Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Fury of the Daleks

I don't normally post links to download audios and things which still have a ongoing commercial value, as I don't like to promote the illegal copying of copywrited material - for example the Big Finish audios. Now don't get me wrong - I hate this commercial consumeristic society as much as the next manic mad man, and obviously a meglomanic like myself delights in breaking the law. But I don't want to help you undermine the business of Big Finish and perhaps risk them going belly up, and so bringing to an end their productions.

So you won't find me linking to Big Finish audios, or the Target novelisation audios, or the BBC narrated soundtracks, all of which are highly recommended, but ongoing commercial concerns. It's all out there, somewhere, if you know where to look. Alternatively get a job and buy them!

However with older BBC stuff it's a bit different - firstly, I paid my license fee, so I sort of think I've paid for Who already! Then, after you have bought loads of stuff, you sort of think well, hey, I deserve some freebies. Well, these audio stories have long been deleted, and as such represent a little piece of history which should be preserved for the future, before the plastic tape they were released on crumbles into dust.

In the early 1990's, as part of the Who 30th anniversary, the Beeb released several Troughton adventures in a new test format under the title of 'The Missing Stories'. The original television soundtrack of 'lost' stories (with episodes missing from the BBC archive) were released with linking narration provided by living Doctors (number 3, 4 and 6). These were only released on cassette (vynal was dead and CD's unborn), and as such could easily go the way of the original episodes and be lost to the world forever.

The stories are:

Power of the Daleks (narrated by Tom Baker)
Macra Terror (narrated by Colin Baker)
Evil of the Daleks (narrated by Tom Baker)
Tomb of the Cybermen (narrated by Jon Pertwee)
Fury from the Deep (narrated by Tom Baker)

It's interesting to note that about the same time, Tomb of the Cybermen was rediscovered, and quickly released on video. Good old Tom gives a typically bonkers performance, reading the stories in the first person, which does take a bit to get used to.

Later the format would be developed into the BBC audio stories, released on CD, and with cleaner and better quality audio. All of the above stories were re-done and re-released, except, strangely, the Macra Terror, which was released with Colin Baker's narration.

Anyway, as the format is largely defunct, and the titles long deleted, here's a link to a page where some wonderfully techy type person has transferred them from audio to MP3 and posted for us all to enjoy. (Here's where we say thank you wonderful techy type person!) There's only two stories up there ready at the moment, Power of the Daleks and Fury from the Deep, but as both are total classics, it's well worth trying these out. The others will hopefully appear on the same link in due course.

Alternatively you can pick the stories up second hand on ebay and the like. The used to be mega rare and highly collectable, with a price tag to match, but since the CD releases, their value has dropped to a couple of quid per story. All you need then is a cassette player...

If you've not listened to the audio recordings of the missing stories, then give these a go. They get better with the second wave of releases, which are availbale on CD and cover many first and second doctor stories.

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