(animated gif thanks to gallifreybase member AnthariaJack)
click on images to enlarge
Name: The Ice Warriors, AKA Martians
Time of Origin: Evolved on Mars in the distant past and have existed into the far future.
Appearances: “The Ice Warriors“, “The Seeds of Death“, “The Curse of Peladon“, “The The Monster of Peladon“, “Red Dawn“, “The Bride of Peladon“, “The Judgement of Isskar”, “Mission to Magnus“, “Legacy“, “GodEngine“, “Frozen Time“, “The Dying Days“, “The Silent Stars Go By“, “Cold War“, “The Resurrection of Mars“, “Lords of the Red Planet“, “The Prisoner of Peladon“; “Empress Of Mars“; technically alternate versions Of them featured in “The Last Resort“; they might have played an indirect role in the events of “The Waters of Mars“.
Doctors: Second Doctor, Third Doctor, Fifth Doctor, Sixth Doctor, Seventh Doctor, Eighth Doctor, Eleventh Doctor; Twelfth Doctor, Tenth Doctor encountered something that may have been created or contained by the Ice Warriors.
Companions: Jamie McCrimmon, Victoria Waterfield, Zoe, Jo Grant, Sarah Jane Smith, Peri Brown, Erimem, Ace, Bernice Summerfield, The Brigadier, Amy Pond, Rory Williams, Clara Oswald; Bill Potts; Adelaide Brooke may have encountered their legacy, and Fitz Kreiner and Anji Kapoor faced what could be considered alternate versions of the Ice Warriors, but none Of them fought the Ice Warriors directly.
The Ice Warriors are reptilian humanoids, their scaly skin and features usually hidden under heavy armour. They have large, claw-like hands on which are mounted sonic weaponry, and their voices are a highly sibilant whisper due to the different composition of Earth’s atmosphere. Two types of Ice Warrior are seen in the series, the rank and file Warriors, and an officer class, which fan lore has christened Ice Lords. The main difference between the two is the design of their armour, with the Ice Lords wearing a lighter, more flexible version than those of the Warriors.
The Ice Warriors is expected to get released on DVD with animated episodes for the lost parts to replace to make it full DVD
The Doctor once again found himself dealing with the Ice Warriors and Peladonian politics when he arrived on Peladon in his seventh incarnation (“Legacy“), The Doctor having been called in to help search for the Ancient Diadem, a crystal tiara inhabited by an evil intelligence that had once triggered centuries of war on the planet Pakha, rumoured to have been recently discovered by an archaeological thief and taken to Peladon. Travelling to Peladon with the Ice Warrior delegation to witness the king’s reinstatement ceremony, The Doctor learned that Peladon was facing a difficult time as the mines were now all but exhausted and their future economy seemed destined to focus on the planet’s tourist appeal, only to find himself facing more personal matters when he was found over the body of Lianna, mother to the High Priestess Atissa holding the murder weapon (Albeit because he was trying to pull it out), prompting Ice Lord Savaar to demand the right to execute The Doctor after his trial in response to The Doctor’s past defeats of the Ice Warriors. However, this was actually part of The Doctor and Savaar’s plan to reveal Atissa’s plan to discredit aliens and force Peladon to return to its traditional ways, Atissa tipping her hand after The Doctor was apparently executed when it was really only a hologram. Although the Diadem thief attempted to steal Peladon’s sacred relics to exert control over the planet and broadcast the Diadem’s influence across the Federation, the Diadem’s ‘instinctive’ attempt to escape The Doctor due to his previous near-destruction of it in his third incarnation gave The Doctor’s allies a chance to destroy the ship that it was on before the thief could escape. With Peladon now temporarily withdrawing from the Federation to stand on its own – thus ensuring that it would be safe from an upcoming war with the Daleks -, The Doctor departed, although Bernice Summerfield remained with the Ice Warriors to join an archaeological expedition to an old Martian city for a time.
