Stained glass Dalek by Chris Thompson

Big Finish’s stained glass Dalek is too beautiful for TV’s Doctor Who

Books, Featured, Sci-Fi & Fantasy, Television, Top story

That headline? Yeah, that’s a dare. Prove me wrong, BBC!

Big Finish Productions’ full-cast audio dramas are well known for redefining elements of TV’s Doctor Who. November’s release “Order of the Daleks,” however, may just take the cake.

The story was penned by Mike Tucker, a longtime special effects master on the original series when it ended in 1989, and author of many original books and audio adventures, particularly featuring the Seventh Doctor. And “Order” features, prominent in its cover art, a stained glass Dalek — something never attempted on television.

Sure, we got wooden Cybermen in Matt Smith’s swansong “The Time of the Doctor,” but there was a tactical reason for that. (Not to say there isn’t in this case — time will tell.) There was also a translucent glass (or Perspex) Dalek in 1985’s “Revelation of the Daleks,” for some reason; that story also starred Colin Baker as the Sixth Doctor, who appears in “Order of the Daleks.” (And there were the Power Ranger-candy-themed “new paradigm” Daleks from Smith’s first season that were quickly forgotten and basically retconned out of existence, although they still show up for family reunions such as in “Asylum of the Daleks.)

With the stained glass and bent lead variation, we may have reached peak sci-fi steampunk — but I don’t care.

Producer-director Jamie Anderson chronicles the creative process behind his, Tucker’s and designer Chris Thompson’s new-old take on a classic, beloved “bug-eyed monster” that few have dared to reimagine.

About Jayson Peters

Nerdvana's founder and owner. A former East Valley Tribune copy editor, page designer and website editor, he is now Digital Editor for The Pueblo Chieftain in Southern Colorado, a web design instructor at Pueblo Community College and president of the Southern Colorado Press Club. He has contributed to the popular GeekDad blog and taught online media at Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, his alma mater. Lifelong Star Wars fan and Trekker who also worships all things Tolkien and Doctor Who.