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Were Power and Evil of the Daleks Shown in Taiwan?


Some more news from our friends over at The Consulting Detective and Will Barber-Taylor @blackadder345 surrounding the recent Ian Levine finds out in Taiwan.

The Consulting Detective has spoken to Eric Loveman who worked at AFNT Radio at various intervals from the late 1960s to the end of the 1970s, Eric says:

“AFNT was just radio. [We weren't allowed a TV station,] the speculation was that the local government didn’t want us competing with the two local TV stations” tweet

Which counters the theory that AFNT broadcast the episodes and indicating other reasoning for their location in Taiwan, The Consulting Detective speculating that possibly that they had been sent to one of the two local stations.

However, the episodes found by Ian are spread though a wide ranging era from Hartnell to Pertwee, they are:

  • The Enemy of the World 6
  • The Keys of Marinus 6
  • The Krotons 3
  • The Ambassadors of Death 1 & 3
  • The Seeds of Death 2
  • The Dominators 2 & 3
  • The War Games 1 & 2

Now if these were sold as per usual, the follow emerges:

  • The Keys of Marius was sold as part of group B of Hartnell stories which also included Marco Polo
  • Enemy of the World was sold as part of group D which also included The Abominable Snowmen, The Ice Warriors, The Web of Fear, Fury from the Deep and The Wheel in Space
  • Season 6 was divided between groups E and F and it appears the entire season will have been located there given the existence of episodes from both groups in our list.

We shall neglect Ambassadors due to the existence of that entire group.

Jon Preddle meanwhile over at BroaDWcast suggests their broadcast had been “blocked” in 1976 and the episodes existed as part of a package gifted freely to the American Forces, which may suggest the normal groups and chains may not apply. What this package comprised of is unknown, nor whether these were new prints or sent from elsewhere, but Consulting Detective brings forward an exciting report that in 1984 a U.S. Sergeant proclaimed to have seen a story involving Patrick Troughton and involving Daleks at the end of the Vietnam war.

For what its worth… tweet

About 1984 I had a conversation with a USAF Sgt. about Doctor Who. He told me that he’d first seen the series a few years before when he’d been stationed in the far east just after the Vietnam War ended. From other stories he’d told me, I gather he’d spent a considerable in South Korea, Japan (Okinawa), and Taiwan. tweet

I remember clearly that he’d said the episodes were in black & white, and that at least one of the stories had featured the Daleks. He also said that the Doctor for these stories was “the guy who looked like Moe” (of the Three Stooges). I remember asking him at that time if perhaps he was mistaken, and that maybe he was confusing Jon Pertwee or perhaps Tom Baker, but he was adamant that it was Troughton (tho he didn’t know the actor’s name). I do not recall if he said it was on AFN or not, nor do I recall where he’d said he’d seen them. Only that he had. At the time I was under the impression that the Troughton stories had never aired in that area of the world (I didn’t know about Hong Kong then), so I just filed it away and mostly forgot about it. Until now, that is. Call this a possible sighting. It might be worth it to start some general inquiries among veterans of the era; surely someone remembers something. tweet

Also, it seems to me that if AFN Taiwan had broadcast the episodes at any time, then its possible other AFN stations (Okinawa? Pusan?) might also have done so, possibly exchanging the episodes much like the BBC used to bicycle them between countries. I do remember reading somewhere that AFN stations used to shuttle programming between them (“How many Star Trek episodes do you have? We’ve only got 20 and everyone’s sick of watching them over and over again!”), so there’s no telling where they entered the system nor where they ended up. It might be worth it to make some general inquiries with AFN itself. tweet

Just my 2 creds worth. tweet

The story is of course one mans word from long ago, but given the seeming randomness of the stories found in the country there is no reason to doubt Power or Evil could have been amongst them. It would be contrary to any claim the broadcast was blocked however.

Read the full story at The Consulting Detective

Our own speculation:

Taking The Enemy of the World as an example, the story was shown in Hong Kong, Singapore, Nigeria, Gibraltar, Australia and New Zealand.

Hong Kong bicycled the story to Singapore and then Nigeria, this is what Phil Morris found.

Leaving only Gibraltar, Australia and New Zealand as origins if these are not new and separate prints. leaving them as our three candidates.

On June 4, 1975 the BBC took receipt of returned episodes from ABC in Australia, of which Enemy was apparently part.

This batch of episodes comprised  of The Space Museum 1 2 3 4, The Chase 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Time Meddler 1 2 3 4, Galaxy 4 1 2 3 4, The Myth Makers 1 2 3 4, The Ark 1 2 3 4, The Smugglers 1 2 3 4, The Tenth Planet 1 2 3 4, The Power of the Daleks 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Underwater Menace 1 2 3 4, The Moonbase 1 2 3 4, The Faceless Ones 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Evil of the Daleks 1 2 3 4 5 6 7, The Tomb of the Cybermen 1 2 3 4, The Abominable Snowmen 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Ice Warriors 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Enemy of the World 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Web of Fear 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Dominators 1 2 3 4 5, The Mind Robber 1 2 3 4 5, The Invasion 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8, The Seeds of Death 1 2 3 4 5 6, The Space Pirates 1 2 3 4 5 6, The War Games 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10.

What happened next is a matter of some debate with many returned episodes in the UK often speculated as being from the batch such as Galaxy 4 3, The Underwater Menace 2, The Faceless Ones 3, The Evil of the Daleks 2, The Dominators 5 and so forth, equally a copy of The Chase 1 and a copy of The Faceless Ones 1 were both found to exist in Australia in the late 70s, despite being on the above list – either they were missed from the shipment, ABC made copies or they had two prints of some stories.

So, could the BBC have sent some of these prints on to the AFNT after they got home? that wouldn’t explain The Keys of Marinus or Ambassadors of Death. Could they have been copied by ABC for the AFNT? Australia was of course allied to the United States and involved in the Vietnam War, as were New Zealand. Could the BBC have sent two copies, one for broadcast and one for troops?

The BBC still had the returned Australian prints of The Dominators in 1978, lowering the chances that if these are indeed Australian prints, they are the original ones from ABC.

New Zealand’s prints of Enemy are listed as having a fate unknown, speculated as having been junked cira 1975, the nation did not broadcast season six and the country is excellently documented thanks to the work of the likes of Preddle.

Only Australia and Gibraltar broadcast all the episodes found by Ian. The range of episodes found suggests either a random selection was sent, a huge consignment or a regular supply. With the latest claims on Power and Evil, it appears there may be a lot more in play in Taiwan than initially realised.

If we factor in Power and Evil of the Daleks upon the new claim, only Australia broadcast them all.

One theory? The Australians may have taken Doctor Who to Taiwan and then as the quote suggests swapped it with the Americans for something new. If so, who knows what there is.

The best of luck to Ian Levine, Paul Vanezis and all involved in what could be an exciting new hunt.


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1 comments
Andy Lehrer
Andy Lehrer

One possibility is that the ABC or someone at the ABC sent Doctor Who prints to Australian troops in Asia where perhaps they were screened at a few camps and then perhaps traded to the Americans for some other films or just left with the Americans when Australia withdrew. Perhaps they were traded directly with American soldiers in Taiwan or ended up with AFTN Taiwan after the Americans themselves left Vietnam.