[[caption-width-right:350:"[[WhatYouAreInTheDark Do I have the right?]]"]]

->''"I know that although the Daleks will create havoc and destruction for millions of years, I know also, that out of their evil, must come something good."''
-->-- '''The Doctor''' (pondering [[ContemplateOurNavels his navel]])

The one where Harry gets his leg stuck in a fibreglass clam.

"Genesis" begins with the Doctor and companions being hijacked on their way back to Nerva Beacon and deposited instead on [[Recap/DoctorWhoS1E2TheDaleks Skaro, home planet of the Daleks]]. The planet is at an early stage in its history, with a long war of attrition currently ongoing between its two human-like native races, the Kaleds and the Thals. The ultimate result of this war is that the Kaleds will inevitably mutate due to the high "[[NuclearWeaponsTaboo chemical]]" levels. They've built themselves travel casings to remain mobile -- and as we all know, these will enable them to become the Daleks. The Time Lords instruct the Doctor to either prevent this entirely, or divert the Daleks' development into a more peaceful form, or -- failing that -- destroy them. They give him a "Time Ring" to allow him to return to the TARDIS once this is done.

The Doctor and companions make their way past horrific mutants, victims of the war's "[[NuclearWeaponsTaboo chemical]]" exchanges, into the Kaled bunker, where truly frightening crippled mad scientist Davros and his henchman Nyder are conducting genetic experiments. They plan to discover the final form of mutation for the Kaled race and develope a new "Travel Casing" for the results, which Sarah and the Doctor instantly recognize as a Dalek. The Doctor and Harry escape from the bunker and persuade the Kaled leaders to put a stop to the experiments, but Davros colludes with the Thals to open the Kaled City's defenses and allow it to be destroyed. He then activates his experimental Daleks and uses them to kill the Thals.

The Doctor makes his way back into the bunker and sets explosives on the Dalek breeding tanks, needing only to touch two wires together to prevent the Daleks from ever existing. However, he can't bring himself to commit genocide, and reasons that much good will eventually come out of the undoubted evil of the Daleks, and who is he to play god like this [[ContemplateOurNavels and so on]]. This fascinating debate is then interrupted by the arrival of a Dalek, forcing the doctor to drop the wires and leg it. As the Dalek pursues it runs over the wires, blowing up the tank anyway.

Meanwhile, some of Davros's fellow scientists are uneasy about the experiments and demand they be stopped. Davros turns the Daleks on them, but his creations then turn on their creator and Davros himself is exterminated. Thals who survived the massacre destroy the entrance to the bunker, sealing the Daleks inside, while the Doctor and co make an escape thanks to the Time Ring. The Doctor estimates that his interference will have put the development of the Daleks back by a thousand years... but instead it's the catalyst for events that nearly destroy him and the whole of creation. [[{{Foreshadowing}} Because after all, when it comes to war,]] [[HarsherInHindsight someone has to fire the first shot...]]

One of very few serials not to involve the TARDIS even by implication: the Doctor and companions arrive by transmat beam, and leave by Time Ring.


* AbsoluteXenophobe: The Daleks though Davros isn't far behind them in terms of Xenophobia, either!
* AbusivePrecursors: The Daleks inherited their racist beliefs and a ruined Skaro from the Kaleds.
* AintTooProudToBeg: In the last episode, Davros actually begs the Daleks to spare the remaining Kaled scientists. It doesn't work.
-->'''Davros:''' These men are scientists, they can help you! Let them live! Have ''pity!''
-->'''Dalek:''' [[foldercontrol]]

[[folder: "Pi-ty?" I have no understand of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE! ]]

* AirVentPassageway: Used multiple times, if somewhat deconstructed: it gets you in and out of places, but it's by no means a stealthy way to do so.
* AlwaysSaveTheGirl: Davros forces the Doctor to give him information about future Dalek defeats by torturing Sarah Jane [[DistressedDude and Harry]].
* ArmorPiercingQuestion: The Doctor, on the verge of destroying the Daleks, pierces his own armor welded together with thoughts such as "Daleks are Evil," "The Ends Justify The Means," "You are better than them anyway," "Even your own people want this to happen," and "You're under orders to destroy them." His dilemma into the moral rightness and the fact the Daleks will produce some good in the form of forces who would be antagonistic toward one and another join together in fear of a common foe lead him to hesitate long enough until another option comes about.
