Doctor Who Plummets To Worst Ratings Since 1986


Doctor Who has suffered yet another blow to its ratings, this time marking last Sunday’s episode as the least viewed installment of the show since 1986.

Jodie Whittaker’s second run as the Thirteenth Doctor hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing, especially considering the fact that many fans are unhappy with Chris Chibnall’s decisions in regards to narrative and lore. Despite offering lots of unexpected twists and surprise reveals, season 12 is still suffering from low ratings, and the sixth episode, titled “Praxeus,” marked the show’s least viewed outing in more than 30 years.

In fact, after losing almost a million viewers with the second and third episodesDoctor Who managed an uptick in numbers owing to Jo Martin’s surprise reveal as a secret Doctor, but that alone wasn’t enough to have longtime fans of the show tune in to watch the rest of the adventures. As such, last week’s episode only managed to rope in 3.97 million viewers, which is a 240,000 loss from the previous one.

This continuous nosedive isn’t a good sign for the series. When the season premiere opened to 4.96 million viewers, which was a staggering 2 million loss since last year’s special episode, “Resolution,” we assumed that Chibnall would somehow manage to redeem the show by introducing another overarching narrative like his predecessors, but that obviously hasn’t worked out since Doctor Who continues to plummet with each episode.

Here’s the list of season 12’s overnight figures so far:

  • “Spyfall, Part 1”: 4.9 million
  • “Spyfall, Part 2”: 4.6 million
  • “Orphan 55”: 4.19 million
  • “Nikola Tesla’s Night of Terror”: 4.04 million
  • “Fugitive of the Judoon”: 4.21 million
  • “Praxeus”: 3.97 million

Obviously, this could have many implications for the series, but the simplest explanation is that many people are unhappy with the current season, and a lot of them have been vocal about their criticisms of Whittaker and Chibnall. Though considering the fact that the showrunner doesn’t really care about reviews, diehard fans will have to somehow adapt to these changes as Doctor Who builds to this season’s grand finale in the next couple of weeks.