'Doctor Who' Season Opens Bigger In 18-49s

BBC America said Saturday night's return of time-traveling sci-fi series Doctor Who attracted 2 million total viewers, including 1.1 million in the adults 18-49 category, on a live-plus-same-day Nielsen accounting. That's down from 2.2 million who watched the season 8 premiere a year ago -- which was the first episode featuring Peter Capaldi as The Doctor and was touted as the series's best-ever season premiere on BBCA -- but was up from 1 million in the 18-49 demo, the network stressed. The latest episode also performed better in social engagement than the season opener a year ago (see this report on Saturday night's Nielsen Twitter TV ratings). 

In the 18-49 age bracket, the Doctor Who episode ("The Magician's Apprentice") trailed only college football on ESPN and Univision's finale of Sábado Gigante on Saturday in its timeslot, the network said. It said the episode topped all previous Doctor Who season premieres on BBC America in the demo and, using that 18-49 yardstick, nearly doubled the season-eight average. Compared with all of season eight, the season-nine premiere was up 186% in the 12-24 age group and up 161% among 18- to 34-year-olds. The full episode is now available for viewing on YouTube.