|Height||~1.7 meters (shell)|
~30 cm mutant
|Diet||Nutrient fluids in shell|
|Subspecies/Races||Dalek Human Hybrids|
|Species Origin||Mutated Kaleds|
|Status||Varies according to timeline alterations|
|Behind the Scenes|
|Created by||Terry Nation|
The Daleks are a species of genetically altered Kaleds from the planet Skaro, and are among the oldest and most dangerous enemies of the Time Lords - particularly the rogue one known as the Doctor - and most other civilizations. Their hard-wired and strongest drive is to wipe out or "exterminate" all lifeforms that are not Dalek, as they believe that it is their rightful destiny to reign supreme.
Daleks have a very durable shell made from dalekanium, a special alloy and bonded polycarbide. They have a rotatable midsection, (usually) bearing the gunstick and a plunger-like extendable manipulator arm capable of mimicking the motions of a natural arm. The head dome is also capable of rotating 360 degrees, and the eyestalk can move up and down. This eye provides wide-angle vision, with zoom and presumably accuracy assistance. The Dalek's eyepiece is its most vulnerable spot, and impairing its vision often leads to it desperately firing its main weapon in the hope of hitting its unseen target. The Dalek casing also functions as a fully-sealed environment suit, allowing travel through the vacuum of space or underwater without the need for additional life-support equipment.
The lower half of the Dalek shell (colloquially known as the "skirt") is studded with several fist-sized globes that act as sensory substitutes or, if need be, can also become components of the Dalek's self-destruct mechanism. Within all this, the Dalek creature is housed, surrounded by screens and machines, and attached to the life-support system.
Daleks also have force fields that make them very difficult to kill, melting incoming bullets, even though bullets can't penetrate the armor anyway. They also have very powerful weaponry, most famously the 'gunstick', with various levels of power ranging from 'stun' to a level which can destroy a large house. There are other attachments seen being used too - these include:
- Claw arm - Equipped with a blow torch, used to cut through materials too durable for their death rays to penetrate.
- Sensor-gunstick arm - A powerful weapon used on Daleks guarding the Emperor.
- Syringe - This is used to inject chemicals into Dalek Sec's casing.
- Dalek claw - Used to operate Dalek machinery.
The voice of a Dalek is electronic, as the Dalek creature has no vocal apparatus as such. Their most infamous exclamation is "EX-TER-MIN-ATE!", with each syllable individually screeched in a frantic-sounding electronic scream. Other common utterances include "I (or WE) OBEY!" to any command given by a superior. Daleks also have a radio communicator built into their shells, which emits an alarm to summon other nearby Daleks if the casing was opened from outside.
At the height of their power, four Daleks claimed that they could conquer the world (this may have been a taunt).
The Dalek's true form is pallid, with many tentacles and the vestiges of eyes and a mouth. It has a large brain which shows through its skin, and supposedly has a very high processing ability and intelligence level. It is almost helpless without its shell, though it could kill a human being using its appendages to strangle the victim.
As a still organic life form, the Dalek body needs proteins and other nutrients to stay alive. For that reason, they occasionally absorb the obliterated remains of their victims. Their bodies are also equipped with microscopic probes which act as robotic antibodies, locating and destroying infectious agents whose remains are likewise directed to the digestive chamber to be harnessed as food.
PsychologyEditUltimately, the most fundamental feature of Dalek culture and psychology is an unquestioned belief in the superiority of the Daleks. Other species are either to be exterminated immediately, or enslaved and then exterminated later once they are no longer necessary. They shout 'Ex-ter-min-ate!' before fighting and/or killing, and almost always use the word in place of "kill" or other such terms. Another result of this superiority complex is their complete ruthlessness, although this is also due to genetic modifications made to the original Kaled mutants by Davros. Because of this, it is nearly impossible to negotiate or reason with a Dalek and is one of many things that make them so dangerous and not to be underestimated. However, their reliance on machinery is also a weakness, albeit one that they recognize in themselves.
Daleks have little to no individual personality and a strict hierarchy, conditioned to obey a superior's orders without question. Due to their frequent defeats by the Doctor, he became an infamous figure in Dalek culture and mythology. They have standing orders to capture or exterminate the Doctor on sight, and are occasionally able to identify him despite his regenerations. This is not an innate ability, but probably the result of good record-keeping. The Daleks know the Doctor as the "Ka Faraq Gatri", (which mean the "Bringer of Darkness" or "Destroyer of Worlds"), or as the "Oncoming Storm".
