Tuesday 20 December 2016

Custom Figure: Promotional Blue Classic Dalek

While Character Options have brought out the best selection of Dalek variants by any toy company to date, any Doctor Who (or specifically Dalek) collector will tell you that in-show variants can only give you so much. Between the movies, stage plays, audios, annuals and comics there’s a whole wealth of variants and colour combinations left untapped, and as a customiser bringing these to life in toy form is one of my biggest pleasure. And sometimes some of the most interesting versions aren’t even part of Doctor Who fiction. Over the years companies have used some pretty interesting Daleks as part of various promotions, and although this latest custom isn’t the most extravagant of them it’s certainly one of my favourites.

While I’m not 100% sure on the origins of this particular Dalek model, I do know that it was largely used in promotional materials, photo shoots and events in the mid to late 1990s. appearances include 1993’s Children in Need, the 1995 Doctor Who annual and greeting visitors at the 1994 Doctor Who Day event in Longleat Safari Park (which I was lucky enough to attend). Blue is one of my favourite base colours for a Dalek, and in a time before the New Dalek Paradigm Strategists and Dalek Time Controller they were few and far between. As you can see from the picture above it wasn’t the most immaculate Dalek around, but the colour scheme really makes it stand out from the usual variants. Dapol produced a similar version which was among my favourite Dalek toys growing up, so I leaped at the chance of recreating it with the far more accurate Character Options mould.

This custom was made from a 1965 Dalek from The Chase collectors’ set with the eyestalk swapped out for that of the gold Day of the Daleks Supreme Dalek. As such it isn’t 100% accurate to the original design (lacking the oval dome lights, ridged base and simpler gunstick) but close enough to mirror it. It was painted using Humbrol metallic blue as the base, Humbrol silver for the eyestalk and then Citadel’s Abaddon black, Skavenblight grey and Ceramight white for the trimmings.

It’s an odd variant to be so passionate about but growing up with Doctor Who off the air it’s a version that sticks out particularly in my mind, most likely because of the Longleat event but also because of the memories flicking through that Doctor Who annual. As well as more movie Daleks this is the kind of thing I really want to tackle when it comes to customs now, slowly building up my ranks with more and more obscure variants.

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