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The Amaryll Challenge was a serialised Daleks comic strip published in TV Century 21. It explored the origins of the Dalek flying saucer and explained why the Daleks began razing planets as opposed to enslaving them.

Some of the "news bulletin" appended to the main storyline of the serial tied in with the then-ongoing crossover Space War story arc that was running through TV Century 21, and focused on a war between Earth and the planet Astra, which had originally been created by David Whitaker for The Rescue.


The Daleks perfect space flight and the Emperor sends a warning to all life in all galaxies — the Daleks are coming!


According to reports from the Space News Agency via Hyper-Space Video-Phone, the Daleks are testing prototypes of their new spaceships as part of their space conquest program. Proto 1 explodes on take off; Proto 4 succeeds in taking off but fails to beat the light barrier; Proto 9 beats the light barrier but even its metalert armour is unable to beat the heat barrier and it melts. Finally, Proto 13, a flying saucer, passes all the tests. The ships are put into production and a fleet leaves Skaro for the first time for universal domination. The Golden Emperor leads the invasion in the gold Proto-Leader. Their first target is Alvega, the nearest planet to Skaro. As they land, the native Amarylls identify them as a threat and the Controller instructs the Amarylls to resist. They spray a passing Dalek scout with seeds which penetrate its casing. Vegetation quickly grows within and shoots out of the casing, killing the Dalek.

The Daleks discover the remains of the scout and the Emperor interrogates a captured Amaryll. The Amaryll tells the Daleks that they could have become friends if the Daleks had acted peacefully, but instead the Amarylls were forced to defend their home. The Controller then orders war to be made on the Daleks and the Amarylls attack. The Emperor orders a retreat from the surface and leads the main body of the fleet to other conquests. Four ships are instructed to stay behind and bombard the surface until all attacking Amarylls are destroyed. Afterwards they begin the construction of a city on Alvega but the Controller fights back and the city, the ships and the Daleks are swallowed up by a huge hole in the ground. Only one ship survives.

The crew of the surviving ship realise the planet is resisting their invasion from the inside. They decide that the planet must be destroyed rather than conquered and they use their ship to drill to the centre. Once they land, their ship is crushed by a giant worm creature which destroys their ship. The Daleks kill the creature but they are trapped at the centre of the planet. The Dalek Leader continues the mission and they search for the core of Alvega. The party dwindles as some Daleks are buried under falling earth while others are crushed by rocks. In the end, the last surviving Dalek locates the Controller and opens fire on it, destroying the planet in an act of self-sacrifice. The Dalek Emperor watches the planet die and issues the fleet a new law: what the Daleks cannot conquer, they destroy. The invasion heads for the next planet — Solturis, a planet rich with minerals and inhabited by humans.




  • The news bulletins and introductory caption framing the story as a report from the Space News Agency were only present in the original printing of the story in TV Century 21, being cut from later reprints.
  • In 2004, Altered Vistas released an animated adaptation of this story.