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When did the BBC first show the Daleks in the British television series Doctor Who?

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February 01, 2010 8:50PM

The Daleks first appeared on the 21st November 1963, briefly as a "cliffhanger" ending to the episode 'The Dead Planet' - only the fifth Doctor Who episode. However, all that is seen at the end of this episode is the sucker arm.

In the next episode, 'The Survivors', the Daleks are seen in full for the first time. These two episodes, and the next five ('The Escape', 'The Ambush', 'The Expedition', 'The Ordeal' and 'The Rescue') make up a seven-part serial, most commonly referred to under the collective title of "The Daleks". The last of these episodes aired on 1st February 1964. The Daleks were the creation of a young Welsh writer by the name of Terry Nation, who had, just prior to his being commissioned to write for Dr Who, been submitting material for the comic, Tony Hancock. Nation's brief for the design of the Daleks was by no means comprehensive and the task of realising the monsters for the small screen fell to BBC designer, Raymond Cusick. It was he who came up with the now famous pepperpot shape etc. And it has to said that it was this unique alien design which popularised the Daleks as much as the name Dalek itself. The other feature of the Daleks which endeared them to the British viewers was of course their grating metallic voices. These were produced by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop's Brian Hodgson using a ring modulator, which treated the voices of the actors using it. The original Dalek voices were spoken by actors Peter Hawkins (of Bill and Ben, Captain Pugwash fame etc), and Gerry Anderson voice artiste, David Graham. They would both voice the metal meanies for all of William Hartnell's adventures featuring the monsters from Skaro. Roy Skelton later took over from Graham for the classic Troughton story "The Evil of the Daleks", and would remain the main voice of the Daleks throughout the remainder of the show's original run. The Dalek operators for that very first story included the late Robert Jewell, the late Kevin Manser, the late Michael Summerton and Peter Murphy (Murphy Grumbar).