posted by [identity profile] at 01:09pm on 2006-04-23
I'm a fan, so of course, I'd say tape and watch (if I didn't already have it taped :-) ). But there are corrections to be made here:

the majority of the Hartnell and Troughton episodes were lost in a fire at the BBC

No and yes and no. 17 of Hartnell's 29 stories exist in their entirety, and and additional 5 of the stories are missing some episodes, but not all. So a majority of Hartnell's episodes actually exist.

Of Troughton's 21, however, only 6 exist in their entirety. A further 12 have only 1 or 2 episodes intact. So I would agree that a majority of Troughton's got wiped.

Alas, it was nothing as spectacular as a fire. They have (or had) storage problems. Specifically, room to store things. So many things got erased and reused, including the black-and-white episodes of Doctor Who. Or that was the initial plan. Surprisingly, they actually failed to erase all of the episodes (obviously), and a few have been found in other places around the world (notably the Troughton story "The Tomb of the Cybermen", which is brilliant). They also wiped some of Pertwee's colour episodes, although they kept the black-and-white versions of them which were sent to areas of the world where black-and-white was still the standard for transmission. Pertwee's story "Invasion of the Dinosaurs" is (or was - I do not know if they have recovered a broadcast-quality copy of that episode; I have a non-broadcast quality copy) missing part 1 because it was titled simply "Invasion" (to keep the dinosaurs a secret until the reveal at the end of the episode), and that was the first season they did not transfer from colour to black-and-white for transmission in other areas.

The "The Three Doctors" was indeed the first "special" episode, celebrating the show's tenth anniversary. "The Five Doctors" was the next "special", for the twentieth.

Yes, I'm a Who geek. Why do you ask? :-D



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