Why, hello there! Long time no see. Yep, we’re back at it.

And boy, oh boy, are we starting off with a doozy. This is a great episode, but damn… I’ll say no more, let’s just get started.

Episode 1:

We open with a group of humans in some form of uniforms, most black, who are armed with weapons. At least one woman in a grey uniform (and a white helmet, as opposed to everyone else’s black helmets.) They’re setting up equipment in a rocky terrain.

A technician operates a scanner, but comes up with nothing. They’re scanning for mammalian lifeforms and the woman in grey worries that whomever they’re scanning for are dead. One of the black-suited men tries to reassure her, but doesn’t try that hard.

Apparently, the woman in grey was the sole member of a group of eight doing a survey in the cavern below, when something went wrong. She says they were all paleontologists and geologists and they’d just discovered a new branch rich in fossils.

The scene switches to inside the caverns, the tunnels light by lamps. Two figures walk in the shadows.

The soldiers and the woman in grey prepare to go down. Two soldiers are left behind to man the scanner. When she’s away, the leader asks one of his subordinates if she believes Professor Kyle (the woman in grey.) They agree that she’s likely telling the truth, as far as she knows it.

The soldiers and Kyle head down. As they make progress, the two on the surface watch the scanner. They see a repeating ‘flare’ on the scanner, but the scanner tech says it’s not worth reporting to Lieutenant Scott.

In the TARDIS, The Doctor knocks on the door, then enters, Adric’s room. He has a book that seems to fascinate him and he tells Adric he must read it. Adric is, typical of teenagers, sulking in bed, looking all pouty.

The book The Doctor is reading is “Black Orchid”, which he was given last serial. Adric starts whining about how everyone teases him and he never gets any proper attention from The Doctor. The Doctor agrees to make more time, but Adric says he’s promised that before.

Adric continues to complain and criticise and The Doctor gets mad and storms off. Adric follows, saying he wants to go back home.

Lt Scott leads Kyle through the tunnels. Kyle discusses a series of issues the expedition had – tools going missing, equipment breaking down, etc. Scott asks if she thinks it was sabotage, but Kyle says there would be better ways to do so. As they move on, we see the two sleek silhouettes moving in the shadows.

The Doctor storms into the console room, arguing with Adric that the TARDIS is not meant for E-Space. Nyssa agrees with The Doctor, saying it’s dangerous. Adric says he could calculate the course, even with negative coordinates.

Tegan tries to stand up for Adric, but gets snapped at by The Doctor. Adric asks to use the computer and The Doctor tells him to go ahead, then storms off again. I’m not sure who’s being more childish – The Doctor or Adric.

In the tunnels, the lights flash suddenly. One of the soldiers stumbles and hurts her shoulder. There’s a wonderfully stupid bit of dialogue – “I’ve hurt my shoulder.” “Can you walk?” I’ve hurt my shoulder before, it’s NEVER impacted my ability to walk.

Scott radios to the two on the surface, to tell them he’s sending up the injured soldier. As they talk, there’s serious static over the line. It seems to coincide with the ‘flare’ on the scanner. Scott tells Walters to trace it, but there’s a bell-like tone in the tunnel and Scott says, “too late,” as the line goes dead.

Kyle says she’s heard that sound before – minutes before the expedition was attacked.

Once more, we see the sleek silhouettes. They seem to look at one another.

The TARDIS appears somewhere in the caverns. Inside, Adric scribbles furious on a pad. The Doctor announces they’re on Earth, 26th century. Adric has to be specific, saying it’s the year 2526 in the scale called Anno Domini.

Tegan and Nyssa try to get The Doctor and Adric to make up, to work together, but both refuse, petulantly. Tegan follows The Doctor as he goes outside for a walk. Nyssa stays to talk to Adric, who is already sorry for his snark. Nyssa tells him to finish the calculations, then show them to The Doctor once he’s calmed down. She leaves to follow Tegan and the Time Lord.

On the surface, Walters and the other (I missed her name) view the scanner – they see three groups of lifeforms – the main party, the injured soldier and escort returning to the surface and a new group of three, unknown to them – obviously The Doctor, Tegan and Nyssa!

They report the new lifeforms to Lt Scott; they tell him that one of the lifeforms has two hearts.

Tegan and Nyssa speak to The Doctor, asking him to make it up to Adric. He agrees, saying he won’t go back to E-Space. Nyssa asks him to look at the figures first and the Time Lord reluctantly agrees.

Scott orders his soldiers to set their weapons to stun, at the news of the newcomers.

The two sleek figures are seen; they seem to be comprised of metal or something, completely smooth exterior, no features whatsoever.

As Tegan, Nyssa and The Doctor investigate the cavern tunnel, Adric works on his figures, watching them on the scanner.

Professor Kyle is given the coordinates for the intruders and she says it’s a tunnel near where they were attacked.

The wounded soldier and her escort stop. The woman on the surface goes down to help them.

