TV Ratings: Red or Black? beats Doctor Who in Saturday 7pm slot

Simon Cowell's shows help ITV1 dominate prime time viewing figures

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Simon Cowell’s high concept ITV1 game show, Red or Black, fought off stiff competition from BBC1’s Doctor Who last night to narrowly win the Saturday 7pm time-slot, according to early overnight viewing figures.

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The first part of Red or Black (7pm to 8:15pm) averaged 6.4 million viewers on ITV1, a 31 per cent share of all viewers watching British television at that time.  A further 200,000 watched on ITV1 +1. 

Meanwhile, Doctor Who (7pm to 7:45pm) managed an average audience of 5.5 million (a 26 per cent share) on BBC1 for Night Terrors, an episode penned by Mark Gatiss.

It is understood Red or Black only marginally beat Doctor Who in the 45 minutes the programmes were head to head, with the ITV1 just 300,000 viewers ahead, picking up numbers after Night Terrors ended in the 30 minutes before the X Factor began.

Red or Black enjoyed an increased audience for its second show of the night (9:15pm to 9:45pm) as an average audience of 7 million viewers (a 31 per cent share) tuned in to see Nathan Hageman (pictured above) become a millionaire at the spin of a wheel.  Another 200,000 watched on ITV1 +1.

The second installment of Cowell’s new game show almost certainly enjoyed an inherited audience boost from another of the media mogul’s shows, The X Factor (8:15pm to 9:15pm), which averaged a very respectable 10.5 million viewers on ITV1. 

Later on ITV1, Jonathan Ross’s return to chatshow presenting (9:45pm to 10:45pm) attracted an average audience of 3.9 million viewers, with a further 400,000 tuning in to see Wossy interview Sarah Jessica Parker and Lewis Hamilton on ITV1 +1.

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Overnight figures do not include on-demand views from BBC iPlayer and ITV Player or +7 time-shift data.