Davros as portrayed by Julian Bleach in 2008

Davros is a cunning and completely deranged Kaled scientist from the planet Skaro and a major antagonist in the British sci-fi series, Doctor Who. He is infamous for being the creator of the Daleks. Cold, calculating, ruthless and completely insane, Davros is willing to do anything to achieve his goals and the goals of his creations. First appearing in 1975 in the Fourth Doctor story "Genesis of the Daleks", the character went on to appear in every subsequent Dalek story up until the end of the classic series' run, but would return once more in the fourth season of the revived series in 2008.

History

Like the Master, Davros has repeatedly defied death and continued to return and threaten the Doctor and the entire universe. He has also been portrayed by multiple actors over the years.

Genesis of the Daleks

In this classic story, the Fourth Doctor is tasked by the Time Lords to travel back to Skaro and stop the Daleks from ever being created. Davros (portrayed for the first time by Michael Wisher) has just completed the development of the original Dalek prototypes and presents them to the Kaled Scientific Elite as the ultimate weapons with which to end the Kaleds' millenium-long war with the Thals. Not long afterwards, the Daleks are unleashed within the Kaled dome and proceed to exterminate the Kaleds.

During these events, the Doctor is captured and Davros carries out his interrogation, discovering that the Doctor is a time traveller and has repeatedly fought the Daleks in the future. Davros demands that the Doctor tell him all about the Daleks' defeats so that he may modify his creations and prevent these defeats from ever occurring. The Doctor pleaded with Davros to make the Daleks a peaceful force for good, but Davros ignored these pleas, viewing his creations as perfect just the way they were.

The Doctor was able to escape when the Daleks eventually came for Davros himself. Though he gave them life, Davros was still not a Dalek himself and so his creations viewed him as inferior. Davros begged for mercy, but the Daleks had no concept of mercy and they shot him.

Destiny of the Daleks

While Davros was believed to have died by a Dalek death-ray, the blast had only damaged his primary life-support circuits. The secondary circuits had kicked in right away, preserving Davros in a state of suspended animation. For centuries, the crippled Kaled lay dormant beneath the ruins of the Kaled dome, hoping that his creations had not forgotten him and would one day need him to lead them.

In "Destiny of the Daleks", Davros (now played by David Gooderson) reanimates and finds himself caught amidst a struggle between the Daleks, the Doctor, and a race of alien androids known as the Movellans. The Daleks have sought out their creator so that he might make them invincible and end the current stalemate between them and the Movellans. Because of the Doctor's interference, both Dalek and Movellan forces are destroyed and Davros is captured. The maniacal scientist is then placed in cryogenic suspension before being taken to Earth to stand trial.

Resurrection of the Daleks

Davros returns once more, this time portrayed by Terry Molloy (who plays the character in every Dalek story from then until 1988). After spending 90 years aboard a space station in cryo-stasis - and remaining conscious for every moment of it - Davros is rescued from his imprisonment by the Daleks. The Daleks have lost their war with the Movellans who used an engineered virus to end the stalemate, and have sought out Davros so that he can develop a cure for the virus.

Pretending to research the cure, Davros experimented on Daleks to bring them under his control. The Doctor, now in his fifth incarnation, attempted to kill Davros at this time, though he lacked the resolve to do so directly. His treachery discovered by the Dalek Supreme, Davros released the Movellan virus onto the prison ship, killing all the Daleks on board. The virus began affecting Davros, who promptly fled in an escape pod before Stien caused the station (and the prison ship) to explode.

Revelation of the Daleks

At some point, Davros set himself up as "the Great Healer" on the planet Necros and lured the Sixth Doctor there. Using the bodies of the dead at Tranquil Repose, Davros created a new race of Daleks with white and gold livery. These became "Imperial Daleks". The new faction was totally loyal to him. However those who weren't intelligent enough were converted into concentrated protein to combat famine on other planets. The Supreme Dalek's forces arrived on Necros after being called in by another Tranquil Repose worker Takis and captured him to put him on trial.

