The classic Fourth Doctor (Tom Baker) adventure, Genesis of the Daleks, first aired in the spring of 1975.  It soon became one of the favourite Doctor Who stories of all time.

Starring Tom Baker as the Fourth Doctor, Elisabeth Sladen as Sarah Jane Smith, Ian Marter as Harry Sullivan and written by Terry Nation, the story underwent several revisions.  Producer Barry Letts and script editor Terrance Dick commissioned Terry Nation to write a story about the origins of the Daleks and introduce the Daleks’ creator, Davros.  By the time the adventure aired during the twelfth season, with producer Philip Hinchliffe and script Robert Holmes,  more changes were made to become the adventure we know today.

Big Finish - Daleks! Genesis of Terror - Christopher Naylor (Harry Sullivan) Tom Baker (4th Doctor) Sadie Miller (Sarah Jane Smith)
Big Finish – Daleks! Genesis of Terror – Christopher Naylor (Harry Sullivan) Tom Baker (4th Doctor) Sadie Miller (Sarah Jane Smith)

Big Finish has released today, Dalek! Genesis of Terror.  This full-cast audio dramatisation of the first episode starring Tom Baker, Sadie Miller (Sarah-Jane Smith), Christopher Naylor (Harry Sullivan) and Terry Molloy (Davros) is based on Terry Nation’s original draft script.  A different story from the one we know and love.  As this is an adaptation of a television script, stage directions are read by Nicholas Briggs, who also provides the voice of the Daleks.  The remaining story episodes only exist in storyline form and are read out by individual cast members to complete Terry Nation’s original vision.

Producer Simon Guerrier said: Daleks! Genesis of Terror was fascinating to record because it’s full of telling differences that reveal choices made by the TV series’ script editor Robert Holmes, producer Philip Hinchcliffe and their team.”

“Tom Baker also had quite a bit to say about the version of ‘his’ Doctor in the script, which gave me a sense of how hard and how conscientiously he’d worked in those early days to create the character of the Fourth Doctor.”

Nicholas Briggs added: “Senior Producer David Richardson and I thought that the power of Terry Nation’s original script for episode one was the visual aspect of it. The stage directions are pure Terry Nation action prose, and I felt strongly that it would be extremely entertaining for listeners to hear these.” 

“It was in the physical representation of the story that this episode differed the most from the broadcast version, so we opted for me to read the stage directions. I also had the fun of playing Tom’s Doctor when we recorded the session with the rest of the cast, Tom having already recorded his bits separately.”

Bigi Finish - Doctor Who Lost Stories - Daleks - Genesis of Terror - Philip Hinchliffe (Producer) and Samira Ahmed (journalist)
Bigi Finish – Doctor Who Lost Stories – Daleks – Genesis of Terror – Philip Hinchliffe (Producer) and Samira Ahmed (journalist)

The box set collector edition has an added bonus with over two hours of extras, including behind-the-scenes interviews and a conversation between Genesis of the Daleks producer Philip Hinchliffe and journalist Samira Ahmed.

Big Finish listeners can save money by purchasing Daleks! Genesis of Terror together in a bundle with 2023’s second Doctor Who – The Lost Stories title, The Ark, for just £25 (collector’s edition CD box set + download) or £23 (download only).

Duration: 151 minutes.
Released: 25 May 2023, exclusively from the Big Finish website.
Director: Samuel Clemens
Written by: Terry Nation
Producer / Additional dialogue by: Simon Guerrier
Senior Producer: David Richardson

Executive Producer: Jason Haigh-Ellery, Nicholas Briggs
In a paved garden outside time, the Doctor is presented with an awful prophecy: the conquest of all time by the Daleks. To prevent this terrible fate, the Time Lords have decided on a radical course — to weaponise time themselves, and destroy the Daleks before they were ever created. And they want the Doctor to carry out this extraordinary task!

Soon, he and his companions Sarah and Harry are on the battle-ravaged planet Skaro, where a war has been raging for centuries. The war is now waged by teenagers using the last surviving weapons. Everything is desperate. But Kaled’s chief scientist has a new weapon that he thinks might just change everything…

A full cast brings to exhilarating life Terry Nation’s original draft for what became the first episode of Genesis of the Daleks — voted by readers of Doctor Who Magazine to be the greatest Doctor Who story of all time!


  1. I look forward to getting this cd when it becomes available and it will be, worth getting to listen to how different iit would have been compared with the broadcast version.


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