During a visit to the twenty-second century, The Doctor had a particularly interesting encounter with the Ice Warriors, as he found himself dealing with the conventional Ice Warriors – currently allied with the Daleks during their invasion of Earth (“The Dalek Invasion of Earth“) – and a group of pacifist Martians who worshipped the Osirans while still recognising the need to avoid a complete devotion to the art of war. While trapped on Mars during the time period when the Daleks controlled Earth (“The Daleks’ Master Plan“) after a disruption in the time vortex apparently destroyed the TARDIS, the Seventh Doctor (“GodEngine“) was forced to take a group of human colonists into the old Martian tunnels to escape the harsh weather above ground, resulting in them encountering a group of Martian pilgrims. Dealing with increasing tension between both sides due to past terrorist attacks on Earth in the name of Martian freedom – although many of the terrorist attacks were the work of alleged Martian sympathisers rather than the Martians – and the knowledge that The vortex rupture that destroyed the TARDIS would originate from Mars’s North Pole within a week, The Doctor and his companions Chris and Roz discovered that The Daleks had made a deal with an Ice Lord to delay their invasion of Mars long enough for him to finish the GodEngine project, as well as the disturbing discovery that The Martian’s holy city was protected by an Osiran WarScarab. Entering the city – although they were only just saved from death thanks to the betrayal of one of the group by a ghostly version of the TARDIS blocking their path long enough for the danger to pass -, The Doctor learned that The GodEngine was an Osiran creation capable of turning stars into subspace plasma projectors by manipulating the subspace manifold… and realised that, while the device would only work on Mars due to Mars’s lack of a bipolar magnetic field, once the Daleks had completed their plan to remove Earth’s core they could transfer the GodEngine to Earth and use it for themselves. As one of the Martians attempted to activate the GodEngine to destroy a human colony – unaware that The weapon couldn’t target anything that relatively small with the precision required, meaning that he would destroy Mars as well -, The Doctor was able to disrupt the GodEngine by throwing a human transit-web transmitter into the GodEngine, the competing subspace interfaces destroying each other (Also restoring the TARDIS as the subspace rupture that destroyed it would now never take place with the loss of the GodEngine, the ship using the GodEngine’s power to put itself back together).
The Eighth Doctor had a particularly interesting encounter with the Ice Warriors shortly after his regeneration, when he was visiting Benny in the twentieth century (“The Dying Days”). This story also revealed that, after a close call with Martian ambassadors during an encounter between the two planets in the seventies (“The Ambassadors of Death“), Earth accidentally made hostile contact with the Ice Warriors, but made a deal to never return to the planet, with the British intelligence services covering up the fact that Mars had a breathable atmosphere so as to discourage further exploration attempts. Unfortunately, the Argyre clan attempted to launch an invasion of Earth after a later, independent expedition landed on the tombs of Martian warlords, the Argyre clan nominally taking over the United Kingdom and using human collaborator Greyhaven to form a mutually beneficial trading relationship, but with the Martians actually intending a mass terraforming of the planet to make it like Mars. Despite the Martian attempt to release a chemical weapon known as the Red Death that would destroy all human life, Benny and The Brigadier were able to rally resistance against the Martians while The Doctor – who had faked his death during an early test of the Red Death – rescued prisoners from the Martian death camps and delayed tests of the weapon. Although the Martian Ice Lord Xznaal nearly destroyed Earth after Greyhaven destroyed the Argyre clan on Mars, The Doctor was able to delay Xznaal long enough for The Brigadier to launch an attack on the Martian ship before it could release the Red Death, The Doctor surviving the subsequent fall by assembling various objects in his pockets into a parachute.
Although the Eighth Doctor did not explicitly encounter the Ice Warriors again in his lifetime, during “The Last Resort”, where time-travelling tours created multiple alternate timelines after reality was damaged by a black light explosion (“Time Zero”), The Doctor encountered another race of Martians created due to the flawed time-travel experiments of Jack Kowaczski, a young boy from a timeline where the ‘new’ Martian race had been enslaved by humans. Travelling back to Mars in multiple timelines created by his own minor changes to history in his homemade time machine, some versions of Jack indirectly created these Martians as they evolved from the bacteria that were left behind by his corpse as his various selves died of asphyxiation upon his arrival on Mars in the past. Although these Martians were conquered by the humans in some realities, in others Jack’s affection for his family’s Martian servant resulted in him going back just far enough to warn the Martians about humanity’s invasion before it happened, resulting in the Martians attempting to conquer Earth themselves. The Doctor was eventually forced to erase this timeline – although the Martians accepted their fate as they recognised that Their paradoxical existence must be averted to save the universe – by kidnapping Jack as a baby and taking him into the past, preventing him from ever creating the time machines in the first place.
