After our last item and our recent podKast we thought we’d put the rumours concerning the rediscovery of lost episodes to bed. It seems, however, that it’s just going to rumble on and on…
First things first: Bleeding Cool managed to get a response from the Head of Communications, Brands, Content & Digital, BBC Worldwide, Philip Fleming concerning the story.
There are always rumours and speculation about Doctor Who missing episodes being discovered, however we cannot confirm any new finds.
The Radio Times website has unsuccessfully attempted to glean more information:
“We can’t confirm because it’s not true as far a I’m aware,” the spokeswoman adds.
But are they talking to Morris? Or anyone with lost episodes.
“I don’t think so?”
So there are no episodes?
“Not as far as we know.”
Meanwhile, we’ve been told that members of the Missing Episodes forum where these things are routinely discussed (and not just for Doctor Who either) have been barred from discussing the alleged discovery.
To summarise, the rumour is that 3 tons of old video tapes and film reels have been shipped from Africa – Uganda is the popular location for these rumours – to Liverpool. Smartphone camera shots of cargo manifests have been used to “prove” the findings, although of course all they prove is that 3 tons of something was shipped to Liverpool. Whether there are 90 lost episodes in this trove is another matter entirely.
As ever we urge taking this whole business with a very big pinch of salt. Even if it is true, and the BBC is in negotiations for the return of these classic TV shows, it seems unlikely that they would be any nearer a deal now than they would have been 12 months ago.
On the other hand, even the original saviour of lost Doctor Who episodes Ian Levine has had a change of heart, going from
"There will always be 106 Doctor Who episodes missing". And yes you can quote me on that.
— Ian Levine (@IanLevine) June 15, 2013
I have just seen "three tons" of evidence that tells me it's all true. Saying no more. Apart from I now believe it again.
— Ian Levine (@IanLevine) June 18, 2013
Don’t know what to believe? Well, believe this: it’s the 50th anniversary of Doctor Who this year. If these episodes turn up, then fine. If they don’t, we’ve still got two more specials, a dramatisation of the show’s early years and a new Doctor to look forward to.