Sunday, 8 August 2010

Wiped! Doctor Who's Missing Episodes

Coming in September from Telos Publishing is a fantastic new book called Wiped! Doctor Who's Missing Episodes. The book covers the extensive catalogue of missing Doctor Who episodes from the BBC archives that were junked in the early 70's. Of nearly 400 episodes that were wiped, 108 are still missing, and this book explains how and why, and what efforts have been made to find and restore them. The synopsis is as follows:
"In the 1960s, the BBC screened 253 episodes of its cult science fiction show Doctor Who, starring William Hartnell and then Patrick Troughton as the time travelling Doctor. Yet by 1975, the Corporation had wiped the master tapes of every single one of these episodes. Of the 124 Doctor Who episodes starring Jon Pertwee shown between 1970 and 1974, the BBC destroyed over half of the original transmission tapes within two years of their original broadcast.

In the years that followed, the BBC, along with dedicated fans of the series, began the arduous task of trying to track down copies of as many missing Doctor Who episodes as possible. The search covered BBC sales vaults, foreign television stations, overseas archives, and numerous networks of private film collectors, until the tally of missing programmes was reduced to just 108 episodes.

For the first time, this book looks in detail at how the episodes came to be missing in the first place, and examines how material subsequently came to be returned to the BBC. Along the way, those people involved in the recovery of lost slices of Doctor Who's past tell their stories in candid detail, many for the very first time.

No more rumours, no more misinformation, no more fan gossip. The truth about Doctor Who's missing episodes can now be told in full!"

Written by Richard Molesworth, with an introduction by the legend that is Terence Dicks, the book is available from September with an RRP of £15.99 from

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