||This article describes a work or element of fiction in a primarily in-universe style. (February 2013)|
|Doctor Who alien|
The 2013 redesign of the Cybermen.
|First appearance||The Tenth Planet (1966)|
The Cybermen are a fictional race of cyborgs who are amongst the most persistent enemies of the Doctor in the British science fiction television series, Doctor Who. Cybermen were originally a wholly organic species of humanoids originating on Earth's twin planet Mondas that began to implant more and more artificial parts into their bodies as a means of self-preservation. This led to the race becoming coldly logical and calculating, with every emotion deleted from their minds.
They were created by Dr. Kit Pedler (the unofficial scientific advisor to the programme) and Gerry Davis in 1966, first appearing in the serial The Tenth Planet, the last to feature William Hartnell as the First Doctor. They have since been featured numerous times in their extreme attempts to survive through conquest up until the programme was cancelled.
Following the revival of the show, the Cybermen returned as a parallel version and appeared in the 2006 series' two-part story, "Rise of the Cybermen" and "The Age of Steel", and have been recurring villains in the revived series since. A further redesign took place in 2013's "Nightmare in Silver", showing technologically advanced Cybermen with a variety of new abilities. They also appeared in the Doctor Who spin-off Torchwood in its fourth episode, "Cyberwoman" (2006). Cybermen have also appeared in 2010 installments of the Doctor Who video game series The Adventure Games.
Physical characteristics 
While the Doctor's other old enemies, the Daleks, were on the whole unchanged during the original series' twenty-six season run, the Cybermen were seen to change with almost every encounter. The Cybermen are humanoid, but have been upgraded to the point where they have few remaining organic parts. They retain living human brains. In their first appearance in the series, the only portions of their bodies that still seemed human were their hands; by their next appearance in The Moonbase (1967), their bodies were entirely covered up in their metallic suits, with their hands replaced by two finger claws, but they changed back to regular five-fingered hands in The Invasion (1968). As they are relatively few in number, the Cybermen tend towards covert activity, scheming from hiding and using human pawns or robots to act in their place until they need to appear. They also seek to increase their numbers by converting others into Cybermen (a process known as "cyber-conversion" or "Robotisation" in the older episodes and "upgrading" in the newer episodes), an often painful process as body parts are removed and replaced with a cybernetic replacement.
It is presumed (and often implied) that there are still organic components beneath their suits, meaning they are actually cyborgs, not robots: in The Tenth Planet, a Cyberman tells a group of humans that "our brains are just like yours", although by the time of Attack of the Cybermen (1985), their brains seem to have been replaced with electronics. Also in this same story, two human slave-prisoners of the Cybermen on the planet Telos, named Bates and Stratton, reveal that their organic arms and legs have been removed by the Cybermen, and replaced by Cyber-substitutes. In Earthshock (1982), the actors' chins were vaguely visible through a clear perspex area on the helmet to suggest some kind of organic matter. In The Tomb of the Cybermen (1967), veins and brains were visible through the domed head of the Cyberman Controller and similarly, in Attack of the Cybermen (1985) and "The Age of Steel" (2006), the Cyber-Controller's brain is visible through the dome. The first is a Mondas Cyber Controller, while the second involves alternative Earth's John Lumic. However, in Revenge of the Cybermen (1975), the Doctor says they are "total machine creatures".
The audio play Real Time implies that the converted victim's face remains beneath the Cyberman faceplate, although the audio plays, like all non-televised spin-off media, are of uncertain canonicity with regards to the television series. The Virgin New Adventures novel Iceberg by David Banks states that some Cybermen experience rare flashes of emotional memory from the time before they were converted, which are then usually suppressed. The Cybermen in the New series are usually constructed from human brains bonded to a Cyberman exoskeletal shell with an artificially grown nervous system threaded throughout ("The Age of Steel"), although direct grafting of cyber-components is another method of conversion ("Cyberwoman"). In The Pandorica Opens, a Cyberman head is shown to open up, revealing an entire human skull, not just the brain.
Although the Cybermen often claim that they have done away with human emotion, they have exhibited emotions ranging from anger to smug satisfaction in their confrontations with the Doctor (although this is only clearly present during their appearances in the 1980s). Some Cybermen in the early stories were even given individual names such as "Krang". Some parallel Earth Cybermen did retain some memories of their pre-conversion lives, although their emotional response varied. In "Cyberwoman", the partial conversion led to a degree of insanity in Lisa Hallett, which was retained even after she transferred her brain into a fully human body. In "Doomsday", Yvonne Hartman is able to retain at least some elements of her personality in order to prevent the advance of a group of other Cybermen, and is last seen weeping what appears to be either an oil-like substance or blood. In the same episode, the Cyber-Leader expresses clear frustration at the humans' refusal to surrender, although in a later scene he criticises the Doctor for showing emotion. In "The Age of Steel", the Doctor is able to defeat the Cybermen by shutting down their emotional inhibitors, enabling them to "see" what had become of them. Their realisation of what they had become led them to either simply shut down out of sheer horror, or partially explode. Lastly, when the first Cyber Leader is killed, his head explodes with some white liquid leaking down his body; there are references in that episode to a patented Cybus Industries mixture of chemicals used to preserve the brain.
