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Web Video / The Cult of Scratchwood

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Bren: You named the Cult of Scratchwood after... Matt's model railway. Why?
Derek the Dalek: There is a term... that human uses. I believe you would say... that I was being... sentimental.

The Cult of Scratchwood is the name of a fanmade webseries created by Matthew Alden-Farrow on YouTube. The series includes the 8 episodes of The Cult of Scratchwood proper, the 5 episodes (plus one Christmas Special) of the prequel series The Adventures of Derek & Matt, the two episodes of Interview with a Dalek, a dozen Ask a Dalek Fourth-Wall Mail Slot shorts, and various related skits.

The basic premise of Cult of Scratchwood sees four misfit Daleks, Derek, Monty, Darren and the Dalek Supreme, stuck sharing ordinary human Matt's flat. They spend most of their time fruitlessly scheming to conquer the world in the name of the Daleks, and causing everyday trouble for their unfortunate roommate in the process.

Thanks to animatronic Dalek puppets and good editing, the series boasts impressive production value for a fanmade production.


The Cult of Scratchwood provides examples of:

  • As Himself: Both Matt Alden-Farrow and Bren Tenkage play fictionalized versions of themselves (though Alden-Farrow is only ever referred to as "Matt").
  • Bad People Abuse Animals: A Blue-and-Orange Morality example. In "Improvement of the Daleks", the Daleks turn Matt's puppy into a cyborg abomination, to Matt's horror. And they genuinely think they're helping.
  • Blue-and-Orange Morality: Lampshaded by Matt in "The Night Before Christmas", this is true of most of the Daleks. They consider the Daleks to be the ultimate good, to the point that they hope to lure Santa Claus with ultimate "good boy" Matt on the basis that his great loyalty to the Daleks makes him objectively "good". Later in the same episode, Derek admits that trying to exterminate Santa Claus is the only way he can fathom of "believing" in him.
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  • Character as Himself: Derek the Dalek is credited in the Doctor Who-style opening where the name of the actor playing the Doctor's companion would appear in a real intro. (In the end credits however, his voice credit properly goes to Matthew Alden-Farrow.)
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Matt in "Night Before Christmas" after he realizes Santa is Real After All.
  • Ineffectual Sympathetic Villain: All the Daleks, bordering on Anti-Villain at times. They ultimately want to exterminate all lesser races, sure, but something always gets in the way, and in the meantime Monty is cute with his constant offers of tea, you can't help but smile at Derek trying to track Santa Claus across the galaxy, etc.
  • Monster Roommate: Matt first has Derek the Dalek (in "Adventures"), and, later on, the entire Cult (in "The Cult", "Ask a Dalek" and the skits). His main complaint? Preposterous electricity bills.
  • Music Soothes the Savage Beast: A downplayed example. When first arriving on Earth, Derek the Dalek was convinced to stay with Matt rather than go on an exterminating spree because he became enamored with Earth music.
  • Pint-Sized Powerhouse: Bren initially scoffs at the idea that the literally pint-sized Dalek Danny could harm him. Only, his laser gun isn't any less powerful than the other Daleks'…
  • Santa's Existence Clause: Played straight. Matt spends most of "The Night Before Christmas" trying to explain to Derek that Santa Claus is not real, and struggling to explain why humans pretend he is (the closest Derek comes to understanding is when he assumes it is "a tool for propaganda"). After Derek has already left, Matt sees Santa's flying sleigh whizzing past his window. He blinks and goes to get another drink.