Thursday, 14 May 2020

Custom Figure: Dr. Who & the Daleks (Movie) Black Dalek

Custom Black Movie Dalek 01

For the last of my three Character Options Dalek figures I recently acquired to do customs with, I decided to do something a little more popular. The 1960s Dalek movies starring Peter Cushing boast some of the most impressive looking and colourful classic-style Daleks out there, but sadly for whatever reason they’ve been overlooked by the current Doctor Who toy line. While previously I’ve done a simple base/light swap to make a Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150AD standard Dalek, but that definitely wasn’t enough. Time to bring in the big cheese himself - the Black Dalek from 1965’s Dr. Who and the Daleks.

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With the exception of perhaps the Supreme Dalek from Planet of the Daleks, the Dalek leader from Dr. Who and the Daleks is undoubtedly the fanciest black Dalek around. If the oversized fender and dome lights weren't enough to make it stand out from the crowd, the alternating gold and silver pattern of its neck rings and hemispheres certainly does. It's a great design that's only ever received one official toy - a remote controlled version from Product Enterprise in the early 00s. Theirs had one glaring inaccuracy though - a claw arm instead of the standard plunger. This is likely because they only produced the one arm for the three variants, but it's inaccurate nonetheless.

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This custom was built using a Dalek Invasion of Earth Saucer Pilot as the base, with the gold neck rings and appendage ball joints taken from the Day of the Daleks Supreme Dalek. The upper base piece was removed from the fender, leaving only the thicker part to make it truly movie accurate. It was painted using a Tamiya black spray for the body, with the livery hand-painted using Tamiya gold leaf and chrome silver paints. Due to several things going wrong along the way I ended up hand painting the dome (although it was black to begin with the shades didn’t match at all) using a Humbrol gloss black. It didn’t go as well as I hoped and the paint isn’t as even as it could be, but it’ll do. Since the movie Daleks have much larger dome lights the toy’s original ones were quickly removed, and replaced with translucent red LEGO cone pieces. They’re pieces customisers commonly use for movie Daleks, and while they obviously aren’t 100% accurate they certainly get the job done.

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This is easily the most striking black Dalek there is in Doctor Who history and it immediately shows when lined up against any others. Why pick between black/gold and black/silver when you can have both? It’s a godsend that the Dalek Invasion of Earth bases can be dismantled so easily, otherwise the only suitable base there’d be for movie Daleks would be the Planet Supreme. Switching out the ball joints from the Day Supreme also worked out really well too, as I never like painting those things since you inevitably lose some of the poseability unless you mind the paint rubbing. The gold doesn’t quite match up to the shade of the paint, but it’s close enough that it doesn’t look odd. I have no idea what state the rights to the movie Daleks are in these days, but it’s a shame Character have never been able to put out some official ones. A three-pack for Dr. Who and the Daleks would be ideal.

Custom Black Movie Dalek 23

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Despite the dome not coming out as well as I’d hoped I’m still extremely pleased to finally add this iconic movie Dalek to my collection, and have had a lot of fun putting these three customs together. Between a movie Dalek, an audio Dalek and a toy Dalek I like to think I’ve covered all bases to make this trio a truly interesting bunch of customs, and it’s really got me wanting to not only do more but also continue to up my painting game. Whether I’ll get another good deal on classic Daleks any time soon is yet to be seen though. If you happen to be reading this Character Toys - please put out some new classic Dalek sets as B&M exclusives. With all the success you’ve had with the Big Finish sets now is the perfect time to do it, and you’d be making a lot of Doctor Who collectors extremely happy.

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