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Doctor Who - The Attack of the Cybermen, by Eric Saward

Doctor Who - The Attack of the Cybermen, by Eric Saward

The Edwardian Cricketer Media Review

Author: EdwardianCricketer/Monday, April 24, 2017/Categories: Blog, Book Review

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Doctor Who - Attack of the Cybermen, by Eric Saward.
Number 138 in the Doctor Who Library. Target, 1989. 140 pages, paperback.
Original script by Paula Moore, BBC 1985.

This adventure features the Sixth Doctor and Peri.

The Doctor and Peri encounter Lytton, whom the Doctor had met in his previous incarnation. At the time, Lytton had allied himself with the Daleks (see “Doctor Who - Resurrection of the Daleks”) and the Doctor had left him stranded on 20th Century Earth. Now it seems Lytton has allied himself with the Cybermen in their attempt to alter history by saving Mondas from destruction when it encounters Earth in a few days (see “Doctor Who and the Tenth Planet”).

On Telos, the CyberController has been repaired and revived (see “Doctor Who and the Tomb of the Cybermen”). The Cryons, the original inhabitants of Telos, have been killing Cybermen as they hibernate in the tombs.

The Doctor and Peri are force to travel via TARDIS to Telos with Lytton by Cybermen they encounter on Earth. Peri escapes to be rescued by Cryons. The Doctor meets a dying Cryon in captivity whom he gives a plan to destroy the Cybermen control center though it will cost the Cryon her life.

Lytton takes a partially Cyber-converted human and his last remaining henchman from Earth to nearly recapture a damaged time ship in an attempt to honor his agreement with the Cryons to keep the Cybermen fro re-writing history and killing their race. He is captured and is being converted into a Cyberman when the Doctor manages to kill the CyberController. The Doctor tries to save Lytton but he dies from injuries suffered from the CyberController.

The Doctor and Peri leave Telos as the dying Cryon’s bomb goes off and destroys the control center, saving the Cryons and ending the Cybermen’s plan to change history.

I honestly don’t remember that much of the televised story except for the attempts to repair the chameleon circuit not working. I do have a vivid memory of two Cybermen crushing Lytton’s hands to the point of making them bleed.

I like Saward’s writing style and he tells the story well. While the book is well-written, it’s not a story that I particularly like. This story seems gory to me and has some excessive “on-screen” violence that doesn’t set well with me. And this story is somewhat continuity heavy with references to “The Tenth Planet” and “Tomb of the Cybermen.” These elements might work  fine for fans but might not work so well for casual readers. For all that it’s well-written, it’s not a book I enjoyed. YMMV.

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