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‘Doctor Who’ Struggles In UK, Soars In US

Sixth season premiere sets a new BBC America record


“Doctor Who” is back, and just like at Christmas the series will air on BBC America on the same day as its premiere in the United Kingdom.

In its launch night, “The Impossible Astronaut” struggled to pull in viewers in the United Kingdom and settled on approximately 6.5 million viewers. While that figure is still an impressive result for the series (matching the ratings for “Torchwood’s” third season), the figure is 1.2 million down from the fifth season premiere last year.

According to BBC News, the overall viewership is likely to increase once BBC iPlayer numbers are collated and the low turnout for the first episode is being blamed on summer weather forecast over the Easter weekend.

However, the series received a much different reception across the Atlantic only a few hours later.

BBC America have confirmed that the launch of the series attracted 1.3 million viewers, snagging the title of BBC America’s most watched broadcast ever.

What previously held the record? “Doctor Who’s” fifth season premiere.

In “The Impossible Astronaut,” the Doctor (Matt Smith) and his time travelling team embarked on a daring mission to the White House to assist President Nixon solve a bizarre and chilling mystery. The episode was also dedicated to former “Doctor Who” companion Elisabeth Sladen who passed away on April 19.

“Doctor Who” airs Saturdays at 6 p.m. BST on BBC One, and then at 8 p.m. ET on BBC America.

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