The first batch of Doctor Who Exclusives at B&M stores arrived in Summer 2020, and soon after it was confirmed a 2nd batch were planned for an Autumn 2020 release. After the first two History of the Daleks Set from the Summer releases, the Autumn 2020 sets would take us to Set 3 and 4 and to the remaining 1st Doctor stories of The Chase and The Dalek Master Plan. In this review we look at History of the Daleks #3, The Chase.
The Chase Set packaging remains consistent with the previous sets with a rectangular window box and deep Blue and grey colour scheme. The window is a little too small to show both Daleks, which is a shame, and this see's the Chase Guard obscured by the triangular cut in that carries the Doctor Who log and the TARDIS outline artwork. The set name sits under the window and above this in a red panel is confirmation of the episode as The Chase from 1965. The foil sticker remains, applied at the bottom left of the window - reading "Limited Edition".
Both side panels carry the TARDIS artwork, with the left side a full panel and the right with a partial wrap around of the window. The back of the box carries another cut in panel of the TARDIS and then an image of our two Chase Dalek figures. Above them to the left is a circular panel that simply states "DALEKS FROM THE CLASSIC DOCTOR WHO ADVENTURE". Over to the other side of the image is another very in depth background text for both The Chase in terms of the story and also the Behind The Scenes info about the Dalek props.
The text for me is far too in depth and gives away the whole plot of the story and leaves nothing for fans to perhaps get intrigued about and go and find out more by discovering Classic Doctor Who. As is also common, the text contains some grammatical issues and even spells Mechanoids incorrectly. The text does not copy what was used on the recently released Jungles of Mechanus set - the spelling of Mechanoids on that set was using the correct spelling according to the Doctor Who website.
THE CHASE (1965)
The First Doctor and his companions are forced to flee in the TARDIS when they learn from the Time/Space Visualiser, taken from the Space Museum, that a group of Daleks equipped with their own time machine are on their trail with orders to exterminate them. The Chase begins on the desert planet of Aridius and takes in a number of stopping-off points including New York's Empire State Building, the 19th Century sailing ship Mary Celeste and a spooky haunted house. Eventually both time machines arrive on the jungle planet Mechanus, where the Daleks try to infiltrate and kill the Doctor using a robot double. The travellers when escaping the Daleks are then taken prisoner by the Mechonoids, a group of robots sent some fifty years earlier to prepare landing sites for human colonists who never arrived. There they meet Steven Taylor, a stranded astronaut who has been the Mechonoids' captive for the past two years. The Daleks and Mechonoids engage in a fierce battle which ultimately results in their mutual destruction. The Doctor's party escape and the Doctor reluctantly agrees to help Ian and Barbara use the Daleks' time machine to return home.
The background piece is particularly poorly written in parts with a segment where brackets are opened, but not closed. The story is referred to as the chase with no capitalisation, and there are some difficult segments to read thanks to the lack of formatted grammer.
The Dalek Props
For The Chase, Ray Cusick was assigned as designer once again, allowing him creative control of the creations for a second time. Previously radar dishes had been added to the back of the Daleks to account for their increased mobility in The Dalek Invasion of Earth, but Cusick felt that he could do better and so dew up a design for a solar panel arrangement of slats around the shoulders. Cusick also indicated that props should be reverted back to their smaller stature and gave instructions to remove the "hovercraft" bases. The situation surrounding all the available props had been assessed for the new production, and an attempt had been made to borrow back the two Barnardo's prop again, however the charity said that due to their own schedule, this would not be possible so two new Daleks were created. So the chase features a mix of original Dalek casings, movie Dalek casings (some with and without bases and ears, and brand new TV Dalek casings but built using 'movie' Dalek techniques. This set features a silver 'Drone' Dalek with the new solar slats and 'cup' shaped lights and one of the repurposed 'Movie' Daleks which were used without operators to guard the entrances of the Dalek Time Ship.
The box is opened via the top flap and inside we have a plastic clear tray containing the Daleks that itself is sat in a cardboard backing piece. The backing card features an illustration of the Mechanus Jungle - but is not the same as the one used for Jungles of Mechanus. The Daleks are held in at the base and the body with a white tie wrapping the body and through to the back of the packaging. This can be untied, but it is easier to snip open with scissors from behind.
Paint & Sculpt 4.0
The Chase Guard uses the original Classic Dalek design without the mid-section slats. It features the same colour scheme as the Jungles of Mechanus 'movie' Daleks with a blue-silver base shade, metallic blue hemispheres and domes and a gold midsection trim. The base is back to the slimline base and the eyes are the smaller ridged lights of the original Dead Planet Daleks. The Chase Guard should not by right have any base to be fully screen accurate but including it was the only real choice Character had to ensure the figure looked finish and the inner gubbings was no exposed.
The proportions of the Classic Dalek sculpt is good and the paint is neatly applied with no obvious flaws. The gun and sucker are cast in silver with the sucker end painted in black. The eye stalk feature a full white iris.
The Dalek Drone moves the design on a little to one of the new props built for The Chase with the addition of the new slats. It is painted in the traditional 60's colours with a silver body and sky blue hemispheres. The eye piece remains the same but has a retracted iris via a smaller painted white dot in the centre. The sucker remains as was, while the gun is updated to the ridged version.
Again, painting on this is pretty slick with no obvious flaws on the figure I purchased.
There are no included accessories with the set
Both Daleks have 4 points of articulation with the rotating dome and pivot eye stalk on the head and the ball joint sucker and gun arm that are plugged into the body and can move on a full 360 degree range.
The movement is fine on each appendage, although the eye stalk on my Drone Dalek has arrived misshapen and sits to one side - possibly due to how it was packed.
Each Dalek also runs on three castor wheels, two fixed and one swiveled so they can be pushed along the floor. All of this is in line with what the Daleks on screen (and the original props could do). The only real enhancement that could have been considered would have been a telescoping sucker arm - which would be difficult at the scale.
I do like the History of the Daleks premis, and it looks like Character and B&M are going to go in story order with these. The issue with that is a bit of buyer fatigue as by the time we hit the 2nd Doctor era we will have had 5 sets of Silver/Blue Daleks and the Troughton era is going to add two more sets before we get to the grey variants in the 3rd and 4th Doctor era.
This set gives us the Chase Guard for those who missed it when it was released as an FX Dalek and adds another Drone for army builders. The Daleks are well done and nicely painted with no obvious paint errors that the earlier 2020 sets and the Big Finish Dalek sets had suffered with.
THe packaging continues to annoy me in that the design actually hides half of one of the figure. I am also not a fan of the very extensive background text - it leaves nothing to the imagination and that would create a desire to go and learn more about the story. These text segments are also riddled with errors including spelling and grammatical errors with this set.
I score the History of the Daleks Set #3 a total of 3.5.
About Me : As a child of the 70's and 80's I grew up in a golden age for action figures and in my youth bought and sold myself through collections of Star Wars, G.I. Joe (Action Force) and M.A.S.K. while also dabbling in He-Man, Transformers and Ghostbusters. Roll forward and I am now reliving that Youth with the action figures of today and am a collector and fan of the larger 6-8 inch figures from my favourite movie and TV licences - including the ones mentioned above, but also the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Doctor Who and the Aliens. I launched The Mephitsu Archives in 2015 with a view of creating a UK focused site or these figures where fans can pick up the latest action figure news, read reviews and get information on where to buy their figures and what is currently on store shelves. I hope I am delivering that to you guys...
action figures, reviews, review, articulation, character options, character toys, B&M stores, daleks, the chase