Lumic's army of cybermen is on the rise, and with more and more people being converted by the hour, time is of the essence. The gang are reduced to fugitives as they roam the streets of parallel London trying to rid the earth of cybermen.
Lumic and the Cybermen are forcing the population to "upgrade" to cold, emotionless creatures like themselves. The Doctor, Rose, and Mickey join forces with the alternate-reality counterparts of Pete Tyler and Mickey Smith, in the search for the one weakness in the Cybermen's plans. Written by
With the exception of a rather bland new catchphrase ("Delete!" being an obvious poor imitation of the Daleks' "Exterminate!"), the return of the Cybermen at the close of the previous episode made for a terrific cliffhanger, paving the way for an even better follow-up.
After narrowly escaping death, the Doctor and his gang need to figure out how to neutralize the Cybermen before it's too late (they are already transforming most of the city) and, on a side note, get back to their own universe so that the various parallel worlds don't start collapsing on each other. Mickey is going through some changes of his own thanks to the encounter with his local counterpart Ricky, which might change the dynamic of the time-traveling trio for good. As for the delusional John Lumic, he is about to discover the downside of an alliance with the Cybermen...
Fast-paced, grittier and more dramatic than the previous part, The Age of Steel is a neat conclusion that also leaves the door open for further story lines, with the parallel universe thread having a certain Star Trek vibe. The Cybermen are treated with the respect such iconic villains deserve (well, minus the aforementioned catchphrase), and, biggest surprise of all, Noel Clarke manages to make Mickey truly interesting for the first time, courtesy of the smart material given to the character. Based on this (and similarities with Season 1), the remaining episodes are a very exciting prospect.
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