In the 5th episode of 1975 story "Genesis of the Daleks", Davros threatens to torture Sarah and Harry unless the (4th) Doctor gives information about Dalek losses. I assume that there was some means of telling whether the Doctor was being honest or, otherwise, it would have been pretty pointless.

Under interrogation the (4th) Doctor states that the Daleks were defeated on Earth in the year 2000 and the conversation tails off as he mentions "release of magnetic properties".

Of course, in the 1964 TV serial "The Dalek Invasion of Earth" the date of the invasion was given as 2164. As well, the reason for the Dalek failure was by the setting of off an active volcano, the Dalek saucer being caught in the explosion rather than the release of magnetic energy (this was the explanation given in the 1966 film version "Daleks Invasion Earth: 2150 AD").

In the final scenes of Genesis, the Doctor notes that the Daleks have been "delayed by perhaps a thousand years".

Two related questions: (1) Was the 4th Doctor's 2000 date was in some original time line, which changed because of his actions delaying the Daleks, or just poor continuity checks? (2) Was the comment about "magnetic properties …" influenced by the film or rather, again, poor continuity checks?

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    I think it's sweet that you think that after more than 50 years of making this show, that the writers give more than a passing thought to what happened in previous episodes. – Valorum Jan 4 at 22:26
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    @Valorum check out the 5th Doctor story Earthshock – user66716 Jan 4 at 22:28
  • @Valorum --- I don't understand your comment. How are the current writers relevant to a question about Genesis of the Daleks (1975)? – Ian Thompson Jan 6 at 21:27
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    @IanThompson - Because canon continuity has never been a feature of Doctor Who – Valorum Jan 6 at 21:32
  • @Valorum Or is it that canon incontinuity is a feature? Wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff and all... – Harabeck Feb 5 at 22:25

What The Doctor says about an invasion in the year 2000 has no resemblance to the events of The Dalek Invasion of Earth, which as you say, take place in 2164.

The Doctor says of the 2000 invasion:

"The Dalek invasion of the Earth in the year 2000 was foiled because of an attempt by the Daleks to mine the core of the planet. The magnetic properties of the Earth were..."

From these details alone it sounds more like their plan was foiled by their own undoing, and The Doctor may not even have been involved. However, if that were the case then it would be part of Earth history.

Possible explanations to retrofit this with continued Who lore:

  • The unsuccessful Dalek attempt to mine the Earth's core took place without them being noticed by any humans and therefore is not part of Earth history.
  • The Doctor was involved, or retrospectively undid the timeline.
  • The Doctor was giving Davros deliberately misleading information in order to placate them.
  • It was the events of Genesis of the Daleks which changed the timeline - as you point out, the Doctor said that the creation of the Daleks had been delayed by about a thousand years. However, as The Daleks have long had the ability of time travel (the first reference to this was in the 1965 First Doctor serial The Chase) this wouldn't necessarily move the invasion date by a thousand years - it would just change events.

As the Doctor Who film Daleks Invasion Earth: 2150 AD is not part of the TV serial canon, it is unlikely that the intention was to suggest otherwise. Interestingly though, it was modern Who writer Steven Moffat's intention to make the existence of the movie part of the TV universe by including the movie poster in the Black Archive. This never happened - but it could be retrofitted that The Doctor was referencing plot elements from a fictional movie loosely based on him to mislead Davros and the Daleks.

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  • I took the 4th Doctor's thousand year to be an over estimate and they released themselves over a period of time of order 100-150 years so that the new invasion of Earth was delayed from the original year 2000 to later. Yes, the Daleks achieved time travel but I've always taken the development to be after the Invasion of Earth. – user66716 Jan 10 at 18:45

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