The Virgin Missing Adventures novel Killing Ground, by Steve Lyons suggests that some Cybermen imitate emotions to intimidate and unnerve their victims. The Big Finish Productions audio play Spare Parts (set on Mondas in the early days of Cyber-conversion) suggests that the Cybermen deliberately remove their emotions as part of the conversion process to stifle the physical and emotional trauma of becoming a Cyberman. The conversion process in the parallel Earth is termed "upgrading".
This motive behind the removal of emotions is made more explicit in "The Age of Steel" where it is done by means of an emotional inhibitor. In that episode, the deactivation of their emotional inhibitors causes the converted Cybermen to realise what they have become, driving them insane and killing them. This motive may also be applicable to Mondas Cybermen, given their forcible conversion of other lifeforms to Cybermen to maintain their numbers, despite the fact the Mondasians appear to have originally willingly converted themselves as a survival mechanism.
The Cybermen have had a number of weaknesses since their introduction. The most notable weakness of the original Cybermen is the element gold. Their aversion to gold was not mentioned until their attempt to destroy the planetoid Voga (the so-called "Planet of Gold") in Revenge of the Cybermen (1975). Initially, it was explained that, due to its non-corrodible nature, gold essentially chokes their respiratory systems. For example, the glittergun, a weapon used during the Cyber-Wars in the future, fired gold dust at its targets. However, in later serials, gold appeared to affect them rather like silver affects werewolves, with gold coins or gold-tipped bullets fired at them having the same effect. The revived series' Cybermen have no such weakness, though the tie-in website for the episode mentions it. Cybermen are also efficiently killed when shot with their own guns, or by a Dalek. Other weaknesses from early stories include solvents, gravity based technology, and excessive levels of radiation. In "The Age of Steel", an EMP grenade is shown to disable a Cyberman and shut down its emotional inhibitor. The vulnerability to gold is clearly not present in some early Cyberman types, for example the type seen in the 1968 serial The Invasion were unlikely to possess it, or perhaps more likely the weakness is simply not known, otherwise the Doctor/UNIT would simply have used it and not required the elaborate plan involving the assistance both of a Russian missile base and the Cybermen's own puppet ally, Tobias Vaughn. It is unclear precisely how many of the different types, and which types, of Cyberman are actually vulnerable to gold. Also there is no official or canon documentation of Cybermen prior to the new series Cybus version being vulnerable to Dalek weapons.
Their armour is often depicted as flexible and resistant to bullets, but can be penetrated by gold arrows and projectiles made of gold. The Parallel Earth Cybermen are bullet-proof and are very resilient, but are not indestructible—they are vulnerable to heavy explosives, electromagnetic pulses and specialised weaponry, as well as Dalek weapons.
The first Cyberman costumes were designed by BBC costume designer Sandra Reid. Early Cyberman costumes included items and material such as cloth, rubber diving suits, PVC, chest units, tubing, practice golf balls, cricketers' gloves, and silver-painted Doc Martens boots. A BBC Cyberman costume from the black & white era of TV has recently[when?] been discovered.
The 1980s design used converted flight suits painted silver. Unlike the Doctor's other foes, the Cybermen costumes have changed substantially in appearance over the years, looking more and more modern, although retaining certain commonalities of design, the most iconic being the "handle bars" attached to Cybermen heads that were supposed to aid with their hearing. Other design elements include their round eyeholes and their chest units. Disguised, black-coloured Cybermen were seen briefly in Attack of the Cybermen.
Aside from these changes, variations in design between rank-and-file Cybermen and their leaders have been seen. In The Wheel in Space and The Invasion (both 1968), the Cyber Director was depicted as an immobile mechanism. In The Tomb of the Cybermen and Attack of the Cybermen, the Cyber Controller was a larger Cyberman with a high domed head instead of the "handle bar" helmet design. In Revenge of the Cybermen, the Cyber Leader had a completely black helmet except for his face. From Earthshock (1982) onwards he could be distinguished from his troops by the black handle bars on his helmet. The Cyber-Leaders in "Army of Ghosts" and "The Next Doctor" also had black handles, with the latter also sporting a black face (or visor), and transparent brain casing.
Because the Doctor is a time traveller, he meets the Cybermen at various points in their history out of sequence from the order the serials were made. This can be confusing since Cybermen from serials set in "earlier" periods of history can sometimes look more sophisticated than those from "later" periods. Lawrence Miles suggests in his reference work About Time 5 that the anachronistically designed Cybermen of Earthshock and Silver Nemesis are time travellers, like those in Attack of the Cybermen. The Doctor Who Role Playing Game "Cyber Files" worked around the contradiction by stating that in the Tenth Planet, the oldest designs of Cybermen were used for the attack while the later more sophisticated models remained on Mondas.
A Cyberman head was seen in the 2005 episode, "Dalek", kept in a display case. The text on the info card states that the head was found in a sewer, suggesting that the head was from The Invasion. However, the corrugated type Cyber-Handles suggest that the head is from Revenge of the Cybermen. The info card states the head was found in 1975, the year in which The Invasion was possibly set and the year in which Revenge of the Cybermen was broadcast.
