By: jbhthescots@mac.com, Categories: Words & Images, 1 comment



Don’t you just hate it when the person behind you in the coffee queue is getting just a tad impatient and showing signs of becoming über-aggressive, just because they’ve not had their double frappuccino fix yet?  It could be worse, I suppose, it could be a Dalek standing in the line at the ‘Tardis‘ coffee kiosk on Wilson Street in Glasgow, during the recent Merchant City Festival – and the double frappuccino fix might explain why they continually whizz around like demented dodgems while frantically shouting “Exterminate!”.


It’s the phrase that’s become synonymous with the TV cult classic Doctor Who that I adored as a kid (and still do today), but  just how many times do you think we’ve actually heard it uttered (or rather shouted) by the natives of Skaro? How often do you think each Doctor hear that menacing threat? Which Doctor had it said to them most? And when was “Exterminate!” first said at all? 


Luckily for us, there’s a nerdy Whovian – surprise surprise – keeping a tab on all those stats for us. 


It turns out, we’ve actually heard the Dalek catchphrase quite a lot – and a lot more often than you may think.  Across the 53 years Doctor Who has been running, the Daleks have said the famous words to the Doctors no less than 514 times, including times they have said “Exterminated”. On average, that’s nine times each year for the show’s run.


While the average per Doctor’s regeneration was fairly low, the actual number varies heavily for each Doctor. Fourth Doctor, Tom Baker, had quite a peaceful reign with just 12 threats of extermination. This is quite odd when you remember Tom Baker’s seven-year reign as Doctor was the longest regeneration – and also despite being in at their birth, in what many believe to be the best-ever Dr. Who adventure, ‘Genesis of the Daleks‘. The highest instances came from David Tennant’s tenth Doctor, with a staggering 83 “exterminates” from Daleks across his five-year stint in the Tardis.


The very first time the Daleks uttered the word was in the second story, fittingly titled ‘The Daleks’. This early William Hartnell story may only have featured two instances of the battle cry, but it was a start of a long cultural reference still alive and well today. 


Just don’t get one behind you in the coffee line, that’s all I’m saying on the matter.


Leica M3 & 2/40mm Summicron-c

Sekonic L-308S

Ilford FP4+ (@125)

HC-110 (Dil. B – 7 min)

Plustek 7600i & Vuescan


1 Comment

  • I really enjoyed this blog & I remember you watching Dr who & William used to sit on your back when you lay on the floor watching TV