The first ratings are in for New Year’s Day across the pond, and we know that BBC One had some high hopes for their lineup. The Doctor Who season 12 premiere was an ambitious tribute-of-sorts to James Bond, whereas the first episode of Dracula was an attempt to replicate the success of Sherlock, the last show of its kind from executive producers Mark Gatiss and Steven Moffat.
In the end, neither one of them managed the ratings that we expected going in. Per overnights.tv, the first Doctor Who episode in 365 days generated 4.96 million viewers, the lowest total for an episode in the Jodie Whittaker era. While we expected a significant drop-off from the season 11 premiere (that was the first episode with Whittaker and there was a ton of advance buzz), we did anticipate that there would be some hype for the show after such a long stretch of time off the air.
If there is a silver lining to these ratings, it’s that they do still represent an increase over the first episode to Peter Capaldi’s second season as The Doctor. With that in mind, you can argue that this show is at least faring a little bit better than the most recent regeneration cycle. We’ll see how things shift when Doctor Who returns to its standard timeslot on Sunday — it may have had lower ratings this time due to New Year’s Day falling on a Wednesday.
Want some more Doctor Who discussion now? Then watch our take on this past installment at the bottom of this article! Once you do that, remember to subscribe to CarterMatt on YouTube and then also view our show playlist. We’ll have more coming throughout the season.
As for the big Dracula premiere, the 90-minute episode generated just 3.6 million viewers. This is far below any episode of Sherlock, though maybe that was an unfair comparison from the start since we’re talking here about one of the biggest literary properties in all of the United Kingdom. We never imagined that it would reach that level, but our hope was a premiere in the 5 million range. A part of the problem here may just be vampire overkill, with this genre largely played out at the moment.
What do you think about the Doctor Who season 12 premiere ratings?
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