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Skaro from space (from the 1996 Doctor Who television movie)
Universe Whoniverse
Notable locations Kaled Dome, Thal Dome
Notable races Dals
Notable people Davros
Creator Terry Nation
Genre Science fiction television

Skaro is a fictional planet from the British science fiction television series Doctor Who created by the writer Terry Nation as the home planet of the Daleks and, at times, the centre of the Dalek Empire.

Skaro is a planet of roughly the same mass and dimensions as Earth, and the twelfth planet from its sun. It has a single continent that is divided into east and west halves of almost equal size. When the Doctor first visits the planet in the 1963 serial The Daleks,[1] Skaro is a nuclear wasteland, whose principal features are a petrified forest, a lake containing ferocious failed Dalek mutations, and the Dalek city.



Prior to the rise of the Daleks, Skaro is the home of a humanoid species with two races, the Kaleds (or Dals) and the Thals. The races went to war with each other, and the resulting mutations set in motion by the nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons used are soon seen by Kaled scientists as being the end of their species in its (ideologically defined) "pure" form. In Genesis of the Daleks,[2] the Kaled chief scientist Davros accelerates their mutations and places the now mutated Kaleds in tank-like "Mark 3 travel machines". These cyborgs then become the dreaded Daleks (an anagram of Kaleds).

The Thals are eventually driven from Skaro by the Daleks. The inheritors of Skaro rule a devastated planet, its seas dead and its surface devoid of almost all life. However, Skaro is rich in minerals which the Daleks use to build massive armies to conquer and destroy other worlds, building an interstellar empire. Some time afterward, the Daleks also abandon Skaro. It is later reoccupied by the Imperial Dalek faction, apparently at the behest of Davros.

Skaro's final appearance in the classic series (in the chronology of Doctor Who universe) is in the story Remembrance of the Daleks, in which the Seventh Doctor tricks Davros and his "pure Imperial Daleks" into stealing the Hand of Omega. As per the Doctor's prediction, they attempt to use it on Skaro's sun in order to generate enough energy to recreate the Gallifreyan time travel experiments. However, the Doctor had already pre-programmed the Hand of Omega prior to the Daleks attaining it, and it turned their sun into a supernova, resulting in Skaro being completely obliterated.[3]

At the start of the 1996 Doctor Who television movie,[4] the Master is put on trial on Skaro by the Daleks and exterminated. This presumably takes place in the relative past of Skaro's timeline before its destruction, as the Eighth Doctor does not comment on it.

Skaro does not appear in any of the Dalek-related stories made from 2005, although a group of daleks called the Cult of Skaro appear in "Army of Ghosts"[5] (briefly), "Doomsday"[6], "Daleks in Manhattan"[7] and "Evolution of the Daleks"[8] — in the last of these the Cult threaten to turn Earth into "a new Skaro".

Doctor Who serials that take place on Skaro or feature Skaro prominently are The Daleks, The Evil of the Daleks,[9] Genesis of the Daleks, Destiny of the Daleks[10] and Remembrance of the Daleks. For Destiny of the Daleks exterior scenes meant to take place on Skaro were shot in Winspit quarry.[11]

Other appearances

In the Eighth Doctor Adventures novel War of the Daleks by John Peel it is revealed that Skaro had not in fact been destroyed by the Seventh Doctor's actions.

The Daleks, via time travel, discover records that show Skaro's destruction. After an attempt to change history (in Day of the Daleks) is unsuccessful, they terraform the planet Antalin to resemble Skaro and manipulate Davros and the Doctor into ensuring that Antalin was destroyed in the original's place. War of the Daleks also reveals that the events of Destiny of the Daleks took place on the terraformed Antalin. The novel also reveals that the name Skaro simply means "home" in the old Kaled language. The novel's canonical status, like all spin-off media, is debatable.

Skaro appears in the Big Finish Doctor Who audio stories The Mutant Phase and Davros (where we learn that Skaro had two moons: Falkus and Omega Mysterium, names drawn from a chart of Skaro's solar system in a 1976 Marks and Spencer tie-in book - Falkus is there revealed to be an artificial planet created by the Daleks as a last refuge), and was where the Emperor Dalek operated from in The Genocide Machine, and features prominently in the I, Davros spin-off series. However in the Dalek Empire series (possibly set after Skaro's destruction in Remembrance of the Daleks) there is no appearance of Skaro and the Daleks are now operating instead from the Seriphia Galaxy.

