Tuesday 5 March 2013

Custom Figure: Dalek Time Controller

 Dalek Time Controller Custom 01

If you're a fan of the classic Doctor Who series and haven't heard any of Big Finish's audio adventures, then you really need to do something about that. Not only have they been able to flesh out Paul McGann's 8th Doctor incarnation into a really good character, but since they aren't limited by the budget of the TV series they've been able to pull off some really ambitious and large-scale stories. The Dalek stories have particularly benefited from this (mostly thanks to the brilliant writing of Nicholas Briggs) and have recently been hinting at events that may lead to the infamous Time War. Starring in the audios Patient Zero, Lucie Miller/To The Death and the more recent Dark Eyes set, I give you the Dalek Time Controller....

Dalek Time Controller Artwork from To The Death and Dark Eyes

The Dalek Time Controller is a Dalek from the far future which was created with an evolved mind that allowed it to perceive time in a more advanced manner than a standard Dalek, as well its mind existing outside of time (so if events are undone, it will still remember them) . Consequently, the Dalek Time Controller was given the position of strategist for all Dalek time missions. It has a blue/grey/black colourscheme (later blue/silver/black in Dark Eyes), with an elongated neck section surrounded by a curved "X" shape.

Without giving too much away about the character, the Dalek Time Controller is one of the greatest Daleks the series has come up with. It's pure Dalek, but is able to communicate in a much more Davros-esque way with the Doctor - leading to much better exchanges. Once I heard it in the audios I knew I had to make one, and thankfully To The Death had a piece of artwork I could work from. I started this project before buying Dark Eyes, so opted for the grey colouring rather than the silver.

Dalek Time Controller Custom 02

The Dalek Time Controller was made using a "Day of the Daleks" Supreme Dalek as a base, with donated parts from a "Dalek Invasion of Earth" saucer pilot. While it isn't vital that these are the Daleks you use, you will need one that has a meshed slat section and a 60s Dalek for the correct eye stalk. I happened to use those two because I managed to get a Classic Dalek set 2 for cheap and the Emperor Guard Dalek had already been used to make the 1965 Supreme Dalek.

Dalek Time Controller Custom 03 Dalek Time Controller Custom 04

Firstly the Supreme Dalek was taken completely apart and the middle section heavily modded. The meshed slat section was cut in half so it only covered the back of the Dalek, the gunbox section filed down and the main body cut back to accommodate the extra neck pieces. Meanwhile the extra neck pieces were taken from the saucer pilot and cut to shape, so that they fit snuggly in the new free space. The Dalek was painted before the new neck section was added, which was superglued together and then fit tightly onto the body.

Dalek Time Controller Custom 05Dalek Time Controller Custom 06

Once the painting was complete, it was time to move on to sculpting the "X". I used air-clay to mould it around the Dalek, and as you might have noticed it's thicker than the on the artwork. This is mostly because modelling anything thinner and getting it to stay together and stuck in that shape proved to be a pain. Once that was dried, the clay was painted and glossed to give it some extra strength.

Dalek Time Controller Custom 07

And there we have it! The Dalek Time Controller retains all the articulation he originally had, although the appendages and eye stalk are now stiffer because of the added paint. The paints used for the model were Revell ultramarine blue, anthracite grey and Citadel Chaos Black. The lights were also painted white due to a mishap with undercoating early on, but I think it suits the figure quite well.

Dalek Time Controller Custom 08

Lucie Miller/To The Death remains my favourite Doctor Who audio and the Dark Eyes set was excellent too, so I'm extremely happy to welcome the Dalek Time Controller into my collection. Now I just need to get a second 8th Doctor for him to do battle with (as my current one is MISB). It's a pity they never did a Dream Lord figure, as he would have doubled nicely as Coltress...

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