Doctor Who, the world’s longest-running science-fiction show, has been branded too sexy by viewers who saw the first episode of a new series over the weekend.
The Eleventh Hour, the first of 13 episodes of the new series of Doctor Who and shown on Saturday evening on BBC1, was criticized for its perceived sexual content.
The new Doctor (played by Matt Smith) has a new companion, Amy Pond (played by Karen Gillan), who was seen speaking candidly about her kissogram repertoire, after being seen dressed up as a policewoman with a very short skirt and nylon stockings.
The ultra-conservative Daily Telegraphquotes one viewer as saying: “Why did she dress up as a tarty policewoman? Surely that’s not fitting for a family show.” Another is quoted as saying: “They’ve completely demeaned Doctor Who by replacing good episode stories with slutty girls.”
The Telegraph says Amy watched at one point in the story as the Doctor completely undressed in front of her, before donning his new outfit of a tweed suit and bow tie.
However, viewers saw only brief glimpses of actor Matt Smith’s torso, and nothing below the waist.
“Gillan defended the decision to dress in a mini skirt,” says the Telegraph, “saying: ‘I tried on different things and, when it came to the short skirts, I just thought it was right. I mean, look down most high streets and girls Amy’s age wear that. It’s not that weird.’”
In spite of the complaints of a few, the episode scored an 85 “appreciation index” score (or AI score), making it one of the most enjoyed programmes of the weekend, and was watched by around 8 million viewers.
Its AI score was higher than first episodes by previous Doctors, with the tenth, David Tennant, scoring 84 and ninth Doctor Christopher Ecclestone scoring 74.
As well as being the highest-rated show of the Easter weekend, it was the eighth highest of the whole week.
Unofficial overnight figures showed that The Eleventh Hour was watched by 7.7 million viewers on BBC1 with another 0.3 million watching on BBC HD (high definition), giving a total audience of 8.0 million viewers. Official figures have not yet been released.