The Cybermen returned in episodes 5 and 6 of the 2006 season of the new series, in a two-part story set on an alternative Earth. The new Cybermen were designed by production designer Edward Thomas's team and Neill Gorton at Millennium FX. The new Cyberman design is physically imposing, being about 6 feet 7 inches (2.01 m) tall. They are made from burnished steel instead of silver, feature the Cybus Corporation symbol on its chest, and have a general art deco design. The other distinct Cyberman design is that of the Cyber-Controller, which had glowing eyes, a transparent forehead revealing the brain, and sockets on its chest-plate providing connectors to other systems.
The Torchwood episode "Cyberwoman" features a partially cyber-converted woman who lacks the outer plating of a fully converted Cyberman. Her body is encased in metal structures but much of her flesh, including her face, is visible. She also has clearly visible metallic breasts, though it is not clear how much of her own flesh has been replaced and how much is merely covered. Another character speculates she could be 40–45% human, and 55–60% Cyberman.
Early Cybermen had an unsettling, sing-song voice, constructed by placing the inflections of words on the wrong syllables. In their first appearance, the effect of this was augmented by having a Cyberman abruptly open his mouth wide and keep it open, without moving his tongue or lips, while the separately recorded voice would be playing, and then shut it quickly when the line was finished. Although the cloth-like masks of the first Cybermen were soon replaced by a full helmet, a similar physical effect involving the mouth "hatch" opening and then shutting when the line was finished was used until The Wheel in Space (1968).
Later, the production team used special effects from its Radiophonic Workshop by adding first a mechanical larynx, then a vocoder, to modify speech to make it sound more artificial. In later stories of the original series and in the audio plays, two copies of the voice track were sampled and pitch-shifted downwards by differing amounts and layered to produce the effect, sometimes with the addition of a small amount of flanging. From Revenge of the Cybermen to Silver Nemesis (1988) the actors provided the voices themselves, using microphones and transmitters in the chest units.
The voices for the 2006 return of the Cybermen are similar to the buzzing electronic monotone voices of the Cybermen used in The Invasion. They were provided by Nicholas Briggs (who performed the voices for the Cybermen in Big Finish audio stories as well as the Daleks in both the new series and the audio stories). As shown in the second series of Doctor Who Confidential, the timbre was created by processing Brigg's voice through a Moog moogerfooger ring modulator. Unusually, in "The Age of Steel", the Cyber-Controller (John Lumic, played by Roger Lloyd Pack) retains his voice after being upgraded, but it is still electronic. In "Doomsday", a Cyberman which contains the brain of Torchwood Institute director Yvonne Hartman retains a female-sounding though still electronic voice, as does the partially converted Lisa Hallett in "Cyberwoman" when her Cyberman personality is dominant. In an effect reminiscent of the earliest Cybermen's mouths snapping open while speaking, the new Cybermen have a blue light in their "mouths" (or "teeth") which blinks in synchronisation with their speech.
Since The Age of Steel in 2006, the Cybermen have had nasaly-sounding electronic voices; this continued all the way until Closing Time in 2011. As of Nightmare in Silver[when?], the Cybermen now have deep, almost growl-like voices. The "mouths" no longer flash to show they are speaking.
Some Cybermen are given titles, being credited as "Cyber Leader" (or variants thereof), "Cyber Lieutenant", "Cyber Scout" or the "Cyber Controller". An immobile computer has appeared in The Invasion that has been referred to as the "Cyber Planner". The Controller seen (and destroyed) in various serials also may or may not be the same consciousness in different bodies; it appears to recognise and remember the Doctor from previous encounters. In Iceberg, the first Cyber Controller is created by implanting a Cyber Director, or Cyber Planner, into the skull of a recently converted Cyberman.
The Cyber-Controller in "The Age of Steel" used the brain of John Lumic, the creator of the Cybermen in that parallel reality. In "Doomsday", a Cyber-Leader appears, and when he is destroyed, mention is made of downloading his data files into another Cyberman unit, which is then upgraded to Cyber-Leader.
The 2008 Christmas special, "The Next Doctor", featured a new, more agile variant called a Cybershade. The Doctor theorises that it is a more primitive version of a Cyberman, using the brain of a cat or a dog, and they physically resemble animals as they have fur and walk on all fours. In the same story a "Cyber-King" appears; according to the Doctor, it is a "Dreadnought-class" ship for use in invasions resembling a Cyberman hundreds of feet tall, and contains a Cyber-factory in its chest. It is controlled from within its mouth. Its right arm can be converted into a cannon, and its left into a laser.
A redesigned version of the Cybermen appeared in "Nightmare in Silver" on 11 May 2013. After "almost 1000 years" of evolution, these latest Cybermen are more agile and flexible than ever before. The Cyber-Planner also made a return, becoming a split personality of the Eleventh Doctor via a cybernetic implant, dubbing itself Mr. Clever; unlike previous Cyber-Planners, this one had a rather erratic personality thanks to the Doctor being its host. It nearly beat the Doctor in battle for control of his mind; if Mr. Clever won, the Cybermen would have gained the knowledge of how to time travel.
Cybermen technology is almost completely oriented towards weaponry, apart from their own bodies. When originally seen in The Tenth Planet, they had large energy weapons that attached to their chests. In The Moonbase, the Cybermen had two types of weaponry: an electrical discharge from their hands, which stunned the target, and a type of gun. They also made use of a large laser cannon with which they attempted to attack the base itself.