* AssholeVictim: It's hard to feel sorry for Nyder when the Daleks kill him carrying out an order of Davros against their will.
* BadFuture: What prompts the Time Lords to draft the Doctor, having foreseen a time when the Daleks will have killed all other lifeforms in existence.
* BadGuysDoTheDirtyWork: When the Doctor can't bring himself to blow up the Dalek incubation chamber, a Dalek sees him. When trying to pursue the Doctor, it drives over the wires, making the bomb explode.
* BBCQuarry: Skaro, of course.
* BeastAndBeauty: The mutants want to kill Sarah [[FantasticRacism because she's not one of them]].
-->'''Sevrin:''' She's beautiful. No deformities, no imperfections.\\
'''Gerrill:''' She is a norm. All norms are our enemies. Kill her now for what she's done to our kind.\\
'''Sevrin:''' No, why? Why must we always destroy beauty? Why kill another creature because it is not in our image?
* BewareTheSillyOnes: The Doctor threatens to shut off Davros' life support system to coerce him into destroying the Daleks, and he '''meant''' ''every word'' of it.
* BizarreAlienBiology: Hinted at with the Kaleds, given when they look at The Doctor and Harry's bio-scans, they've got no idea what they're seeing.
* BlackAndGrayMorality: Both Davros and the Daleks are portrayed as utterly evil, with the Thals and Kaleds paling in comparison. However, the war between the two races is GrayAndGrayMorality at best and comes very close to being BlackAndBlackMorality. The Kaleds are Nazi allegories who desire the destruction of the Thals, while the Thals use disposable slave labor to build weapons and murder the vast majority of the Kaleds to bring about peace, a sentiment Davros himself echoes later in the story.
* BlasphemousBoast: Davros boasts that with the Daleks he'll become mightier than the Gods.
* BlatantLies: Davros claims the Daleks' guns are for self-defense.
* BystanderSyndrome: No-one dares defend Ronson from Davros and his accusations.
* ButtMonkey: Lampshaded by Harry during his encounter with the clam: "Why is it always me that puts a foot in it!?".
* CapsLockNumLockMissilesLock: Happens twice! First with Davros' chair is equipped with a button that will turn off his life support and kill him in 30 seconds, placed right next to all of his other controls, which could easily be accidentally hit, considering he [[EvilCripple barely has any control over his only functioning hand.]] And, also, the rocket which the Thals plan to use to destroy the Kaleds has two buttons right next to one another on its main control. Fire and Destruct.
* TheChessmaster: Davros, and spectacularly so. Watch closely -- for the whole 6 episodes, he is not so much as momentarily inconvenienced by ''any'' of the events of the serial until the very end.
* ChromosomeCasting: Apart from Sarah, the only female character is Bettan. And she was originally a man.
* ChronicBackstabbingDisorder: Davros has a particularly developed case, which gives the fact that he does not foresee the Daleks' betrayal of him a nice sense of irony.
* ClamTrap: In a [[MemeticMutation memetically]] {{Narm}}y moment, Harry Sullivan somehow manages to accidentally step into a giant terrestrial mollusk that [[EvilutionaryBiologist Davros]] created, and get trapped by it. In the sixth and final episode, the Doctor, Harry and Sarah are confronted by ''three'' of them, and must dramatically leap over the utterly still clams to reach safety.
* CliffhangerCopout: A notorious example in the episode two/three cliffhanger, where Sarah falls from a great height while climbing the access tower of the Thal rocket... and lands on a platform just below her that definitely should have been visible in the previous episode.
* CombatBreakdown: The war on Skaro that led to the Daleks' creation is an extremely large scale example, as it went on for so long that both sides began running out of resources to power their more advanced weapons and resorted to using gunpowder-based weapons, bows and arrows, etc.
* CosmeticallyAdvancedPrequel: The Doctor describes the prototype Daleks as 'primitive', but they're still portrayed by 1970s-style props, rather than the older 1960s design.
* CrapsackWorld: Want to know why the Daleks are the wonderful caring culture they are? Look at where they came from.
* CruelAndUnusualDeath: Poor [[TheScapegoat Ronson]] doesn't die instantly from the Dalek's rays like everyone else does.
* DarkerAndEdgier: One of the grimmest, bleakest stories the series ever did.
