The Daleks from Doctor Who are powered by static electricity and hate and are known to often repeat “Exterminate!” rather than, for example, “Hello” or “Nice weather we’re having.” Daleks are jerks, really. And they are also incredibly recognizable, appearing in the first season of Doctor Who nearly 50 years ago and revisiting the Doctor periodically in the five decades since. We can thank Ray Cusick for the Daleks’ iconic appearance.
Sadly, Ray Cusick passed away in his sleep on Thursday at the age of 84. He leaves behind two daughters, seven grandchildren, and many fans of his memorable designs for Doctor Who. Nicholas Briggs (current voice actor of the Daleks) sums up Cusick’s iconic work, “Lots of my friends who are not Doctor Who fans think that the program is ‘Doctor Who and the Daleks’ – that surely the Daleks are in it all the time – which isn’t true but that is the impression. That’s the brilliance of the creation of the Daleks. They’ve made an indelible stamp on the series really.”
Pour out a little bit of fish sticks and custard for Ray Cusick today. Here’s a collection of Dalek cosplay and funny Dalek references in pop culture.
And finally, here’s Eddie Izzard talking about Daleks in 1993 (NSFW audio).