As previously reported in the Doctor Who MInd Robber. the UK tabloid the Mirror yesterday alleged that the BBC would announce the recovery of missing Doctor Who episodes on Tuesday. The Mirror’s claim appeared to be substantiated by an article in The Radio Times which indicated that two lost serials, likely to be from the Troughton era, would be released digitally on Wednesday.
A November 1963 Radio Times cover announcing the launch of the new series Doctor Who
Fans hopes for an early resolution of the long standing missing episode rumours where dashed last night when the Mirror reported that the press conference had been postponed until the end of the week. A BBC Insider is quoted as saying
“With all the excitement in the last few days about the lost episodes we are really keen to get the information out, but there are a few delays.
“We want everything to be ready and for this announcement to excite fans so they will have to wait a few days longer.
“They have been waiting nearly 50 years for this, so a couple of days shouldn’t make any difference.”
Almost simultaneously with the Mirror’s announcement of the delay, The Radio Times amended its online article concerning the digital release of missing episodes. It now ways that the missing episodes will be available for sale to the public this week.
Respected UK newspaper The Guardian has also weighed into the rumours and published an article today which claims that a BBC press conference will be held on Thursday.
Yeti in the tunnels of the London Underground in the lost Troughton era serial The Web of Fear
The mounting tension among fans about the impending announcement is so great that at least one online Doctor Who forum has closed its Missing Episodes thread and curtailed all discussion of the issue until an official announcement by the BBC.
The latest rumours suggest that the two missing serials recovered, and due for release, are two Season Five stories, Enemy of the World and The Web of Fear. The serials are consecutive stories and among the most sought after by fans. In our The 10 Most Wanted Missing Episodes article published on October 4 we listed the Enemy of the World as number 6 and The Web of Fear as number 5.
Patrick Troughton as Salamander in the lost Season Five serial The Enemy of the World
In the meantime, general fan consensus seems to be that the Mirror’s claim of the recovery of over 100 missing episodes from Ethiopia is at best an exaggeration, and at worst an outright lie. The Mirror’s claims were reported on the UK’s SkyNews channel and also in the press worldwide, including Australia’s news.com.au. There are now, however, very few sceptics remaining with the vast majority of vocal fans believing that at least some episodes have been recovered.
Further information will be published as it comes to hand.
©Vivien Fleming, 2013.
Official Confirmation – BBC to Reveal Missing Doctor Who Episodes