Daleks have anti-gravity or levitation jets, in the shape of several domes, on the underside of their casing. These enable independent space flight and maneuvering.
Dalek travel technology varied over time. The Daleks also developed time travel capabilities. Time Corridors, for example, allow limited transport between one era and another.
SpaceshipsEditDalek spaceships are consistently designed in a saucer shape, and have far greater speed and firepower than a single Dalek, each ship capable of 'cracking continents', and certainly possessing planet-buster devices. Beam weapons commonly found on Dalek craft include 'deep penetration Ion Cannons', 'Anti-Matter Drills', 'Photon Impellers', massive 'Neutralizers', 'Disruptors', 'Ruby Ray Lasers', and Particle Beam weapons. The most common bomb is the Firebomb, with a blast equivalent to a small volcanic eruption (maybe 100 kilotons). These are deployed against large ground targets such as cities. Their warships are also equipped with Neutron Bombs, which wipe out organics but leave the infrastructure undamaged, by using almost all energy in producing high-energy neutrons. Neutron Strikes can be used to 'detonate stars'.
Their warheads can be launched from torpedo ports, in Target Seeking Missiles, or via automated SpaceMine-Layers. The standard space mine has an infrared tracker, and an explosive radius of 8 miles.
These ships are capable of entering the Vortex, and have both anti-gravity and fusion drives. An acceleration compensator stops the occupants for being destroyed during acceleration. Electromagnetic pulses cause the outer hull of the saucer to spin to produce movement there, for unknown reasons. The Crucible, a Dalek station holding the Reality Bomb, is powered by a core of Z-Neutrino energy, which manifests itself as a massive, star-like fireball.
Their outer hull is made of non-corrodable spaceship-grade dalekanium, incredibly durable and resilient. The hull is protected by the ship's energy-shielding pulses and several massive shield generator arrays.
Daleks ships keep in contact with Skaro and other Dalek outposts using sub-etheric signals broadcast from the saucers signal transmitter ring and power/communications spikes. As a back up, they have "black box" recorders designed to survive the destruction of the ship.
Dalek warships have sensors (such as the Rad-Etheric Magnascope, and the Asteroid Avoidence Rods) that can 'detect a sparrow's fall' at 15,000 kilometers. Their Defense Electron Shields can function as a cloaking system to protect them for scanners. However this significantly limits their top speed. Saucer size and larger Dalek warships are equipped with electronic jamming devices that can disable all communications over a continent sized area. The Daleks have developed magnetizing beams, which can manipulate objects.
Most Daleks ships have a Suicide Unit auto-destruct system which consist of a neutron bomb. Alternatively the reactors of several ships can be linked together, to massively increase the yield when all the ships self-destruct. Their warships have numerous small servo-robots that maintain and repair them, and have spherical escape pods.
Void ShipEditIn the "Army of Ghosts"/"Doomsday" a void ship is a spherical ship that is capable of travelling through the nothingness between parallel universes, existing outside the whole of time and space — though visible to the human eye, it emits no energy of any kind and has no mass to speak of, thus causing an uneasy feeling in those who look upon it. Torchwood instruments, being more advanced than any human technology, originally could not detect anything from the sphere, but began reading mass and energy emissions when the Daleks emerged; the devices might simply have been reading the Daleks themselves.
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The Daleks were created by a megalomaniacal Kaled war scientist named Davros, under orders from the Kaled Elitel. The project was designed to build a weapon capable of defeating the Kaleds' great enemy, the Thals; Davros betrayed the Kaled council, and instead designed his own 'supreme being', capable of surviving the nuclear wasteland that Skaro had become. Davros removed all emotions from his creation, save those of hatred and contempt for all non-Dalek life. The Dalek being is a genius programmed from birth to regard all other species as inferior, which showed a lack of foresight on the part of their creator as the Daleks went on to kill him (although he returned from death later on). Before their fall at the hands of the Time Lords, the Dalek race split into two factions: the renegade Daleks, under the command of the Supreme Dalek; and the Imperial Daleks, under the command of the Dalek emperor (the resurrected Davros).The Daleks opposed the Time Lords in the Last Great Time War. Many worlds were destroyed in this war, fought in the Eternal Void and the Time Vortex itself, including Skaro. Massive fleets clashed, and both species were nearly wiped out. Near the end, nightmarish creatures and entities began to form under the strain of the subtly warping universe, and the Doctor resorted to The Moment, which destroyed all parties involved in the Time War and locked it against time travel.