* DemocracyIsBad: Gharman proposes that the Dalek project be scrapped and the Kaleds continue under a democratically elected leader. Using Gharman's proposal of democracy to his advantage, Davros demands a vote between loyalty to Gharman and his plans, or continuing the Dalek project under himself. In private, he says the following to Nyder: "They talk of democracy, freedom, fairness. Those are the creeds of cowards. The ones who will listen to a thousand viewpoints and try to satisfy them all. Achievement comes through absolute power, and power through strength." Davros gains support in the election by calling on old favours he did for members of the opposition. And after still losing out in the vote, Davros decides to [[BoardToDeath kill off Gharman and his opposition]] by inviting the Daleks to join the election.
* DisneyDeath: Following the Thals' missile strike against the Kaled City, the Doctor believes Harry and Sarah Jane (whom he had sent to warn the Kaled leaders) had died in the attack. In fact, they had been waylaid by Mutos and never even reached the Kaled City.
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: The Thals have blonde hair and are warriors, the Kaleds have brown hair and are scientists. Now consider what the Daleks were inspired by, and their combined legacy is the Daleks...
* DoomedByCanon: The Doctor is sent back in time to destroy the Daleks before they can even be created. However, because of the number of adventures involving the Daleks, this is clearly not possible.
* DomedHometown: The Thal Dome and the Kaled Dome. One gets betrayed and nuked. The other gets overrun by the Fell Saltshakers.
* TheDragon: Nyder, Davros's nearly emotionless right-hand man.
* DressingAsTheEnemy: The Doctor and Harry dress in Thal uniform in order to rescue Sarah Jane. The Doctor gestures to the guard, who comes over, and the Doctor blocks his exit while Harry goes in for a GroinAttack that leaves him unconscious. Later, Harry dresses in the Kaled Military Elite uniform to rescue the Doctor from Nyder.
* EasilyForgiven: The Thal leader decides that the first act of peace will be to release all prisoners of war.
* EnemyMine: When the Doctor has the chance to destroy the Daleks at their creation, one of the reasons he gives against this is that otherwise hostile races would be forced into alliances due to this.
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Even Nazi-analog Kaleds find Davros' scheme abhorrent.
** Likewise, Davros is quite upset when the Daleks kill Nyder, and when they move to kill his only other loyal supporters too, he is shocked and tries to think up reasons for why the Daleks ought to let the men live.
** Nyder subverts this when this when told by Davros of his plans to exterminate the Kaleds as well as the Thalls, for a moment he seems truly shocked that Davros would really do such a thing, before immediately deciding he did not care.
* EvilCannotComprehendGood: Davros truly, honestly believes that the Daleks killing everything other lifeform will be a good thing.
-->'''Davros:''' When all other lifeforms are supressed, and the Daleks are the ultimate rulers of the universe, then we will have peace. Wars will end.
* EvilCripple: Davros. A truly frightening portrayal, especially the way he moves his one remaining hand.
* EvilVsEvil: The war between the Kaleds and the Thals started out as BlackAndGrayMorality or even BlackAndWhiteMorality, but by the start of the story, it had become very close to being Evil Versus Evil: the Daleks and Thals are both prepared to commit outright genocide against the others (which the Thals actually do, although their genocide is not complete), and the Thals (who up until that episode had been presented rather sympathetically) utilise slave labour and do not care in the slightest about the mortality rate of their slaves. Despite that, the Kaleds and Thals are both presented as generally less evil than the Daleks and Davros, and in a clear case of EvenEvilHasStandards, plenty of Kaleds are appalled by Davros' genetic manipulation of the Daleks into {{Omnicidal Maniac}}s. Indeed, more Kaleds are presented sympathetically in this episode than unsympathetically, despite the fact that the episode doesn't scrimp on the not-very-subtle Nazi allegory and makes it plain that Kaled society at large is monstrous.[[note]](While the Thals' more monstrous portrayal in this episode might seem to be a case of HeWhoFightsMonsters or TookALevelInJerkass, this episode was set ''before'' any other portrayal of the Thals, so this would mean that chronologically, this would be an ''inversion'' of TookALevelInJerkass. On the other hand, the war is described as having gone on for hundreds of years, so it is quite possible that neither the Thals nor the Daleks were anywhere near so monstrous at the start of the war).[[/note]] It's revealed in the ''first'' Dalek story from the Thals themselves that there weren't "good guys" during the original war, have changed in the years since, and aren't proud of their history. They wonder if the Daleks, whom they haven't seen in a while, have un-taken their level in {{Jerkass}}. ([[OmnicidalManiac They haven't, of course]].)
