BBC Releases Lost Episodes of 'Doctor Who' Exclusively on iTunes

BBC today announced the release of two sets of lost episodes from the hit show Doctor Who, which it is currently exclusively selling on iTunes. Five new episodes of the first set titled The Enemy of the World and four new episodes of the second set titled The Web of Fear have been digitally remastered after they were found in Nigeria, Africa earlier this year, and will remain on the iTunes Store until a DVD release later this year.

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BBC Worldwide North America announces that a stash of BBC master tapes from the 1960s featuring missing episodes of Doctor Who has been recovered in Nigeria, Africa. The BBC has re-mastered the tapes, and is making two stories, "The Enemy of the World" and "The Web of Fear," now available exclusively on iTunes (www.itunes.com/DoctorWho).

Eleven Doctor Who episodes were discovered (nine of which have not been seen for 46 years) by Philip Morris, director of Television International Enterprises Archive, by tracking records of tape shipments made by the BBC to Africa for transmission. Morris says, "The tapes had been left gathering dust in a store room at a television relay station in Nigeria. I remember wiping the dust off the masking tape on the canisters and my heart missed a beat as I saw the words 'Doctor Who'. When I read the story code I realized I'd found something pretty special."
Doctor Who: The Enemy of the World and Doctor Who: The Web of Fear are now available on the iTunes Store for $9.99 each.



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78 months ago
"Nigeria, Africa"

Thanks for the clarification. Please maintain this informative style by referring to your location as USA, North America.

Thank you

Mark
United Kingdom, Europe.
Rating: 26 Votes
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78 months ago
What a coincidence! Just a few days ago, I received an email from some guy who said that he had $40 million and two sets of lost "Doctor Who" episodes that he was trying to smuggle out of Nigeria, and asked me for my help.
Rating: 15 Votes
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78 months ago

Massive Doctor Who fan here but I don't think people should have to pay for these. They've been gone for years and the BBC has just happened to find them, they shouldn't use it as an excuse to get money out of people.


The more profit these episode generate, the more weight the BBC will put behind looking for more of them. As a "massive" fan, surely that's a good thing? I'm more than happy to pay $10 for something I thought I'd never get the chance to see.

As the article states, they didn't "just happened to find them", Philip Morris spends his time and money traveling the globe looking for lost film and I'm sure he passes that cost onto the BBC. There's also the cost of the restoration work involved.
Rating: 9 Votes
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78 months ago
I've never been a Doctor Who watcher, and am happy they found the episodes. But this should NOT be in iTunes. It should be free, on iPlayer for UK residents, along with every other episode from the back catalogue.

Sure, sell it outside the UK but given that we've already paid for the damn thing to be made and restored it makes no sense that we should have to pay for it again.

To put it in perspective for anyone in a country without a license fee.

We pay £145.50 per year. At todays rate that's about $232 USD, so $19.33 a month.

If you were paying for Netflix, and were then told "sorry, all this new stuff is premium, you gotta pay extra for it", you'd be pretty pissed, and netflix is only $7.99 a month.
Rating: 8 Votes
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78 months ago
It irritates me that BBC Worldwide (the commercial arm) seems to be in charge of the episodes. I was hoping they would be broadcast, perhaps as part of the 50th anniversary schedule instead of just being sold
Rating: 4 Votes
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78 months ago

It irritates me that BBC Worldwide (the commercial arm) seems to be in charge of the episodes. I was hoping they would be broadcast, perhaps as part of the 50th anniversary schedule instead of just being sold


My understanding is that following the demise of the series in 1989/90, the BBC basically sold the rights to the show to BBC Worldwide/Enterprises. As such, at the moment, the BBC are acting on behalf of BBC Worldwide by making the current series of the show. Worldwide OWN Doctor Who.

As such... It's quite within their rights to sell the episodes on iTunes. Frankly, it's MUCH better than us fans having to wait for a DVD release, which quite frankly is the only other feasible route we will have to see them.

Of course, there's also the theory that there are more missing episodes to come, and that whilst the BBC says they are going to screen the first ever Doctor Who - An Unearthly Child - on 23 November to celebrate the anniversary, it may in fact be a different story that goes to air... IE a currently missing story.

Hopefully the episodes will make it to free-to-air tv in the fullness of time - ie the next time your local channel decides to play Classic Who... whenever that may be...
Rating: 4 Votes
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78 months ago
Massive Doctor Who fan here but I don't think people should have to pay for these. They've been gone for years and the BBC has just happened to find them, they shouldn't use it as an excuse to get money out of people.
Rating: 3 Votes
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78 months ago

Massive Doctor Who fan here but I don't think people should have to pay for these. They've been gone for years and the BBC has just happened to find them, they shouldn't use it as an excuse to get money out of people.


Agreed. I don't think I'm missing anything by not buying them. :)
Rating: 3 Votes
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77 months ago

Your point is invalid because we're legally FORCED to fund the BBC and that means ALL BBC activities from restoring old shows to creating new one's is funded by the same means. You couldn't be more presumptious and wrong if you tried.


Restoring old shows is not done using the license fee. It is handled by BBC Worldwide who operate as a commercial business, and are forbidden from using license fee money. I'm afraid the 'epic fail' is on your end... :(

Simply paying your license fee does not mean you automatically own BBC programmes, any more than you automatically own Starsky and Hutch or Star Trek (two US shows the BBC used your license fee to acquire) or Raiders of the Lost Ark (a movie the BBC used your license fee to pay for.) If you attend a concert or a live show, you don't automatically own any recording of the show that might subsequently be sold, even if the recording is of the actual gig you attended. If you bought Sgt. Pepper on LP, you don't automatically own the CD, or the iTunes downloads... It may suck, but that's just the way life is..!
Rating: 3 Votes
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77 months ago

Um yes actually, by charging international audiences for watching BBC content, they recoup the cost of not receiving any licence fee from them while every single household in the UK are forced against their will BY LAW into giving the BBC £2.75 a week for their entire life. Nice try on the smugness though, I'm sure it felt good at the time :-P


Okay, a few facts:

(1) You don't have to pay a penny of the UK tv license fee if you can't receive BBC programming.

(2) Over 75's don't pay anything at all.

(3) As unfair as a license may seem (and it is, after all, a form of opt-in direct taxation), it is at least more transparent and fair than commercial television. With commercial television, the cost of the programming is paid for by advertisers, who ultimately include it in the cost of their products. This would be all fine and dandy if advertising lowered the price of products, but there is no correlation between the cost of brands and their level of tv advertising -- indeed often the cheapest brands are the ones that do not advertise on tv. So commercial television is a form of indirect taxation, much like VAT; a hidden cost within your weekly shop that the average fool in the street doesn't even realise is there.

Pay-per-view is the fairest way to pay for tv. The license fee may be akin to a tax, but at least it is a direct tax where we know how much we're paying. How much do we pay for ITV, Channel 4 and Sky? (And please don't tell me you believe Cola-Cola and BMW pay for their programmes out of the goodness of their hearts..!)
Rating: 3 Votes
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