Since I’m still immersed in grant writing, to start the afternoon off, here’s one that I saw a week ago but never got around to answering. It’s a question from this week’s host of the Skeptics’ Circle, Bronze Dog, over at (appropriately enough) The Bronze Blog, who asks:
You’ve been captured by Daleks. You’re their legendary foe who always comes up with some clever way of thwarting their plans for universal domination. They’re equipped with a death ray, nigh-impenetrable armor, and a plunger that somehow works as a multitool.
Why don’t they just shoot you?
I can answer that one! Although many of the answers in the comments are quite good, I think I have the real answer. Just think about it. It’s the same reason that, when James Bond is captured, the villain doesn’t just have one of his henchmen take him out in the back and put a bullet in the back of his head, but instead goes into a long explanation of what he’s doing and how brilliant his plan is before picking an improbably ridiculous method of execution (laser beams, piranhas, G-force centrifuges, etc.), often with witty repartee like this:
James Bond: Do you expect me to talk?
Goldfinger: No, Mr. Bond. I expect you to die.
Yes, it’s the very same reason!
As Dr. Evil would say, “You know, I have one simple request. And that is to have sharks with frickin’ laser beams attached to their heads!” Personally, my question would be: “Can I have a Dalek with something other than a frickin’ stalk with an electronic eye on it that’s so easily blinded?”