After the Time WarEdit
The Doctor thought he was the only survivor, until he came across a Dalek that had been captured and tortured by Humans. This Dalek absorbed Rose Tyler's DNA to rebuild itself, but gained her emotions so destroyed itself.
The Dalek Emperor also survived and created an army of Daleks from the bodies of dead humans. These Daleks hated their own existence because they had begun life as an inferior species. On the verge of conquering Earth, they were destroyed by Rose Tyler, the Doctor's human companion, who had absorbed the power of the TARDIS to save the doctor.
The Battle of Canary WharfEdit
However, the Cult of Skaro, 4 Daleks whose purpose was to imagine and think like their enemy (regular Daleks have no imagination), survived by hiding in the Void. They hid with the Genesis Ark, a Time Lord prison ship which held millions of Daleks, and entered the world after the Cybermen opened the Rift to the Void, allowing the Cybermen army through. There was a great battle, with the Daleks clearly winning, but the Doctor reopened the Void and all the Genesis Ark-held Daleks and Void-borne Cybermen were sucked in. The Cult of Skaro, however, escaped through the use of an 'Emergency Temporal Shift'.
Their leader, Dalek Sec, was imprisoned by the other three when, after turning himself into a Human-Dalek hybrid, discovered emotions and planned to continue the species by creating hybrids using the bodies of humans whose minds had been destroyed. He was later accidentally exterminated when he tried to save the Doctor, who Dalek Sec claimed was the key to saving the Daleks. His experiment was interrupted by the remaining members (breaking the law that 'Daleks must obey'), and the results were humans with the minds of Daleks. However, the Doctor got in the way of the gamma beam, mixing in Time Lord DNA, so the Dalek Humans had curiosity and some free will, and destroyed two more members of the Cult of Skaro. The final member, Dalek Caan, escaped from the Doctor (who was offering to help him) using an emergency temporal shift, but the Doctor said that they would meet again.
The New Dalek EmpireEdit
Before they did, Caan had travelled to and from the Time War and brought back Davros, the original creator of the Daleks. Caan's entering the War meant he absorbed the knowledge of the universe, and realised the Daleks had to be undone. Davros created an army of real, true Daleks and created a 'Reality Bomb', a matter-annihilating device, amplified by being broadcast through certain planets, of which Earth was one. The Doctor, aided by a Metacrisis-produced human Doctor and a Donna with a Time Lord mind, eventually destroyed the entire army and left Davros in an exploding ship.
A New Dalek ParadigmEditThe Doctor then encountered the Daleks in his eleventh form, where they pretended to serve under the British Forces in World War 2. However, in order to survive over the years, they had been forced to endure some degree of DNA contamination by other species, driving them to use a Progenitor to recreate a new race of "pure" Daleks. They were so genetically different to the Daleks that had designed the device, however, the Progenitor did not recognize them as Daleks, and thus did not allow them access. However, they circumvented this by laying a trap for their nemesis, the Doctor, by posing as loyal robot soldiers for the British during World War II. Using his testimony that they were in fact Daleks, they used this information to convince the Progenitor, and a race of newer, "pure" Daleks was born. Despite the Doctor's determination to bring a "final end" to the Daleks, they escaped him yet again. These "New Paradigm" Daleks served as an "officer class" to their smaller, bronze predecessors.
- In the first story arc they appeared in, in 1963 - nowadays known as "The Daleks" - it is stated that they were mutations of a species known as the "Dals", who acted as scientists and engineers as opposed to the warrior race that was the Thals. An image of what the Dals looked like is seen by the characters, but not by the audience. The dialogue seems to imply that these creatures were not a physically human-like race like the Kaleds were later revealed to be.
- However, in The Dalek Chronicles comic strips written by the Daleks' creator, Terry Nation, alongside Doctor Who co-creator David Whitaker; the original Dalek race is portrayed as diminutive blue-skinned humanoids.
- In the Peter Cushing movie Dr. Who and the Daleks, the Dalek creature removed from the armor is mostly unseen (as in the original series). However, unlike the series, it is shown to have a webbed hand instead of a tentacle.