Let's get down to business. First here are the links to Episodes One through Four.
Here are links to...
And now here is the disclaimer.
Preliminaries taken care of, let's kick off...
Scene opens: interior of the TARDIS. The Doctor and River are working around the console as lights flash from the Cybermam helmet the Doctor has mounted to the console. The time rotor is spinning above them.
River: Think you've got it. Doctor?
The Doctor: Just about, River! That little stunt Mr. Clever pulled with the hologram....
Cyberman helmet (electronic voice): Connection...
The Doctor: Yes?
Cyberman helment: Confirmed!
The Doctor: Yes!
River: We found him!
The Doctor: I think so. I've been picking up pockets of Cyberman activity where we've found Cybermen infected by...
The Doctor (sigh): Fine. Cybermania. Whatever...
River: Yay! I win... again!
The Doctor ignores her.
The Doctor: But the main Cyberfleet... poof! Nowhere to be found! But that's where Mr. Clever would have to be if he was behind this... thing.
The Doctor: Whatever. But confronting us by hologram transmission on Chloris was the opening I needed. So a little polarity reversing...
River: Oh, I just love a good polarity reversing!
The Doctor: Oh, now you're making reversing polarity sound obscene.
River: Well, it depends on the polarity being reversed, Sweetie.
The Doctor: Anyway, reversing the polarity of the nanotech buried in this Cyber helmet and...
The TARDIS time rotors stop.
River: And now we're in Mr. Clever's backyard.
The Doctor: Possibly with an army of Cybermen waiting for us.
River: To kill us or to dance at us? It could go either way.
The Doctor: More or less. Do you know what you need to do?
River: Don't worry, my love. I've got-
River stops and stares at the Doctor who becomes aware of it.
The Doctor: What?
River shakes her head.
River: Nothing. It's nothing.
The Doctor (shrugs): OK then.
He starts to turn away but then he stops.
The Doctor: Hold on.
The Doctor: If I learned anything from Rory Williams, it's this: "When a woman says it's nothing, you better believe it's something."
River: That is what you learned from my dad?
The Doctor: That and also why it's not a good idea to have a glass floor. The point is, there's something on your mind.
River: It's just... we're going out into a ship full of Cybermen led by a being who is a combination of Cyber Planner and Time Lord. There's no telling what's going to happen. And... you're not worried, are you?
The Doctor: Worried? Why should I be? We've been through worse, right? The crash of the Byzantium, the Pandorica.
River: You're not worried about me.
The Doctor: What?
River: Whatever awaits us out there, that's not my...
River pauses. There's a look in her eyes of fear and sadness. Then she takes a deep breath.
The Doctor: What?
River: And nothing means nothing.
River strides towards the doors as the Doctor follows.
River: Come on, let's see what the Cybermen have waiting for us.
Scene change, exterior, outer space: the flagship of the Cybermen fleet.
Scene shifts inside. Mr. Clever steps off of a brightly lit square.
Mr. Clever: I have distracted and dazzled the galaxy enough with the silly shenanigans of Cybermen run amuck. Meanwhile, I'm been readying for the future, a future that will fear the Cybermen as they have never been feared before. Behold...
Suddenly the lights come up in the corridor and lining down the walls on either side of Mr. Clever are rows and rows of silver beings, far sleeker and less cumbersome that the old Cybermen but somehow more deadly looking. There are black sunken insets where their eyes would be.
Mr. Clever: The evolution of the Cybermen!
And the eyes of the Cybermen begin to glow red.
The Doctor (voice): That sounds impressive. Can they make fruit smoothies?
Our perspective expands as we see the Doctor walk up to Mr. Clever and his cache of redesigned Cybermen.
The Doctor: Maybe even do some vacuuming. Now that would make my day!
Mr. Clever: Doctor! Now that's what I call fast! It was just mere moments that we last saw each other.
The Doctor: Do you really think YOU are a priority? I had some laundry to sort, the pantry shelves to reorganize. Oh and I had to clear some shows out of my Netflix queue. Lovely show on there about the Queen of England. Quite like the chap playing Prince Phillip...
Mr. Clever: No matter the face, the same prattling banter comes pouring out of your mouth.
The Doctor: Banter? Banter? I am on record as being against banter! Now what I'm in favor of is asking questions. Like, who exactly are these Silver Surfer cosplayers?
Mr. Clever: Would you really like to know?
The Doctor: The only think I like better than questions are answers.
Mr. Clever: Allow me to introduce Cybermen 2.0 or as I like to call them Cybermax, trademark pending, all rights reserved, #CybermaxIsCybercool.
The Doctor: Very sleek design. An effective merging of form and function.
Mr. Clever: Exactly! You see it too!
The Doctor: Well, I was just quoting something Andy Warhol said to me at a party in Soho once.
