Yessir, we’re back with more Classic Who figures, and this time Character Options is taking us all the way back to 1965, when Doctor Who audiences embarked on the extra long serial known as “The Chase.” It was a meandering, exciting and sometimes silly epic in which The Daleks built their own time machine and set about to hunt The TARDIS’ crew through time in an effort to, well what else? EXTERMINATE THEM!!!! This what you might call a cracker of an serial as it not only featured the return of The Doctor’s most popular enemies, but it also introduced The Mechanoids, a race of mechanical killing machines that were created by the writers with the express purpose of giving The Daleks a run for their money. In the end it was more of a stalemate through mutual destruction, but I’m sure it was a ratings draw nonetheless. The serial was also noteworthy for seeing the departure of The Doctor’s first two companions, Ian Chesterton and Barbara Wright. And hey, The Beatles even made a guest appearance… or sorts. It was also actually the first time that we saw Daleks in Manhatten. Suck on that nuWho! But enough with the history lessons. The fact that this set exists is giving me goosebumps so let’s get on it with it.
The set comes in the gorgeous new retro-styled deco with the appropriately classic series logo. As usual it’s a window box, but this time there isn’t a printed backdrop insert, but rather just a colored backdrop that matches the box deco. I’d be lying if I said I wouldn’t have preferred a backdrop, but that’s fine. The set is a lot bigger than most of the other sets we’ve seen, mainly because The Mechanoid is pretty big by itself and when you toss a couple of Daleks into the mix, you need some serious real estate inside that package. As you can see, the set includes one Mechanoid and two Daleks. Let’s start with the Daleks.
The two Daleks are identical and are extremely close to the Daleks in the introductory episode and released by CO as a figure in the first of the two Dalek 3-packs way back when. In fact, these are practically identical to that figure except for the addition of the mesh wrap around and “shoulder slats” that have become common in pretty much all Daleks since. They even feature the same silver paint job with baby blue spheres that was used in the very first story. Next to the gun metal blue of the late 70’s Daleks, I think this is my favorite color scheme of them all. If you’ve collected your share of CO’s Dalek figures then you know the paintwork can be hit or miss and this pair of figures is a great example of that. One of them is absolutely perfect. The other one has a huge blue smudge right in the front middle of his apron.
Articulation on these guys is what you should expect by now. They roll around on three spinning wheels concealed beneath their aprons. Their sucker arm and gun arm are both secured with ball joints and you can pop them off if you want to create double sucker Daleks or double gun Daleks. Their heads turn 360-degrees and their eye stalks can look upward.
And then there’s The Mechanoid. Designed by humans to tame planets for colonization, these giant balls were more likely outfitted with their gizmos to be able to deforest areas or take care of hostile wildlife. But those gizmos work just as well in dealing out death to Dalek fools. If you were expecting a hollow rotocast blob, think again, as this is a nice hefty toy that outdoes the Daleks by rolling around on not three, but five wheels. Take that Daleks! It has a single stalk arm that houses a flame thrower, two pincer arms that fold out from its hemisphere and a sensor module that can rise and retract from the top of its globe. The flame thrower arm can be swapped out with an arm that doesn’t have the molded flame on it, if you prefer to display your Mechanoid in a more docile posture.
The cost of this battle in a box? Well, it’s right around the same fifty bucks that most of CO’s recent multi-figure packs are running. If you figure The Daleks at about fifteen bucks a piece and The Mechanoid at twenty, well… it still seems like a good chunk of change. On the other hand, this is easily the best army building pack that CO has put out. Even the old Dalek 3-packs each came with a Supreme that would have been redundant. This set gives you two awesome Daleks and the new Mechanoid and I gotta say, I’m really tempted to pick up a second one while I can. Unfortunately, with so many other Doctor Who sets coming up, I think I’d best save my monies. But even so, I can’t help but look at this set as pure loving fanservice. I probably first saw this serial about 25 years ago when I was 15 and I could never have dreamed to own these figures back then. And now I do! Life is awesome!