Why BBC America Should Run Classic Who

Welcome to a new feature for my blog. Each month, I will post an editorial.

Because I live in the United States, I watch Doctor Who on BBC America. It’s no longer on Netflix, and Hulu is no longer offering a free service. Thus, my only means of watching Doctor Who is BBC America. I don’t like it, but I deal with it.

My main gripe with BBC America is that most of the time, it’s a rerun channel. I don’t mind reruns, but here I think some thought must be put into things. BBC America is a British channel. Yet, what reruns do I see? Star Trek: The Next Generation, CSI Miami, and other Star Trek programs. It seems like the only British shows I see rerun are Doctor Who and Planet Earth. Do you know where else I can watch those shows I mentioned? I can watch Star Trek on Netflix. CSI Miami shows on USA and I think TNT. That’s not right. And when Doctor Who does show, it’s the revival version. American programs do not belong on BBC America!

Now, I want to stress something, I’m a fan of both the Classic and Current version. I resent the notion that you can only like one or the other. And yet, the classic version is rarely played on BBC America. They had a short run feature on Sunday mornings called “Breakfast With the Doctor”, which had Tom Baker stories. That was a good start. At the end of last year, they promoted the newly-animated version of “Power of the Daleks”. But that’s only part of the classics. Why not play as much as we can (barring the episodes that are still missing, of course.)?

Current Who fans are missing out. BBC America seems to be clamping down on Dailymotion, which used to be where you could watch Classic Who. Yes, there’s DVD’s of the episodes, but those are expensive, especially when you’re buying directly from BBC America website. And I’m willing to bet, some don’t even know you can buy Classic Who on DVD. BBC America could promote those classic episodes by showing them on TV. They don’t even have to marathon all of a story. They can just do part of it. When I watched it on PBS back in the day, they’d run it for one hour, playing 2 parts at a time. On top of that, Current Who references Classic Who often. Those who haven’t seen the Classic episodes will be lost on those references.

So come on, BBC America! Play the old Doctor Who, not just some of the time, but all the time. You seem to have ample space.



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