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The Cybermen

Enemies of The Doctor

Despite their robotic appearance the Cybermen from Doctor Who are not true robots. Rather they are - like the Daleks - a hybrid of organic and robotic technology. Cyborgs. They are also one of the Doctor's oldest recurring enemies.

What Is A Cyberman?

A Cyberman is a powerful metallic humanoid killing machine complete with an organic brain, usually human. New Cybermen are created by forcefully processing unwilling humanoids - in the new Doctor Who this is ironically referred to as upgrading.

Cybermen are authoritarian with a strict hierarchy. However the presence of an organic brain means that unlike true robots Cybermen often retain a trace of individual personality and sometimes even a dry sense of humour which is reflected in their dialogue.

Whereas the Daleks take a direct approach to conquest - exterminate everything in their path - the Cybermen prefer to prey on the weaknesses of their enemies. They often use deceit and employ traitors in the ranks of their enemies.


In the original ("classic") Dr Who series the Cybermen first appeared in 1966 to lock horns with the First Doctor, William Hartnell, in the story "The Tenth Planet". They were initially a highly advanced race from the planet Mondas. When that planet was threatened they began colonising other worlds. Their main outpost was the planet Telos where they built huge cryogenic chambers - "tombs". With their race dwindling the Cybermen/Mondasians took to forcibly converting other intelligent humanoids into their form in order to expand their numbers.

In the new Doctor Who the original Cybermen have long since been wiped out in the vast time war. However new Cybermen are created in a parallel universe by John Lumic on Earth.

There have been many different designs of Cyberman over the years, the latest having a more sleek and robotic appearance than the earlier versions which were clearly just an actor in a silver body suit. Apparently the original cyberman costumes used diving apparatus painted silver and worn on the front to represent chest units!

The Cybermen have always been one of the show's most popular aliens and much Cyberman merchandise has been available to buy over the years. This ranges from crude early figures through to more sophisticated modern toys, games and costumes you can buy today.

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