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Doctor Who - The Tomb of the Cybermen

episode 37

UK 1967
produced by
Peter Bryant for BBC
directed by Morris Barry
starring Patrick Troughton, Frazer Hines, Deborah Watling, Aubrey Richards, George Pastell, Cyril Shaps, Roy Stewart, Clive Merrison, Shirley Cooklin, George Roubicek, Alan Johns, Bernard Holley, Michael Kilgarriff, Peter Hawkins (voice)
written and Cybermen created by Kit Pedler, Gerry Davis, script editor: Victor Pemberton

Doctor Who, Doctor Who (Patrick Troughton), Doctor Who (classic series), Cybermen, Victoria Waterfield

review by
Mike Haberfelner

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Doctor Who (PAtrick troughton) and his companions Jamie (Frazer Hines) and Victoria (Deborah Watling) pay a visit to Telos, the planet of the Cybermen, who are now thought extinct. On Telos though there is a tomb that holds the last Cybermen in suspended animation, and an earth expedition has made it its task to uncover the Cybermen's last secrets ... which wouldn't be half bad were there not three among the expedition - archeologist Klieg (George Pastell), Kaftan (Shirley Cooklin), the financier of the expedition, and their black strongman Toberman (Roy Stewart) - who are hell-bent on bringing the Cybermen back to life and rule the world with their help.

The real problem is, they manage to bring the Cybermen back to life alright, but the Cyber-Controller (Michael Kilgarriff) has no desire to cooperate with them, so soon enough, the Doctor, his companions and large parts of the expedition find themselves caught between the Cybermen on one side and Klieg, Kaftan and Toberman on the other - until ultimately the Cybermen kill Klieg and Kaftan and Toberman has a change of heart and joins forces with the Doctor and company, single-handedly taking out many a Cyberman. And in the finale, he dies a hero's death sealing off the tomb of the Cybermen again ...

 

This episode has quite some things going for it: Unusually impressive sets, an interesting story with two parties of villains (the Cybermen and Klieg and company), and resulting from it quite a bit of suspense. That said however, Tomb of the Cybermen is far from perfect: The direction is incredibly flat, even for Doctor Who, the impressive sets, especially the tomb itself, are underused or shown in the most unimpressive manner (result of a rushed production schedule most probably), and the Cyber-Controller himself looks rather pathetic than anything else.

In all, not a bad episode, but it could and should have been much better.

 

review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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