Doctor Who News leaks

Published on July 17th, 2014 | by Danny_Weasel

Doctor Who Leaks That Embarrassed The BBC

Following the latest Doctor Who leaks, it’s clear that BBC Worldwide is a leaky ship. From scripts to full rough cuts some of us have seen far more of the new Doctor than we would like (even I haven’t managed to come out unscathed). But let’s face it, this isn’t the first clanger the Beeb has dropped when it comes to keeping things under wraps. Join us as we take a stroll down memory lane and see some of the other spoilerific leaks from days gone by.

Rose Blooms Early

It was a big hit before it even reached TV screens in 2005, as the first episode of the newly resurrected show hit the net on torrent sites and became massively pirated, thanks to a worker in a Canadian TV station who got a little too over excited and decided to share it with the world.

Not that it did the show any harm, here we are almost 10 years later as proof of that.

Location, Location, Location

Yes, thanks to the rise of social media and smartphones we have spent many years catching glimpses of sets, actors, monsters and more from the likes of Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram. Series 8 has been a big hit in this respect with big clips turning up from a number of episodes, and even pictures from the series finale (don’t worry I wont go into detail on content) that potentially give away some pretty big moments.

Can we blame the BBC for leaks like this? Well yes, you would imagine that something as big as Doctor Who‘s finale would have a tightly controlled set and plenty of security, if shows like Broadchurch can manage it, why not Doctor Who? Seriously, set security on Broadchurch 2 was as tight as a dolphin’s blow hole when I was there.

Doctor, what is your name

Early Release

In 2013, The Name of the Doctor was massively anticipated; no one could wait to see what was going to happen in the build up to the 50th anniversary. Unfortunately some of us didn’t have to wait, as BBC Worldwide accidentally sent out the pre-ordered Blu-ray box sets of the whole series two weeks early and giving it away, quite literally.

Thankfully in this case the fans proved that they are better than most and kept quiet about the episode, though they did tell us just how good it was and that it would be worth the wait, which did amp up the anticipation for the rest of us. So thank you BBC… sort of.

A Novel Idea

Of course, stories appearing too soon is not a new problem, as older fans will know. Back in 1983, for the shows big 20th anniversary fans were treated to ‘The Five Doctors’ the target novel appearing in shops the day before the show aired. To many fans at the time this was the ultimate temptation, but, true to form even those who bought it the day before still waited until after the broadcast to dig in.

Ultimately we live in a time where spoilers are everywhere, but luckily almost all are now clearly signposted (thank you Doctor Song and your catchphrase) and a lot easier to avoid. And should any further leaks spring from Worldwide, no doubt there will be a number of faithful fans on hand to promptly plug them up again and bury the evidence till its safe for the rest of us, and to them I tip my fez in thanks.

How do you feel about leaks of this degree? Are spoilers simply something we should learn to live with or do you think more should be done to ensure total lock-down on anything and everything? Let us know below.

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8 Responses to Doctor Who Leaks That Embarrassed The BBC

  1. avatar simon magellan says:

    Re the book in 1983: wasn’t it more like a week before the transmission. Long time ago, but I remember buying (and reading) it and am sure it was a lot longer than just the day before.

    Re location: With all due respect, DW is a lot bigger than Broadchurch, and a lot more can be revealed by a location shoot. We’re not likely to see Daleks wandering around the town Broadchurch is shot in!

    If filming in public, there’s only so much you can reasonably do – we do, after all, live in a free country.

    Re the footage: This is an odd one – still puzzled why it was sent to the US, let alone put on a open server! It has been said it was for translation services? But it was unfinished footage, so that seems strange.

    In this case, would definitely say the BBC, or some part of it, is at fault, yes.

    • avatar TonyS says:

      It was certainly more than a day. I bought it in Plymouth, read it, went to a Local Group meeting in Tooting- all before it was transmitted.

      • avatar TonyS says:

        I’m talking about The Five Doctors by the way

      • avatar simon magellan says:

        I have a feeling they did exactly the same with the TV Movie, though I was able to exercise more restraint then and didn’t buy it until after the fact.

  2. avatar Ian Gettings says:

    Anyone remember the Black Dalek making a surprise appearance on some ITV live show? before the first part of the series two finale. RTD said he was shocked and it kinda gave strong suggestions that the Daleks would be returning with the Cybermen at the end of the series.

  3. avatar TimeChaser says:

    It would be nice if we could live in a spoiler-free world, but the internet culture we have now just doesn’t allow for that. People will always want to put up filming photos, and things will end up being leaked whether by accident (the early Name of the Doctor release) or by design (leaked Rose, scripts, etc), all we can do as fans is our best to exercise restraint and not get pulled in to anything spoiler-ish.

  4. avatar J W says:

    I don’t mind the occasional spoiler now and then, I feel it increases my desire to see certain episodes or series if I get a taste of what’s in store. What I cannot stand are people who insist on ruining it for everyone else by going online and posting every little detail, I prefer simply to know the spoilers are out there and seek them out myself if I so desire.

  5. avatar simon magellan says:

    Back in the 80s, JNT gave out a lot of info – DWM and DWAS would be revealing details about stories well in advance, plus photos. It didn’t make me less keen to see what was happening, though I did often find my imagination weaved better stories from the fragments than we actually saw!

    It also meant he could keep the big surprises – the return of the Cybermen in Earthshock for example, hidden. Maybe a more open approach by Cardiff would work better than trying to maintain a MI5 style lockdown?

    Talking of spoilers, several sources have new filming pics that, if you are that way inclined, could suggest how the new series is going to end… I will say nothing more!

    (Apart from the fact that Capaldi is wearing his jumper again. In this heat!)

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