Life Form: Cybernetic Organism
A Dalek is equipped with:
- A single mechanical eye-stalk mounted on a rotating dome
- A gunstalk containing a 'death ray'
- They can also be fitted with a projectile weapon
- A telescoping robot manipulator arm.
- Adaptation of trays, mechanical claws, or other specialized equipment like flamethrowers and blowtorches.
Dalek casings are made of a bonded polycarbide dubbed 'dalekanium'. The lower half of a Dalek's shell is covered with protrusions — 'Dalek bumps'. These are described as 'sense globes' or sensors and are also part of a self-destruct system. The armor has a forcefield that evaporates most bullets and absorbs most types of energy weapons.
The creature inside the mechanical casing is repulsive in appearance and vicious even without its mechanical armor. The first-ever glimpse of a Dalek mutant was a claw peeking out of the shell. The actual appearance of mutants has varied, but in most cases they are octopoid, multi-tentacled creatures, having one eye and an exposed brain.
In 'Dalek', The Doctor described the Dalek as a genius: it could run through an electronic lock's billion combinations in seconds and download all of the information on the internet into its memory, showing the union of the biological and mechanical components.
For many years, it was thought that due to their gliding motion Daleks were unable to tackle stairts. The Doctor once escaped the Daleks by climbing up a tower and characters escaping up a flight of stairs in the episode 'Dalek' made this same joke. However, the Daleks showed a new ability of being able to hover up the stairs. The various appearances of the Daleks in the new series have featured Daleks hovering and flying using an energy thruster.
History within the show
When the Daleks first appeared, they were presented as the descendants of the Dals, mutated after a brief nuclear war between the Dal and Thal races. However, in a later episode, the Dals were now called Kaleds, and the Dalek design was attributed to one man, the crippled Kaled chief scientist and evil genius, Davros.
Instead of a short nuclear exchange, the Kaled-Thal war was portrayed as a thousand-year-long war fought with nuclear, Biological and chemical weapons causing widespread mutations among the Kaled race. Davros experimented on living Kaled cells to find the ultimate mutated form of the Kaled species and placed the subjects in tank-like 'travel machines'.
The Daleks were thought to have been destroyed by The Doctor in the Time War, along with the race of the Time Lords. However, a single Dalek made an reappearance appearing to be the sole survivor. And later on, The Dalek Emperor returned, having rebuilt the Dalek race with human subjects. These Daleks and their fleet were reduced to subatomic particles in 'The Parting of the Ways'.
Later, the Cult of Skaro were introduced. These was a group of four Daleks: Dalek Sec, Dalek Caan, Dalek Jast, Dalek Thay, who were the only Daleks is existence to be given an imagination so that they could create battle strategies and plans. They had survived the Time War by escaping into the Void between dimensions.
After trying and failing to repopulate the Dalek race and destroy Earth, the Cult of Skaro began experiments that were attempting to force a Dalek evolution by crossing their DNA with humans. Dalek Sec volunteered and became the first human/dalek hybrid, however the three remaining Daleks rebelled and destroyed him. The Cult also attempted to create humans with Dalek personalities but this attempt failed after the Doctor interfered, Jast ahd Thay were destroyed and Caan escaped via another temporal shift. It is believe that Cann is the last remaining Dalek.
The Daleks returned again with Davros, in a bid to conquer the universe. They were defeated in their plan when Donna, as the DoctorDonna destroyed the Daleks and Davros presumably died in the flames.
Broken Dalek saucers were seen outside the smashed Citadel in The End of Time, where it was revealed that the Time Lords planned to have an armistice with the Daleks.
The Daleks returned once again with a new design in 'Victory of the Daleks'.
Episodes appeared: The Daleks, the Chase, the Daleks Master Plan, The Five Doctors (briefly), Genesis of the Daleks, Remembrance of the Daleks, Ressurection of the Daleks, Frontier in Space, Planet of the Daleks, Destiny of the Doctors the Dalek Invasion of Earth, Death to the Daleks, Day of the Daleks, Dalek, Bad Wolf, The Parting of the Ways, Army of Ghosts, Doomsday, Daleks in Manhattan, Evolution of the Daleks, The Stolen Earth, Journey's End, The End of Time (briefly) Victory of the Daleks, The Pandorica Opens, The Big Bang