Doctor Who: The Newbies Guide
The Age of Steel
This is the sixth episode of Series Two.
Where does this fit?
This follows on from the cliffhanger in Rise of the Cybermen
Other Guides to this Story
The tenth Doctor wears a brown pinstripe suit with trainers. He is much more jovial and good-humoured than his ninth incarnation, appearing to have largely recovered from the mental scars of the Time War. He does, however, have a hard edge to his personality, being the sort of man who doesn't give second chances.
Rose Tyler is a 19-year old girl from London 2005. Before meeting the Doctor Rose lived with her mother, Jackie Tyler, on a council estate and had a boyfriend called Mickey Smith. Her father, Pete Tyler, died when she was a baby.
In Rose she worked in Henrik's department store when the ninth Doctor was investigating Auton activity in the store and saw him blow it up. Rose then helped the Doctor defeat the Nestene Consciousness's attempt to take over the world and he offered her a chance to travel in the TARDIS. In The End of the World the Doctor upgraded her mobile phone, tying it into the TARDIS so that she can call home no matter where or when she is.
Mickey Smith is Rose Tyler's boyfriend. In Rose he was captured by the Nestene, witnessed the Doctor and Rose defeating the Nestene, saw the inside of the TARDIS, and was there when Rose departed with the Doctor. Because he had trouble adapting to what had happened the Doctor took a dislike to him.During the year Rose was missing Mickey did a lot of research into the Doctor and his impact on human history. He met the Doctor and Rose again in Aliens of London/World War Three when he helped the Doctor and Rose defeat some aliens called the Slitheen. He gained the Doctor's respect and was willing to wait for Rose's return.
In Boom Town he and Rose effectively split up. Although Mickey was still hopelessly in love with Rose he knew that the Doctor would always come first for her. Unfortunately for him Rose didn't really take in what he was saying about how he wanted her to come back for him. In School Reunion he asked the Doctor if he could travel on the TARDIS.
In Rise of the Cybermen, we met his counterpart in the alternative universe - who is called Ricky.
Recurring and Historical Characters
The Cybermen were once "humans" from Earth's twin planet Mondas who had augmented themselves with cybernetics in order to survive when their planet was thrust out of its orbit. The process removed their emotions and they became motivated entirely by survival - aiming to convert humans into Cybermen in order to keep their race alive. The Doctor first encountered them in The Tenth Planet. He has fought against the Cybermen on numerous occasions since then. The fifth Doctor saw the Cybermens' origins in Spare Parts. The Cybermen seen here are from an alternative universe and, despite the similarities, have no connection to the original Cybermen.
Pete Tyler is Rose Tyler's father, who died in a car crash when she was still a baby. In Father's Day Rose went back to meet him on the day he died. She discovered that he was a "Del Boy" character, always coming up with hopeless schemes to get rich quick, and that his marriage to her mother Jackie was not as happy as she had been led to believe.
Jackie Tyler is Rose Tyler's mother, and has become familiar with the Doctor's lifestyle since first meeting him in Rose. The "real" version of Jackie is a single mum living on a council estate. The alternative version of Jackie seen here is not too different in personality from the one we are familiar with.
Other Characters The vast majority of the characters we see in this story were also in the first part of the story, Rise of the Cybermen. We are briefly introduced to them in the pre-credits sequence.
As this is the second half of a two-parter, you are strongly advised to watch the first half, Rise of the Cybermen. Rose's relationship with her father was first explored in Father's Day.