* FantasticRacism: This serial shows that on pre-Dalek Skaro, the Kaleds (the race that became the Daleks) and the Thals hated each other, and both of them hated the mutants (who hate the 'norms' in turn), to the point that the Thals (who were usually shown as pacifist allies of the Doctor) used them as slave labor.
--> '''Nyder:''' We must keep the Kaled race pure. Imperfects are rejected.
* {{Fanvid}}: The Doctor tells Davros the [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fACWbQZ-1_k cause of every Dalek defeat]]. [[VillainBall They're stupid.]]
* FlashbackToCatchphrase: The Kaled scientists use the word exterminate a lot in their normal conversation. Then the Daleks show up, and '''EXTERMINATE''' was born...
* ForTheEvulz: Davros is posed a philosophical question by the Doctor: "If you had a virus that, when released, would kill everyone in the universe, would you release it?" Davros' answer is that yes, he would release it, for no other reason than because he could.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: During the first episode, The Doctor and Harry are dragged into a bunker and meet the fanatical General Ravon, who begins ranting (''very loudly'') about how the Kaleds will end the war soon. And then there's this part:
-->'''Ravon:''' We will avenge the deaths of our fallen brothers and sisters, and build a peace that will be a monument to their sacrifice! Our battlecry will be '''TOTAL EXTERMINATION OF THE ''THALS!'''''
* ForeverWar: The conflict between the Kaleds and the Thals has been going on for a thousand years.
* FourEyesZeroSoul: The repellent Nyder.
* GasMaskMooks: Both the Kaleds and the Thals use these; [[JustifiedTrope justified]] in that we see poison gas used as a weapon on-screen, WWI-style, with the protagonists nearly succumbing to it before being rescued.
* GenghisGambit: This is one of the reasons the Doctor refuses to destroy the Daleks at their very beginning.
-->''You see, some things could be better with the Daleks. Many future worlds will become allies just because of their fear of the Daleks.''
* GenocideDilemma:
** The Doctor posses this question to Davros: If he had a virus in a capsule that would destroy every living entity in the universe, would you release it? Davros, after brief consideration, screams with joy he would do it.
** The Doctor, on the other hand, found himself with the means and ability to wipe out the Daleks forever. His debate and rationalization of the permissibility of this action, of what it would turn him into if he did the very thing that he condemns the Daleks for doing, eventually leads him to not doing it.
** Of course, since The Daleks were pretty much ''programmed'' to feel nothing but hate and rage for other lifeforms, The Doctor ''really'' should have known a false equivalency when he saw it.
* GenocideFromTheInside: Davros helps the Thals to wipe out the other Kaleds when the Doctor persuades the Kaled government to try to end the Dalek project.
* GenreBlindness: Pretty much no one sees Davros' constant betrayals coming, despite the fact that he is ObviouslyEvil. Davros himself has a case of this when he expects the Daleks not to turn on him.
* GoalOrientedEvolution: Davros worked out what the Kaled race was going to evolve into as a result of the centuries-long ABC war they'd been having with the Thals (apparently it was a green blob that would require a motorised dustbin if it was going to get around).
* GoodCannotComprehendEvil: Garman just '''doesn't''' get that Davros is an utter monster, and honestly thinks he'll go quietly.
* GoneHorriblyRight: You wanted merciless half-machine beings that bowed to nobody and nothing, Davros? You got it.
* HateSink: Davros is truly terrifying, but at least he's kind of fun. Not so for Nyder, his repugnant, emotionless right-hand man.
* HeelFaceTurn: Practically every character that turns out to be a good guy starts of pretty ambiguously.
* HeroicBSOD: The Doctor (briefly) goes depressed when he thinks Sarah and Harry are killed by the Thal missile.
* HitlersTimeTravelExemptionAct: Discussed.
--> "If someone who knew the future pointed out a child to you and told you that that child would grow up totally evil, to be a ruthless dictator who would destroy millions of lives... [[Recap/DoctorWhoS35E1TheMagiciansApprentice could you then kill that child?]]"
* HoistByHisOwnPetard: They wanted unstoppable powerful killing machines. They got it.
