In the finale to Doctor Who's 8th series, Death in Heaven,

where did the newly created Cybermen's armour come from? I mean, they rose from their graves already fully suited up. Not to mention the fuel to drive their thrusters!

I was hoping this would be mentioned, at least in passing, but everybody totally ignored it, as if it was normal. Unless I'm missing some clue?

(Oh, and if anyone can improve on the title, while still keeping it informative and non-spoilerish, I'd be delighted!)

  • 6
    waves hand vigorously. There's your explanation. -Moffat (but seriously, I think it's not explained in the episode)
    – Tim S.
    Nov 9, 2014 at 20:57

5 Answers 5


The Doctor stated (at 18:20 for those of you with access to IPlayer) that the rain was actually 'cyber-pollen'.

It wasn't rain, man-scout, it was pollen. Cyber-pollen. Every tiny particle of a cyberman contains the plans to make another cyberman

Combine that with the dimensionally trancendental technology of a time lord (a la Missy) and an interesting new fluid capable of hiding non biological matter ("Dark Water"), and you have rain capable of full cyber conversion of the dead.

  • 4
    I don't think the answers are going to get any better than this, so, OK.
    – Mr Lister
    Nov 10, 2014 at 6:37

The clue lies in the quickly mentioned factoid by the Doctor that the scheme had probably been implemented years ago, and had been going on for some time.

  • He mentions that if Missy had access to a TARDIS or some other time travel capacity, she could have plotted this centuries ahead of this very moment. It was said so quickly, if you stepped out of the room for a second, you may have missed it.

  • We are left to assume this was a special nanotechnology capable of either providing its own materials from the environment, carried its own materials as part of that fluid medium or as is so often mentioned, some sort of "Time Lord technology," which is so advanced, we simply won't be able to fathom where the additional mass came from."

  • 2
    Ah yes, for as long as there have been stories about the afterlife. But that doesn't explain how, for instance, the body lying on the table in the morgue could suddenly have a Cyberman suit. It wasn't even in contact with the rain water on the floor.
    – Mr Lister
    Nov 9, 2014 at 11:46
  • +1 for Time Lord technology: the Mistress could potentially fit any number of metal suits in a molecule of water...
    – evilsoup
    Nov 9, 2014 at 12:56
  • 3
    The dark water was shown to be able to flow upward into the morgue drawer presumably carrying the armor with it. Nov 9, 2014 at 14:33
  • I didn't even object to the robot suit, considering that we were supposed to believe that Missy had invented a technology that could reconstruct enough of a body that had been buried for centuries to allow the construction of a Cyberman.
    – BCdotWEB
    Nov 9, 2014 at 17:11
  • @BCdotNET Oh that. I assumed that the suit would provide most of the functions that the body could no longer do, like movement and such. On the other hand, then what would they need the skeletons for. Make the whole Cyberman purely mechanical and simply upload the human mind into its robotic brain. Oh well, maybe in the next version.
    – Mr Lister
    Nov 10, 2014 at 6:36

I assume the rain was a variant of the "dark water" they had all been sitting in. Which means you couldn't see any metal in it.
Water encases a body, builds a suit, water runs off... presto! Metal suit suddenly "appears".

  • Ooh, I like this one, particularly because it's something I hadn't thought of. But it's just a hypothesis, like the other answers, and I'm looking for something that was shown on the screen and that I missed.
    – Mr Lister
    Nov 9, 2014 at 13:54
  • Sorry, all I can think of is the demonstration of Dark Water - where you see a watch and sleeve disappear in the water, leaving a bare hand visible. Nov 10, 2014 at 21:55

I had noticed that the 'water' was flowing uphill so the contact in the morgue would be related to that same gravity defeating nanotechnology, the increase in mass however and the sourcing of metals from the environment rather stretches credibility.


Matter and Energy are two states of the same thing. If an object exist, it has both matter and energy, and the form that is displayed to an objective observer is dependant not on the object, but the observer. An insect sees a flower very differently than you or I, and it is quite possible that every being sees a different reality. When you speculate as to the origin of a given manifestation you must remember that it is determined by you, not by the actual circumstance of existence experienced by the object in question. The body acquiring a cyberman suit may have been a body encased in said suit all the time, with the suit becoming visible when a predetermined set of variables occurred. That being said, you can find many examples in fiction and even scientific theory covering the creation of matter from energy. Replicators, transporters and holodecks spring to mind. Asking "Where did it come from?" is kind of like wondering where dirt originated. We don't know because we don't have all the data.

  • Can you provide any evidence to back up your claims? It seems to fly in the face of everything we know about the reflection of EM from surfaces into our eyes. Nov 9, 2014 at 14:54

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