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BBC Doctor Who

Missing episodes of Classic Doctor Who returned to BBC Archive after decades


By Stephen Lepitak, -

December 12, 2011 | 2 min read

After decades of searching, two classic episodes of Doctor Who from the Sixties have been discovered.

The two episodes, one featuring William Hartnell’s first incarnation of The Doctor, episode three of ‘Galaxy Four’ and another featuring Patrick Troughton’s Second Doctor, episode two of ‘The Underwater Menace’, were returned by film collector Terry Burnett to the BBC Archive. Burnett is said to have bought both episodes at a village fete in the 80’s and was unaware of what the film canisters contained.

The material was yesterday screened at the British Film Theatre in London yesterday, although over 100 episodes still remain to be found, having been wiped in the seventies.

Media commentator and host of cult TV podcast The Thumbcast, Iain Hepburn, commented: "Although Underwater Menace and Galaxy 4 are unlikely to be on the top of any fan's wishlist, the fact they were found at all is remarkable. Every time an expert says it's unlikely any more episodes will be found, they turn up another couple of gems.

"They represent a remarkable look, not just at two early adventures from Doctor Who, but at a long-lost era in television production.

"And as always, with each new discovery of long-lost episodes brings the BBC that step closer to having a complete archive of Doctor Who's history. It'd be wonderful to think there may be more discovered before the 50th anniversary in 2013."

The two episodes are said to have come from Australia, and will feature as part of a DVD release in 2012.

BBC Doctor Who

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