From The Doctor Who Cuttings Archive
Doctor Who Cuttings Archive
Jump to: navigation, search
The Times coverage of series 1 date
For 25 years, Doctor Who's creaky charm captivated a nation 2005-03-06
The thrill of the chaise 2005-03-06
Elevate, exterminate: Daleks conquer stairs in new Doctor Who 2005-03-06
The Doctor faces his newest adversary ... the Canadians 2005-03-09
Doctor Who puts accent on a new look to old show 2005-03-10
Forgotten timelord 2005-03-11
The Return of the Time Lord 2005-03-18
Billie the kid 2005-03-19
Piper at the gates of dim 2005-03-21
The Whys and Whats of Who 2005-03-26
Doctor faces a high-tech challenge 2005-03-26
Blonde Bombshell 2005-03-26
Oh Lord, he's still stuck in the past 2005-03-27
Just what the Doctor ordered 2005-03-28
Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor 2005-03-28
The Right Medicine? 2005-03-30
He saves the world and BBC, then Dr Who quits 2005-03-31
Casanova actor seduces the Doctor Who casting agent 2005-04-01
Dr Who too scary for young children 2005-04-14
BBC climbs down over Doctor Who fear factor 2005-04-15
Casanova regenerates into the new Doctor Who 2005-04-16
Who's Afraid? 2005-04-19
Nigel Andrew's View 2005-04-23
Rovers' returns 2005-04-29
Back behind the sofa — it's a Dalek 2005-05-02
Wanted: One Time Lord, Tardis optional 2005-05-06
Let's not be beastly to Daleks 2005-05-16
An absurd ruling takes the fun out of Doctor Who 2005-05-16
Unsuitable for children 2005-05-17
The censors ... will ... exterminate 2005-05-17
Doctor treated 2005-05-19
Legislate! Legislate! 2005-05-19
BBC advises Doctor Who fans to stay offline until the bitter end 2005-06-14
Sought, located 2005-06-15
The Doctor's fate is sealed with a first kiss — or two 2005-06-16
I'm prepared for my role as BBC Man, but how to fit Big Specs into the new Dr Who? 2005-06-25

Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor (2005)

2005-03-28 Times b.jpg


THE £10 million gamble that the BBC took on reviving Doctor Who appears to have paid off: more than ten million of us tuned in to see the Time Lord rematerialise.

BBC One beat off ITV in one of the fiercest Saturday night ratings battles for years. While Doctor Who got a peak viewership of 105 million, Ant & Dec's Saturday Night Takeaway on ITV1 — featuring David Beckham — pulled in only 85 million. Doctor Who was seen by 44 per cent of those watching television at 7pm.

Doctor Who was dropped by the BBC in 1989, when viewing figures fell to four million. But Christopher Eccleston, the ninth incarnation of the Doctor, opened with the same number of viewers hooked by Tom Baker during the series' high-watermark in the 1970s.

A further one million are believed to have recorded the programme or watched it with others at Doctor Who parties. As soon as the opening episode was over, thousands of fans gave their verdict in internet chatrooms. The Outpost Gallifrey site recorded 1,200 simultaneous hits.

Eccleston's performance was in general approved of, but some complained about the absence of the traditional cliffhanger ending.

A typical message on the BBC's Doctor Who board was posted by Harry "The Doctor" Hayfield, Ffos-y-ffin, Wales, who wrote "Lots of proper drama intermingled with just the right amount of science, history.. and comedy. Now, where can I get one of those gobbling wheelie bins?"

A ratings failure was unthinkable for the BBC, which spent more than £1 million promoting the programme through television trailers and advertising hoardings. After struggling against ITV1's Pop Idol for several years, BBC One has deployed two blockbusters on Saturdays. Strictly Dance Fever is a spin-off from last year's Strictly Come Dancing, which has been bought by the Disney-owned ABC network for the United States. It was the surprise hit of 2004, attracting II million viewers for the final. Strictly Dance Fever, presented by Graham Norton, also began on Saturday night.

ITV1 joined the fray with a Stars In Their Eyes live final and Celebrity Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?, but could not break BBC One's ratings lead.

The ten million-strong audience almost doubled BBC One's average Saturday-night figure this year and gives Peter Fincham, its new Controller, a boost.

Doctor Who was pulled from the schedules in 1985 by Michael Grade, who is now chairman of the BBC. It was revived by its international sales: the new series begins in Canada and New Zealand next month. A TV-movie version of Dr Who, starring Paul McGann, drew 9.1 million in 1996. Saturday's audience also dwarfed figures for the last series of the show in 1989, when Sylvester McCoy, the seventh Doctor, won an average 4.2 million viewers. ITV said that it was untroubled by the defeat, claiming that comparisons between an entertainment show and a big-budget drama were unfair. A spokesman said "The average audience of 72 million for Ant and Dec was up on the show last Easter Saturday, which got 7.1 million viewers. We have no complaints."

Saturday, with an England-Northern Ireland World-Cup qualifying football match in the early evening, was a scheduler's dream. But the return of the Daleks promises to retain viewer interest in Doctor Who.

Is Dr Who the way forward for the BBC/ Send your e-mails to


• 2005 season (Christopher Eccleston) 10.5m viewers

• 1996 (Paul McGann film) 9.1m

• 1989 (Sylvester McCoy) 4.2m

• 1974-81 (Tom Baker) 10m average

• 1963-66 (William Hartnell) 4m rising to 1 million with Daleks

• Peak audience 16m 1979 during technicians' strike

• First episode was aired on BBC, November 23, 1963 More than 600 episodes, 150 stories and three films

• More than 110 million watch series in 65 countries

Disclaimer: These citations are created on-the-fly using primitive parsing techniques. You should double-check all citations. Send feedback to

  • APA 6th ed.: Sherwin, Adam (2005-03-28). Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor. The Times p. 9.
  • MLA 7th ed.: Sherwin, Adam. "Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor." The Times [add city] 2005-03-28, 9. Print.
  • Chicago 15th ed.: Sherwin, Adam. "Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor." The Times, edition, sec., 2005-03-28
  • Turabian: Sherwin, Adam. "Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor." The Times, 2005-03-28, section, 9 edition.
  • Wikipedia (this article): <ref>{{cite news| title=Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor | url= | work=The Times | pages=9 | date=2005-03-28 | via=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=24 May 2019 }}</ref>
  • Wikipedia (this page): <ref>{{cite web | title=Who's the daddy as 10m find time to see the Doctor | url= | work=Doctor Who Cuttings Archive | accessdate=24 May 2019}}</ref>