BBC America said the Saturday-night season premiere of Doctor Who -- starring Peter Capaldi as the newest Doctor -- set a record for a season opener of the classic sci-fi series, which is starting its eighth season since the franchise was rebooted.
The network said 2.2 million viewers tuned in for the 8:15 p.m. ET premiere of the episode, titled "Deep Breath," including more than 1 million in the adults ages 25-54 demographic. When two replays were counted in, the number of total viewers rose to 2.58 million, which was the highest-rated season premiere ever on BBC America, per the network. The previous bests among premieres were for the second half of season seven in the 25-54 demo (737,000) and for the first half of season seven among total viewers (1.55 million), the network said.
Intruders, a new series that debuted after Doctor Who at 10 p.m., posted 796,000 total viewers, rising above 1 million when two replays were added in. The paranormal thriller drew 352,000 adults ages 25-54 and the premiere was on par with the season-one premiere of Orphan Black. And a Doctor Who post show, After Who Live, at 11 p.m. delivered 408,000 total viewers and 205,000 in the 25-54 bracket.
Overall, this was BBC America's highest-rated Saturday night ever, the network said.
The network claimed the No. 1 spot among cable networks among the 25-54 demographic between 8 and 10 p.m. and said Capaldi's heavily promoted full debut made BBC America the top TV network on Twitter and Tumblr for the day.
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