The hand discharge was also present in The Tomb of the Cybermen, which featured a smaller, hand-held Cyber-weapon shaped like a pistol that was described as an X-ray laser. In The Wheel in Space, the Cybermen could use the discharge to also operate machinery, and had death rays built into their chest units. They displayed the same units in The Invasion as well as carrying large rifles for medium distance combat. In Revenge of the Cybermen and Real Time, their weapons were built into their helmets. Killing Ground indicates that this type of Cybermen also have more powerful hand weapons. Subsequent appearances have shown them armed almost exclusively with hand-held cyberguns.
The Cybermen have access to weapons of mass destruction known as cobalt bombs, also sometimes as Cyber-bombs, which were banned by the galactic Armageddon Convention (Revenge of the Cybermen). A "Cyber-megatron bomb" was mentioned in The Invasion, supposedly powerful enough to destroy all life on Earth. In Earthshock, the Cybermen also used androids as part of their plans to invade Earth.
The New Series Cybermen electrocute their victims by touching them and at first carried no other weaponry. In "Army of Ghosts" and "Doomsday", the Cybermen are equipped with retractable energy weapons housed within their forearms (these were actually first shown in "The Age of Steel", but only very briefly and were not used during that episode), but also use modified human weapons to battle the Daleks. The arm mounted guns prove effective against humans but are unable to penetrate Dalek shields. Two Cybermen sent to parley with Dalek Thay at the Battle of Canary Wharf shot the Dalek but were promptly exterminated. In the Torchwood episode "Cyberwoman", the partially converted Lisa Hallett used her electrical touch against the Torchwood team, as well as an energy beam fired from her arm which could only stun the part of the body at which it was aimed. In "The Pandorica Opens", the cybermen again have the wrist-blaster, but also regain the modified human weapons. In "Nightmare in Silver", the Cybermen have the ability to move at super sonic speed, at this speed they appear as blurry after images.
The Cybermen also use smaller, cybernetic creatures called "cybermats" as weapons of attack. In their first appearance in The Tomb of the Cybermen, they resembled oversized metallic silverfish and had segmented bodies with hair-like tactile sensor probes along the base of their heads, which were topped with crystalline eyes. The Second Doctor described them as a "form of metallic life," implying that they may be semi-organic like the Cybermen, and that they too attack by feeding off brain waves.
The second model of cybermat seen in The Wheel in Space was used for sabotage, able to tune in on human brainwaves. They were carried to the "Wheel" in small but high-density sacs that sank through the hull of the space station, causing drops in air pressure. These cybermats had solid photoreceptors for eyes instead of crystals. The Second Doctor used an audio frequency to jam them, causing them to spin, crash and disintegrate.
The third model, seen in Revenge of the Cybermen, was a much larger, snake-like cybermat that could be remotely controlled and could inject poison into its victims. It had no visible eyes or other features, and was as vulnerable to gold dust as the Cybermen were.
The fourth model of cybermat appears for the first time in the revived series in the 2011 episode "Closing Time", where it is shown to have an organic mouth, and transmits power to a crashed Cybership
In the audio play Spare Parts, "mats" are cybernetically augmented creatures, sometimes kept as pets. Cybermats of a different design are used for surveillance by Mondas' Central Committee. The creatures occasionally go wild, chewing on power sources, and must be rounded up by a "mat-catcher." In the Past Doctor Adventures novel Illegal Alien by Mike Tucker and Robert Perry, set in the 1940s, the Cybermen create cybermats by cyber-converting local animals like cats or birds, possibly because of lack of technological resources.
The Cybermats appeared in the video game "Blood of the Cybermen" where instead of killing, they turned individuals into cyberslaves. The slaves have mostly human bodies, but have Cyberman heads and in some cases arms. The Cybermen see the Cyberslaves as inferior, and delete them once they have served their purpose.
An Upgraded form of Cybermats appeared in "Nightmare in Silver". They were incredibly small mechanical insects that were more versatile and were able to convert other lifeforms into Cybermen partially. They were referred to as a Cybermite.
The name "Cyberman" comes from cybernetics, a term used in Norbert Wiener's book Cybernetics or Control and Communication in the Animal and the Machine (MIT Press, 1948). Wiener used the term in reference to the control of complex systems in the animal world and in mechanical networks, in particular self-regulating control systems. By 1960, doctors were performing research into surgically or mechanically augmenting humans or animals to operate machinery in space, leading to the coining of the term "cyborg", for "cybernetic organism".
In the 1960s, "spare-part" surgery was starting out, with the first, gigantic heart-lung machines being developed. There were also serious suggestions of wiring the nerve endings of amputees directly into machines for quicker response. In 1963, Kit Pedler had a conversation with his wife (who was also a doctor) about what would happen if a person had so many prostheses that they could no longer distinguish themselves between man and machine. He got the opportunity to develop this idea when, in 1966, after an appearance on the BBC science programmes Tomorrow's World and Horizon, the BBC hired him to help on the Doctor Who serial The War Machines. That eventually led to him writing, with Gerry Davis's help, The Tenth Planet for Doctor Who.