Remembrance of the Daleks

Davros evidently survived his trial as he was next seen leading the Imperial Dalek faction in the Seventh Doctor story "Remembrance of the Daleks". The Daleks were locked in a state of civil war and had brought their battle to Earth in 1963 where both the Imperial and Renegade factions fought to retrieve an ancient Time Lord weapon, the Hand of Omega. The Doctor managed to prevent either faction from taking the Hand, activating it himself and using it to destroy all Dalek forces. Davros, however, survived by leaving his ship in an escape pod just before the Hand of Omega tore the ship apart.

The Stolen Earth / Journey's End

Davros would return in 2008 during the fourth season of the revived Doctor Who series, this time portrayed by Julian Bleach.

Prior to the series' revival, Davros had taken part in the Last Great Time War between the Daleks and the Time Lords. The Daleks' creator had led them during the first year of the war until his apparent death when his flagship was devoured by something called the Nightmare Child. The Doctor had tried to save Davros but failed. However, Davros would still escape thanks to Dalek Caan, a member of the Cult of Skaro that had succeeded in breaching the time-lock on the events of the war. At the cost of his sanity, Caan rescued Davros and together they forged the New Dalek Empire, hidden away within the Medusa Cascade, a nebula that existed out of sync with the rest of the universe.

In 2009, the planet Earth vanished from its place in time and space. The Daleks had brought the planet to the Medusa Cascade along with 26 other planets, all of which were aligned like components of a great celestial engine. Davros was using the planets to power his ultimate weapon, the Reality Bomb: a device that would unleash a never-ending wave of Z-neutrino energy that would negate the electrical bonds that held all matter together, thus completely annihilating everything in existence.

Davros' plan almost succeeded, but was thwarted at the last moment by the intervention of the Tenth Doctor's then-companion Donna Noble. Donna had absorbed the Doctor's DNA as a result of a biological meta-crisis, gaining the Doctor's mind in the process. Together with the Doctor and a meta-crisis clone of the Doctor, Donna deactivated the Reality Bomb and scrambled the Daleks' power feeds, causing a fatal overload. The Daleks' Crucible space station began to tear itself apart and the Doctor and his allies fled aboard the TARDIS. The Doctor offered to save Davros, but the crazed scientist refused to accept help from his hated enemy and named him as the "Destroyer of Worlds".

The Magician's Apprentice/The Witch's Familiar

Having somehow survived the destruction of the Crucible, Davros would return to his home planet of Skaro, which had been restored by the New Dalek Paradigm. On the brink of death, he remembered his encounter with the Twelfth Doctor in his childhood, and ordered Colony Sarff to bring him to him. When he faced the Doctor again, Davros talked about the Daleks, calling them his children. He admitted that even though he created them he couldn't control them, claiming he couldn't stop them from exterminating the Doctor's friends. During this meeting, Davros showed the Doctor that he had recorded all his foe's speeches about morality. Perhaps as a taunt, Davros singled out one about killing a child who would grow up to be a "ruthless dictator who would destroy millions of lives"; the Doctor had the chance to prevent Davros from ever creating the monsters known as Daleks, but had failed because of his compassion.

Davros revealed a series of cables connecting him to the life force of every Dalek. While attempting to make the Doctor feel compassion for him as part of a plan to steal his regenerative energy, Davros learned that the Doctor had saved Gallifrey from destruction at the end of the Time War. Whether sincerely or not, Davros congratulated the Doctor on saving his people, referring to his own failure to save the Kaled race from extinction. Shutting down his eye implant, Davros told the Doctor that he wanted to see one last sunrise with his own eyes. However, when the Doctor, apparently driven by compassion, released regenerative energy into the cables, Davros was quick to act; using Colony Sarff to secure the Doctor, he began siphoning regenerative energy from the Time Lord and transmitting it into every Dalek across Skaro, using some of it to renew himself and remove his reliance on his life-support chair for survival. However, after being saved by Missy, the Doctor revealed that he had known of Davros' plan, and had let him take the energy as part of his own plan to stop the Daleks. He then revealed that Davros' transmission of the energy into every Dalek on Skaro had included the decaying Daleks in the sewers beneath the city, who attacked the Dalek City and destroyed it, with Davros still inside when the roof of the infirmary collapsed on him. Having cheated death so often, it remains unclear if Davros truly died during this event.

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