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Star Trek: The Next Generation/Doctor Who: Assimilation2 is a great comic, but what's the deal with the Cybermen in the flashback?

Kirk and Spock shooting Cybermen. Note earmuffs.

They have the enormous earcovers and smooth lines of the Mondasian Cybermen from early Who:

Cyberman from the 1968 story *The Invasion*. Note earmuffs.

On the other hand, the Cybermen we see during Picard's time...

Borg eyepatches are the latest in Cyberwear.

...have the distinctive cheekbones and smaller earpieces of Cybus Cybermen from "Pete's World."

Cybermen from the 2006 story Army of Ghosts. Note cheekbones and smaller earcovers.

Within the story, it is made very clear that the Cybermen in both the TOS and TNG eras are part of the same bridgehead force from the Whoniverse into the Trekverse, but by all visual cues they shouldn't be; Mondasian and Cybus Cybermen are entirely different creatures with different origin stories and different weaknesses and strengths. Besides, since the Cybermen are using time travel to do this, shouldn't all the Cybermen in the story hail from roughly the same time period?

  • Why are the Mondasian and Cybus Cybermen shown working together, or as part of the same group? Is this just a visual gag akin to the (highly amusing) art style change in the flashback, or is there some kind of thought behind it?

(The allergy to gold would've been a strong indication that they're all Mondasian, but Nightmare in Steel provides the exact same problem: Cybus-looking Cybermen --though we don't know where they come from-- with an allergy to gold which the Doctor can really only know about because he thinks they're Mondasian.)

Although meta-level answers might be necessary, answers that boil down to "timey-wimey" or the MST3K mantra will be considered unhelpful.

  • I tagged this star-trek-tng despite it also being about a flashback to the star-trek-tos era, because the comic in question is a TNG comic; if this is wrong, please try to help me understand why. – BESW Jun 25 '13 at 12:20
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IMO this has been an art decision, rather than something story related.

The Cybermen from the new series aren't considered to be different to those found in the classic episodes, possibly just more recent versions.

The parallel earth Cybermen (from Cybus) are special in their way, as they just started at that step (plus a different origin for the "C" on their chest). At the same time you could argue that they essentially retconned their appearance (but then again there's a classic head found in the museum the Doctor and Rose visit in season one).

But a different (and probably easier) approach/explanation: They intentionally used the old style as this plays in TOS era. If you look at the image you provided, the Doctor (it's him I assume?) looks a lot more like the classic doctors, wearing more colorful clothes, etc. with long curly(?) hair. So they might have used classic (or TOS) style Doctor Who for the TOS parts of the comic and modern Doctor Who for the TNG parts?

Also, just to note: I wouldn't compare the cybermen heads, because these differences could indeed be caused by the drawing style alone (except the brow line above their eyes). But look at their torsos, they're definitely not using the modern design (unless that's some kind of additional armor or whatever).

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It's because the Mondasian and Cybus Cybermen have merged, as of Season 7 of Doctor Who.

In "Nightmare in Silver", the Cybermen are a three-way fusion, combining Mondasian Cybermen, Cybus Cybermen, and the Borg technology they obtained in Assimilation2.

  • Interesting! Is this speculation, or do you have source? I'm certainly willing to make it my head canon. – BESW Aug 31 '13 at 16:27
  • @BESW It doesn't mention Assimilation, but this interview with Neil Gaiman, who wrote Nightmare in Silver makes explicit that he intended the Cybermen in that story to be hybrids between the two previously-seen types. – Jules Aug 10 '14 at 2:39

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