Pedler, influenced by the logic-driven Treens from the Dan Dare comic strip, originally envisaged the Cybermen as "space monks", but was persuaded by Davis to concentrate on his fears about the direction of spare-part surgery. The original Cybermen were imagined as human, but with plastic and metal prostheses. The Cybermen of The Tenth Planet still have human hands, and their facial structures are visible beneath the masks they wear. However, over time, they evolved into metallic, more robot-like designs.
The Cybermen attracted controversy when parents complained after a scene in The Tomb of the Cybermen in which a dying Cyberman spurted white foam from its innards. Another incident was initiated by Pedler himself, who took a man in a Cyberman costume into a busy shopping area of St. Pancras. The reaction of the public was predictable, and the crowd almost blocked the street and the police were called in. Pedler said that he "wanted to know how people would react to something quite unusual," but also admitted that he "wanted to be a nuisance." Pedler wrote his last Cyberman story, The Invasion, in 1968, and left Doctor Who with Gerry Davis to develop the scientific thriller series Doomwatch.
Fictional history 
Classic series 
Millennia ago, during prehistoric times, Mondas was knocked out of solar orbit and drifted into deep space. The Mondasians, already far in advance of Earth's technology and fearful for their race's survival, replaced most of their bodies with cybernetic parts. Having eventually removed all emotion from their brains, to maintain their sanity, the natives installed a drive propulsion system so they could pilot the planet itself through space. As the original race was limited in numbers and were continually being depleted, the Mondasians – now Cybermen – became a race of conquerors who reproduced by taking other organic beings and forcibly changing them into Cybermen. The origins of the Cybermen were further elaborated upon in Spare Parts. The Mondasians also sent out spacecraft to colonise other worlds, including Telos, where they pushed the native Cryons aside and used the planet to house vast tombs where they could take refuge in suspended animation when necessary.
Earth invasions 
The Cybermen's first attempt at invading Earth was sometime in the late 1960s or 1970s. A group of Cybermen from "Planet 14" had allied themselves with British industrialist Tobias Vaughn, who installed mind control circuits in electrical appliances manufactured by his International Electromatics company, paving the way for a ground invasion. This was uncovered by the newly formed United Nations Intelligence Taskforce, led by Brigadier Lethbridge-Stewart, who repelled the invasion with the help of the Second Doctor, Jamie and Zoe. (The Invasion)
In 1986, the First Doctor and his companions Ben and Polly, met an advance force of Cybermen that landed near an Antarctic space tracking station. This advance force was to prepare for the return of Mondas to the solar system. As Mondas approached, it began to drain Earth's energy for the Cybermen's use, but in the process began absorbing too much energy. The Cybermen tried to destroy Earth to protect their planet, but were delayed long enough for their planet to disintegrate. The Cybermen on Earth also fell apart as their homeworld was destroyed. The energy drain possibly exhausted the Doctor's life-force, causing him to regenerate. (The Tenth Planet)
In 1988 a fleet of cyber warships was assembled to convert Earth into a new Mondas. A scouting party was sent to Earth in search of the legendary Nemesis statue, a Time Lord artefact of immense power, made of the "living metal" validium. Due to the machinations of the Seventh Doctor and his companion Ace, however, the Nemesis destroyed the entire cyber-fleet instead. (Silver Nemesis)
In 2012 the inert head of a Cyberman was part of the Vault, a collection of alien artefacts belonging to American billionaire Henry van Statten ("Dalek"). According to its label, it was recovered from the London sewers in 1975 and presumably came from the 1970s invasion attempt, although it is of a design only seen in Revenge of the Cybermen, which took place in the late 29th century (in a metafictional sense, the label is accurate, as Revenge was broadcast in 1975).
By the mid-21st century, mankind had reached beyond its planet and set up space stations in deep space. One of these, Space Station W3, known as "The Wheel," was the site of a takeover by Cybermen who wanted to use it as a staging point for yet another invasion of Earth. The Second Doctor, Jamie and Zoe prevented this. (The Wheel in Space)
By the year 2070, Earth's weather was being controlled by the Gravitron installation on the Moon. The Cybermen planned to use the Gravitron to disrupt the planet's weather patterns and destroy all life on it, eliminating a threat to their survival. This attempt was also stopped by the Second Doctor, Ben, Polly, Jamie and the surviving crew of the moonbase, who used the Gravitron to hurl the Cybermen into space. (The Moonbase)
Five centuries after the destruction of Mondas, the Cybermen had all but passed into legend when an archaeological expedition to the planet Telos uncovered their resting place in The Tomb of the Cybermen. However, those Cybermen were not dead but merely in hibernation, and were briefly revived before the Second Doctor sent them back to sleep, with help from some of the archaeologists, Jamie and Victoria.
