Thursday’s instalment of The Sarah Jane Adventures received a hefty boost in audience figures in anticipation of David Tennant’s (last minute) appearance in the first episode of The Wedding of Sarah Jane Smith, with a massive 1.3 million viewers tuning in – around 10% of the available audience according to overnight figures.

With an audience Appreciation Index score of 87, the first part of the adventure fared very well indeed; only to be pipped by the second instalment on Friday which saw an increase in AI (89) but a slight dip in audience with 1.1 million tuning in. This again was around 10% of the available audience and the most watched broadcast in the 4.35 – 5.00pm timeslot.

Overnight figures are largely estimates, with final figures taking into account delayed viewing methods released a couple of weeks after a show is broadcast.

Meanwhile critical response has been largely favourable, no doubt buoyed by David Tennant’s final scenes as the Doctor (this episode was recorded after shooting on the Tenth Doctor’s era of Doctor Who had wrapped), with Digital Spy awarding the episode 4 stars. Most of their praise was heaped upon guest star Nigel Havers (playing Sarah’s intended, Peter Dalton) however, who was barely used until the final moments.

The twist that revealed Dalton was effectively a dead man walking allowed much-loved actor Havers to flex his thespian muscles, showing that the character was more of a victim than a villain. Move over Cheryl Cole, here’s a bona fide British national treasure!

(Figures via GallifreyNewsBase)