* HopelessWar: The Thal-Kaled War has been going on for years and years, and both sides are technologically regressing with no hope of breaking the stalemate and no appetite for a peaceful solution. (The Davros-centric AudioPlay/BigFinishDoctorWho audios make it '''even worse''').
* HumanoidAlien: The Kaleds look like humans with brown or dark hair, while the Thals have blonde hair.
* {{Hypocrite}}: The Kaleds look down on mutants and are big believers in racial purity, and yet their chief scientist Davros was crippled and mutated into something only vaguely human and it did nothing to lower his standing in Kaled society.
* IfYouKillHimYouWillBeJustLikeHim: Spelled out for the viewer in almost those exact words by the Doctor as he tries to rationalize his act of genocide.
* ImprobableAge: {{Lampshaded}} with General Ravon, who would owe his rank to both his fanatical dedication to the Kaled cause and the fact that he started as a ChildSoldier.
* IrrevocableOrder: The Doctor '''almost''' gets Davros to do this. The Doctor has control of Davros' life support system and tells him to give the order to destroy the proto-Daleks or else he'll turn it off.
-->'''Davros:''' This is Davros. Elite unit seven will go to the incubator room. All survival maintenance systems are to be closed down. The Dalek creatures are to be destroyed.\\
'''Doctor:''' Tell them the order cannot be countermanded.\\
'''Davros:''' This order cannot--\\
''Nyder knocks out the Doctor from behind''\\
'''Davros:''' This is Davros, this is Davros. My last order is cancelled, repeat, cancelled. No action is to be taken.
* ItIsDehumanising: Thal soldiers refer to all Mutos as "it", even Sarah when they think she is one.
* ItsAllAboutMe: The Kaled government threatens to delay Davros's works? Davros engineers the destruction of the entire Kaled city.
* JokerImmunity: The ''real'' reason the Doctor couldn't bring himself to wipe out the Daleks.
* KillerRabbit: During their trip to the Thal city, Harry gets attacked by a savage ''clam!'' Apparently it's one of Davros' old experiments.
* LackOfEmpathy: The Daleks, as well as Nyder, Davros' soulless right-hand man.
* LandMineGoesClick: The Doctor steps on a partially-buried mine in the rubble of Skaro, and Harry has to wedge rocks under the mine so that he can lift his foot off it without it going off.
* LiteralCliffhanger: Episode 2 ends with Sarah losing her balance on a high scaffold.
* MadScientist: Davros. Duh.
* MeaningfulName: TheDragon is called Nyder. "Neidr", pronounced the same way, is Welsh for "snake". Although, as many fans have pointed out, it's Gharman who is the one who tries to give the Daleks knowledge of good and evil, not Nyder.
* {{Mutants}}: Both the mutos, who live in the wastelands, and the results of Davros's animal tests, that live in the caves.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: The Kaleds believed there were no such things as aliens, due to Davros having "proven" that in the ''seven'' galaxies they know of there was no other life. And then they met The Doctor. Oops.
* NoCelebritiesWereHarmed:
** Nyder is blatantly Skaro's morphic-resonance copy of Heinrich Himmler.
** Michael Wisher based Davros' voice on ''Bertrand Russell''. Really.
* NoodleIncident: We never find out ''why'' the Kaleds and Thals are engaged in war. It makes the conflict even scarier.
* NuclearWeaponsTaboo: Despite claims in most earlier and later ''Doctor Who'' stories, and much of the text on this very page, the word "nuclear" is never mentioned in "Genesis of the Daleks", and problems that are usually associated with radiation are ascribed to mysterious "chemicals".
* OhCrap: See LandMineGoesClick above and VillainousBreakdown below.
* OmnicidalManiac: Davros hasn't quite got this far, but his 'virus' speech shows us that if he had that kind of power, he would use it, just for the sake of having it.
* OriginsEpisode: The serial gives us the origins of the Daleks.
* PunctuatedForEmphasis: We discover where the Daleks got this habit WHEN-EVER DAV-ROS STARTS RAN-TING!
* PostApocalypticGasmask: The lands outside the sheltered cities of the Kaleds and the Thals has become so toxic from their war that their soldiers have to wear gasmasks to survive in the open.
* PseudoCrisis: Sarah loses her grip on a ledge and screams as she plummets... actually, no, there's a ledge six inches below her, and she continues to climb.