The Doctor faced the genuine Ice Warriors once again when the Eleventh Doctor arrived on the planet Hereafter in the village of Beside, an Earth colony struggling through a particularly harsh winter (“The Silent Stars Go By“). Learning about the harsh snow and recent disappearances in the village, The Doctor resolved to investigate the situation, noting the suspicious failure of the terraforming equipment after twenty-seven generations of relative comfort. While The Doctor and Amy searched for missing villagers, Rory Williams – who had become separated from them when he went back to the TARDIS for a coat – discovered a group of Ice Warriors that began to attack another group of villagers, resulting in Rory being captured and taken to their base as The Doctor deduced who he was dealing with. However, although The Doctor confirmed that The Ice Warriors had arrived on the planet a decade ago and begun adjusting the terraforming equipment to make it more suitable for them, the Ice Warriors claimed that a third party were responsible for the recent harsh weather, revealing that an unidentified energy source had rendered their conventional weapons useless. Realising that The colony’s automated defences – created by the terraformer mutating local wildlife to serve its purpose – had started to produce ‘Transhumans’ to counter the Ice Warriors, The Doctor realised that The Morphan colonists were actually just the labour force for the Earth elite – the real colonists currently in suspended animation -, who would prepare the colony for them. As the Morphans and Ice Warriors fought the Transhumans, The Doctor reprogrammed the terraforming equipment to shut them down, subsequently recommending a different planet for the Ice Warriors to colonise while leaving the Morphans in control of the colony.
The 2013 episode “Cold War” is the first to depict the Ice Warriors in the revived series and features the Eleventh Doctor (Matt Smith) encountering Grand Marshal Skaldak, a legendary warrior who had been trapped in the ice for 5000 years, on a sunken Soviet submarine. It is also the first televised story to depict an Ice Warrior without its armour. After Skaldak escapes from the ice the crew manage to subdue him, which under Martian Law he believes is a declaration of war by humanity. After failing to communicate with his fleet for rescue or reinforcements, Skaldak leaves his armour and tears apart crew members to forensically study the weaknesses of human anatomy. One crew member, Stepashin (Tobias Menzies), reveals to Skaldak that The submarine is armed with nuclear missiles that could destroy the planet. Upon returning to his armour Skaldak prepares to fire the missiles. However he relents and is rescued by an Ice Warrior spaceship that pulls the submarine through the ice to the surface. Before the spaceship leaves, Skaldak deactivates the warheads.
The Ice Warriors reappear alongside the Twelfth Doctor in the 2017 episode “The Empress of Mars,” featuring the first female Ice Warrior. While female Ice Warriors have been mentioned before, this marks their first onscreen appearance. In the episode, a crew of soldiers in the Victorian era help an Ice Warrior who they nickname Friday get home after his crashed ship is salvaged and he is awoken from suspended animation, only for him to discover the planet is dead. Friday awakens the Ice Queen, Iraxxa, who wants to kill the humans. Despite a rebellion by one of the soldiers, Colonel Godsacre, the missions’ true commander, negotiates his death as long as she spares the rest of his men and the Earth. Iraxxa is impressed with his bravery, and offers him to join their ranks. Iraxxa awakens several dormant Ice Warriors, and the Doctor calls the Galactic Federation’s Alpha Centauri to pick up the remaining Ice Warriors, realizing this is the beginning of the Ice Warrior golden age.
They also met the 5th Doctor in the Big Finish Audio, Red Dawn. and Bride of Peladon – they were also in the unmade TV story on audio Thin Ice, produced by Big Finish, which was supposed to be season 27 opener had it not been cancelled in 1989
The Ice Warriors first appearance is due on DVD in 2013 with animated remaining episodes for missing episodes.
Back to Alien Cultures page
Buy the Ice Warriors CD