a weak 7/10 to a solid 9/10 for me. I am liking Capaldi's Doctor a lot faster than I thought I would! He's already my second favourite after Smith!

TheNightmareChild just got fitted for a loincloth
TheNightmareChild just got fitted for a loincloth

I personally don't mind the placement of the "Am I a good man?" scene.  It's easy enough for me to accept that the Doctor has been questioning that up to that point and he wanted Clara's input on the subject.  I suppose it is a little convenient that this question would arise at the very beginning of an episode that to an extent explores the Doctor as a person though.

conallmc2013
conallmc2013

"there has never been a good dalek": Dalek sec and the dalek in "dalek"

cyberbrayde
cyberbrayde

That paragraph called Danny the Solider. I just made this up, Danny the Solider Nanny? No.... Dan the Solider Man? Daniel the Manuel.

Favonian Squall
Favonian Squall

I've got to say my favourite bit was in the protein pool when the Doctor mentions that Ross is now "on the top layer, if you want to say a few words." That was just brilliant. :')

Jaylcookie
Jaylcookie

Has the fx budget been slashed? CGI looks worse now

Joe17
Joe17

I'm just going to say it...I love Danny already! No not like that. Although there's no denying he's easy on the eye...*sigh*


Anyway I really like his character and backstory. I can't wait for him to meet The Doctor. It should be very interesting.

The Lazy Cat Has Gone to Heaven... With Clara.
The Lazy Cat Has Gone to Heaven... With Clara.

I liked the way the "heaven" scene was incorperated personally. It'll be very interesting to see where this Missy mystery goes, if any more characters end up with in the next few episodes maybe we can spot a pattern (if there is one). Also there's the matter of her (maybe) having an interest in Clara (if she is the woman in the shop), perhaps she has some agenda of keeping the Doctor alive? Any ideas?

Noybusiness
Noybusiness

@Master Michael Moon I more envision them passing the script back and forth between them on a regular basis, like people in my Fiction Writing Workshop who have collaborated with other writers.

BeyondThePolice
BeyondThePolice

@Master Michael Moon I don't think the only scene Moffat wrote was the Missy scene; it was like ten seconds long. If that's enough to credit a cowriting, then Moffat also would've been credited for Closing Time for writing the two-minute scene at the end. 

JasonWright1
JasonWright1

They used the same location in a Sarah Jane story first, and as it's been redressed every time I'd guess it's just them reusing the location a third time.

Rani Nose
Rani Nose

Might be a coincidence. Might not be. It is early in the series and we simply don't have enough information to say one way or the other.

sontaran17
sontaran17

@Merganman4 I know! Sitting there coming off my seat and it looks like the Doctor will sucseed for a moment... "Yes...... YESSSSS...... NOOOOOO"

A Friend of the Ood is in your wall! :O
A Friend of the Ood is in your wall! :O

@AnthonyJFuchs This is exactly what I was hoping for with this Doctor. He's unpredictable and no longer does what would necessarily be considered "the right thing", but he doesn't carelessly throw away people's lives without good reason. Everything he does is planned in a way that he'll get the job done, and yet the things he does can still shock us because he doesn't normally work like that. It's the reason I love Seven.

TheIdleIdol
TheIdleIdol

Compare the CGI of recent episodes to some of the CGI of earlier NuWho - say, the Lazarus Monster, Plastic Mickey, the CGI shots of Slitheen, etc - and I think it's pretty clear that what we're getting right now is, comparatively, very good. Admittedly it's not quite Hollywood Blockbuster quality, but for a television show it's actually rather commendable.


sontaran17
sontaran17

Surely not! This episodes CGI was arguably one of the best we've ever had!

supermoff burning bright
supermoff burning bright

@Jaylcookie The CGI looked brilliant to me, some of the best special effects I think Doctor Who has ever employed, but ultimately fantastic CGI is nowhere near as important as a fantastic story. Fortunately, Into the Dalek had both, at least imo :)

MaraBackman
MaraBackman

@Jaylcookie Not that I would have noticed anything of lesser quality, or been bothered by it, but it's not an anniversary year anymore so they most likely won't go full-on Hollywood very much. That said, I've found the effects to have still been excellent for a TV-show, in both episodes.

The Outer Space K9
The Outer Space K9

I thought the CGI was amazing in Into the Dalek. Better than in Deep Breath certainly where the dinosaur looked a bit out of place. The space battle was great in this episode.

Mark McCullough
Mark McCullough

@The Lazy CatMy thoughts on Missy: She only seems to be gathering those who have gave their lives for the Doctor (Hard to judge with only two though). Perhaps as a reward. As for the motives there are still outstanding issues with the arc which run before. Namely fact 12 takes part in saving Gallifrey which itself is a destiny paradox. Work it back and you get to the point that the 12th Doctor only came to be because someone gave Clara his number.

Lord of Time is looking for ents
Lord of Time is looking for ents

And I think some of the charcterization (Doctor and Clara) is from Moffat. The Idea "Into th Dalek" came origanally from Moffat, how you should know, if you watched DW Extra.

conallmc2013
conallmc2013

@A Friend of the Ood @conallmc2013 dalek- yes but he turned good at the end irregardless of his past, Dalek sec was still a dalek even if since he was transformed that is exactly what they were going to do to this dalek in this episode- transfrom it. Lastly i forgot about the Clara dalek in Asylum- which still constitutes I must say. Even then the original daleks on Skaro were obedient and not subject to evil it was only when davros asked for compassion to be removed. 

The Outer Space K9
The Outer Space K9

The Dalek ship could have looked more convincing (the interior I mean).

The_War_Braden
The_War_Braden

Maybe Missy is collecting those who give their lives willingly, Gretchen chose to sacrifice herself to save the others and The Half Face man may have willingly jumped from the restaurant, and both of these characters ended up in heaven, whereas Ross was murdered and didn't end up in heaven.

Maybe Missy is collecting those who will willingly sacrifice themselves for the greater good, the question is why? What does she need them for?

ConradWesleyClough
ConradWesleyClough

@conallmc2013 @A Friend of the Ood I am not sure I would categorize getting so freaked out by feeling emotions other than hate that one commits suicide as 'turning good' (and the Dalek in Dalek was also mutated by Rose's DNA to be something other than pure Dalek by that point).

A Friend of the Ood is in your wall! :O
A Friend of the Ood is in your wall! :O

@The_War_Braden We don't actually know if Ross ended up there or not. They didn't say either way. It's possible that everyone who dies this season will. What if all the death this season is leading up to a big "this is what the Doctor does to people" moment in the finale? Moffat seems to like that sort of thing. That would be more grim and blunt than usual, but he did promise a darker show this year.