* PunchClockVillain: The Thals and Kaleds seem to be portrayed as this. The Thals are using brutal methods in their war against the Kaleds such as enslaving people and forcing them to do work that will kill them but once they think they have won the war they decide to free all their prisoners and some Thals even prove helpful to the Doctor when the Daleks attack them. The Kaled scientists are doing research that will lead to the creation of the Daleks but most of them are shown to be opposed to Davros ultimately.
* PuttingOnTheReich: Kaled dress, propaganda, medals, and salutes. As if the very nature of what Davros was [[OmnicidalManiac creating]] wasn't enough to clue you in.
* TheQuisling: Davros gives instructions to the Thals, the race his people the Kaleds have been fighting against for a thousand years, on how to destroy the Kaleds when they threaten to shut down his Dalek project. Then subverted when he sends the Daleks to wipe out the Thals.
* ReasonableAuthorityFigure: The heads of the Kaled government listen to what the Doctor has to say, and have been trying to circumvent Davros' near-total control for some time. Of course, they've got the same GenreBlindness as everyone else, and trust Davros when he appears to go along with their requests.
* RedemptionEqualsDeath: Most of the surviving Kaleds try to oust Davros from his position of authority at the end. Davros proposes a vote... but only so that he knows who to shoot.
* RefugeInAudacity: The line the Doctor uses to distract some Thal guards while breaking in to their city to rescue Sarah Jane
-->'''Doctor:''' Excuse me, can you help me? I'm a spy.\\
(knocked out by Harry)
* {{Retcon}}: In previous episodes the Kaleds were called the Dals, and the war between them and the Thals lasted just one day (i.e., implied to be a nuclear war). Here the war has been going on for a thousand years.
** Then again, this ''is'' a show about time travel...
*** It explains in the expanded verse The Dals were extinct by the time of the Thousand Year War between the Thals and the Kaleds, as were the Tharons, as a result of a programme of genocide orchestrated by the Kaleds. A few words of the Dals' language were preserved, such as "Varga" meaning "devourer." (AUDIO: Purity) Davros, the creator of the Daleks, found a prophecy in the forbidden Book of Predictions, written in the extinct language of the Dals, which stated "...and on that day, men will become as gods." In the original language, the final word was pronounced "Dal-ek." so it very possible is a case of mistaken identity.
*** And the Thals says it has been 500 years since the war and don't seem to have been in a position to write the best histories.
* RhetoricalQuestionBlunder: PlayedForDrama when the Doctor asks Davros if he would release a virus that would end all life [[OmnicidalManiac and Davros gleefully replies that he would.]]
* RogueAgent: A Time Lord points out to the Doctor that they allow him to roam the universe doing his thing in exchange for doing the occasional favor for them, so he should just stop griping and get with the program.
* RummageFail: Lampshaded when the Doctor is ordered to turn out his pockets. He begins to do so, noting that "This might take some time..."
* SavedByThePlatformBelow: A notorious CliffhangerCopout in episodes 2/3. Sarah Jane falls from a rocket-access tower in the cliffhanger, only to land on a platform that definitely was not there in earlier shots in the sequence.
* SchizoTech: Mentioned in Part One. The war with the Thals has been going on so long that instead of using expensive laser weaponry, they're down to conventional gunpowder arms, and if things keep up they're going to finish with bows and arrows.
* SecretUndergroundPassage: There is a secret underground tunnel between the Kaled and Thal cities that Davros uses to sneak the newly created Daleks into the Thal city. This leads to a bit of FridgeLogic. If the Kaleds knew there was a tunnel between the two cities, why didn't they use it to smuggle normal troops into the Thal city and end the war years ago?
** However when trying to get back to the city Sarah and Harry are attacked by Mutants, showing that it is still a dangerous trek to get to the tunnels and that it would be difficult to get an army there.
* SelfDisposingVillain: A Dalek runs over the separated wires to the detonator, blowing up the incubation room.
* SetRightWhatOnceWentWrong: Not-quite-subverted. The Time Lords send the Doctor back in time to the creation of the Daleks, with the goal of either preventing their creation, or at least making them less aggressive. While there, the Doctor is captured by the Daleks' creator and is made to detail every Dalek vulnerability he knows about. Being the universe's resident expert on fighting Daleks, this would have been a catastrophe had he not destroyed the tape before leaving the scene.
* ShoutOut: The Doctor's meeting with the Time Lord was inspired by ''Film/TheSeventhSeal''.
