Monday, 6 February 2012

The Tomb of the Cybermen (Doctor Who Series 5 Story 1)

Our lives are different to anybody else's. That's the exciting thing! Because nobody in the universe can do what we're doing.

That quote sums up the entirety of my love for this silly old programme. I know that, without a doubt, had the TARDIS pitched up in 1990s Bedfordshire my teenage self would have been through those battered old doors in a flash.

The Tomb of the Cybermen is a favourite of mine. I have to admit that there are terrible plotting flaws and some obvious kirby wires but you know what? I really don’t care. Watching this one with my son I was shown the beauty that is high adventure and the terror of mortality. When a 6 year old bred on a diet of Ben 10 and The Clone Wars gets excited at a silly old black and white sci-fi from 1967 then you know that you are onto something special.

The story is simple. The Cybermen, facing extinction out, laid a trap to capture new bodies. Our heroes walk into it. The Doctor is wonderfully ambiguous and you are again exposed to a dark manipulative man that wholly has his own agenda, he clearly manipulates the archaeologists to reveal the Cybermen so that he can defeat them yet manages to make it seem to be their doing. On the flip side, left to their own devices the tombs would have been breached and the Cybermen won. Its a testament to the character that the Doctor can be so opaque.

When the story was rediscovered in 1991 and released in 1992 those Doctorless wasteland years become slightly more tolerable. The coda of the Cybermen meant so much more “We will survive”. In 2012 Doctor Who is once again one of the BBCs hottest products. We DID survive.

Paul Out…

Coming up “The Abominable Snowmen

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