We’re a little less (probably) than a year away from transmission, but the rumour mill is already churning, as it’s being mooted that Doctor Who might move back to Saturday nights for its next series.
Since 2005, the main series (not including specials) have aired on Saturdays, but for Series 11, that shifted to Sunday evenings. And while ratings saw an initial lift, each subsequent episode saw a decline – apart from a small increase for the finale, The Battle of Ranskoor Av Kolos – which is apparently the reason the programme could change slot again. A mysterious “insider” says:
“There is a feeling families are freer to watch on Saturdays than Sundays, when kids have homework to finish. While the show rated well overall, there were concerns over the decline in audience.”
We should just note that the idea kids aren’t watching because they’re doing homework is nonsense and flies in the face of every bit of PR generated by the BBC of late about how Sundays have proved a success.
We’re not commenting on why the ratings declined: everyone has their own theories.
Now, this rumour comes from The Mirror, and yes, many will be quick to point out that such tabloids are often wrong. The thing is, The Mirror has quite a history of being right. They were right about Peter Capaldi leaving, for instance, as well as the 2016 gap year, and indeed, that Series 12 won’t air until 2020.
So if the BBC has a leak, that person seems to have contacts at The Mirror.
Of course, this might all come to nothing. Doctor Who might remain on Sunday nights for the foreseeable future (and we’d argue that this is probably the best way of maintaining an audience: Saturdays often saw the series’ time slot change, and at least on Sundays, there was little competition). But we’ll just have to wait and see.
What are your thoughts, dear DWC readers? Fact or fiction? A good move or ill?