A suitable casing for treatment

Dear Johnny Fanboy,

In the first-ever Doctor Who Dalek story, er, The Daleks, the First Doctor and Ian Chesterton remove a Dalek mutant from its casing so that Ian can hide inside it.

However, whenever we have seen inside a Dalek casing in later stories, such as The Five Doctors, Resurrection of the Daleks and Dalek, all the excess space surrounding the creature has been taken up by machinery. So how can Ian fit inside?

Adam Leigh

Johnny Fanboy replies:

The Daleks have evolved over the years, not only in terms of the technological development of their casings - such as the addition of vertical slats, from The Chase onwards, and the deployment of personal force fields, from Dalek onwards - but also in terms of the mutation of their bodies. For example, they have hands in The Daleks, whereas their only visible appendages in The Five Doctors and Resurrection of the Daleks are tentacles. The imperial Daleks possess crustacean-like claws in Remembrance of the Daleks, in which the Doctor remarks that, "They've mutated again," while the creatures seen in the new TV series have developed a single eye that we've never seen before.

Therefore it's possible that the mutants seen in later series have changed in size and/or need more equipment to support them or to carry out additional functions. It may be that the travel machine seen in The Daleks has plenty of room for Ian to get inside, even though he wouldn't have been able to do the same with casings seen in subsequent stories.

An alternative, and far simpler, explanation would be to assume that the Doctor and Ian remove some excess equipment before Ian climbs inside. While the camera is on Barbara and Susan, who are guarding the corridor outside, we do not see what the Doctor and Ian do between removing the mutant and Ian entering the machine.

Case closed.

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