The “Doctor Who” Christmas special delivered record-high ratings for BBC America, and capped a record breaking year for the network.
“Doctor Who: The Time of the Doctor” drew 2.47 million total viewers, up 72 percent from last year’s episode. The special was Matt Smith’s finale as The Doctor, and featured the regeneration into the next Doctor, played by Peter Capaldi.
“Doctor Who” was not the only success for the network. The fourth quarter of 2013 was BBC America’s highest-rated quarter of all time. “Orphan Black,” “Broadchurch” and “In The Flesh” ranked in many 2013 best-of television lists, the cable channel said in a release. “Orphan Black” in particular garnered a Golden Globe nomination, with lead Tatiana Maslany earning a Critics’ Choice Award, a Television Critics Association Award and a Young Hollywood Award.
Overall, the network tied with AMC for the most nominations for a basic cable network.
The network also made strong inroads into social media. According to a news release, BBC America was the first network to offer in-tweet branded videos synced to an entertainment television series (for “Top Gear”). They also sponsored a Twitter Amplify campaign around the “Doctor Who” 50th anniversary special, and reportedly have planned new campaigns in 2014.
To maintain their momentum, BBC America has a strong slate of upcoming 2014 premieres, including a miniseries about the creator of James Bond, Ian Fleming. “Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond” debuts Jan. 29, followed by the second season premiere of “Ripper Street” on Feb. 22 and the return of “Orphan Black” on April 19. New seasons of “Wild Things of Dominic Monaghan,” “In The Flesh,” “Top Gear,” “Atlantis” and “The Graham Norton Show” will be aired later in the year.