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Published on April 26th, 2011 | by Christian Cawley

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Impossible Ratings on BBC America

While UK journalists scratch their heads and try to understand how a show can have a lower audience than 12 months ago but still have a huge share (don’t worry, UK fans, all is well) BBC America’s broadcast of The Impossible Astronaut on Saturday evening set a record for the cable network!

1.28 million viewers tuned into the series’ first U.S.-filmed episode, according to Nielsen, with adults in the 25-54 demographic apportioning a 0.92 rating. This might not seem a lot, but BBC America is a subscription-based cable channel. As such gaining an increase over the course of 12 months is pretty good.

Doctor Who is one of BBC America’s prime shows, with the previous record set by The Eleventh Hour in April 2010. The Impossible Astronaut was 71,000 viewers higher than Matt Smith’s introduction episode, however.

This is obvsiouly superb news, and let’s hope it continues into Day of the Moon, which airs this Saturday.

Now this can be in no small part to the excellent attitude of BBC America in reaching out to websites like Kasterborous to assist them with promotion of the show in the USA. We’d like to say a massive “well done!” to Rory (the other one) and his colleagues at the BBC America PR team and wish them all the best with the rest of the season!

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About the Author

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A long-term Doctor Who fan, Christian grew up watching the show and has early memories of the Graham Williams era. His favourite stories are Inferno, The Seeds of Doom and Human Nature (although The Empty Child, Blink and Utopia all come close). When he’s not bossing around the news team, Christian is a freelance writer specialising in mobile technology and domestic computing, and enjoys classic rock, cooking and spending time in the countryside with his wife and young children. You can find him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.




2 Responses to Impossible Ratings on BBC America

  1. avatar Rick says:

    Another nice point is that BBC America has actually reduced the number of those on screen pop up ads, which have been the bane of our existence over here. this was the first time since the new series came back that I did not download it. I watched the first run on BBCA. I could seriously do *without* those insider documentaries during the show, though. At least wait and do that like a Confidential afterward. I may have to just wait and watch the On Demand version a day later but they have made the attempt to make the viewing more palatable and I appreciate it.

  2. avatar nel says:

    yes, no popups is always a good thing. though, and i never thought i’d say this, being a DW fan, by the time the premiere aired i was starting to get a bit annoyed at the relentless BBCA promotion. And that countdown clock in the corner of the screen was as annoying as the pop-ups.

    I’m curious though as to how many were new Who viewers, given that at least one reason for the higher ratings was the same day transmission, and that BBCA is free to promote the show to its hearts content now that it has rights to air full seasons first-run. After all, the first time it got its highest ratings ever was for the End of Time, and that was without the year-long PR push.

    anyway just makes me curious if there are brand new viewers or just those of us who kept the faith, downloading online while DW was in the wasteland of Syfy or months delays on BBCA, coming out of the woodwork to watch it first-run on TV for the first time. It was sort of an odd experience as a US viewer when i realized i wasn’t watching it on my PC as usual! ;)

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