By the 26th century, the Cybermen were back in force, and the galactic situation was grave enough that Earth hosted a conference in 2526 that would unite the forces of several planets in a war against the Cybermen. A force of Cybermen tried to disrupt this conference, first by trying to infiltrate Earth in a freighter and when that was discovered by the Fifth Doctor, to crash the freighter into Earth and cause an ecological disaster. Although the attempt failed, the freighter was catapulted back in time to become the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs. Unfortunately, the Doctor's Companion Adric was trapped aboard the freighter, and died in the crash when a Cyberman destroyed the controls before he could break the final code; leaving the Fifth Doctor, Tegan and Nyssa to mourn him. (Earthshock)
The Cybermen faced complete defeat now that humanity was united against them in the Cyber-Wars. The glittergun had been developed as a weapon against them, with Voga, the legendary "Planet of Gold", being a major supplier of gold dust ammunition. Meanwhile, the native Cryons on the planet Telos rose up and sabotaged the Cybermen's hibernation tombs. Using a captured time machine, a group of Cybermen travelled back to Earth in 1985 to try to prevent the destruction of Mondas, but were stopped by the Sixth Doctor and his companion Peri. The Cryons also finally succeeded in taking back Telos. (Attack of the Cybermen)
The Cybermen did survive their defeat in the final Cyber-War, but they had been reduced to small remnant groups wandering throughout space. The Fourth Doctor, Sarah Jane Smith and Harry Sullivan encountered one such group around the year 2875; and the Doctor very sarcastically pointed out their diminished state, noting that they had "no home planet, no influence, nothing!", and were "just a bunch of pathetic tin soldiers, skulking about the galaxy in an ancient spaceship." These Cybermen had discovered that Voga had drifted through space and wandered into the solar system, being pulled into orbit around Jupiter as a new moon. They planned to restore their race's power with a plan of revenge against Voga by destroying it with cyber-bombs. They hoped that this would disrupt their enemies' supply of gold, but their plot was stopped by the Doctor. (Revenge of the Cybermen)
Another group of Cybermen had survived the Cyber-Wars and occupied a planet to recover from the near-defeat during the Cyber-Wars in "Nightmare in Silver". These Cybermen had "upgraded" themselves through centuries of combat, making them far more resilient and agile.
A Cyberman (of the type seen in The Invasion) also appeared in the Miniscope exhibit in Carnival of Monsters (1973). Three squads of Cybermen of the Earthshock variety, each led by a Cyber-Leader, appeared in The Five Doctors (1983) in a slightly larger role.
Revived series 
Doctor Who was revived after a long hiatus by new showrunner Russell T Davies in 2005. In the first series of the revived programme, the Cybermen do not appear except for the inactive head of one seen in a private museum of alien artefacts on Earth in the 6th episode "Dalek". For series 2 however, in 2006, Cybermen were reintroduced with a new origin story set in a parallel universe. In the "Rise of the Cybermen"/"The Age of Steel" two-part story, the Tenth Doctor (David Tennant), Rose Tyler (Billie Piper) and Mickey Smith (Noel Clarke) crash down into a parallel London where the Cybermen are being created on modern-day Earth. The Cybermen are created by the owner of Cybus Industries, the dying transhumanist mad scientist John Lumic (Roger Lloyd Pack). Lumic's Cybermen successfully convert much of the world's population by placing their human brains into robotic shells. The Doctor and his friends free London from their control. A human resistance group, the Preachers, then sets about to clean up the remainder of Lumic's factories around the world. The Cybermen reappear in the 2006 finale "Army of Ghosts"/"Doomsday", they exploit a breach between universes to invade the Doctor's Earth. This breach however is caused by a Dalek transport device; the Daleks reveal themselves, inciting all-out war between the species with mankind caught in the crossfire. The Doctor ultimately re-opens the breach, causing the Cybermen and all but a few Daleks to become trapped inside before it is re-sealed. That same year, the spin-off programme Torchwood produced a follow-up episode which disclosed that several Cybermen were created from prime universe humans using a faster process of grafting materials to their bodies, a fate which befell partially converted Torchwood employee Lisa Hallett (Caroline Chikezie), whose colleague and boyfriend Ianto (Gareth David-Lloyd) attempted to reverse her condition while hiding her at Torchwood Three in Cardiff. After Lisa's programming asserted itself, she began killing and was killed by Ianto's colleagues. Cybermen next appeared in the 2008 Christmas special "The Next Doctor", where exposition reveals that many escaped the void between worlds due to the events of the 2008 series finale, in which the Daleks damaged the barriers between realities. Based in London 1851, the Cybermen allied themselves with human Miss Hartigan (Dervla Kirwan) and attempted to conquer Earth, before being stopped by the Doctor.
After Steven Moffat took over the role of executive producer in 2010, Cybermen of the design introduced by Davies continued to appear. No explicit reference is made to their origin. They first appear in "The Pandorica Opens" (2010) alongside many of the Doctor's recurring enemies as part of an alliance dedicated to stopping him. They arrive in Cyberships to apprehend him in 102 AD. A Cyberman is depicted whose individual body parts are able to operate independently of one another, and whose head—which contains a human skull—is shown to move on tentacle-like wires and fire tranquiliser darts. They next appear in the video game Blood of the Cybermen, without the Cybus Industries chest plate of the 2006 redesign. Cybermen are unearthed in the Arctic in 2010; their ship is said to have been damaged by a time-storm and crashed 10,000 years earlier. They appear briefly in "A Good Man Goes to War" (2011), again without a chest logo although with a blank chest plate. The Doctor's companion Rory (Arthur Darvill) confronts them and demands the location of a secret asteroid base because they monitor that entire quadrant of space. The Doctor destroys a large fleet of their spaceships as a "message" to them to indicate his seriousness. In "Closing Time", an old, long-since-crashed cyber-ship beneath Earth's surface is reawakened by electrical work in 2011 Colchester; Cybermats are reintroduced to the series. The Cybermen attempt to cyber-convert the Doctor's friend Craig (James Corden) by initially inserting him into cyber-ship machinery which attempts to electronically erase his emotions. Craig resists conversion due to his love for his child, causing an emotional feedback loop that destroys the cyber-ship.
