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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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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.

Article Link: BBC Releases Lost Episodes of 'Doctor Who' Exclusively on iTunes
 

Sky Blue

Guest
Jan 8, 2005
6,856
10
As a huge Who nerd, this is very exciting.

It was nice to buy the episodes at the time of the announcement instead of waiting for the DVD.

Sounds like there might be more to come!
 

japanime

macrumors 68020
Feb 27, 2006
2,306
2,728
Japan
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.
 

markfraser

macrumors newbie
Jul 12, 2008
11
0
"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.
 

rmwebs

macrumors 68040
Apr 6, 2007
3,140
0
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.
 
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576316

macrumors 601
May 19, 2011
4,056
2,556
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.
 

GoCubsGo

macrumors Nehalem
Feb 19, 2005
35,741
149
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. :)
 

MaxZero

macrumors newbie
Oct 11, 2011
16
0
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
 

Sky Blue

Guest
Jan 8, 2005
6,856
10
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.
 

roadbloc

macrumors G3
Aug 24, 2009
8,784
213
UK
Sweet. Can't complain at more Doctor Who. I've still yet to buy series seven blurays.
 

cosmichobo

macrumors 6502a
May 4, 2006
718
390
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...
 

MaxZero

macrumors newbie
Oct 11, 2011
16
0
ie the next time your local channel decides to play Classic Who... whenever that may be...

Probably whenever someone important who was involved in the production dies. I remember watching the episodes with the first appearance of the Daleks on BBC4 a number of years back for that reason
 

Plutonius

macrumors G3
Feb 22, 2003
8,800
7,995
New Hampshire, USA
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.

Did you ever consider that they had to pay a great deal of money to get these episodes back from Nigeria ? What did you think ? When they found the lost episodes, the owners of them in Nigeria said "I'm glad you have found them. Here, take them back and we will not even charge you" :D ?
 

ohio.emt

macrumors 6502a
Jul 18, 2008
811
176
Ohio
Did you ever consider that they had to pay a great deal of money to get these episodes back from Nigeria ? What did you think ? When they found the lost episodes, the owners of them in Nigeria said "I'm glad you have found them. Here, take them back and we will not even charge you" :D ?

I don't know if they would have had to pay for them. Since they were found in the possession of a TV station I think the would still be the property of the BBC, but that would be for the lawyers to decide.
 

rmwebs

macrumors 68040
Apr 6, 2007
3,140
0
Did you ever consider that they had to pay a great deal of money to get these episodes back from Nigeria ? What did you think ? When they found the lost episodes, the owners of them in Nigeria said "I'm glad you have found them. Here, take them back and we will not even charge you" :D ?

At that point they can do what they have always done with any UK-owned broadcast - pass the cost to BBC Worldwide as international sales will more than cover the cost. Then give it to UK residents/license fee payers at no extra cost. We pay them ~£12 a month as it is for the rubbish they keep putting out, the least they can do is stick them on iPlayer for a week.
 

Plutonius

macrumors G3
Feb 22, 2003
8,800
7,995
New Hampshire, USA
I don't know if they would have had to pay for them. Since they were found in the possession of a TV station I think the would still be the property of the BBC, but that would be for the lawyers to decide.

I'm sure they had to pay for them. If you read the news article, many of the older episodes were put on film for sale to foreign countries (i.e. they were sold to Nigeria).
 

ThunderSkunk

macrumors 68040
Dec 31, 2007
3,179
2,933
Milwaukee Area
Awesoooooome!

All this talk of channels and subscriptions to channels and distribution arms and local channels...

...all unnecessary, obsolete, and fading fast because of it. I'll be glad to see the whole rats nest go.
 

AngerDanger

macrumors 603
Dec 9, 2008
5,343
27,861
"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.

I don't see why you're getting so angry, emotion about this. He's just attempting, present tense verb to be as informative, adjective as he, human can be. It's really quite nice, attribute!
 

RickyB

macrumors regular
Oct 28, 2007
202
6
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.

I'm happy that the BBC charge for this and other programmes they sell online and on DVD/Blu Ray. Without that income stream, the licence fee would be so much bigger.
 

The Man

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2004
597
202
I still can't believe that the BBC destroyed so many taped shows in their archive. All these old shows -- including Doctor Who -- were thrown out or the tapes reused. How stupid is that?
 

APlotdevice

macrumors 68040
Sep 3, 2011
3,120
3,790
I still can't believe that the BBC destroyed so many taped shows in their archive. All these old shows -- including Doctor Who -- were thrown out or the tapes reused. How stupid is that?

It does seem stupid in retrospect, but you have to remember that at the time the home video cassette had not been invented yet and there were too few channels to show reruns. On top of that the magnetic tapes were expensive, so reusing them saved a lot of money.
 
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