The year, 1966.
The date, Oct 8.
The time, just before 6.15pm.
The place, behind the sofa…
Why? The Cybermen have arrived!
That’s right, our favourite cyborgs from Mondas are celebrating 50 years of terrorising the galaxy in Doctor Who. From 1966, when they first faced William Hartnell’s First Doctor (even causing a regeneration!), through the decades until their team-up with Missy in 2014, the Cybermen have a very special place in Whostory.
And, just in case you haven’t seen any adventures with the awful automatons, we’ve got five stories you simply HAVE to watch NOW! Check them out below.
THE TENTH PLANET
It’s easy to see why Peter Capaldi himself wants to see the Twelfth Doctor face off against the original version of the Cybermen. First seen in 1966, the Mondasian Cybes are markedly different to what they upgraded to over the years.
With a number of visibly human facets - hands and eyes, for example - these terrors were truly horrific. Add to that a disturbingly lilting yet monotone voice and you’ve got yourself a classic Doctor Who “monster”.
The Cybermen proved to be instantly popular and returned just months later in another wonderfully claustrophobic tale, The Moonbase.
CyberQuote: “You will have no need of emotions. You will become like us.”
THE TOMB OF THE CYBERMEN
Lost for many years - due to the BBC’s policy of destroying old episodes - this Second Doctor story was a thing of myth for many years.
Uncovered in Hong Kong in 1991, the story was released the following year and showed off Patrick Troughton’s classic adventure. Tomb, like The Tenth Planet is claustrophobic tale and slightly violent in parts too, highlighting the real threat of the Cybermen.
Introduced in the 1967 four-parter are both the Cyber Controller and the cute-but-deadly Cybermats. Best of all, however, is the iconic cliffhanger from Episode Two which sees the Cybermen break out from their tomb. A moment often imitated, but never bettered.
CyberQuote: “We will eliminate fear from your brain.”
Eighties. Cybermen. RULE! That is all.
After a break of almost seven years, Mondas’ baddest boys returned onscreen in a story that re-established them as a fully formidable threat (after a slightly ignominious outing in 1975’s Revenge of the Cybermen).
Shinier and more EXCELLENT than ever, the Cybermen weren’t mucking around when they intended to crash a spaceship into the Earth, in what the Cyber Leader described as a, “great psychological victory.” Steady on there, you almost sound emotional!
The ship would have wiped out the enemies of the Cybermen who were meeting on Earth to sign a pact uniting their military forces in a war against the Cyber race. What actually happened? They wiped out the Dinosaurs. Close. So close.
And, thirty-year old spoiler coming up, the Cybermen also caused the extinction of companion Adric. Which one are you sadder about?
CyberQuote: “I see that Time Lords have emotional feelings.”
THE FIVE DOCTORS
Ok, technically this is not a Cybermen story but it does feature a couple of iconic scenes with our silver chums being obliterated on Gallifrey.
The Raston Warrior Robot makes easy pickings of a Cyber platoon in one of Doctor Who’s most entertainingly destructive and violent scenes - beheading a Cyberman was never so much fun!
Later on, The Master teamed up with the calculating Cyborgs only to betray them in Rassillon’s Tower. A deadly laser-filled board saw their end with the renegade Time Lord finishing one off with a blaster for good measure.
So technically not a Cybermen story and technically they don’t come off very well, but we love watching it nonetheless!
CyberQuote: “Promises to aliens have no validity.”
ARMY OF GHOSTS / DOOMSDAY
After their earlier return in the dramatic two-parter Rise of the Cybermen / The Age of Steel just weeks earlier, the Cybermen returned emphatically to establish themselves as a real-world threat in this two-part finale from 2006.
Their redesign was retro-futuristic and they came with an appropriate new catchphrase, DELETE! But these were still the Cybermen who basically wanted to take over the Universe. Or, in this case, any parallel universes they came into contact to.
Earth’s populace was fooled into thinking ‘ghosts’ were visiting us, but it was just the Cybermen preparing for their most audacious invasion ever. And they would have gotten away with it to if it wasn’t for those pesky Daleks. We look forward to a rematch…