Short thoughts on Doctor Who, disc by disc (originally published June 2012)
Destiny of the Daleks
Tonight’s soundtrack: KMFDM, “Megalomaniac”
Daleks versus Silver Disco Rick Jamesbots? Not terribly gripping. We’re told of their galactic conflict and subsequent stalemate, never shown it.
Daleks versus human armies? A joke. It’s like watching the grass get mown. You’re gonna care about an individual blade?
Daleks versus Cybermen? Even worse. Grass in combat boots getting mown.
Daleks versus Time Lords? Philosophically interesting, but again it takes place off-screen. Plus, it’s just realities getting overwritten by exterminating increasingly primitive butterfly ancestors. You’d only see a flickering screen.
Daleks versus Daleks? Another stalemate. And loud. Everyone in the universe would be living downstairs from an internet forum read aloud by an amplified Speak ’n’ Spell.
No. Here’s the trick I think they missed:
Daleks versus Bruce Lee.
Bruce Lee’s philosophy, his flexibility of technique and rejection of authority, combined with his focus on—hang up, sorry, no. I was going to make a big thing about Lee and the Daleks being perfect opposites and yet containing each other when I realized I just want to see some eyestalks getting kicked off heids.
You might think that would be a bit of an action let down, given that Daleks know very little plunger-to-hand combat. Thing is, Game of Death-style, Lee will have already faced Robo-men, Ogrons, the Master, and a little school girl before he gets to actual Daleks. By the time he’s ripping them out of their domes and squeezing their little squid bodies with one fist, it’s pure catharsis, baby.
* * *
“The tools, your natural weapons, have a double purpose:
1. To destroy the opponent in front of you - annihilation of things that stand in the way of peace, justice and humanity.
2. To destroy your own impulses caused by the instincts of self-preservation. To destroy anything bothering your mind. Not to hurt anyone, but to overcome your own greed, anger and folly. Jeet Kune Do is directed toward oneself.”
-Tao of Jeet Kune Do,
Bruce Lee, Dalek Killer