* SignificantAnagram: Kaleds - Daleks.
* StartOfDarkness: Come and see just how the Daleks came to be.
* StupidEvil: Nyder has a brilliantly illogical moment where he opens fire on the Doctor, Harry, and General Ravon risking his general's life just to kill a couple of people out of racism. This actually works to enhance how much of a psycho he is.
* StupidGood: Gharman is quite gullible when he believes Nyder would turn against Davros so easily.
* ThrownFromTheZeppelin: When Davros confronts [[MinionWithAnFInEvil dissenter]] Gharman and his scientists and guards and asks who is with him and who is against him, a few step over to join him and [[TheDragon Nyder]]. No prizes for guessing [[ThePurge what happens]] to Gharman and the others.
* TheTimeTravellersDilemma: The Doctor is given an opportunity (an order, even) to prevent or seriously alter the creation of the Daleks. The only obvious downside is that at that point the Daleks hadn't done anything wrong (yet), and so he'd be committing genocide against a thus-far innocent race, who he knew would turn evil and try to wipe out entire species... he didn't, merely delaying their development for a while, for which causality is thankful
* TookALevelInJerkass: Up until this story, the Thals were the Daleks' good counterparts. All that changes as it turns out they use mutos as slave labour or simply shoot them if they're unfit, infect their prisoners with radiation poisoning, psychologically abuse Sarah for kicks and not only butcher the entire Kaled population but force the Doctor to watch. Possibly an inversion, as all their previous stories are set later on in their history.
** Previous stories set later in the Thals timeline often mention their hatred of war and violence, based on their experiences with it, and that they used to be warriors. It was never said that they were that bad, though.
* UndyingLoyalty: Nyder to Davros.
* WackyWaysideTribe: The giant clam. It comes out of nowhere, has no bearing on the plot, doesn't make a lot of sense and was clearly tossed in to stretch the episode out another couple of minutes.
* WeaksauceWeakness: Why does Davros have a button on his chair for the express purpose of shutting down his own life support system? [[FridgeBrilliance Do you think he'd ever let himself be taken alive?]]
* WellIntentionedExtremist: {{Subverted}} with Davros, who at first appears to be this (he claims to the other Kaleds that he was trying to prolong the survival of his race through changing them to a [[LittleGreenManInACan form more suitable for surviving in a nuclear apocalypse]], and everyone seems to treat him with respect). When the Doctor attempts to morally reason with him towards the end of the story in the hope that he'll realise how dangerous the Daleks are and see some sense, it soon becomes apparent that Davros is, in fact, a completely delusional OmnicidalManiac who knows exactly how terrible the Daleks are and is going to do it anyway [[AGodAmI to set himself up above the gods]].
* WhatHappenedToTheMouse: Kavell, the Kaled scientist who frees Harry, Sarah and Gharman, disappears between Parts Five and Six. He's last seen midway through Part Five leaving with Gharman, but isn't with him and the other Kaleds when they're confronting Davros in Part Six. Unlike other MIA Kaleds (Ravon and Tane especially), it can't be argued he died in the Kaled dome when the Thals blew it up, since that happened a couple of episodes earlier.
* WhenPropsAttack: When the Doctor is attacked by the "naked" Dalek mutant, it is clearly an inert object being manipulated by Tom Baker.
* WideEyedIdealist: Gharman, despite being in a hopeless ForeverWar, and on the side ruled by a sociopathic psychotic mad scientist, is convinced that peace and reason will win out, even after everything else Davros does. Surprisingly, he actually makes it to the last episode before dying.
* VillainousBreakdown: Davros very quickly lapses into one when his creations betray him.
* WeightAndSwitch: A variation is done when the Doctor stands on the land mine: Harry props rocks ''under'' the mine, so it is blocked.
* TheXOfY: The title. From now until the revived series, all Dalek stories will use the "(something) of the Daleks" title format.
* YoureInsane: Davros reacts thus to being outvoted:
--->'''Davros:''' Do you believe that I would let a lifetime's work be ended by the will of spineless fools like you? You have won nothing! I allowed this charade to be played out for one reason only: To find those men who were truly loyal to me and to discover those WHO WOULD BE-TRAY ME! WE-- [[PunctuatedForEmphasis I! WILL! GO! ON!]]
--->'''Gharman:''' You are ''insane'', Davros!