The top ten: Ways of defeating the Daleks
John Rentoul is chief political commentator for The Independent on Sunday, and visiting professor at King's College, London, and at Queen Mary University of London. Previously he was chief leader writer for The Independent. He has written a biography of Tony Blair, whom he admired more at the end of his time in office than he did at the beginning.
Sunday 17 November 2013
'There's a problem with the Daleks,' said Steven Moffat, producer of 'Doctor Who', which marks its 50th anniversary this week. 'They have been defeated by the Doctor about 400 times. Surely they should just see the Tardis approaching, say, "Oh. It's him," and trudge away.' Here, thanks to Cavan Scott and Mark Wright, are just a few of their weaknesses...
1. Stick mud in the Dalek's eye and push it over a cape to insulate it from its power supply. First and best method.
2. Dig a hole in the desert, cover it with an old cardigan, get a Dalek to chase you and hope it falls in.
3. Leave a cooling duct open If you're lucky, a burst of ice will engulf passing Daleks at just the right moment.
4. Blast it with a directional ultrasonic beam of rock'n'roll.
5. Push it into a mirrored corridor It will be exterminated by its own ricocheting death ray.
6. Topple it out of a third-storey warehouse door.
7. If you are Davros, modify the Movellan virus to eradicate your own creations. But make sure you are not susceptible to the plague yourself. Whoops.
8. Get it to make a mistake Some Daleks are so self-critical that they'll overreact and self-destruct.
9. Get it to absorb human DNA It will question its own existence and exterminate itself.
10. Stare into the heart of the Tardis, giving you the power to delete the Daleks from history. The downside is you start to die. Upside is the Doctor kisses you, absorbs the power and regenerates.
Next week: Gender-ambiguous MPs' names
Coming soon: Monarchs of England 1066-1707: judged on leaving the country in better shape than found. Send your suggestions (by 26 November), along with ideas for any future Top 10s, to firstname.lastname@example.org
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