Doctor Who News Kirk vs Gorn

Published on April 8th, 2014 | by James Lomond

Ian Levine Throws Down The Omnirumour Gauntlet

It is going DOWN on Twitter, dear reader. Well. It might. Nip over to the microblogging site to read some fizzing comments from Northern Soul DJ and missing episode supremo, Ian Levine.

He has challenged Philip Morris, head of the international television archive company that recently returned 1967′s Enemy of the World and Web of Fear to the BBC to a public debate:

This centres around the fact that a number of other finds alongside the two returned Troughton stories are suspected to have been made and we all waiting on an announcement. We’ve previously reported on the rumored discovery of Marco Polo and check out our overview of a Starburst article examining why there might be legitimate reasons to delay announcing more recovered episodes. Levine is well-known for his strong views and at times vitriolic commentary on the return of missing episodes to their original home. He thinks we should have been told more by now. Others are sure that Morris will spill the wonderful beans when the time is right. Levine replies,

His challenge has prompted some less-than-impressed responses. We can understand, given his role in saving the first Dalek serial from destruction and long-term involvement in the search, that he might feel entitled to a view on these things. Like the rest of us, Ian really, really, really wants to know, like, NOW. But that doesn’t give any of us a right to demand information – however strongly we feel it.

The problem is, while it’s just old telly and doesn’t really matter at all – it also sorta does matter. Sorta quite a lot. What do you think, Kasterborites – do we need an open debate or do we need some patience and a little bit of faith?


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24 Responses to Ian Levine Throws Down The Omnirumour Gauntlet

  1. avatar OllyBain says:

    The problem is this: If they find four episodes of a serial and then release them on DVD, then find more and release them again, and then a special edition they really risk annoying lots of people. Despite it being awesome, the bare bones release of ‘The Enemy of the World’ was annoying, as they will definitely release it again.

    In a sense it’s better we don’t know as silly demands will cost people a lot more money than a single considered release of a serial.

  2. avatar Christine says:

    Some patience and a bit of faith for me. Despite all what happened in the past, I don’t feel anybody is entitled to anything. Come on, it is terribly sad so much was (is) missing in the first place, and I for one am rather pleased that dedicated searches are made at all. Yes, I would like to know more now (who wouldn’t) but indeed there may be many reasons why the information (if there is any) is being withheld. No need for calling anything or anyone sick because of it. Who knows, destructive remarks like this might even cause people like Philip Morris to stop looking altogether and focus more on other missing tv instead (and they do look for other things. Missing episodes from series from the 60′s aren’t unique to Doctor Who) where the efforts are appreciated instead of being called sick. Thankfully, many fans are less agressive and challenging, and even grateful for all the effort put into it. And hopeful for more, as always!

  3. avatar dr jon says:

    I think if episodes are out there which have been found but not announced to the public straight away must have a good reason from the people involved in it. For example they may have three episodes in bad condition which need some work on them or they may be close to finding the last missing episodes to the story. So I can understand why they are keeping quiet. But they could also have done it another way. They could have let the fans know that they have found a few missing episodes but are in poor quality and it may take time to repair them, or they are waiting for a missing episode to turn up. Or even that they have found episodes but are in the negotiations with another party involved. But all of those reasons could cause friction with the fans and others involved. So I think we should wait and take heed of gossip and wait to see what happens. After all we fans have waited to find new episodes for a long time so a little longer will not hurt.

  4. avatar craigt68 says:

    Oh dear, handbags at dawn on Blackpool beach!!! I agree with Christine. I have never met (and would never wish to meet) Mr Levine as, in his contributions to broadcast and print media, he comes across as a bit of a bully. Yes, he has found and returned priceless lost episodes for which everyone is grateful but he seems to believe this gives him a certain level of entitlement to access/information. With every intemperate Tweet his reputation suffers. Sad really.

    • avatar Mugen Pharoah says:

      ‘Love and Monsters’ is a much maligned episode. But rewatch it as a satire on fandom, and with a certain infamous Blue Peter designed monster as an analogue for a certain figure in fandom and you gain a whole new appreciation for it….

      • avatar Christine says:

        Haha! I really like this one

  5. avatar dr jon says:

    I couldn’t have put it better about Mr Levine craig68. Its just the way he comes across,which puts the other fans of the show in a bad light.

    • avatar Mugen Pharoah says:

      He’s basically the inspiration for the Viz ‘I smashed my TV and sent the BBC the Bill’ trope…

  6. avatar Al says:

    Has anyone stopped to think that the reason there hasn’t been an announcement is because there isn’t anything to report? A few months back it was reported that some 60s episode films were found, but they were already in the archive. Alternately, does Levine have any experience with negotiations? The BBC can’t just send men in black to grab film canisters from some guy’s basement in Burundi.