Skaro is also the setting for the Peter Cushing feature film Dr. Who and the Daleks (1965) which is generally regarded as non-canonical, although the story in the film is a copy (with some changes) of the serial The Daleks (naturally shortened since a feature film does not have the same running time as a 6-episode serial).

The BBC-Licensed Dalek Book (1964)[12] includes a map entitled 'The Dalography of Skaro'. This shows the planet to have three continents (Dalazar, Darren and Davius), five seas (The Ocean of Ooze, The Sea of Acid, The Sea of Rust, The Serpent Sea and the land-locked Bottomless Sea) and three major islands (The Island of Gushing Gold, The Island of Moving Mountains and an island chain named The Forbidden Islands). Dalazar is identified as the location of the Dalek city, Davius as being populated by the Thals and Darren as the site of the neutron bomb explosion which transformed the Daleks from their humanoid form into mutants. The BBC-Licensed The Dalek Outer Space Book (1965)[13 ] confirms some of these details in a cutaway illustration entitled 'The Strata of Skaro'. A sea called The Ocean of Death is added, together with The Islands of Mist which, from the description, appears to be an alternative name for the Dalek Book's Forbidden Islands.

"Let's Go (To Planet Skaro)" was the third single released by UK punk rock band The Shapes and concerned the wedding reception of the Doctor on the planet.

"Exterminate, Regenerate" is a song released by UK "Trock" band Chameleon Circuit and mentions Skaro.

The Time War

An article by Russell T Davies in the Doctor Who Annual 2006 states that Skaro, like Gallifrey, was devastated at the end of the Time War. This suggests that the Daleks had managed to rebuild and/or reoccupy their home planet and is somewhat consistent with War of the Daleks. This is also generally consistent with Dalek Caan's claim in "Daleks in Manhattan" that its planet "is gone... destroyed in a great war".

This may also imply that either Skaro survived the events of Remembrance of the Daleks (as portrayed in War or otherwise), or that the Seventh Doctor's actions in Remembrance were part of the Time War. While the canonical status of the novels is uncertain, Russell T Davies intimated in the Doctor Who Annual 2006 article that various Dalek stories take place as parts of the Time War, such as Genesis of the Daleks, which he refers to as "the first strike".

See also


  1. ^ The Daleks. Writer Terry Nation, Directors Christopher Barry, Richard Martin, Producers Verity Lambert, Mervyn Pinfield. Doctor Who. BBC, London. 21 December 1963–1 February 1963.
  2. ^ Genesis of the Daleks. Writer Terry Nation, Director David Maloney, Producer Philip Hinchcliffe. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC1, London. 8 March 1975–12 April 1975.
  3. ^ Remembrance of the Daleks. Writer Ben Aaronovitch, Directors Andrew Morgan, John Nathan-Turner (uncredited), Producer John Nathan-Turner. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC1, London. 5 October 1988–26 October 1988.
  4. ^ Doctor Who. Writer Matthew Jacobs, Director Geoffrey Sax, Producers Peter V. Ware, Matthew Jacobs. Fox Network. 14 May 1996.
  5. ^ "Doomsday". Writer Russell T Davies, Director Graeme Harper, Producer Phil Collinson. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC One, Cardiff. 2006-07-08.
  6. ^ "Doomsday". Writer Russell T Davies, Director Graeme Harper, Producer Phil Collinson. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC One, Cardiff. 2006-07-08.
  7. ^ "Daleks in Manhattan". Writer Helen Raynor, Director James Strong, Producer Phil Collinson. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC One, Cardiff. 2007-04-21.
  8. ^ "Evolution of the Daleks". Writer Helen Raynor, Director James Strong, Producer Phil Collinson. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC One, Cardiff. 2007-04-28.
  9. ^ The Evil of the Daleks. Writer David Whitaker, Director Derek Martinus, Producer Innes Lloyd. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC1, London. 20 May 1967–1 July 1967.
  10. ^ Destiny of the Daleks. Writer Terry Nation, Director Ken Grieve, Producer Graham Williams. Doctor Who. BBC. BBC1, London. 1 September 1979–22 September 1979.
  11. ^ "Winspit Quarry, Doctor Who - The Locations Guide". Retrieved 2008-02-04.  
  12. ^ Whitaker, David & Nation, Terry: The Dalek Book, page 72. Panther Books Ltd. / Souvenir Press Ltd., 1964.
  13. ^ Nation, Terry & Ashton, Brad: The Dalek Outer Space Book, pages 12 & 13. Panther Books Ltd. / Souvenir Press Ltd., 1965.

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