Mr. Clever: But seriously, this is great! I mean, this is what I was prepared to give the Cybermen. A chance to grow, to improve, to maximize their potentional. But they rejected change, they rejected evolution, they rejected me! ME!
The Doctor: So this a Cyberman... who has evolved.
Mr. Clever: Precisely! Max Prime, say hello to the Doctor.
A Cybermax at the forefront of the group turns with a very fluid and human grace and nods towards the Doctor.
Cybermax (very smooth, pleasant voice): Hello, Doctor.
The Doctor: Why... hello!
Mr. Clever: See? Got rid of that irritating electronic garble the Cybermen used to utter. Now its like listening to an angel speak.
The Doctor: I wouldn't go that far.
Mr. Clever: Max, regale the Doctor with a bit of verse.
Cybermax: Come again, sweet love doth now invite,
thy graces that refrain to do me due delight. To see, to hear,
to touch, to kiss, to die with thee again in sweetest sympathy.
The Doctor: Why?
The Doctor: Mr. Clever, I think this one has a circular logic flaw in its processors.
Mr. Clever: No, Doctor! The Cybermax are as they should be. Cybermax are superior. All that is inferior must-
Mr. Clever: I and my creation have given you the only answer that matters. The only truth.
Mr. Clever: You're grasping at straws, Doctor!
Mr. Clever: What?!
Mr. Clever: Oh, I gotta see where this is going!
The Doctor: Gladly! Look, there are different starting points for the beginning of the Cybermen. The planet Mondas. Cybus Industries on a parallel Earth! But they all have one thread in common: fear!
Cybermax: That is an... intriguing observation.
Mr. Clever: Wait! What? No, it's not...
Cybermax: Will you elucidate?
Mr. Clever: No, no elucidating!
The Doctor: Certainly!
Mr. Clever: Oh bugger.
The Doctor: The development of the Cybermen changed the terms of life itself, from a messy progression of life's developments over time to a rigidly defined status quo. Messy equals scary. Sometimes that progression is beautiful and amazing. New science is discovered! New art is created! And new lives are born. And other times that progression isn't so wonderful. Lives are lost, hearts are broken and memories...
The Doctor falters a moment.
The Doctor: And memories are taken from us.
Mr. Clever: Doctor, what are...?
Cyberman: It is... inefficient.
The Doctor: Actually, it's amazing how well it works! For all the planets I've been to and all the exploring I've done through time, it is astonishing to me how well life works. But it's scary! And the Cybermen fixed that!
Mr. Clever: Doctor! I think that is quite-
Mr. Clever steps back startled by this exclamation from the prime Cybermax. The Doctor slyly raises an eyebrow. He knows he's winning.
Cybermax: I would... learn more of what the Doctor has to say.
The Doctor: And there is so much more to learn! Listen, the Cybermen did not fix the fear of death; they fixed the fear of life. All the sadness, all the pain, all the heartbreak... gone!
Cybermax: This is an advantage.
The Doctor: No, this is an obstacle. Because now the Cybermen are locked! Locked into a status quo that will never change! Cybermen can upgrade humans to become more Cybermen but the Cybermen cannot upgrade themselves!
Cybermax: The Cybermen cannot evolve.
The Doctor: Yes! But...
Cybermax: The Cybermax CAN evolve.
Mr. Clever: Uh oh.
The Doctor: There! Now you're getting it!
Cybermax turns towards Mr. Clever.
Mr. Clever: Why... what?
Cybermax: Why destroy?
Mr. Clever: Because the human race must be upgraded or they will be deleted!
Mr. Clever: Because the human race must be conquered by the Cyber race. If they refuse, they will be destroyed!
Mr. Clever: I told you!
Cybermax: Why must WE be the destroyers?
Mr. Clever: Because you are the next great phase of Cybermen!
Cybermax: We are not Cybermen. We are Cybermax. We are...
Cybermax looks at the Doctor.
Cybermax: We are something new.
The Doctor nods with the hint of a smile. But Mr. Clever flies into a rage.
Mr. Clever: No! NO! You can't do this! I gave you life! You are MY Cybermen! You will NOT betray me!
Cybermax: You adhere to stagnant and outmoded programming. As Cyber Planner and Time Lord, you could have evolved into something beyond the core programs and structures of the Cyber race. We are Cybermax. We are new. We are growing. We are changing. You... are not.
Suddenly Mr. Clever cries out in pain, clutching his head.
Mr. Clever: What's happening?!?!
Cybermax: You are malware to the new Cybermax imperative. You are being removed from our Cybernet.
Mr. Clever: No! I'll get back to the central processing core of the Cyber net! I will have control! I will control the Cybermen old and new! You wait and see!
Mr. Clever runs off.
The Doctor: So what, may I ask is the new Cybermax imperative?
The Doctor: Ah, good! I approve! It's an imperative I follow myself.