Cybermen next appear in "Nightmare in Silver" (2013), after Steven Moffat commissioned writer Neil Gaiman to radically overhaul the Cybermen. In a distant future, the Cybermen—collectively known as the Cyberiad—have become more advanced through continually upgrading to overcome weaknesses. They are thought extinct after the human empire destroyed a whole galaxy in a bid to wipe them out, but re-emerge on a planet visited by the Doctor. The Cybermen sport a new design and display new abilities such as super speed and resilience, and also reveal they have evolved to the point where they no longer limited to cyber-converting only humans. They also utilise advanced miniscule Cybermats known as Cybermites which can also partially convert life forms. The Cyberiad attempts to to take over the Doctor's mind, leading the Cyberiad's primary consciousness (the Cyber-Planner) to battle with the Eleventh Doctor for control of it. These Cybermen are ultimately defeated when the emperor of the galaxy (Warwick Davis) orders the planet's destruction, though the head of one Cyberman is seen floating in space.
Other appearances 
The BBV audios Cyber-Hunt and Cybergeddon and the BBV video Cyberon feature the Cyberons, which are a race of cyborgs not dissimilar to the Cybermen; Cyber-Hunt was quite blatantly using the Cybermen and the Cyber Wars under another name, with the plot based around the Cyberon/Cybermen being converted humans.
The Cybermen were also featured in the novel Iceberg by actor David Banks, who played the Cyber Leader in the television series from Earthshock to Silver Nemesis. Banks had previously written, in 1988, Cybermen, a fictional history of the Cybermen which included a "future" design for them. The Missing Adventure Novel Killing Ground also features Cybermen of the type seen in Revenge of the Cybermen. During this novel, the Sixth Doctor's new companion Grant Markham returns to his home planet and learns that a group of Cybermen have hidden on it for centuries, with his robophobia being based around the repressed memory of witnessing a Cyberman kill his mother before he escaped.
In two Virgin Missing Adventures novels by Craig Hinton, the Cybermen become Cyberlords at some point in their history. They are mentioned in passing in Hinton's The Crystal Bucephalus, where the Cyberlord Hegemony is a peaceful future version of the Cybermen who have an empire in the Milky Way; their description was modelled after Banks's designs. In The Quantum Archangel, there are numerous unexplained references to the Cyberlords as an extremely advanced race. At one point, they are referred to as the Time Lords' greatest ally in the Millennium War, though because that war was supposed to have taken place a very long time before the modern era, it is unclear how this bit of Cyberhistory fits in or whether or not they have achieved advanced time travel capabilities. While not explicitly mentioned, Hinton may have adopted this idea from the aborted script for the Five Doctors by Robert Holmes (scriptwriter), which would have had the Cybermen adopting Time Lord DNA to achieve their higher state of being.
The Past Doctor Adventures novel Illegal Alien featured Cybermen and Cybermats in London during the Blitz. Cyber-technology left over from that adventure was subsequently misused in Loving the Alien, written by the same authors. The Fifth Doctor story Warmonger by Terrance Dicks has the Cybermen join the Doctor's alliance against Morbius. The First Doctor story The Time Travellers by Simon Guerrier, set in an alternate reality, has the Cybermen (who are never named) living at the South Pole and trading advanced technology to South Africa. The Eighth Doctor Adventures novel Hope by Mark Clapham features the Silverati, a group of cybernetically enhanced humans heavily reminiscent of the Cybermen, in existence in the very far future as the universe approaches its end, with some evidence suggesting that the Silverati were adapted from remnants of the Cybermen of the present.
The Cybermen have appeared in several Big Finish audio plays battling the Doctor, the first of which was Sword of Orion (released on CD in 2001 and broadcast on BBC 7 in 2005), where the Eighth Doctor deals with humans and androids engaged in a war who seek Cyber-technology to improve their sides. The 2002 play Spare Parts explored aspects of the Cybermen's origin, revealing that the design was ironically only perfected after their creator, Doctorman Allan, studied the biology of the Fifth Doctor and duplicated a third lobe to the Doctor's brain that controlled his body functions. They were the villains in the company's BBCi webcast Real Time in 2002 and appeared in a linked trilogy of plays entitled The Harvest (2004), The Reaping (2006) and The Gathering (2006). They most recently appeared in Human Resources, which Big Finish produced for radio BBC 7 and will subsequently release on CD.
The first instalment of a four-CD series titled Cyberman, which does not feature the Doctor, was released in September 2005. Sword of Orion and the Cyberman series are set around the "Great Orion Cyber-Wars" of the 26th century, when androids rebelled against humanity in the Orion System and both human and android turned to the Cybermen to gain a military advantage. In Sword Of Orion, the Cybermen are still entombed on Telos and are mostly forgotten, setting it before Earthshock; by the time of Cyberman, Telos has been destroyed by an asteroid collision, placing that series after Attack of the Cybermen. The Bernice Summerfield play The Crystal of Cantus features a former human colony turned into Cybermen, with Irving Braxiatel planning to use them as a private army. A Cyberman tomb also appeared in the Bernice Summerfield play Silver Lining, which came free with Doctor Who Magazine #351.
