The Daleks, the monsters which have terrified generations of children with their cries of ‘Exterminate!’, are going into temporary exile.
Doctor Who boss Steven Moffat said that he had decided to give the Doctor’s sworn enemies ‘a rest’ for a while.
He told Radio Times magazine that the fearsome creatures would have ‘trudged away’ by now after being defeated so many times.
Moffat, the BBC One show’s executive producer, said: “They aren’t going to make an appearance for a while… We thought it was about time to give them a rest.”
He added: “There’s a problem with the Daleks. They are the most famous of the Doctor’s adversaries and the most frequent, which means they are the most reliably defeatable enemies in the universe.
“They have been defeated by the Doctor about 400 times. Surely they should just see the TARDIS approaching, say, ‘Oh. It’s him again’, and trudge away.”
The Daleks were voted the scariest villains in the history of Doctor Who in a poll of 21,000 fans in 2007. They have made regular appearances in the long-running science fiction show since appearing in the first series.
Created by Terry Nation, the Daleks were resurrected as the Doctor’s most feared enemy when the show was brought back in 2005.
Asked whether the plotlines of the current series had become too complex, Moffat, also the show’s head writer, said: “Well, you have to pay attention.
“You can’t watch it when you are doing the ironing. And you certainly can’t watch it when you are tweeting. You have to sit down and focus, and a child audience certainly does that.”