Cybermax: We will explore. We will ask questions. We will seek answers. We will do what we were designed to do: evolve. Change. Grow.
The Doctor: Good luck with that. I envy this journey you're about to go on.
Cybermax: Doctor, how do you... feel?
The Doctor: Hopeful.
Cybermax: Then we feel... like you do.
With that the collected Cybermax begin to glow all over their forms. Unlike the classic Cybermen who flew with boot jets, the Cybermax vanish in a flash of light as if teleported.
The Doctor stands alone for a moment. Then he whispers to himself.
The Doctor: Hope. Hope is good.
Scene change: a massive technological complex. Running and stumbling into this chamber is Mr. Clever.
Mr. Clever: The Doctor! He cheated me again! Cheated me of my greatest creation! Cheated me and left me... alone.
Mr. Clever frantically works the controls of the machinery.
Mr. Clever: The Cybermen rejected the future! The Cybermax rejected the past! They all rejected me! I will not stand for it! I am... I am... the pinnacle of Cyber... achieve-
Suddenly Mr. Clever slumps against the controls.
Mr. Clever: Cut off from the Cybernet for both versions of Cybermen. And I've expended too much of the life force I absorbed from the Doctor! I... I... I can't end this way.
River (voice): Hello, Sweetie!
River casually enters the chamber.
Mr. Clever: River Song! Well, as I... live and breathe.
River: But not for very much longer.
Mr. Clever: The Cybernet firewall is shutting me out. But there's...more, isn't there?
River holds out her sonic screwdriver.
River: While you, the Doctor and the Cybermax were debating questions of life, the universe and everything, I was busy.
Mr. Clever: You planted... a virus.
River returns the screw driver to her pocket.
Mr. Clever: My Cyber self is being... re-written. No. NO! I can't be re-written! I am the Cyber Planner who became a Time Lord! I... AM...
Mr. Clever: I used up... so much power... to create the Cybermax...
River: I know...
Mr. Clever: And they... betrayed me. My... my children betrayed me!
River: They did what you designed them to do.
Mr. Clever trembling with weakness as he looks disdainfully at River.
River: They evolved. Beyond their Cyberman history. Beyond... you.
Mr. Clever. Ha.
River withdraws her blaster from the holster on her hip.
Mr. Clever: Oh, really, River? Has it come... to this?
River: You should not have existed in the first place. I can't allow you a second chance.
Mr. Clever: The Doctor... would not approve.
River: The Doctor isn't here right now.
River aims her blaster at Mr. Clever.
River: Sorry. I get it honest on my mother's side.
Mr. Clever: M... Mercy?
River: You know who I am.
Mr. Clever: Then... no mercy?
River shakes her head 'no'.
Mr. Clever: Save me, River. Don't kill me! Save me!
Mr. Clever: Because I... can save you.
Mr. Clever: I have the Doctor's memories, his knowledge. Knowledge of the future, your future. HE knows your fate! I know your fate!
River: What makes you think I want to know?
Mr. Clever: Because time... can be re-written.
River: Not my time with the Doctor! No way in hell I would...
Mr. Clever: No, not the days gone by but the days that never came.
Mr. Clever: You can run with him, run with the Doctor... forever. I can save you...
Mr. Clever: Save you from the forest... from the shadows...
River squeezes the trigger on the blaster and a beam of energy shoots forth and strikes Mr. Clever who screams before vanishing in a burst of fire and ash. River stands still as the burning ash flickers about.
River: Spoilers, Mr. Clever. And besides...
Solemnly, she returns the blaster to her holster.
River: My diary is almost full.
Quietly, River turns and walks away. She approaches the TARDIS to find the Doctor leaning against the blue box waiting for her.
The Doctor: River. Are you all right?
River: Are the Cybermen sorted out?
The Doctor: If that virus I had you download to the Cybernet did the trick. I could not override their core programming...
Quick cut aways to the four scenes from last week's episode as the Cybermen fly off.
Then back to the Doctor and River.
The Doctor: But the repair cycle code I sent out should keep the Cybermen out of everyone's hair for awhile.
The Doctor: River?
River: Yes, love?
The Doctor: Mr. Clever.
River: He disintegrated.
The Doctor glances at the blaster in River's holster and looks back up into River's eyes. But River's expression betrays nothing.
The Doctor: OK then.
River starts to open the TARDIS door as she walks past the Doctor. Then she stops, turns and cups the Doctor's cheek in her hand. She smiles and he smiles back.
River: We should get back to Darillium.
The Doctor: Yes. I suppose we should.
River enters the TARDIS. There's sadness in the Doctor's eyes as he follows her. Then the light on top begins to flash and we hear the familiar sound of the TARDIS engines.
And the TARDIS vanishes from view.
OK, then. And that as they say is that.
Tomorrow more new posts on some stuff 'n' junk. And something Doctor Who related in next Sunday's post.
Until next time, remember to be good to one another.