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article imageDoctor Who episode most recorded of all time

By Mathew Wace Peck     May 21, 2011 in Entertainment
The opening episode of the current series of Doctor Who has become the UK's most-recorded television programme of all time.
The episode in question – The Impossible Astronaut by Steven Moffat – was first broadcast in the UK on 23 April this year, and achieved a total viewing audience of 8.86 million.
However, it has now emerged that more than four million viewers opted to "time shift" the episode by recording it to watch at a later time. According to Kantar Media: "A colossal 4.1m viewers chose to 'time shift' the show by watching a recording of the show either later that day (called VOSDAL – Viewing On Same Day As Live – by the TV industry) or in the following week."
Year on year, since its return to TV screens in 2005, Doctor Who has continued to gain in popularity – not just in the UK, where it is produced, but in other countries, too. In the past, the 48-year-old science-fiction drama series was often thought of as niche television, but is now regarded as "must see" by a much wider audience, which would seem to explain the recording-for-later-viewing figures.
Speaking about the figures, Kantar's Commercial Director, Dalia Gereis, said: "Increasingly viewers are using their own 'time travel' abilities to watch TV shows when they want them […] Given that these figures do not include data from online catch up services like BBC iPlayer and ITVplayer, it is clear that judging a show's performance just by looking at it's overnight viewing figures is unlikely to give the full picture."
According to Broadband TV News, "The Doctor Who episode beats the previous highest recorded [programme], the Christmas Day showing of [the Matt Lucas and David Walliams] comedy Come Fly with Me" of 3.29 million.
The current series of Doctor Who continues this weekend in the UK, US and Canada, with The Rebel Flesh, the first of a two-part story by Matthew Graham (Life on Mars). It stars Matt Smith, as the Doctor, and Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill, as Amy and Rory Pond.
More about Doctor Who, the impossible astronaut, day of the moon, Matt smith, BBC
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