The essential guide to the most terrifying monsters in Doctor Who, presented by 'voice of the Daleks' Nicholas Briggs.
THE VOICE OF THE DALEKS SPEAKS... 'Being the voice of the Daleks leads to many odd things. Almost all of them involve hiding behind something and screaming into a microphone. I've threatened to exterminate the great and the good in the Savoy at the Radio Times Awards. I've demanded that a terrified receptionist should put me through to David Beckham 'immediately!' live on BBC local radio. I've menaced Blue Peter presenters in the Albert Hall while the BBC Philarmonic played the Doctor Who theme in the background. It's all been a bit strange. And, I suppose, some might say that putting together this documentary is the strangest thing of all. Pretending that the Daleks are real... a subject fit for historical analysis. When did the Time War really begin? What are the Dalek strategies of conquest? But, for me, at least it's not odd at all; because the Daleks put a spell on me from the moment I first saw them glide on to the TV screen. That toddling little Nick Briggs, child of the 1960s, was inexplicably enchanted by these terrifying creatures. Was it the exciting stories? The astoundingly individualist design that looked eerily like a cross between kitchen appliances and a portable heater? The fact that their dastardly deeds made the good Doctor all the more heroic in his battles against them? Well, all of the above applied. But for me, from some unfathomably early age, it was THE VOICE! Simultaneously mesmerised and appalled by it, I just wanted to hear that voice. The cliche is true, you know. We did all run round the playground saying 'exterminate' in the 1960s. I'd be doing it again now, but my short trousers don't fit so well any more! And so, as the years passed, I started to try to do THE VOICE. When people ask me how I got to be the voice of the Daleks, I tell them I've been practising since I was five. They laugh. But it's true. Naturally, without the help of a ring modulator (the voice scrambling gizmo) I was reduced to just shouting and trying to cause as much distortion as possible... but it never worked. So, I would divert myself from the disappointment by putting together clips of Dalek stories I'd sneakily tape-recorded off the telly, linking them with bits of narration, analysing Dalek strategies of conquest, warning any listeners of impending invasion. But, of course, no one was listening. It was just me, playing my squeaky old reel-to-reel tape recorder. Now, dry your eyes, because I did finally get out and meet girls and everything. But as the years passed, I eventually got my hands on a ring modulator, and my dream came true. I could do THE VOICE! By the space year 2000, I was doing Dalek voices for the Big Finish Doctor Who CDs. Then, one day my agent phoned me and told me Russell T Davies and his team wanted me to do the Daleks on the telly. So it now seems fitting to me that after all that, I'm back editing together clips of my favourite Dalek stories, now 'officially' recorded off the telly. And between the clips, I'm warning of the dastardly evil of the Daleks! Not only that, but I'm doing THE VOICE as well. I couldn't be happier. My hope is that my passion for these epic tales of good versus metallic evil will help you to experience some of the thrills and chills that made my childhood such fun. Nicholas Briggs, February 2006.