Wednesday, May 4, 2011

BBC comment on Doctor Who ratings success

The BBC have commented on the ratings success of the opening episode in the current series of Doctor Who, and how the programme is a "key part" of the Saturday night schedules.

"The Impossible Astronaut" was watched by nearly 9 million viewers on BBC One, making it the channel's third most-watched programme of the week and the sixth most-watched overall.

Speaking to Digital Spy, Dan McGolpin, Head of Planning and Scheduling for BBC One, said: "Doctor Who is a key part of BBC One's Saturday night schedule and this series got off to a great start with the opening episode achieving a 37% share of live viewing - more than any episode in the previous series.

Due to the recent hot weather and early scheduling, many "news" sources (Daily Mail!) have reported on the drop in the initial overnight ratings, however the BBC have dismissed the importance of these figures, quite rightly pointing out that it is the consolidated ratings that matter.

"However, overnight ratings are only one part of the story for shows like Doctor Who and once you take into account catch-up viewing, the total audience for episode one is now around 9 million, representing a 43% share of the audience. BBC iPlayer figures will take this even higher - last year's opening episode was the most watched show on this platform, being streamed over 2.2m times."

"Like last year, this series of Doctor Who is scheduled at start times between 6pm and 7pm on a Saturday night, where it attracts a very strong audience including a large proportion of younger viewers," McGolpin added. "Very few drama series on any of the UK's channels achieve audience volumes of this size."

Doctor Who series six opener was also the highest-rated drama of the week, only beaten by Britain's Got Talent and soaps, according to The Doctor Who News Page.

(Source: Digital Spy)


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