Whovians, rejoice! After a long dry spell of new Doctor Who content (Christmas specials? Seriously?), British streaming service BritBox has announced that the largest library of classic Doctor Who episodes is now available to stream online. Starting on April 4th, 2017, BritBox will host 550 episodes of the first twenty-six seasons of the iconic, groundbreaking science fiction series. These episodes span the show’s run from 1963 to 1989 and cover the tenure of the first seven Doctors.
As a bonus, the collection will include the famed “lost” episodes of Doctor Who found in the BBC archives. The video of these 97 episodes has been lost over the years, but the soundtracks were found by the BBC. This is the first time these episodes have appeared on any streaming service. The most recent episodes, filmed after 2005, are only available on Amazon Prime due to an outstanding licensing agreement.
Soumya Sriraman, President of BritBox, believes that making the classic Doctor Who episodes available for streaming could open up a new audience for the already-legendary series:
Doctor Who continues to be a global phenomenon that spans generations. Whovians in the U.S. now have a one-stop-shop for the most comprehensive catalog of Classic Doctor Who to either relive the exciting adventures with their favorite Classic Doctors, or experience for the first time how it all began.
As an added bonus, BritBox has curated exclusive “playlists” that gather classic episodes together based on themes like “Monsters” or “Companions.” BritBox is a joint venture between BBC Worldwide and ITV and brings classic British series to the streaming market. Current offerings include not only Doctor Who but other classics such as Red Dwarf, A Bit of Fry and Laurie, Absolutely Fabulous, Blackadder, and the original British version of The Office.
BritBox is available for subscription starting at $6.99/month but new subscribers can sign up for a free 7-day trial. That might not be enough time to binge all 550 episodes, but I’m sure you could squeeze a few hundred in if you get creative. Who needs sleep when you have so much Who to watch? Better catch up now: the latest season of Doctor Who premiers on BBC on April 15, 2017.