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Published on May 9th, 2006 | by Christian Cawley

The Cybermen ARE COMING!

You can’t seriously expect to get through this week without visiting the updated www.cybuscorporation.com website, with it’s added features – so do it now, before I get into my stride.

The Cybermen, as you are no doubt aware, make their long overdue return to Doctor Who this week. This story, made up of the episodes Rise of the Cybermen/The Age of Steel is effectively a revision of the Cybermen, in much the same way that Genesis of the Daleks redeveloped the themes of the earlier Dalek stories.

You will of course be aweare that the Radio Times features a stunning front cover featuring what we suspect to be a Cybercontroller.

SFX has previewed Rise of the Cybermen which points out that:

The alternate world setting also allows a reboot for Cyber-continuity – one that ties in with our obsession with technology in this age of mobile phones and iPods. Fear not though, these are still essentially the same old Cybermen.

And although the story is set on an alternate Earth, the characters don’t get the same treatment as in 1970s Inferno – sadly…

As is widely known, the story is set on an alternate Earth, but if you’re hoping for an evil alternate Rose dressed entirely in black leather then you’re going to be disappointed

And SyFyPortal’s Scott Nance reports that Russell T Davies and Rise of the Cybermen director Graeme Harper have spoken about the story. Harper in particular was unhappy with leaks of the Cybermen’s redesign which prompted the early reveal of the Doctor’s silver foes…

“Some of it upset me,” Harper said in an interview. “Not personally, but I was trying not to give too much away early in the storytelling. This was a new breed of Cybermen, so I planned to show a bit of eyes or mouth, maybe a little bit of hand or metal, or some out of focus blurs; just a hint so you know they’re coming eventually. Once you finally see them, you see them for the rest of the episode and the following episode, so I wanted to leave it as long as possible for the audience to get their first taste of Cybermen.”

Meanwhile, Executive Producer Russel T Davies worked hard to make the background to the new Cybermen believable:

Part of my problem with it was I didn’t believe it,” Davies said in an interview. “We were trying to create a world where there were Body Shops on every corner where people got a new arm, and I didn’t believe that, and I’ve never believed it. I think you have to be practical and honest about these things, and I always used to have trouble with Steve Austin’s bionic arm, because it’s no good just having a robot arm; it’s what it’s attached to, so it could just be ripped off. So it wasn’t the gore and the darkness about it. I just didn’t believe it. What is the point of going for a new arm? It simply doesn’t work.”

And to conclude, icwales have reported that Rise of the Cybermen/The Age of Steel guest actor Andrew Hayden-Smith, also known as a CBBC presenter, reckons that RTD was planinng on a “gay scene” in the Cybermen story…

Andrew, who is openly gay, stars as a preacher fighting against an evil industry in a future episode of the series which stars new Doctor David Tennant and Billie Piper. He said: “There’s a line at the end that suggests my character is gay but it’s not made clear. I think Russell was after a gay kiss but they couldn’t push it that far!

Kid’s TV these days, eh…!

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About the Author

A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.




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