Today In DOCTOR WHO History: October 22nd - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

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Today In DOCTOR WHO History: October 22nd

...And you say it's set in Coal Hill School and it's full of teenage angst? Why, Jack? Why would they do that?

Click on any red text to read our full retrospectives/reviews for that episode. All viewing figures are for UK premiere broadcasts unless otherwise stated.

October 22nd
In our daily round-ups of the episodes of Doctor Who which received their debut broadcast throughout the show's long history we usually start with just that - the actual Doctor Who episodes. But as October 22nd is an important day for the world of Doctor Who we're mixing it up. So...

Let me share a little tale with y'all.

The year was 2006, and BBC Wales had won the use of a helicopter for an evening in a local Variety Club Sunshine Coach fund raising raffle. Naturally they decided to fly over Cardiff all night filming aerial views, but then found themselves left with a bit of a problem.

Not knowing what to do they turned to Russell T Davies who wrote a little show called 'Cardiff By Night' solely to accommodate the 11 hours of footage they had. When they showed the result to the Director General of the BBC he loved it, but suggested that RTD include 86% more swearing and shagging (two of the DG's favourite things). The result was Torchwood.

True story that. Perhaps.

Yes, Doctor Who's post-watershed spin-off got underway on October 22nd 2006 with a double bill of episodes, which managed to deliver on all three counts - there was Cardiff by night, there was swearing and there was shagging. Really, what more could a Doctor Who fan want?

Everything Changes was broadcast at 9:00pm and watched by 2.52 million viewers, pretty much everyone stayed around for Day One which began at 9:52pm and was watched by 2.50 million viewers.

And there are more Doctor Who spin-off adventures for you to come, although this time with substantially less Cardiff/swearing/shagging (although you should see the outtakes! oh my!!), as we have two stories from The Sarah Jane Adventures. From season one, on this day in 2007, 1.6 million were tuned into part one of Warriors of Kudlak, then two years later episode one of The Mad Woman in the Attic drew an audience of 0.75 million.

BUT WAIT. There's even more...

So how many spin-offs has Doctor Who had? You can count them on one hand with a finger (or thumb) to spare! But what are the odds that two of them would end up debuting on exactly the same day albeit 10 years apart? Well I don't know the odds but it happened and it's history so no-ones gonna bet against it now, but still, spooky, eh? Like someone at the BBC planned it or something. Anyhow, 10am (10am!!) on Saturday October 22nd 2016 the opening two episodes of Class. For Tonight We Might Die and The Coach With The Dragon Tattoo premiered on BBC Three's now online only service.

How'd they fare, I hear you ask? Dunno. Sorry. The BBC never actually released any official viewing figures for streaming ratings, but we do know that Class had poorer than expected ratings, failing to make the BBC iPlayer Top 20 in its first seven weeks, and failing to secure over a million viewers at any point when repeated on BBC One in a late-evening slot across January and February 2017.

So that's why it never came back.

Oh, and also because it wasn't very good. That too.

But let's get to the parent show shall we...

Episodes Broadcast
Back in 1966 it was almost time to call time on the first Time Lord. Part three of The Tenth Planet was broadcast at 5.54pm and watched by 7.6 million viewers. Then, in 1977, it's Fourth Doctor time with part four of The Invisible Enemy, which had an audience of 8.3 of Britain's finest.

Born October 22nd 1938, it's a very happy birthday to Derek Jacobi who played Professor Yana/the Master in the Tenth Doctor adventure Utopia.

Join us again tomorrow for another round-up of the episodes broadcast, the spin-offs aired, the special events, the birthday's celebrated and anything else of note that went down on this day in Doctor Who history.

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