The Doctor and the ladies find fossils of dinosaurs and discuss them, as Nyssa is unaware of them. The Doctor discusses the death of the dinosaurs; when Tegan says an asteroid, he says he doesn’t know, but always meant to go back and find out.

Snyder (that’s her name) contacts Walters, checking in to find where the wounded party is. He gives her directions.

The wounded party sees one of the sleek figures. The wounded soldier asks if it’s Snyder.

Snyder can’t find them. Walters tries to triangulate, but there’s a flare again. He says the computer doesn’t register it. Snyder hears a scream and rushes off. Walters yells over the communicator for her to get out of there, as the other two are dead, but we see that she is too, and the sleek figures stand there, impassively.

Professor Kyle collapses as the troops rush through the tunnel. Scott calls for a stop and then is contacted by Walters, who says Snyder and the other two are dead. Scott asks if the aliens are still there and Walters confirms. Scott sends Sgt Mitchell and a few others to go back and investigate what happened to Snyder and the other two.

Adric watches as The Doctor and ladies wander. He says out loud, “Don’t wander too far, Doctor.” This line has always stuck with me, for some reason.

Professor Kyle has recovered enough to continue and the troops move on.

Tegan wonders what evolutionary stage her ancestors were at when the dinosaurs passed on. The Doctor smirks, remarking, “Primitive, Tegan… very primitive.” Stupid Tegan.

The scanner flares again. Walters contacts Mitchell, who is leading her secondary group, warning her the scanner is flaring again, very near her.

The main group of troops (led by Scott, accompanied by Kyle) reach a large open room and take cover, realising they’re near the aliens.

Mitchell and her two soldiers (oooh, big troop) find the burned remains of Snyder (identified by her name tag which survived). Suddenly, the sleek figures approach them. They report their presence to Walters, who says there’s no reading. Suddenly, Mitchell screams and her life-form blip on the scanner goes out, as do the two with her. Walter yells into the communicator, cuz, well, that’s the smart thing to do.

The Doctor and ladies enter the large room Scott’s troops are hiding in. Tegan identifies mining equipment, and she and Nyssa approach, despite The Doctor’s caution. Scott and the troops step out. Kyle says she doesn’t recognise any of them.

When The Doctor makes introductions, Scott yells at him to shut up. Walters contacts Scott to report Mitchell and her men are dead. He tells Scott the hostiles that killed Mitchell and company never showed on the scanner. Scott says that’s impossible and tell him to keep trying. Scott throws down The Doctor and demands to know where the bodies are.

As usual, the travelers try to explain they didn’t kill anyone. Kyle says the bodies must have been covered by the rockfall.

Adric suddenly gets an alert from the TARDIS and sets down his figures.

The two sleek figures run through the tunnels.

The soldiers find a metal plate in the rock, a hatch. Scott demands The Doctor open it. Suddenly, the two sleek figures arrive and begin shooting (they have weapons build into the palms of their hands, it seems.) Everyone takes cover and a firefight starts.

The Doctor explains to Kyle and Scott they’re androids. Kyle says she recognises the sound of their blaster fire, saying they’re the ones who attacked them. The Doctor asks if she knows why they attacked, but she doesn’t. He remarks that whomever is controlling the androids must have had a reason.

We see a scanner showing the view of the androids. The view focuses in on The Doctor. Suddenly, our camera view switches and we see several Cybermen standing, watching the view, seeing The Doctor (though they shouldn’t recognise him, they haven’t met him in this incarnation yet) and the Cyberleader barks, “Destroy them! Destroy them at once,”… and the music plays.

A good episode, they were going for a surprise of bringing back the Cybermen, and did a great job of it. (I even understand the filming was hush-hush.) Great reveal at the end, great cliffhanger! I can only imagine watching that and not knowing they Cybermen were the bad guys (they were last seen in 1975, I believe) and having to wait a week… oh, wait, the show was aired twice a week on consecutive days then. Still, having to wait 24 hours, when you guys only have to wait less than a second!

spoiler warning

Episode 2:

The Doctor tells Scott to have his soldiers concentrate their fire on one of the androids; they single out the one on the right and and manage to damage it. The Cybermen discuss that the androids are programmed for self-preservation and will take precautions not to be further damaged. The androids retreat to the entrance.

Adric leaves the TARDIS.

The Doctor suggests that the androids are protecting the hatch. Nyssa brings up that the androids are more logical than people, which The Doctor suggests could be used against them.

Adric wanders into the area, calling out for The Doctor, but sees the androids and hides.

The Doctor and Nyssa propose that if the soldiers attack the hatch, they’ll create a conflict in the androids between their programming to defend the hatch and protect themselves.

As the soldiers attack the hatch, the Cyberleader says the humans must be stopped. The androids move to act, but Adric distracts one by throwing a large rock. The soldiers take advantage to focus their fire on the android’s head and it explodes. The other android moves off.

As the soldiers congratulate each other, Nyssa examines the head of the android that went blooey. She shows that the android was transmitting and The Doctor says that whomever the hatch belongs to now knows the android was destroyed.

