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Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

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Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 13:59

So this was an interesting discussion I was having with my friends the other day. And it is actually quite an interesting topic when you look at it.

So we all know Doctor Who has never been a show JUST for kids, but is it even for kids at all anymore? Sure the show doesn't contain graphic imagery or swear words, but that doesn't automatically make it universal.

Now this is in no way intended to be critical, in fact I actually think it's better to focus the show more on adult viewers as it allows them to make it more realistic. 

In last year's series, specifically the episode "Thin Ice", two major issues were touched upon: child death and racism. Yes these are things that are happening all over the world, but why do younger audiences need to find out about them through a sci-fi tv show? Considering that in the exact same story there's a Lochness-style monster, it kind of takes way the effect of it all and brings back about the fiction element, making it less effective on the younger audience.

Take a look at the upcoming series. The main actress, Jodie Whittaker isn't one that the younger audience will know. In fact the majority of them probably won't even remember her name. Her credits include Broadchurch, Attack the Block, Black Mirror and many other works. Having seen quite a lot of her roles in Film & TV, she is definitely used to working in more "mature" storylines, and if Doctor Who is still meant to be a family-friendly show, it will be a massive change for her career. 

Another example, Bradley Walsh. Yes, he is one that younger audiences probably will recognise from the Chase, even if it's just on the TV in the background, they're bound to know him. However that's the problem, the Chase is a gameshow. The younger audience won't know him as the brilliant actor which he is. I would be very surprised if younger audiences watch Coronation Street and/or Law & Order UK. Therefore, seeing him as a gameshow host, it will be difficult for the younger audience to view him as a character.

I know it sounds like I'm just rambling on pointlessly, and in fairness maybe I am, but when I made these points to my friends, even they had considered what I was saying and that to a degree maybe I was "on to something". What do you think?
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Admin-Emperor Dalek on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 15:08

Good points. You reminded me of the back cover on the original Three Doctors novel, says something like A childrens programme that adults adore.
Previous Doctors were not that well know to kids, Peter Capaldi was best known for his part in Malcolm Tucker the foul mouhted director of Communications for the Government. William Hartnell was known for the Army Game, Tom Baker had done a few movies, like Rasputin the mad monk for Hammer films, not very child friendly.
I think WHO is going to be aimed at teens.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 15:14

Thanks Admin. I think you're right about teens being the target audience, most fans who grew up with the revived series (such as myself) are now in that age range, and since Doctor Who is losing its appeal and ratings, there definitely aren't as many new fans nowadays.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Admin-Emperor Dalek on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 15:35

I think there will be some because of a female Doctor. Moffat ailenated the audience with plot holds and stories not having an explantion for years to come.
Doctor Who can appeal to everyone. In the 70's from 1975 Phillip Hinchcliffe and Robert Holmes wanted to attract 12+ year olds, hence the more horror type stories.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 16:56

Even with a female doctor, I think it's getting increasingly more difficult for the BBC to find a balance to satisfy all audiences.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Admin-Emperor Dalek on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 19:29

All the BBC can think about making is dectective dramas, nature programmes and reality crap.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Sun 28 Jan 2018 - 20:50

Even more evidence that the show's target audience is being redirected. The BBC are producing a lot more "mature" shows now, Doctor Who should become one of those. 

I still agree with the point that since the audience who joined with the revived series are now in their teen years, it's probably time to add more mature elements to the show. Not necessarily full-Walking Dead style, just enough to remind us that we're not watching CBBC.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Dalek on Mon 29 Jan 2018 - 17:41

This is a very interesting topic, I agree it's become more mature recently and I think it's for the better as, like you, I'm a teen who grew up with Tennant and I doubt I'd still be into it if the Smith and Capaldi eras continued in the same vein. If Who was still aimed at children, it probably wouldn't be on any more-generally, kids aren't into TV as much due to the amount of child based internet equipment available, which is why CBBC and CBeebies are a bit more generic now than they were in my day, as they have to try and cater to everybody, they can't do things like SJA or Young Dracula, only catering to sci-fi, drama, horror fans etc. as there isn't as much demand, they want shorter cartoons and reality, etc.

(Sorry I've not explained my point that well but hope you get the gist).
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Mon 29 Jan 2018 - 19:55

Dalek wrote:This is a very interesting topic, I agree it's become more mature recently and I think it's for the better as, like you, I'm a teen who grew up with Tennant and I doubt I'd still be into it if the Smith and Capaldi eras continued in the same vein. If Who was still aimed at children, it probably wouldn't be on any more-generally, kids aren't into TV as much due to the amount of child based internet equipment available, which is why CBBC and CBeebies are a bit more generic now than they were in my day, as they have to try and cater to everybody, they can't do things like SJA or Young Dracula, only catering to sci-fi, drama, horror fans etc. as there isn't as much demand, they want shorter cartoons and reality, etc.

(Sorry I've not explained my point that well but hope you get the gist).
Valid point actually. Definitely relatable considering I too grew up with the Tennant era. In fact I remember watching Army of Ghosts for the first several hundred times  Razz .

I think the increase in gaming consoles is affecting it as well. Hear me out, think about all the consoles there are now: Xbox One S, PS4 Pro, Nintendo Switch, even PC (Apologies if some of those names were wrong; believe it or not I'm not actually a typical modern-day teenage gamer), and then compare it to 2005-06, where consoles are a lot less advanced. The increase between then and now has really redirected younger generations' attention I think. Perhaps another reason the BBC could use to justify the quiet redirecting of the Who audience.

Considering Torchwood and Class both got 15-rated, maybe Doctor Who should increase to that as well? Would allow them to explore many more stories, and make them more realistic too. Obviously with teenagers being taught more advanced History topics, it would allow the new series to explore more historical events that we all know of; the most prominent one being the rumoured Rosa Parks' bus boycott story (I must say, I really do adore this event - people standing up for their rights, and I would be delighted if it was incorporated into the Whoniverse).
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Admin-Emperor Dalek on Mon 29 Jan 2018 - 22:59

You can make the show for kids but in a way it appeals to adults. I am a fan of Lego Star Wars films & the Superhero one as they have a lot of jokes that only adults would get.
Sarah Jane Adventures was for kids & teens but so many adults watched it, it had that appeal.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Tue 30 Jan 2018 - 7:05

I don't think they can afford to tone it up just slightly considering the 3-12 audience is quickly diminishing.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by Admin-Emperor Dalek on Tue 30 Jan 2018 - 9:41

What is it about Game of Thrones that appeals to so many, young & old. I have never watched it.
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Re: Is Doctor Who's target audience being redirected?

Post by LastOfTheSonics on Tue 30 Jan 2018 - 18:01

Admin-Emperor Dalek wrote:What is it about Game of Thrones that appeals to so many, young & old. I have never watched it.
I've absolutely no idea. A few of my friends watch it, I don't. I do watch some mature shows, I think the appeal is the creative and deep storylines.
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