  7. avatar OllyBain says:

    The idea of there not being any more things to announce is very strong. However then you would expect someone to say “Hey guys, cool down, there’s nothing else right now. The well is dry.” on a very formal level and repeatedly. As far as I know that hasn’t happened, which is what drives the omnirumour. I wouldn’t expect another announcement now until the Capaldi debut.

  8. avatar Joseph Prince says:

    I think that Levine’s frustration with the process is understandable. There has been a lot of misinformation and rumors, and a series of poorly worded denials from the BBC.

  9. avatar Mugen Pharoah says:

    I think Ian Levine has taken his inspiration from the Nigel Farrage/Nick Clegg debate there, requesting an open debate. Not sure they’d get a Dimbleby to host it though.

  10. avatar Paul McGann's Cat says:

    All this seems to come out of Levine’s need to be the king of the missing episodes. I really think it’s nothing more or less than an ego thing for him. For too long people have let him get carried away with his supposed status as a “superfan” and I think it’s all now gone to his head.

    Whether or not Morris has missing episodes is really none of Levine’s business. Just because Levine himself has uncovered some in the past doesn’t mean he bought himself an entitlement to be involved in any subsequent recoveries. Frankly he should just shut up and be patient like the rest of us as right now he’s coming across as an tantrum prone buffoon, and I’m sure that’s not how he wants to be regarded.

  11. avatar Rick714 says:

    Levine should just shut up and have some decorum. It’s embarrassing when he goes on like this. I’m sure finding Doctor Who episodes is just one small part of a much bigger job and responsibilities in Morris’ life. DW is not the be all end all. I understand Levine’s frustration but this is not the way to behave, with these tantrums.

  12. avatar Rick714 says:

    Although let’s at least appreciate the title picture for this. Kirk vs the Gorn! Classic, well played. :)

    • avatar vortexter says:

      Phil as Kirk and Ian as…!

  13. avatar Andrew Dorgomire says:

    Ian really hated that Marco Polo April Fool’s hoax. It possibly sent him over the edge and he decided to apply some pressure for a real answer about the missing episodes.

  14. avatar Francis cave says:

    In the incredibly unlikely event that such a debate took place it would be a disaster.

    For a start Morris is running a tv recovery business for profit (which he is perfectly entitled to do) while levine is just an individual who wants episodes returned for the love of the show.

    Therefore they have two quite different approaches with the bbc which seems to be what levine can’t understand, ie in his mind if you have recovered anything you should just give it back.

    The debate would probably just end up with levine begging/screaming to be told what else has been recovered with Morris holding his cards close to his chest (assuming there are in fact any dw cards) and not saying anything.

    Levine must feel that someone he initially offered assistance to is somehow stabbing him in the back (in his mind anyway) and he has gone from praising Morris to out an out saying he hates him.

  15. avatar dr jon says:

    Philip morris must be kirk,and we can guess who must be the gorn!

    • avatar James Lomond says:

  16. avatar Ian says:

    Actually, Ian and everyone else has a perfect and absolute right to demand everything and anything at any time. You don’t necessarily have the right to get it, but you sure as hell have every right to demand it. ;)

  17. avatar Steve Andrew says:

    Levine is certainly a man of contradictions. He’s done so much for fandom, but can be exasperating at times. Hyperbolic demands like this don’t really help.

    And he can’t lose: if he gets his debate, he can claim some kind of moral victory. If he doesn’t get his debate, he’ll say, “See? They must be hiding something!” It’s like a conspiracy theorist: any evidence against his theory is interpreted as evidence for the theory.

    With this demand, he sounds like a creationist who constantly demands debates with scientists. When they quite rightly refuse to dignify him with a response, he claims they’re too cowardly or they’re admitting defeat somehow.

    Morris would probably be perfectly happy to have this debate, if he didn’t already have too much stuff to do.

  18. avatar Geoff says:

    Debate? Really? Where would this debate take place, how would it be reported? Who would pay for that? All relevant questions and there are no satisfying answers. Put it on TV? I can’t see that happening. It would just be an appalling piece if car crash TV that still got clip repeats in 20 years on Brian Pern type comedy shows! So the other option: stage it off TV somewhere….a down at heel Bloomsbury hotel function room awaits, no thanks.

    What on earth is in it for Phillip Morris whichever option you take?
    If I was advising him I’d be saying: Stay away from this nutcase there’s nothing in this for us.

    BTW personally I don’t mind Ian Levine, the man is responsible for us being able to enjoy a number of Who gems (not just episodes) today that would be long gone if he hadn’t collected or found them so no knocking him from me. I just think this is a case of engage fingers on keyboard slightly ahead of engage brain….And we are all guilty of that sometimes.

  19. avatar joesiegler says:

    Ian needs to just shut the hell up, and stop it with the epic round of getting his panties in a knot that he’s been suffering from since someone ELSE found lost Doctor Who.

    As others have said he deserves credit for what he’s saved in the past. That doesn’t give him the right to act like a total asshat and a spoiled brat like he has over this subject.

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