The Cyberleader says to activate the device; his subordinate argues with him. The Doctor works on the hatch. The Cyberleader gives the order to detonate the bomb.

The Doctor opens the hatch, revealing the bomb within! The Doctor orders everyone back into the TARDIS. When Scott radios to Walters, the chirping of the bomb can be heard over the radio. The Doctor realises that the signal was sent from afar and not a result of him opening the hatch, as he’d originally thought. He rushes with the others into the TARDIS, attempting to jam the signal.

(But if the signal has started the countdown, why must there be another signal to detonate? That makes no sense whatsoever.)

The Cyberleader prepares to detonate as The Doctor hurried rushes to jam. With moments left, the signal is jammed. The Cyberleader calls for more power.

The Doctor and Adric run to the bomb, to deactivate the bomb before power is increased to break the jam. While working, they discuss why the androids didn’t attack Kyle’s party for the first four weeks of the expedition. Suddenly, the signal breaks through and the bomb starts up again.

Desperate, The Doctor randomly starts cutting the bomb, and luckily gets the right one.

The Cybermen are dismayed that the bomb has been deactivated. The Cyberleader says that Earthlings are too simple to overcome Cybertechnology. (Ah, yes, I forgot that everything is Cyber- with the Cybermen. My Cyberblogging will do it’s Cyberbest to Cyberkeep up.)

The Doctor asks why a bomb, why these caves? Adric says it’s not their problem.

The Cybermen review the recording from the android from the fight. The Cyberleader sees the TARDIS, recognising it. (So they just made it seem that The Doctor had been recognised.)

The Doctor and companions prepare to trace the signal to deep space, to see who is behind the bomb. Scott and Kyle insist they come along and The Doctor reluctantly agrees.

The Cyberleader tells his Cybersubordinate about The Doctor. On their little scanner, we get video of the First Doctor lecturing the Cybermen on emotions, then the Second Doctor speaking of orders to destroy him and the Fourth Doctor calling them “a pathetic bunch of tin soldiers skulking about the galaxy in a spaceship”.

Realising that none of these men were there, the Cyberleader says he’s regenerated once more.

Lt Scott gets a subdued line of “Bigger than you think,” as he and his troops are led deeper into the TARDIS. The Doctor asks Adric to stay, but the boy whines that he’s hungry. The Doctor thanks him for his help in deactivating the bomb and helping with the android.

The Doctor says that if Adric could work out a course, he’d see about taking him home. Adric says the work is already done, even a way through the CVE. The Doctor compliments him and then apologises for their argument. Adric does the same, saying he over-reacted.

Adric says he doesn’t really want to go home, that there’s nothing there for him. The Doctor says he did the work for nothing, but Adric laughs and says it made a point… “Besides, you never know, I might change my mind again.”

The Cybermen prepare their contingency plan to attack Earth.

On a space ship, a man and woman debate about their captain being on a space station a long time. They discuss morale and non-functional security scans. They get a report that the captain is about to come aboard.

Elsewhere, the TARDIS materialises on the freighter, apparently in a cargo hold. The Doctor and Adric exit, to do some recon.

The captain, accompanied by two men carrying her goods, enter the bridge. She gives the crew new coordinates. The captain complains that she was kept there seven hours, explaining that there’s some big conference going on Earth, thus all the increased security… but the ship has an all-clear all the way to Earth now.

Ringway, one of the officers, worries about some missing crew. Apparently, he feels the captain should have brought it up with the security inspection, but she says it can be dealt with later – she’s more concerned with getting to Earth on time and getting a bonus.

In the TARDIS, Lt Scott grumbles that he should have gone with them. Tegan says he’ll be fine. A signal beeps on the console and Nyssa says the ship has entered warp drive.

A security patrol wanders the catwalk on the cargo hold; one mutters that he doesn’t want to go wandering through all the crates in the hold. The other says you could hide an arm down there and nobody could find it. (Hmmm.) They see a motion and go to investigate.

Adric asks why they’re going back and forth, but The Doctor says he wants to announce his presence.

The Cyberleader receives a report that the ship has gotten the all-clear to Earth, but the missing crew is still an issue for many on board. The Cyberleader says they have intruders in the hold that can be used as scapegoats.

Adric wants to go back to the TARDIS, but The Doctor says they should have been seen by now and will stay out a few more minutes.

Ringway contacts the men in the hold, who report they saw someone. Ringway gives the order to apprehend them, that he’ll be down immediately.

Adric tells The Doctor he has the feeling they’ve been spotted some time ago and are being followed.

The patrol wanders, seemingly having lost their prey.

The woman on the bridge sees The Doctor and Adric and calls the captain.

Adric and The Doctor hear some screams and run to investigate.

The captain arrives on the bridge and gives the order to sound the general alarm.

Adric finds the dead patrol. Ringway comes up behind The Doctor and Adric as they inspect the bodies. Adric says they should go before they’re found and blamed and when they turn, Ringway, gun pointed at them, says, “On this ship, we execute murderers,”… and the credits roll.

Another well done cliffhanger and the one you get until later this week. See you then!