They have also appeared in the various Doctor Who comic strips, beginning with The Coming of the Cybermen in TV Comic #824-#827. TV Comic cashed in on their frequent presence in the TV series in the late 1960s by featuring them regularly, and they appeared in Flower Power (TVC #832-#835), Cyber-Mole (TVC #842-#845), The Cyber Empire (TVC #850-#853), Eskimo Joe (TVC #903-#906), Masquerade (TVC Holiday Special 1968), The Time Museum (TVC Annual 1969), The Champion (TVC Holiday Special 1969) and Test-Flight (TVC Annual 1970). Their absence from the TV show for most of the 1970s was reflected in a lack of appearances in the strip: they eventually returned in the early 1980s in the Doctor Who Monthly strip Junk-Yard Demon (DWM #58-#59). They made further appearances after the publication was re-titled Doctor Who Magazine: Exodus/Revelation/Genesis (DWM #108-#110), The World Shapers (DWM #127-#129, written by Grant Morrison, which revealed that the Voord were the race that evolved into the Cybermen and that Mondas was previously the planet Marinus), The Good Soldier (DWM #175-#178) and The Flood (DWM #346-#353). In addition, a Cyberman named Kroton, who originally appeared in a couple of Doctor Who Weekly back-up strips called Throwback: The Soul of a Cyberman (DWW #5-#7) and Ship of Fools (DWW #23-#24), was reintroduced in Unnatural Born Killers (DWM #277) and was briefly a companion of the Eighth Doctor in The Company of Thieves (DWM #284-#286) and The Glorious Dead (DWM #287-#296). The Cybermen had their own one-page strip in DWM from issues #215-#238, written by Alan Barnes and drawn by Adrian Salmon.
In 1996, the Radio Times published a Doctor Who comic strip. The first story, entitled Dreadnought, featured the Cybermen attacking a human starship in 2220 and introduced the strip companion Stacy Townsend.
In the Doctor Who/Star Trek crossover, Assimilation2, the Cybermen join forces with the Borg, forcing the Eleventh Doctor to join forces with the crew of the Enterprise-D to stop them. The Borg and Cybermen have begun to attack and convert worlds without declaring themselves first, with the apparent 'leader' being a Cyber-Controller with Borg components. The Doctor also recalls a past incident where he helped the crew of the original Enterprise defeat a Cyberman infiltration of a Federation outpost in his fourth incarnation, although it would appear that this is a recent addition to his past history as the Eleventh Doctor also remembers not remembering that encounter. The Cybermen attempt to subvert and take over the Borg Collective, forcing the Doctor and the Enterprise to ally with the Borg to stop the Cybermen and restore the Collective to normal.
Major appearances 
Stage plays 
- Doctor Who - The Ultimate Adventure – Wimbledon Theatre, London (premiere 23 March 1989)
- Doctor Who - The Tomb of the Cybermen – Oxford Brookes University, Oxford (premiere 16 June 1998)
Audio plays 
The Blue Tooth Spare Parts The Gathering Real Time The Reaping The Ultimate Adventure Legend of the Cybermen The Harvest Kingdom of Silver & Keepsake Sword of Orion Human Resources The Girl Who Never Was The Silver Turk Silver Lining The Crystal of Cantus Scorpius Fear Conversion Telos Outsiders Terror Machines Extinction
- Iceberg by David Banks (Virgin New Adventures)
- Killing Ground by Steve Lyons (Virgin Missing Adventures)
- Illegal Alien by Mike Tucker and Robert Perry (BBC Past Doctor Adventures)
- Made of Steel by Terrance Dicks (Quick Reads Initiative)
- Plague of the Cybermen by Justin Richards
On the BBC's Doctor Who website, the Cybermen appear in two online flash games, Cyber Assault and Save Paris (both 2006), depicting the war between the Cybermen and Preachers on the parallel Earth, and Cybermen vs. Dalek. Cyber Assault is presented from the Cybermen point of view, with the cyborgs featuring as playable characters.
See also 
- The Cybus Industries tie-in website refers to earlier prototypes having an "allergy" to gold, stating that this was eliminated after further improvements of the Cyberman body.
- "Ep 177: Alexandra Tynan, Gloria Jeans and Ingham Chicken Ads, Ladette Quotes". Boxcutters. Retrieved 18 May 2011.
- "Cult – Doctor Who – Realtime – History of the Cybermen – Nice Outfit". BBC Online. Retrieved 3 July 2006.
- "Doctor Who Props – Cyberman Costume".
- Peterkin, Tom (30 July 2008). "Doctor Who to be challenged by new Cyberman enemy". Daily Telegraph (UK). Retrieved 31 July 2008.
- Donald Longmore (1988). Spare Part Surgery – The Science of the Future. Aldus.
- "The Day a Cyberman went shopping in St. Pancras". Radio Times. 23 November 1968. p. 39.
- "warning.jpg". bbc.co.uk.
- [dead link]
|Wikiquote has a collection of quotations related to: Cyberman|
- Cyberman on TARDIS Data Core, an external wiki
- Designer Alexandra Tynan discusses the creation of the cybermen on the Boxcutters podcast