“Mission to the Unknown” is a missing episode of the third season of the British science fiction television series Doctor Who, first broadcast on 9 October 1965.
Exactly 54 years after its original broadcast, a recreation of this missing epsiode will premiere on the Doctor Who Youtube channel.
The recreation by the University of Central Lancashire has been championed by several Doctor Who luminaries including Nicholas Briggs, who provided the Dalek voices for the recreated episode, and stars like Peter Purves, who played 1960s companion Steven Taylor, and Edward de Souza, who played Marc Cory in the original episode, who have visited the new set to lend their support.
This sole standalone episode of the show’s original run (apart from the 1983 feature-length anniversary special The Five Doctors, which was later shown in a multi-episode form) – serves as an introduction to the 12-part story The Daleks’ Master Plan.
It is also notable for the complete absence of the regular cast, including the Doctor (although William Hartnell is still credited on-screen). The story focuses on Space Security Agent Marc Cory (Edward de Souza) and his attempts to warn Earth of the Daleks’ latest plan. Although audio recordings of the episode exist, no footage is known to have survived
This episode officially came about because producer Verity Lambert wanted to give the cast regulars an extra week’s holiday between the second and third production blocks, extending their break from five weeks to six, and so it was decided to make the final episode in serial T a one-off story introducing elements of the forthcoming story The Daleks’ Master Plan (Serial V) without including any of the regular actors.
It was also the final Doctor Who episode on which Verity Lambert served as producer.
Terry Nation wrote this episode partially as an attempt to create a story about the Daleks that did not involve the Doctor or his companions, so that he could eventually develop and sell the idea of a Dalek series, divorced from the Doctor Who universe.
Mission to the Unknown will premiere on 9th October at 17:50 (UK TIME) over on the Doctor Who Youtube page.